Lost History

US Triumphalism and the Ukraine Mess

Russian President Vladimir Putin delivering a speech on the Ukraine crisis in Moscow on March 18, 2014. (Russian government photo)

Besides the misleading simplicity of Official Washington’s narrative on Ukraine, the “good guy/bad guy” storyline ignores important lessons of world history and human nature, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar explains.

The Perception Management Priority

Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Michigan, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee.

Since the Reagan era, Republicans have pushed “perception management” to manage how Americans perceive the world. A key element is right-wing talk radio, which has now lured Rep. Mike Rogers from his powerful intelligence post to a seat behind a microphone, as JP Sottile explains.

What Kind of One-State Solution

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)

As the illusion of a “two-state solution” fades away with the deadlocked Israeli-Palestinian talks, what remains is a “one-state solution” that will be either democratic and egalitarian or a de facto apartheid system with a permanent Palestinian underclass, as Lawrence Davidson observes.

Misguided Honor for Condi Rice

Ex-Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice

U.S. officials lecture others about respecting international law and punishing human rights crimes, but those principles are ignored when the violators are U.S. officials. Offenders like ex-Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice even get honors, as Coleen Rowley and Todd E. Pierce note.

‘We’re All Cheneyites Now’

Vice President Dick Cheney.

In late 2008, when President Obama opted more for “continuity” than “change” — and ceded control over much of his foreign policy to hawkish “rivals” — he locked in many of Dick Cheney’s neocon theories that trampled constitutional principles, as retired JAG Major Todd E. Pierce explains.

Did Manning Help Avert War in Iran?

U.S. Army Pvt. Chelsea (formerly Bradley) Manning.

From the Archive: Many of the world’s crises, like those in Syria and Ukraine, can be better understood by factoring in Israel’s maneuvers to involve the U.S. in bombing Iran. Documents leaked by Pvt. Manning exposed how one such scheme might have played out, as Robert Parry wrote in 2013.

Forgetting the Lessons of Deterrence

Russian President Vladimir Putin

“Tough-guy/gal-ism” is rampant again in Official Washington with many New Cold Warriors lusting for a military confrontation with Russia. But few of these hawks have a clear idea how deterrence worked during the real Cold War, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Recalling a Proud American Moment

cesar-chavez-movie

United Farm Workers founder Cesar Chavez, with quiet dignity and nonviolent tactics, rallied millions of Americans behind the cause of oppressed farm workers in the 1960s, a remarkable moment recalled in a new movie by Diego Luna, interviewed by Dennis J Bernstein.

Obama Ensnared in Bush’s Abuses

President Barack Obama and former President George W. Bush (with First Lady Michelle Obama and former First Lady Laura Bush) walk to a White House event on May 31, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

President Obama’s fateful decision – after winning the 2008 election to seek “continuity” rather than “change” and “to look forward, not backward” – has trapped him in a web of constitutional abuses that began in the Bush-43 presidency and extended into his own, as Coleen Rowley describes.

Changing Israel from Without

Israeli author and academic Ilan Pappe.

For decades, one-sided support for Israel distorted U.S. perceptions and policies in the Middle East. Only recently has the pro-Zionist narrative faced significant challenge, including protests against the abuse of Palestinians from Israeli dissidents like Ilan Pappe, who spoke with Dennis J Bernstein.