Religion

Religious Tests of Campaign 2012

Though the United States has a tradition of separating church and state, the 2012 presidential campaign may test the limits of that tolerance. Not only do some Republicans continue to question Barack Obama’s Christianity, but GOP front-runner Mitt Romney is a Mormon and other contenders, such as Sarah Palin, are Christian fundamentalists, as the Rev.…

Is ‘Delegitimizing’ Israel Anti-Semitic?

Israel and its backers are on the political offensive against critics who are putting non-violent pressure on the Likud government of Benjamin Netanyahu to address the legitimate needs of Palestinians and to recognize human rights for all people who live in Israel/Palestine. Israeli defenders equate this “delegitimizing” of Israel with anti-Semitism, but Lawrence Davidson disagrees.

Spirits of Justice Going to Gaza

Exclusive: “The Audacity of Hope” is a boat that will carry Americans through the Mediterranean Sea as part of a small flotilla challenging the Israeli blockade of Gaza, where 1.5 million Palestinians live largely cut off from the world. One of the Americans aboard the ship is former CIA analyst Ray McGovern, who describes some…

Israel’s Jewish Exodus

Hard-line Israelis reject the idea of reasonable compromises for peace, arguing that any significant concessions to Palestinian sovereignty would threaten Israel’s security or the Zionist cause, but Lawrence Davidson notes that demographic trends, including a growing Jewish exodus from Israel, could have far worse consequences.

A Minister Out of Place

Prophets and priests have served rival and often contradictory roles throughout history, with priests officiating at society’s rituals and prophets addressing society’s injustices. Recently, the Rev. Howard Bess found himself in a position to serve both functions.

Netanyahu’s Pyrrhic Victory

Exclusive: In a whirlwind trip to Washington, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu behaved less like a visiting head of state and more like a pro-consul arriving in a conquered land to lecture its titular leader on the limits of his independence and to receive acclaim from subservient lawmakers. But ethics professor Daniel C. Maguire warns…

Taking the Side of the Billionaires

Exclusive: America’s Right pitches itself as populist, taking the side of the common man against “big guv-mint” and “lib-rhul elites,” but its actual policies – from the NFL lockout to Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget – side with the billionaires in what amounts to an escalating class war against the middle class and the poor, Robert…

Cheering Netanyahu’s Intransigence

Exclusive: Republicans and Democrats in Congress leapt to their feet again and again to applaud Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu even as he was challenging the policies of President Barack Obama. Yet, this pro-Israeli solidarity could have harmful consequences for Israel, the Palestinians and the United States, writes Robert Parry.

The Gospel According to Dylan

Bob Dylan, the great poet/songwriter, turned 70 this week, prompting remembrances of how his words, music and anti-authoritarian vision helped shape generations of Americans, especially the one that came of age during the Vietnam War in the 1960s, as Gary G. Kohls notes in this guest essay.

Leaving a Church of Free-Market Miracles

A significant part of the U.S. population is stuck in angry denial, unwilling to acknowledge scientific realities (like global warming), embracing fictions (like Barack Obama’s Kenyan birth), and refusing to acknowledge America’s diminished situation (like the crumbling infrastructure of roads and education). Rather than act sensibly, they cling to their diminished status and mock anyone…