Tag Archive for Iran

The Limits of US Military Power

Seahawk helicopters fire flares as they approach the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln in the Atlantic Ocean, Aug. 2, 2012. (Photo credit: U.S. Navy Seaman Zachary A. Anderson)

Official Washington’s new conventional wisdom is that the Obama administration is weak because it won’t launch military strikes against every adversary around the world. But the reality is that military force has done little to project U.S. power since World War II, writes Lawrence S. Wittner.

How the US Propaganda System Works

broadcast-networks

Americans are told that other governments practice censorship and propaganda, but not their own. Yet, the reality is quite different with many reasonable viewpoints marginalized and deceptive spin put on much that comes from officialdom, writes Lawrence Davidson.

Putin’s Subtle Message to Obama

President Vladimir Putin replies to journalists’ questions at a press conference with President of Switzerland and OSCE Chairperson-in-Office Didier Burkhalter on May 7, 2014. (Russian government photo)

Exclusive: Russian President Putin sought to cool the rhetoric over Ukraine with an appeal for a postponed referendum in the east and an order to pull back Russian troops, but another message was to President Obama – over the State Department’s head – that it’s time to talk, reports Robert Parry.

Hearing US ‘Allies’ Whine

President Barack Obama talks with Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko during a state call at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, Japan, April 24, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Official Washington is abuzz with punditry about President Obama showing weakness around the world, with the old-reliable antidote being more Pentagon spending and more foreign military adventures. But this “debate” misses how real U.S. interests are served, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Why Neocons Seek to Destabilize Russia

Russian President Vladimir Putin. (Russian government photo)

Exclusive: Any propaganda war starts by planting stories that your target is getting rich, whether he is or isn’t, the latest move in demonizing Vladimir Putin. But the larger question is what might happen if the neocons succeed in destabilizing nuclear-armed Russia, asks Robert Parry.

Foreign Entangling Sanctions

President Thomas Jefferson in a portrait by Rembrandt Peale.

The U.S. government prefers economic sanctions as the opening move in any international chess match with adversaries, but sanctions on Iran – and threatened ones against Russia – could disrupt energy supplies and hurt the West as much as the targets, ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar observes.

What’s the Matter with John Kerry?

Secretary of State John Kerry.

Special Report: As a young warrior and senator, John Kerry stood up to politicians who spread propaganda that misled the public and got people killed. Now, as a 70-year-old Secretary of State, he has become what he once challenged, reports Robert Parry.

Making Iran’s UN Envoy a Wedge Issue

Iranian Ambassador to the United Nations Hamid Aboutalebi.

America’s neocons and their allies want an escalating confrontation with Iran, not a negotiated solution to the nuclear issue. So they seek out hot buttons to anger Iran and make President Obama’s job harder, such as blocking Iran’s choice of UN ambassador, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Playing Word Games on Iran and Nukes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at a press conference in Iran. (Official Iranian photo)

In the U.S. propaganda war against Iran, a recurring tactic is to play games with words, conflating a nuclear program with a weapons program despite the longstanding judgment of  U.S. intelligence that Iran is not working on a bomb, as Gareth Porter reports for Inter Press Service.

Anti-Iran Hardliners Seek New Excuse

Sen. Robert Menendez, D-New Jersey.

U.S. hardliners seeking to disrupt negotiations that would constrain – but not eliminate – Iran’s nuclear program are citing Iran’s efforts to evade U.S. oil sanctions as their latest excuse. But Iran has no obligation to submit to U.S. sanctions, notes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.