Lost History


The Impending Failure in Afghanistan

Seen through a night-vision device, U.S. Marines conduct a combat logistics patrol in Helmand province, Afghanistan, April 21, 2013. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Anthony L. Ortiz)

America’s neocon-driven foreign policy is more about political one-ups-man-ship in Official Washington than the realities on the ground in countries like Afghanistan where the U.S. military is then expected to do more than is possible, leading to failure after failure, as Independent Institute’s Ivan Eland describes.

Raw Deal for Black Freedom Trail

Freedman's Village as it appeared in Harper's Weekly in May 1864.

Exclusive: Columbia Pike has long been the most neglected corridor in Arlington, Virginia, despite – or perhaps because of – its historic role as the freedom trail for thousands of African-Americans fleeing the Confederacy and slavery. That neglect now has a new chapter as a planned Streetcar is killed, reports Robert Parry.

Asking Christians about Tolerance of War

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

Many Americans are tuning out on politics and international affairs – feeling they have no real say in what the government does – but there is a danger from such passivity, particularly the license given to the powers-that-be to make war and more war, as Gary G. Kohls explains.

Obama, the People and the Facts

President Barack Obama discusses Ukraine during a meeting with members of his National Security Staff in the Oval Office, Feb. 28, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Exclusive: The political crisis facing President Obama and the Democratic Party results from a profound loss of faith in the U.S. government, made worse by Obama’s obsessive secrecy. But he could address both problems by opening the books on some key hidden chapters relevant to today, writes Robert Parry.

The Right’s Dubious Claim to Madison

James Madison in an engraving

From the Archive: Central to the question of whether America’s Right is correct that the Constitution mandated a weak central government is the person of James Madison and what he and his then-fellow Federalists were doing at the Constitutional Convention in 1787, wrote Robert Parry in 2013.

Learning the Lessons of Peace

The Prophet Isaiah (Illustration from a Bible card published by the Providence Lithograph Company)

Isaiah, one of the great Jewish prophets, was an advocate of peace whose words inspired Jesus’s non-violent teachings centuries later and continue to resonate to the present day, writes Rev. Howard Bess.

The Risk of Misreading Russia’s Intent

Russian President Vladimir Putin addresses a crowd on May 9, 2014, celebrating the 69th anniversary of victory over Nazi Germany and the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Crimean port city of  Sevastopol from the Nazis. (Russian government photo)

Official Washington’s “group think” on Ukraine holds that the crisis is all about Russian “aggression” and “expansionism” even with comparisons to Hitler. But such a hyperbolic interpretation of intent can create its own dangerous dynamics, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar explains.

Der Spiegel Tones Down Anti-Putin Hysteria

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin. (Israeli government photo)

Exclusive: The mainstream U.S. news media continues to spew out a steady flow of anti-Russian propaganda over the Ukraine crisis, but the prominent German newsmagazine Der Spiegel has begun to temper its belligerent tone, finally reflecting the more nuanced reality, reports Robert Parry.

The Troubling History of Thanksgiving

Sitting Bull, a Lakota Indian leader who led resistance to U.S. government policies against the Native American populations before being killed by Indian agency police in 1890.

Though Thanksgiving can be a happy time for American families to get together, the actual history behind the holiday includes the complicating reality of genocide against Native Americans, including some who welcomed the first European arrivals, as Gary G. Kohls describes.

The Politics of Thanksgiving Day

Original Thanksgiving as depicted by Jennie A. Brownscombe

Thanksgiving Day is rooted in a myth of friendly cooperation between Native Americans and European settlers, celebrated a year after the Pilgrims landed in Massachusetts and nearly starved. But the reality was more of one-sided generosity and two-faced betrayal, as William Loren Katz explains.