Category: Politics

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’42’ and 44

President Barack Obama bending over so a boy visiting the Oval Office could feel that the President's hair was like his. (White House photo by Pete Souza)

From the Archive: American rightists and many Republicans continue to treat President Obama with a personal disrespect that reeks of racism: hoisting signs about his “Kenyan birth,” laughing at him as a rodeo clown, wishing for his impeachment hostility that recalls…

How Congress Overlooked NSA Spying

Edward Snowden, who revealed himself as the leaker of top-secret documents related to the National Security Agency's electronic surveillance. (Photo credit: the UK Guardian)

Edward Snowden’s leaks about the National Security Agency’s surveillance programs might have been avoided if more members of Congress had done their duty to stay informed about these classified activities, rather than get distracted by the fluff of politics, says…

The Moral Imperative of Activism

St. Thomas Aquinas, a theologian of the Thirteenth Century.

Exclusive:  Today’s crises endless war, environmental catastrophe, desperate poverty and more can seem so daunting that they paralyze action rather than inspire activism. But the imperative to do something in the face of injustice defines one’s moral place in the…

Scoring Points Over a Terror Threat

Al-Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri.

Though it’s summer, Official Washington’s factionalism never takes a vacation. The neocons are in workaholic mode, claiming the precautionary closure of some U.S. embassies proves al-Qaeda remains a major threat, despite the fact that no terror attack has actually happened, as ex-CIA analyst Paul…

Iran/Iraq ‘Defectors’ and Disinformation

Ahmed Chalabi, who served as leader of the Iraqi National Congress.

From the Archive: For years, “defectors” from “enemy” states have supplied the U.S. government and media with propaganda that is eagerly repeated to justify economic, diplomatic or even military retaliation. That was the case with Iraq in 2003 and now…

Will Zionism Sink Mideast Peace?

Martin Indyk, former U.S. ambassador to Israel and lead U.S. representative to the new Israeli-Palestinian talks.

The resumption of peace talks between Israeli and Palestinian negotiators is widely cheered, but it will result in a positive result only if the genuine interests of both sides are treated fairly, a prospect that is undercut by the pro-Israeli…

Who’s to Blame for NSA Excesses?

Seal of the National Security Agency

After a terrorist attack like Benghazi or the Boston Marathon the press, pols and much of the public decry the failure to prevent the violence, but the mood shifts amid disclosures of intrusive means to counter threats. This ambivalence can…

GOP’s Mad Health-Care Vendetta

House Speaker John Boehner.

Republicans and their Tea Party allies are plotting one more frenzied assault on the Affordable Care Act by disrupting congressional townhall meetings and possibly holding the full-faith-and-credit of the United States hostage. But the madness may just expose how crazy…

Will Obama Pick a Retread for Fed?

Former Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers.

The choice of the next Fed chairman will have a big impact on the U.S. and world economies. But President Obama appears tempted to pick a safe retread like former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers though some progressives hope his choice…

Sending the Wrong Signals on Iran

Iran's President-elect Hassan Rouhani during a television appearance.

Tough-guy-ism is still a powerful ideology in the U.S. Congress, where House members just voted to ratchet up sanctions on Iran even as its new leadership is eager to reach an accommodation with the West on its nuclear program. This…