Tag Archive for John F. Kennedy

Why JFK Still Matters

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Since John F. Kennedy’s death, there’s been little presidential rhetoric that was not either bombastic and self-serving – Reagan’s “tear down this wall” – or cringingly dishonest – Nixon’s “I am not a crook” or Clinton’s “I did not have sexual relations with that woman.” Which may be why JFK still inspires many, writes Beverly…

Standing in an Adversary’s Shoes

President John F. Kennedy addressing the nation regarding the October 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis.

Americans are notoriously disinterested in history, preferring to focus on the present and often reacting to the latest crisis. But the past can teach important lessons including the need to understand an adversary’s perspective and to avoid unnecessary conflicts, as ex-U.S. diplomat William R. Polk explains.

How Neocons Constrain Obama’s Message

President Barack Obama touches the Marshall Plaque at Michie Stadium upon arrival for the United States Military Academy at West Point commencement in West Point, N.Y., May 28, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Exclusive: President Obama said that just because the U.S. military is “the best hammer does not mean that every problem is a nail” – a wise observation – but he then confused his foreign policy speech by pandering to neocon narratives on crises in Ukraine and elsewhere, reports Robert Parry.

Can Obama Speak Strongly for Peace?

President Barack Obama, with Vice President Joe Biden, attends a meeting in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Dec. 12, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

From the Archive: President Obama is preparing a speech to address neocon charges that he’s shown “weakness” toward U.S. adversaries, but the greater challenge would be for him to tell the people why cooperation with those adversaries is vital for real peace, as Robert Parry wrote in March.

Can Obama Speak Strongly for Peace?

President Barack Obama, with Vice President Joe Biden, attends a meeting in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Dec. 12, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

From the Archive: During the Cold War, two presidents delivered honest warnings to Americans, Eisenhower on the “military-industrial complex” and Kennedy on how “we all inhabit this small planet.” Now Ukraine presents a challenge to President Obama to speak out for peace, as Robert Parry wrote in March.

Trying Not to Give Peace a Chance

Amid the crisis over Syria, President Vladimir Putin of Russia welcomed President Barack Obama to the G20 Summit at Konstantinovsky Palace in Saint Petersburg, Russia, Sept. 5, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Exclusive: The trust between President Obama and President Putin helped avert a U.S. war on Syria and got Iran to agree to limit its nuclear program, but the neocon-driven crisis in Ukraine has dashed hopes of building on that success for a more peaceful world, writes ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern.

Can Obama Speak Strongly for Peace?

President Barack Obama, with Vice President Joe Biden, attends a meeting in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Dec. 12, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Exclusive: Sen. John McCain is baiting President Obama for making America “look weak” and is demanding more aggressive responses toward Syria, Iran and Russia. Thus, Obama faces a turning-point moment when he must confront neocon warmongering or surrender to it, reports Robert Parry.

How ‘Looking Forward’ Tripped Up Obama

CIA Director John Brennan.

Exclusive: President Obama has stumbled into a constitutional firefight between the CIA and Senate Intelligence Committee over the spy agency’s attempted cover-up of its Bush-era torture practices, a clash he could have averted by wielding a declassification stamp, reports Robert Parry.

JFK’s Embrace of Third World Nationalists

President John F. Kennedy reacts to news of the assassination of Congo's nationalist leader Patrice Lumumba in February 1961. (Photo credit: Jacques Lowe)

Exclusive: The intensive media coverage of the half-century anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s murder was long on hype and emotion but short on explaining how revolutionary JFK’s foreign policy was in his extraordinary support for Third World nationalists, as Jim DiEugenio explains.

How JFK’s Murder Changed a Life

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The half-century anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s murder has prompted retrospectives on his presidency but also remembrances of what the shocking act meant to people who lived through it. Journalist Richard L. Fricker reflects on how that day changed his life.