Tag Archive for Paul R. Pillar

Misreading Benghazi and Terrorism

The U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, burning on the night of Sept. 11, 2012. (Photo credit: Voice of America)

The Republican case of a Benghazi terror “cover-up” never made much sense because President Obama immediately called it an “act of terror.” But now other parts of the GOP’s contorted narrative are collapsing as well, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar observes.

How Iran Could Help on Iraq

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

If Official Washington were a place where sanity prevailed and true American national interests were protected, there would be calls for cooperation with Iran to address the crisis in Iraq, but that would upset a big part of the neocon agenda, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar explains.

Overreacting to the Iraq Crisis

Embattled Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. (Photo credit: U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Jessica J. Wilkes)

The new hysteria gripping Official Washington is over the collapse of the Iraqi army in the face of an offensive by Islamic militants. But the threat is not as extreme as some opinion leaders are describing, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Missing the Facts on Iran’s Nuke Talks

Washington Post's "fact-checker" Glenn Kessler. (Photo credit: Singerhmk)

The Washington Post’s Glenn Kessler often deviates from his purported role as “fact checker” to advance a political agenda, which often requires him to distort the facts or to ignore contrary evidence as he did recently regarding Iran’s nuclear talks, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

‘War on Terror’ and the Bergdahl Swap

U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl, who was freed from Taliban captivity in a swap for five former Taliban leaders.

After the 9/11 attacks, narrow “counterterrorism” operations gave way to the blunderbuss “war on terror,” opening the way to more traditional practices of war including prisoner exchanges, like the one for Sgt. Bergdahl, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar writes.

Congress Bends to Israel’s Iran Demands

Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tennessee, who is seeking a disapproval vote on any agreement that the Obama administration negotiates with Iran over its nuclear program.

Congressional mischief-making to undermine a deal to restrict Iran’s nuclear program continues, much of it orchestrated by the Israel Lobby which supports the Israeli government’s threats of a military strike against Iran, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar notes.

Finding an End to Endless Wars

President Barack Obama announces on May 27, 2014, plans for ending U.S. combat operations in Afghanistan by the end of 2014 and withdrawing all U.S. forces by 2016. (White House photo)

For Official Washington’s neocons all wars should go on indefinitely and any timetable for leaving Iraq, Afghanistan or any other country subject to American military assault in recent years represents defeatism. But such open-ended commitments would likely mean endless occupations, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Pope Francis Prays at Two Israeli Walls

Pope Francis praying a separation wall in Palestine on May 25, 2014. (Photo credit: Pope Francis's Facebook page.).

Pope Francis tried to bring a moral perspective to Israel’s subjugation of the Palestinians, including scenes of him praying at a separation wall in Palestine as well as at the famous West Wall in Jerusalem, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar notes.

Libyan ‘Regime Change’ Worsened Chaos

Ousted Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi shortly before he was murdered on Oct. 20, 2011.

In 2011, a coalition of U.S. neocons and “humanitarian” war hawks pushed for and got a military intervention in Libya with the goal of eliminating Muammar Gaddafi, but the ouster and murder of Gaddafi has only led to worse chaos and more death in Libya, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar explains.

In Case You Missed…

Some of our special stories from April looked behind the Ukraine crisis, challenged the conventional wisdom on the Syria-Sarin dispute, exposed U.S. hypocrisy on Iran, explained the hard truth about Israeli “apartheid,” and explored Oklahoma’s rush to a ghoulish execution.