Religion

Making Iran the Ultimate Enemy

Iranian women attending a speech by Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. (Iranian government photo)

The determination of U.S. neocons and Israeli politicians to make Iran and its allies the great evils in the Middle East has prevented any rational U.S. policy toward the region, even to the point of facilitating possible victories by Sunni extremists in Syria and Iraq, as Professor Seyed Mohammad Marandi explains.

More Neocon Hypocrisy in the Mideast

Dennis Ross, who has served as a senior U.S. emissary in the Middle East.

America’s neocons are now advancing their “regime change” goals in the Mideast by tarring “enemies,” like Syria’s largely secular government, as “Islamist” while shielding “friends” like Saudi Arabia despite its intense religiosity, yet one more double standard, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Cheney’s Dangerous Mideast Nostrums

Former Vice President Dick Cheney.

The extremist group ISIS asserts that only brutality will drive Westerners, including Israelis of European descent, from the Middle East. But the flip side of that coin is the demand from the likes of Dick Cheney for ever increasing repression of political Islam, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar notes.

Is Israel Bad for the Jews?

A scene from inside Berlin's Holocaust memorial.

Israel’s new plan for appropriating nearly 1,000 acres of West Bank land for more Jewish housing underscores the trend toward accelerated ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, a strategy that is stirring revulsion in much of the world and tarnishing the noble principles of Judaism, as Lawrence Davidson observes.

Why Israel Is Bad for the Jews

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin "Bibi" Netanyahu

Among the harm that hardline Israeli policies have inflicted on Judaism is the erosion of the traditional Jewish tolerance toward dissent, now virtually forbidden if it involves criticizing Israel, as Danny Schechter learned when he asserted that “Israel is bad for the Jews.”

The Battle for Palestine

French diplomat Francois George-Picot, who along with British colonial officer Mark Sykes drew lines across a Middle East map of the Ottoman Empire after World War I, carving out states with boundaries that are nearly the same as they are today.

Special Report: Americans often focus on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict based on the latest atrocity and which side is to blame. But there is a long and important back story to this conflict which continues to stir up unrest across the Middle East, as retired U.S. diplomat William R. Polk explains.

The Very Un-Christian Nagasaki Bomb

The ruins of the Urakami Christian church in Nagasaki, Japan, as shown in a photograph dated Jan. 7, 1946.

A bitter irony of the Nagasaki atomic bomb was that an all-Christian American crew used the steeple of Japan’s most prominent Christian church as the target for an act of unspeakable barbarism, making a mockery of Christian teachings on non-violence, writes Gary G. Kohls.

How Israel Trashes Judaism

A graphic released by the Israeli Defense Forces to justify Operation Protective Edge's destruction of so many civilian structures in Gaza. (Israeli government graphic)

While Official Washington excuses Israel’s latest slaughter of Gazans as justifiable self-defense, many thoughtful Jews are lamenting how the traditional humanism of Judaism is being despoiled by the brutal practices of the Israeli government, writes Danny Schechter.

Gaza’s Desperate ‘Prison Riot’

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at AIPAC conference in Washington, D.C., on March 4, 2014.

The noble traditions of Judaism – stressing justice for the downtrodden – are being soiled by the endless cruelties that Israel and its current leaders heap on the Palestinians, including the latest slaughter of more than 1,700 Gazans, many of them children, a moral catastrophe addressed by theologian Daniel C. Maguire.

The Periodic Slaughter of Palestinians

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meeting with President Obama on Sept. 1, 2010. (White House photo by Pete Souza)

To the Israeli government, the periodic slaughter of Palestinians in Gaza is called “mowing the grass,” a chore that frequently needs repeating. But this violence is wearing on the world’s conscience, including moral objections from more and more Jews, observes Lawrence Davidson.