Category: Obama Administration

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Sinking Deeper into the Mideast

President Barack Obama and White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough. (This White House photo by Pete Souza was taken when McDonough was deputy national security adviser.)

The deserts of the Middle East and North Africa have become a kind of quicksand for U.S. policymakers, the more they thrash around violently the faster they sink, with the latest round of warfare against the Islamic State worsening matters,…

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,…

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…

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…

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…

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…

Americans Losing Faith in Democracy

President James Madison, an architect of the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights, but also a Virginia slave owner.

Except perhaps on the well-funded Right with its potent Fox News/talk radio media machine, Americans feel increasingly powerless to influence policies either to address their economic plight or to curtail the nation’s overseas military adventures, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R.…

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.

NYT Shows How Propaganda Works

Earlier in the crisis over Syria, President Vladimir Putin of Russia welcomed President Barack Obama to the G20 Summit at Konstantinovsky Palace in Saint Petersburg, Russia, Sept. 5, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Exclusive: The U.S. mainstream media pretends it operates with professional standards of objectivity and fairness, but especially in its international reporting the only real standards are double standards, as the New York Times has shown on Ukraine and Syria, writes…

A Dangerous Failure with Iran

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani celebrates the completion of an interim deal on Iran's nuclear program on Nov. 24, 2013, by kissing the head of the daughter of an assassinated Iranian nuclear engineer. (Iranian government photo)

President Obama’s failure to sign off on a final nuclear agreement with Iran, which would have reined in but not eradicated its nuclear enrichment program, undercuts Iran’s moderate President Rouhani and strengthens the hardliners who never trusted Obama and the U.S.,…