Category: The Bush-43 Administration

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An Imperial Death Grip on Democracy

President Barack Obama as he is sworn in on Jan. 20, 2009, with an oath to defend the Constitution. (Defense Department photo by Master Sgt. Cecilio Ricardo, U.S. Air Force)

Official Washington controlled by a lethal mix of politics, ideology, media and money has an imperial death grip on what’s left of the American democratic republic, a hold so suffocating that it’s hard to envision any move to escape. But some…

A Murder Mystery at Guantanamo Bay

President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney receive an Oval Office briefing from CIA Director George Tenet. Also present is Chief of Staff Andy Card (on right). (White House photo)

Exclusive: America’s plunge into the “dark side” last decade created a hidden history of shocking brutality, including torture and homicides, that the U.S. government would prefer to keep secret, even though many of the perpetrators are out of office, writes…

Forgetting Lessons of Terrorism

President George W. Bush announcing the start of his invasion of Iraq on March 19, 2003.

Terror tactics have always been partly theater designed to elicit public reaction, whether to draw attention to a grievance or to draw the U.S. military into a conflict. Yet, American pols and pundits seem to have forgotten this reality and…

Ducking War Responsibilities

The U.S. Congress has balked at approving a war resolution against the Islamic State, while moving aggressively to derail negotiations to ensure that Iran's nuclear program remains peaceful.

Conservatives insist that they revere the U.S. Constitution, but congressional Republicans as well as Democrats hastily fled Washington to hit the campaign trail rather than vote up or down on authorizing new wars in Syria and Iraq, an abdication of…

Making Iran the Ultimate Enemy

Iranian women attending a speech by Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. (Iranian government photo)

The determination of U.S. neocons and Israeli politicians to make Iran and its allies the great evils in the Middle East has prevented any rational U.S. policy toward the region, even to the point of facilitating possible victories by Sunni…

Guantanamo’s Force-Feeding Challenged

Some of the original detainees jailed at the Guantanamo Bay prison, as put on display by the U.S. military.

Exclusive: In the Kafkaesque world of Guantanamo, even inmates cleared for release are held indefinitely and if they try to kill themselves via hunger strikes are brutally force-fed to keep them alive. Finally, a U.S. court is confronting whether the force-feeding…

Rushing to War in the Wrong Places

President Barack Obama meets with his National Security Staff to discuss the situation in Syria, in the Situation Room of the White House, Aug. 30, 2013. From left at the table: National Security Advisor Susan E. Rice; Attorney General Eric Holder; Secretary of State John Kerry; and Vice President Joe Biden. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Official Washington’s “group think” is that President Obama is “weak” because he doesn’t rush into wars with the abandon that talk-show favorite John McCain would like. But Obama may actually be “weak” because he gets pushed into conflicts that ex-CIA…

Eroding Principles of Human Rights

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)

After World War II, there was hope that core principles of international law and human rights would become universal, but increasingly these standards have suffered from selective application and propagandistic manipulation, causing a loss of credibility in these key precepts, as Lawrence…

Eyes Finally Open to Syrian Realities

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad

Exclusive: For the past three years, Official Washington has viewed the Syrian civil war as “white-hatted” rebels against “black-hatted” President Assad, but finally some of the “gray-hatted” reality is breaking through, though perhaps too late, Robert Parry reports.

Who’s to Blame for ISIS ‘Surprise’?

CIA seal in lobby of the spy agency's headquarters. (U.S. government photo)

For several years, Official Washington blinded itself to the growing radicalism of the Syrian opposition, all the better to portray the Assad regime as the “bad guys” and the rebels as the “good guys.” Now, everyone is pointing fingers about…