Foreign Policy

The One-Sided US Narrative on Iran

Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. (Iranian government photo)

In the preferred U.S. narratives, American leaders are always wise and rational but must deal with pigheaded and crazy adversaries. That is the way the current U.S.-Iranian nuclear negotiations are presented inside Official Washington but there is a very different reality, as Gareth Porter explains.

The Putin-Did-It Conspiracy Theory

President Barack Obama talks with President Vladimir Putin of the Russian Federation as they join other leaders en route to the APEC Family Photo at the International Convention Center in Beijing, China, Nov. 11, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Exclusive: A new truce agreement in Ukraine rekindles hope that the bloodshed can be reduced if not stopped, but Official Washington’s gross misunderstanding of the crisis, blaming everything on Russia’s President Putin, raises doubts and portends a potentially grave catastrophe, writes Robert Parry.

A Vague War Declaration on ISIS

Journalist James Foley shortly before he was executed by an Islamic State operative.

President Obama has tossed Congress a draft resolution on using force against Islamic State militants but the vague language is something of a hot potato that neither the White House nor Congress is comfortable with, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Pressuring Obama toward More War

President Barack Obama in his weekly address on Sept. 13, 2014, vowing to degrade and ultimately defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. (White House Photo)

Still fearing of accusations about a lack of patriotism, Hollywood keeps making movies like “American Sniper” that ignore the criminality of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, an attitude that, in turn, makes it harder for President Obama to show restraint in foreign crises, notes Independent Institute’s Ivan Eland.

NYT Whites Out Ukraine’s Brown Shirts

Nazi symbols on helmets worn by members of Ukraine's Azov battalion. (As filmed by

Exclusive: The New York Times has been more biased on the Ukraine crisis – endlessly promoting State Department propaganda – than when it published false Iraqi WMD stories last decade. Case in point: a story from Mariupol hailing the Azov battalion without noting its neo-Nazi fighters, writes Robert Parry.

‘Christianists’ Howl at Obama’s Truth-telling

President Barack Obama addresses the National Prayer Breakfast at the Washington Hilton in Washington, D.C., Feb. 7, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Though founded by a pacifist who spoke for the oppressed, Christianity has contributed to more wars, injustices and genocides – in all corners of the world – than any other religion. But President Obama’s glancing reference to this reality prompted howls of protests, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar notes.

A Peace Activist in Federal Prison

The aging federal facilities in Lexington, Kentucky, which include a prison for women. (Photo: Bureau of Prisons)

The U.S. incarcerates its people at the highest rates in the world and many times what other developed nations do, including citizens who engage in non-violent protests against America’s war policies, as Kathy Kelly experienced both in her youth and now as she returned to the same aging prison in Kentucky.

‘Realists’ Warn Against Ukraine Escalation

Russian President Vladimir Putin during a state visit to Austria on June 24, 2014. (Official Russian government photo)

Exclusive: The neocons’ war-and-more-war bandwagon is loaded up again and rolling downhill as “everyone who matters” in Washington is talking up sending sophisticated weapons to Kiev to escalate Ukraine’s civil war, but some “realists,” an endangered species in U.S. foreign policy, dissent, notes Robert Parry.

Finding Creative Ways to Torture

George W. Bush taking the presidential oath of office on Jan. 20, 2001. (White House photo)

After World War II, Americans led the way in establishing landmark human rights principles, including a repudiation of torture. But more recent U.S. leaders have chosen to disgrace those ideals by devising euphemisms and end-runs to continue the barbaric practices, as Peter Costantini describes.

Ronald Reagan’s Torture

President Ronald Reagan meeting with Guatemalan dictator Efrain Rios Montt.

From the Archive: George W. Bush’s torture policies may have been extraordinary in the direct participation of U.S. personnel but they were far from unique, with Ronald Reagan having followed a similar path in his anti-leftist wars in Central America, as Robert Parry reported in 2009.