Human Rights

How Human Rights Can Build Haiti

Former Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide.

American interventions in Haiti are often sold as paternalistic charity for a basket-case country, but the U.S. interference has often done more harm than good for the impoverished nation where two lawyers have tried to a different approach, building human rights, writes Marjorie Cohn.

Haiti and America’s Historic Debt

Toussaint L'Ouverture, leader of Haiti's slave rebellion against France.

From the Archive: Some Americans view Haiti through a lens of racial bigotry, seeing the poverty-stricken Caribbean country as proof that black people can’t govern themselves. But there is a very different historical narrative regarding America’s profound debt to Haiti, as Robert Parry described in 2010.

The One Percent’s Great Escape

Mr. Moneybags from the "Monopoly" game

F. Scott Fitzgerald once wrote that the rich “are different from you and me,” which remains true today except now they don’t even want to be around regular people, seeking more and more remote locations to escape from the increasingly angry commoners, as Michael Winship explains.

‘Group-Thinking’ the World into a New War

Russian President Vladimir Putin laying a wreath at Russia's Tomb of the Unknown Soldier on May 8, 2014, as part of the observance of the World War II Victory over Germany.

Exclusive: The armchair warriors of Official Washington are eager for a new war, this time with Russia over Ukraine, and they are operating from the same sort of mindless “group think” and hostility to dissent that proved so disastrous in Iraq, reports Robert Parry.

Honoring NSA’s Binney and Amb. White

Former National Security Agency official William Binney sitting in the offices of Democracy Now! in New York City. (Photo credit: Jacob Appelbaum)

In our age of careerism, it’s rare for high-ranking officials to sacrifice their powerful posts for principle, but that was what NSA’s William Binney and the late U.S. Ambassador Robert White did. Their sacrifices and integrity were honored by likeminded former government officials, as ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern describes.

Flattering the Dead Saudi King

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry delivers a greeting from President Barack Obama during a meeting with King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia in Riyadh on November 4, 2013. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

Though Saudi King Abdullah was a repressive leader at home who contributed to political and sectarian violence across the Middle East, his death is mourned by Western leaders who were dependent on his vast ocean of oil and his vaults full of money, as Sam Husseini explains.

Jesus as Whistleblower

Jesus delivering his Sermon on the Mount as depicted in a painting by Nineteenth Century artist Carl Heinrich Bloch.

Christian churches typically present the religious mythology about Jesus, as the supernatural Son of God who was sacrificed on the cross as atonement for man’s sins. But there is a more historical Jesus who instructed the poor about the injustices they faced and died for it, writes Rev. Howard Bess.

The Battle over Dr. King’s Message

Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1964, a powerful example of how dissenters have addressed injustice in America and given meaning to democracy.

From the Archive: Martin Luther King Day is a rare moment in American life when people reflect – even if only briefly – on the ideals that guided Dr. King’s life and led to his death. Thus, the struggle over his message is intense, pitting a bland conventional view against a radical call for profound change,…

MLK and the Curse of ‘Moderation’

A mug shot photo of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

From the Archive: When Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. went to jail to focus national attention on the injustice of segregation, he was stung by criticism from Christian clergy who feared upsetting the status quo and urged “moderation,” prompting his historic rejoinder from the Birmingham jail, as Rev. Howard Bess recalls.

Hypocrisy on Parade in Paris

Singer James Taylor performs "You've Got a Friend" onstage in Paris on Jan. 16, 2015, during a tribute to the victims of the Charlie Hebdo massacre. On the left is Secretary of State John Kerry. (U.S. State Department photo)

At the Paris procession honoring the victims of the Charlie Hebdo massacre, world leaders locked arms in defense of free speech – although many of the participants including the French have been busy cracking down on freedom of expression, notes Michael Winship.