A key justification for three recent U.S. military actions – in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya – was to oust brutal dictators and pave the way for a more democratic future. But these violent strategies have fallen short on the pro-democracy front, writes the Independent Institute’s Ivan Eland.
After years of American-led sanctions followed by a U.S. invasion and long occupation, Iraq is a shattered society with sectarian tensions again on the rise, but the Independent Institute’s Ivan Eland says the United States should resist the impulse to return militarily.
America’s still-influential neocons are pounding President Obama for failing to negotiate a longer U.S. military occupation of Iraq, blaming him for the country’s latest political crisis. But the Independent Institute’s Ivan Eland says the U.S. pullback was part of a necessary reordering of U.S. priorities.
At least since the oil shocks of the 1970s, it has been Official Washington’s dogma that the United States must stand ready to fight wars over access to Middle East oil, but the Independent Institute’s Ivan Eland questions that certainty in a new book, writes Carl Close.
The Western powers achieved violent “regime change” in Libya under cover of a UN resolution to “protect civilians” and by relying mostly on air power to isolate and then kill Muammar Gaddafi – and doing it all at a much lower price than the Iraq War. But Ivan Eland sees dangers in this “victory.”
For a decade now, the American people have been told that only a “long war” against Islamist extremism can keep them safe from terrorism, even at the cost of trillions of dollars and loss of their liberties. Not even the death of al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden changed the tune, says Ivan Eland.
With the assassination of Anwar al-Awlaki, a U.S. citizen and al-Qaeda associate based in Yemen, the Obama administration has stepped onto a slippery slope where loosening standards for extrajudicial killings could slide into a terrifying use of government power, the Independent Institute’s Ivan Eland writes.
After the 9/11 attacks, many Americans were ready to surrender constitutional liberties for an extra measure of security – and the Bush administration was more than willing to accept that deal. But the Independent Institute’s Ivan Eland says the trade-offs haven’t changed much under President Barack Obama.
Washington pundits – from neoconservatives through progressives – are celebrating the NATO-backed ouster of Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi as a worthy use of the West’s military capabilities. But the Independent Institute’s Ivan Eland sees dangerous pitfalls ahead, both in Libya and elsewhere.
Rep. Ron Paul came in one percentage point behind Rep. Michelle Bachmann in the Iowa Republican straw poll, but – as Jon Stewart has noted – was still excluded from the Big Media’s list of who’s to be taken seriously in the GOP race. The Independent Institute’s Ivan Eland traces the media’s disdain for Paul to his criticism…