Human Rights

A Possible Israeli Turning Point

A section of the barrier -- erected by Israeli officials to prevent the passage of Palestinians -- with graffiti using President John F. Kennedy's famous quote when facing the Berlin Wall, "Ich bin ein Berliner." (Photo credit: Marc Venezia)

The upcoming Israeli elections mark a possible turning point in the Mideast – with more moderate Israelis challenging Benjamin Netanyahu’s hard-line land grab of Palestinian territory. But Netanyahu’s approach is not the deviation from Israel’s history that some claim, says Lawrence Davidson.

Will France Repeat US Mistakes after 9/11?

President George W. Bush in a flight suit after landing on the USS Abraham Lincoln to give his "Mission Accomplished" speech about the Iraq War.

Exclusive: As three suspects in the Charlie Hebdo massacre die in a shootout with French police, the cycle of violence that has engulfed the Mideast again reaches into the West, but the challenge is to learn from U.S. mistakes after 9/11 and address root causes, not react with another round of mindless violence, says ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern.

Obama’s Narrative of Deceits

President Barack Obama talks with President Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine and Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker following a bilateral meeting in the Oval Office, Sept. 18, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Though President Obama promised “transparency” and “openness,” he has slipped so far from those goals that some wonder how many sides of his mouth he can speak through. He has surely not broken from the longstanding pattern of presidential deceits that have eroded the Republic, as Jason Hirthler writes.

CIA’s Hidden Hand in ‘Democracy’ Groups

CIA Director William Casey.

Special Report: Documents from the Reagan presidential library reveal that two major institutions promoting “democracy” and “freedom” — Freedom House and National Endowment for Democracy — worked hand-in-glove, behind-the-scenes, with a CIA propaganda expert in the 1980s, reports Robert Parry.

Resisting a Navy Base on China’s Periphery

Waves crashing against Jungmun Daepo Jusang Jeollidae, the columnar joints in Jungmun, Jeju-do, South Korea. (Photo credit: Yoo Chung)

The idyllic island of Jeju off the southern tip of South Korea is the unlikely front line in a possible future military confrontation with China — as a major new naval base is constructed there despite determined opposition from peace activists who were joined by former U.S. intelligence analyst Elizabeth Murray.

The Challenge of Ending Wars

President Barack Obama meets with his national security advisors in the Situation Room of the White House, Aug. 7, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Official Washington’s “tough-guy-ism” – the one-upping macho rhetoric about how to respond to foreign crises – makes it hard for leaders to avoid wars and perhaps even harder to end wars, a dilemma addressed by ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

The Upside-Down Policy on Israel

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

Despite the collapse of Israeli-Palestinian peace prospects, the Obama administration continues the fiction that any Palestinian appeal to the UN somehow threatens those non-existent talks, while Republicans vow to sync U.S. policies even more in line with Israeli demands, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar explains.

Rebuilding the Obama-Putin Trust

Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland, who pushed for the Ukraine coup and helped pick the post-coup leaders.

Exclusive: Heading into the last quarter of his presidency, Barack Obama must decide whether he will let the neocons keep pulling his strings or finally break loose and pursue a realistic foreign policy seeking practical solutions to world problems, including the crisis with Russia over Ukraine, says ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern.

Israeli Founder Contests Founding Myths

Israeli Uri Avnery

The Torah (or Old Testament) is a master work of literature and faith, but it tells many mythological tales that have little or no basis in real history, as Uri Avnery, one of Israel’s founders, has had the courage to declare, with an introduction from retired U.S. diplomat William R. Polk.

Israeli Scholar Disputes Founding Myth

Israeli historian and author Shlomo Sand. (Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)

From the Archive: Twin myths undergird the claim by Israeli hardliners that they own the land of Palestine: the Biblical stories about the Exodus and the ancient kings of Israel and the claim that the Romans forced the Diaspora of Jews to Europe, a fiction that a brave Israeli scholar exploded, as Morgan Strong reported in…