Month: September 2013


Recycling a Bush Iraq Ploy on Syria

President George W. Bush.

Exclusive: Syria’s tentative acceptance of a plan for putting its chemical weapons under international control opens a pathway to avoid a U.S. military strike, but the Obama administration may use the opening as a new route for winning congressional war…

Trusting Obama’s Syria War Case

President Barack Obama.

While some intelligence experts are skeptical of President Obama’s case for bombing Syria, others trust the allegations and mock those who doubt the justification for war. Ex-CIA analyst Melvin A. Goodman is part of the latter group but agrees with the first that…

Contrasting Reactions to Egypt, Syria

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaking at Cabinet meeting. (Photo credit: Israeli government)

Israel’s preferences for Egypt’s military regime and against Syria’s authoritarian one continue to shape U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. In Egypt, President Obama has accepted a coup that ousted an elected government, while in Syria, he threatens war,…

Time to Reveal US Intel on Syria

President Barack Obama and White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough. (This White House photo by Pete Souza was taken when McDonough was deputy national security adviser.)

Exclusive: Countering growing opposition to plans for bombing Syria, the White House dispatched Chief of Staff Denis McDonough to the Sunday talk shows. But the choice underscored the Obama administration’s credibility problems and raised new doubts about the case for war,…

Obama’s Syrian Case Shows Cracks

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Aug. 30, 2013, claims to have proof that the Syrian government was responsible for a chemical weapons attack on Aug. 21, 2013, but that evidence failed to materialize or was later discredited. [State Department photo]

New cracks have appeared in the Obama administration’s case for bombing Syria. Though the White House’s four-page white paper has been palmed off as a U.S. intelligence assessment, it now appears to have been a political document that cherry-picked evidence, reports…

Congress: Beware of Secret Briefings

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel testifies before the House Foreign Affairs Committee at the Rayburn House Office Building in Washington, D.C. on Sept. 4, 2013. Secretary of State John F. Kerry and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin E. Dempsey joined Hagel for the testimony.  DoD photo by Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo)

The Obama administration has refused to release its supposed evidence implicating the Syrian government in the alleged chemical weapons attack of Aug. 21, and it now appears the “classified briefings” to Congress have been more a sales job than a dispassionate…

Tell Kristof to Stop Lying on Syria

New York Times columnist Nicholas D. Kristof.

Exclusive: Columnist Nicholas D. Kristof has cultivated a reputation as a caring humanitarian who abhors violence, but he has now joined the ranks of liberal war hawks eager to bomb Syria, a choice that also has led him to enlist…

Is War on Syria Veering Off-Script?

Earlier in 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)

When the U.S. government readies for war, there is a well-worn script. A “bad” guy is defined; some act of perfidy is alleged despite murky evidence; politicians and journalists express righteous outrage; a confused public is dragged along. Except that…

Congress Denied Syrian Facts, Too

President Barack Obama answers questions at a press conference at Konstantinovsky Palace during the G20 Summit in Saint Petersburg, Russia, Sept. 6, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Exclusive: While seeking authority for a limited war with Syria, the Obama administration withheld from the American people the U.S. intelligence on the alleged chemical weapons attack of Aug. 21, amid assurances that Congress got all the secret details. But…

Obama Warned on Syrian Intel

Secretary of State John Kerry departs for a Sept. 6 trip to Europe where he plans to meet with officials to discuss the Syrian crisis and other issues. (State Department photo)

Exclusive: Despite the Obama administration’s supposedly “high confidence” regarding Syrian government guilt over the Aug. 21 chemical attack near Damascus, a dozen former U.S. military and intelligence officials are telling President Obama that they are picking up information that undercuts the Official Story.