Tag Archive for Paul R. Pillar

Israel’s Robust Debate on Iran Threat

For decades, the debate about Israeli security has been far more robust in Israel than in the United States. The same holds true today as Israeli opposition leader Shaul Mofaz challenges the government’s bellicose rhetoric on Iran while U.S. politicians and pundits pander or stay silent, notes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

A New Egyptian Government Rises

Egypt’s moderate Islamist president, Mohamed Morsi, is picking his way through hot political coals as a new governing system rises from the embers of the old. But his ad hoc constitutionalism is not unprecedented; indeed, it is how the United States was forged, notes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Ryan Pick Leaves Global Void

In picking House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan for the vice presidential slot, Mitt Romney signaled a disinterest in filling his own gap in foreign policy experience – as well as a likely avoidance of international affairs as a major topic in the presidential race, observes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Neocons Push for Deeper Syrian Role

The neoconservatives who run the Washington Post continue to beat the drum for more U.S. war in the Middle East, now giving voice to influential neocon pundits demanding that the Obama administration begin lethal aid to Syrian rebels, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar notes.

America’s Plutocratic Traditions

Some voters are in disbelief that Mitt Romney’s tax plan would raise taxes on the poor and the middle class in order to reduce them even more on the rich. But government strategies favoring the rich date back to the origins of the Republic, notes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Punishing Iran, Endlessly

With U.S. politics locked in a competitive “tough-guy-ism” – as Republicans and Democrats up the ante on punishing Iran to avoid being deemed “weak” or insufficiently “pro-Israel” – no one seems to notice that the tactics are fast becoming an end in themselves, observes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Romney’s Clueless Remark on Palestine

Republican Mitt Romney pandered to a right-wing pro-Israeli audience by claiming Israel’s economic success, relative to the widespread poverty in Palestine, reflected superior cultural values and possibly divine preference, a statement that ignored the impact of the longtime occupation, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Romney Pleases Political Donor on Israel

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is stopping in Israel to highlight his close ties to Prime Minister Netanyahu. But the visit also will showcase super Super-PAC donor Sheldon Adelson, whose money is aimed at defeating President Obama, notes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Kafkaesque Legacy of Gitmo/Bagram

More than a decade after the 9/11 attacks and George W. Bush’s “war on terror,” U.S. justice remains mired in Kafkaesque legal swamps at Guantanamo Bay and Bagram, places where murky theories about “unlawful combatants” mean detainees have no real rights, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Risk of Iran War Escalates

Western powers test out harsh economic sanctions on Iran. Israel pins the blame for a bus bombing in Bulgaria on Iranian agents, presumably retaliating for Israeli assassinations of Iran’s scientists. As tensions ratchet up – Syria’s unraveling, too – the chances for a disastrous war escalate, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.