Whining White Southerners

Confederate battle flag flying on the grounds of the South Carolina Statehouse.

Exclusive: Some brave white Southerners, including the son of segregationist Strom Thurmond, have spoken out against Confederate symbols like the battle flag, but many whites still react with fury at calls for retiring those symbols and other honors bestowed on Confederate leaders, writes Robert Parry.

Trump’s Fixation on Rape and Color

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump

Real estate and entertainment mogul Donald Trump has soared to the top tier of Republican presidential candidates after a rant about Mexican immigrant “rapists” – not the first time that Trump has mixed the explosive topics of rape and color, leading Jeff Cohen to ask if Trump is a “serial racist.”

How Israel’s Gaza Blockade Backfires

An Israeli strike caused a huge explosion in a residential area in Gaza during the Israeli assault on Gaza in 2008-2009. (Photo credit: Al Jazeera)

Israel’s crushing blockade – and periodic assaults – against the 1.8 million people jammed into Gaza have led to the emergence of an Islamic State affiliate that is now challenging Hamas, an example of how extreme repression breeds ever greater extremism, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Info-War in the Iran-Nuke Talks

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

Information warfare — or “info-war” — is all the rage inside the Obama administration, which delights in distorting or misrepresenting facts as a “soft power” weapon to advance its international goals. Those games have reached into the Iran nuclear negotiations, reports Gareth Porter.

Still Waiting for USS Liberty’s Truth

USS Liberty (AGTR-5) receives assistance from units of the Sixth Fleet, after she was attacked and seriously damaged by Israeli forces off the Sinai Peninsula on June 8, 1967.  (US Navy photo)

Exclusive: During the Six-Day War in 1967, Israeli warplanes and warships tried to sink the USS Liberty, killing 34 of the spy ship’s crew. Afterwards, U.S. and Israeli officials excused the attack as an unfortunate mistake and covered up evidence of willful murder, as ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern explains.

Jeb Bush’s ‘Transparency’ Ploy

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush

Exclusive: In an opening volley of a possible clash between two well-to-do political dynasties, Jeb Bush challenged Hillary Clinton by releasing more than three decades of tax returns,  both to quiet criticism of his own past business dealings and to highlight Clinton’s reputation for secrecy, writes Chelsea Gilmour.

Not Learning from Mideast Mistakes

Barack Obama, then President-elect, and President George W. Bush at the White House during the 2008 transition.

Exclusive: The neocon strategy of “regime change” has proved financially costly and strategically disastrous – setting almost the entire Middle East on fire – but almost no lessons have been learned, no accountability assessed, and no relevant questions asked, writes ex-U.S. diplomat William R. Polk.

Offending Iran’s Dignity

Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, waving to a crowd. (Iranian government photo)

America’s neocons are back at work demeaning an agreement to constrain Iran’s nuclear program – to keep alive the neocon dream of bomb-bomb-bombing Iran. And the insults are having an effect by offending Iran’s dignity and creating friction among the negotiators, writes Trita Parsi.

Behind the Greek Crisis

Alexis Tsipras, leader of Greece's Syriza party. (Photo credit: FrangiscoDer)

Exclusive: The usual narrative of the Greek economic tragedy is that the country is paying for its past profligacy, but there is deeper back story of political repression fueled by major powers intervening in Greece and contributing to a dysfunctional political system, recalls ex-U.S. diplomat William R. Polk.

How Zionism Corrupts Judaism

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

Judaism is a religion based on humanistic principles offering powerful arguments for social justice, but it has been hijacked by Zionists who have twisted it into an excuse for ethnic cleansing and mass murder, as Professor of Moral Theology Daniel C. Maguire describes.

How to Eradicate Racism

Accused mass murderer and white supremacist Dylann Roof shown burning an American flag.

The massacre of nine black churchgoers in Charleston and a rash of arson at other black churches across the South show that despite conservative self-serving claims – and liberal wishful thinking – about racism becoming a thing of the past, much more work needs to be done, says Lawrence Davidson.

Hillary Clinton’s Failed Libya ‘Doctrine’

Ousted Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi shortly before he was murdered on Oct. 20, 2011.

Exclusive: Libya remains a nation shattered by political chaos and bloody terrorism, a result of the U.S.-backed “regime change” in 2011 that Secretary of State Clinton championed and once saw as her crowning foreign policy achievement, even the basis for a “Clinton Doctrine,” reports Robert Parry.

The Right’s Made-up ‘Constitution’

Gouverneur Morris, a delegate to the Constitutional Convention and a key drafter of the Preamble. (Painting by Edward Dalton Marchant)

From the Archive: Many Americans, especially Tea Partiers and Neo-Confederates, either haven’t read the U.S. Constitution or insist on distorting its plain language which established federal supremacy over the states and empowered the central government to “provide for … the general Welfare,” as Jada Thacker noted in 2013.

Toward a Rational US Strategy (Part 2)

President Barack Obama meets with his national security advisors in the Situation Room of the White House, Aug. 7, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Special Report: The ultimate madness of today’s U.S. foreign policy is Official Washington’s eager embrace of a new Cold War against Russia with the potential for nuclear annihilation. A rational strategy would seek alternatives to this return to big-power confrontation, writes ex-U.S. diplomat William R. Polk.

Toward a Rational US Strategy (Part 1)

World_map_changes_02-6-20

Special Report: Current U.S. foreign policy is driven by neoconservative ideologues and tough-talking “liberal interventionists” who spread chaos and death around the world while failing to serve real American interests. It’s time for a fundamental rethinking, writes former U.S. diplomat William R. Polk.

Game of Chicken with Iran

Secretary of State John Kerry (third from right) with other diplomats who negotiated an interim agreement with Iran on its nuclear program. (Photo credit: State Department)

In lock-step with Israeli hardliners, U.S. neocons continue their campaign to block a nuclear deal with Iran even if the tight restrictions would serve broad American interests and avert another Mideast war. That has left Secretary of State Kerry in a dangerous game of chicken, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Gay Marriage and Western Muslims

One of the families featured on TLC's 2011 series, "All-American Muslim"

The evolution of thought on gay marriage shows how religions can adapt to humanistic trends of society, but religious fundamentalists refuse to budge from ancient prejudices, a challenge confronting not only Judaism and Christianity but Islam, as ex-CIA officer Graham E. Fuller describes.

Confronting Southern ‘Victimhood’

Confederate President Jefferson Davis.

Exclusive: Many white Southerners are getting their backs up again over demands that the Confederate flag and other symbols of slavery be removed. But the core problem is that the South never admitted that slavery and then segregation were wrong, instead offering endless excuses, writes Robert Parry.

Finessing the Iran-Sanction Issue

Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei sitting next to President Hassan Rouhani and addressing the cabinet.

Despite discouraging headlines about last-minute troubles facing the nuclear deal with Iran, negotiators have devised a clever way of sidestepping the touchy issue of when Iran would get sanctions relief — by delaying the actual signing until initial steps have been taken, reports Trita Parsi.

Turkish Voters Rebuke Erdogan

President Barack Obama walks along the Colonnade at the White House with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey, Dec. 7, 2009. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

A surprise election setback for Turkish President Erdogan’s party reflected growing public resistance to his dictatorial style, his aggressive behavior toward Turkey’s neighbors and an economic downturn, as Alon Ben-Meir explains.

Was Turkey Behind Syria Sarin Attack?

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Aug. 30, 2013, claims to have proof that the Syrian government was responsible for a chemical weapons attack on Aug. 21, but that evidence failed to materialize or was later discredited. [State Department photo]

From the Archive: Turkey’s history of “deep state” intelligence may have resurfaced in 2013, according to journalist Seymour Hersh, as Turkish-backed, Al-Qaeda-affiliated terrorists learned to make sarin and may have used it in Syria to trick the U.S. into joining that civil war, as Robert Parry reported in 2014.

On the Trail of Turkey’s Terrorist Grey Wolves

Former Turkish Prime Minister Tansu Ciller.

From the Archive: Turkey, as a NATO country near Russia’s border, developed a powerful “deep state” where intelligence operatives, terrorists and gangsters crossed paths and shared political alliances, a grim reality that author Martin A. Lee explored in 1997 and a dark legacy that reaches to the present.

Neocons Urge Embrace of Al Qaeda

The second plane about to crash into the World Trade Center towers in New York City on Sept. 11, 2001.

Exclusive: The latest neocon gambit is to build support for “regime change” in Syria by downplaying the evils of Al Qaeda, rebranding it as some sort of “moderate” terrorist force whose Syrian affiliate is acceptable to Israel and supported by Saudi Arabia. But this audacious argument ignores reality, writes Daniel Lazare.

Selective Outrage on ‘Terrorism’

Rep. Peter King, R-New York

America’s view of “terrorism” is distorted by politics and bias, with intense hostility toward the Islamic variety but with much more tolerance of other forms, such as Cuban “anti-communist” violence and right-wing extremist murders, as underscored by a new study examined by ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Shaking Off the Symbols of Racism

Accused mass murderer Dylann Roof in a photo holding the Confederate battle flag.

A century and a half after the Civil War, many U.S. politicians still pander to Confederate sympathizers and hesitate to object to the South’s racist symbols, an attitude shaken by the murders of nine African-Americans in a Charleston church, as William Loren Katz describes.

Forgetting Reagan’s Worst Scandal

President Ronald Reagan, delivering his Inaugural Address on Jan. 20, 1981.

The mainstream U.S. media shies from direct criticism of conservative icon Ronald Reagan, so the history of the Iran-Contra arms-for-hostages deal often gets forgotten even amid discussions about the U.S. policy against negotiating with terrorists, as Sam Husseini notes.

Turkey’s Troubling War on Syria

syria-map

In Syria, the war to overthrow the secular government in Damascus has attracted Islamic militants from around the world, but they have relied on funding and support from Saudi Arabia, Qatar and – perhaps most importantly – Turkey, where an election reflected growing popular resistance to this war policy, writes Rick Sterling.

War on Whistleblowers, After Obama

NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden speaking in Moscow on Oct. 9, 2013. (From a video posted by WikiLeaks)

The war on whistleblowers has injected fear of prosecution into all honest communications between national security officials and reporters, meaning that the public instead gets a steady diet of U.S. government lies, propaganda and self-serving rhetoric, a problem addressed by John Hanrahan.

Was Race a Factor in Sterling Case?

Former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling.

President Obama’s war on whistleblowers grinds on with ex-CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling dispatched to a federal prison in Colorado, far from his home and family. In Sterling’s case, there’s also the disturbing issue of race, as Norman Solomon explains.

The Nitwits Are in Charge

New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman.

Exclusive: Pundit Thomas Friedman laments that the new Cold War isn’t funny enough for him, but there really isn’t anything funny about the U.S. plunging into an unnecessary nuclear showdown with Russia over Ukraine while Friedman and his fellow VIPs misreport what’s happening, writes Robert Parry.

Why Turkey’s Erdogan Stumbled

Turkish President Recep Erdogan.

In his rise to power, Turkish President Erdogan won popular support by showing independence in foreign affairs but then got caught up in his own grand ambitions, including support for violent “regime change” in Syria, setting the stage for an electoral rebuke, as ex-CIA officer Graham E. Fuller explains.