Human Rights

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The US Hand in the Syrian Mess

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in front of a poster of his father, Hafez al-Assad.

Exclusive: Neocons and the mainstream U.S. media place all the blame for the Syrian civil war on President Bashar al-Assad and Iran, but there is another side of the story in which Syria’s olive branches to the U.S. and Israel were spurned and a reckless drive for “regime change” followed, writes Jonathan Marshall.

Making Excuses for Saudi Misbehavior

Saudi King Salman bids farewell to President Barack Obama at Erga Palace after a state visit to Saudi Arabia on Jan. 27, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Exclusive: Saudi-Israeli apologists are doing back flips to justify why the U.S. interest in having peaceful relations with Iran should take a back seat to sectarian and regional desires of Riyadh and Tel Aviv, including that peace with Iran will cause the Saudis to misbehave even more, notes Daniel Lazare.

MH-17 Mystery: A New Tonkin Gulf Case?

Russian-made Buk anti-missile battery.

Exclusive: In 1964, the Tonkin Gulf incident was used to justify the Vietnam War although U.S. intelligence quickly knew the facts were not what the U.S. government claimed. Now, the MH-17 case is being exploited to justify a new Cold War as U.S. intelligence again is silent about what it knows, writes Robert Parry.

Entering the Age of Nuclear Terror

Trinity test on July 16, 1945. (U.S. government photo)

As much as this year’s 70th anniversary of stopping the Holocaust was a moment to honor, the anniversaries over the next few weeks will mark the successful test of Trinity and America’s horrific atomic destructions of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, recalls Gary G. Kohls.

US/Israeli/Saudi ‘Behavior’ Problems

Washington Post columnist David Ignatius. (Photo credit: Aude)

Exclusive: In Official Washington’s latest detour from the real world, top pundits are depicting Iran as the chief troublemaker in the Mideast and saying the nuclear deal should hinge on Iranian “behavior.” But the real “behavior” problems come from Israel, Saudi Arabia and the U.S., writes Robert Parry.

Coming Under ‘Fire’ at Korea’s DMZ

Women Cross DMZ walk in Pyongyang, North Korea at the Monument of Reunification  (Photo by Niana Liu)

If you try to address controversial foreign policy issues these days – without chest-pounding belligerence – you can expect to be denounced by a well-funded cottage industry of “human rights activists” and “citizen journalists,” a phenomenon that Ann Wright confronted when crossing from South to North Korea.

The Path Ahead for Palestine

Palestinian leader Mustafa Barghouti (Photo credit: Aude)

Israel under Prime Minister Netanyahu is showing no inclination to resolve the long-festering conflict with the Palestinians who remain harshly repressed in an apartheid-like system as Jewish expansion continues into Palestinian lands, a crisis that PLO leader Mustafa Barghouti describes to Dennis J Bernstein.

Touchy Issue: Talking with ‘Terrorists’

Afghan commandos demonstrate their skills for U.S. Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, on Camp Morehead, Afghanistan, April 23, 2012. (Defense Department photo by D. Myles Cullen)

Official Washington often exacerbates foreign conflicts by shoving them into misshapen narratives or treating them as good-guy-vs.-bad-guy morality plays, rather than political disputes that require mediation. The problem is particularly tricky with “terrorist” groups, writes ex-CIA official Graham E. Fuller.

Struggling for Women’s Sports Equality

U.S. Women's National Team (Soccer), winners of the 2015 World Cup. (Via Twitter.)

Exclusive: The huge crowds watching the U.S. women’s soccer team win the World Cup marked a moment of hope for Americans who lament the gross disparity between the support for men’s and women’s sports, but it’s still an uphill struggle for anything close to parity, as Chelsea Gilmour explains.

Fallout from Reagan’s Afghan War

Ronald Reagan, 40th U.S. President

In the 1980s, President Reagan funded and armed Islamic fundamentalists to defeat a Soviet-backed secular regime in Afghanistan. Now, one of those ex-U.S. clients is throwing his support behind the brutal Islamic State, a lesson about geopolitical expediency, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.