Official Washington loves departing Defense Secretary Robert Gates; politicians and pundits alike hang on his every word, applauding his “candor” and praising his “courageous” spending cuts. But military budget expert Winslow T. Wheeler says Gates’s record doesn’t match his press clippings.
The U.S. government has finally released the full Pentagon Papers describing how the American people were misled into the Vietnam War. The declassification comes four decades after most of the document was leaked by Pentagon insider Daniel Ellsberg, who today says similar deceptions are enabling wars in Afghanistan and elsewhere.
In protests from the Middle East to the American Midwest, people are confronting the question of whether societies should be organized for the benefit of the broad population or the wealthy elites. That question is being expressed perhaps most sharply in protests spreading across Europe, including Spain, reports Pablo Ouziel.
Exclusive: The American neocons are again on the upswing as they undercut peace initiatives from the Obama administration and gain Republican support for maintaining massive Pentagon spending, in exchange for limiting senior citizens’ access to Medicare. As Robert Parry reports, the neocons can now see the light at the end of the tunnel for their restoration…
As the ice caps melt and wars continue to kill, the U.S. news media remains obsessed with sex scandals, such as Rep. Anthony Weiner tweeting lewd photos of himself. But this persistent moral outrage is its own strange voyeurism, not just a distraction from true crises but a crisis of American hypocrisy, as poet Phil Rockstroh observes.
As a current article of political faith, Republican leaders decry the science on global warming as ”junk” or a left-wing conspiracy. Even as temperatures rise around the planet and new weather patterns threaten food supplies, the GOP and its right-wing alllies refuse to face the frightening new reality, as Michael Winship notes.
By embracing false or unproven allegations about foreign adversaries, U.S. policymakers may believe they are looking tough or pleasing some important constituent group. But they are also creating a situation that can get out of hand and get lots of people killed, as Lawrence Davidson notes is happening now with Iran over its nuclear program.
Even as another potential Great Depression looms, the U.S. political/media system seems incapable of addressing the crisis and devising coherent answers. Instead, the old partisan and lobbying games dominate the political world and obsession with trivia commands the news media’s focus, Danny Schechter writes.
Exclusive: The looming U.S. defeats in Iraq and Afghanistan represent a threat to the political fortunes of America’s neocons — if they get blamed for the disasters. However, if they can hang the failures around President Obama’s neck, the two lost wars might help bring the neocons back to power as early as 2013, writes Robert Parry.
Secret political donations threaten to inundate Campaign 2012 to flood levels that would make the Watergate slush funds look like kiddy pools. In this guest essay, Michael Winship explains how political scandals – big and small – trace back to money in politics.