Though it’s summer, Official Washington’s factionalism never takes a vacation. The neocons are in workaholic mode, claiming the precautionary closure of some U.S. embassies proves al-Qaeda remains a major threat, despite the fact that no terror attack has actually happened, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar observes.
“Defectors” are among the most unreliable intelligence sources since they have an obvious motive for discrediting their former governments, but still have been allowed outsized roles in whipping up hysteria against Iraq in 2003 and now against Iran, as Gareth Porter reports for Inter Press Service.
From the Archive: For years, “defectors” from “enemy” states have supplied the U.S. government and media with propaganda that is eagerly repeated to justify economic, diplomatic or even military retaliation. That was the case with Iraq in 2003 and now with Iran, as Robert Parry reported in 2012.
The cruel irony of how the United States has addressed post-9/11 war crimes, including President Bush’s invasion of Iraq and his use of torture, is that no major government official has been held accountable, yet whistleblowers have faced harsh reprisals, most notably Pvt. Bradley Manning, as Marjorie Cohn explains.
The resumption of peace talks between Israeli and Palestinian negotiators is widely cheered, but it will result in a positive result only if the genuine interests of both sides are treated fairly, a prospect that is undercut by the pro-Israeli bias of the U.S. government, says Lawrence Davidson.
From the Archive: The purchase of the Washington Post by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos gives the newspaper a chance to shed its neocon ideology and get back to sound journalism. But that will require a housecleaning of top editors and columnists who turned the Post into the neocons’ flagship, like Fred Hiatt, Robert Parry wrote in…
Double standards abound in how the West treats Iran’s nuclear program, most notably the silence about Israel’s undeclared nuclear arsenal. Iran has not built a single bomb and accepts nuclear inspections, yet it is the one confronted with threats of war, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar observes.
On Aug. 6, 1945, the world changed. Though war had plagued humankind for millennia, the U.S. atomic bomb on Hiroshima showed how all life might end, a threat that remains as nuclear-armed states keep their arsenals, thus creating incentives for non-nuclear states to join the doomsday club, as Peter G. Cohen notes.
Hassan Rouhani’s inauguration as Iran’s new president revives hope for resolving the Iranian nuclear dispute, but continued belligerency from the U.S. Congress and Israeli leaders could dash the opportunity – as could American misreading of regional trends, as Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett explain.
After a terrorist attack – like Benghazi or the Boston Marathon – the press, pols and much of the public decry the failure to prevent the violence, but the mood shifts amid disclosures of intrusive means to counter threats. This ambivalence can put government officials in an impossible spot, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.