Tag: Paul R. Pillar

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Hamas and the Tyranny of Labels

Israel is using the latest rapprochement between the PLO and Hamas as the newest excuse to reject peace talks. The charge is that Hamas is “terrorist” although the same label has been applied to the PLO and indeed to some…

Foreign Entangling Sanctions

The U.S. government prefers economic sanctions as the opening move in any international chess match with adversaries, but sanctions on Iran and threatened ones against Russia could disrupt energy supplies and hurt the West as much as the targets, ex-CIA…

Why the US Obsession over Ukraine?

The U.S. government acts like it has a vital interest in separating Ukraine from Russia, even if that sparks a civil war among Ukrainians and disrupts Europe’s economic recovery. A slightly varied history might have given a different perspective, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R.…

Rigging the Game Against Palestinians

Official Washington’s neocons are busy spinning the latest U.S. failure to negotiate an Israeli-Palestinian peace as an excuse to extend the Israeli occupation indefinitely by insisting that the Palestinians first pass some ever-receding test of quality self-governance, as ex-CIA analyst…

Making Iran’s UN Envoy a Wedge Issue

America’s neocons and their allies want an escalating confrontation with Iran, not a negotiated solution to the nuclear issue. So they seek out hot buttons to anger Iran and make President Obama’s job harder, such as blocking Iran’s choice of…

Spies, Diplomacy and Double Standards

While Israel demands that the U.S. release spy Jonathan Pollard, it continues to persecute Mordechai Vanunu for exposing the existence of Israel’s nuclear arsenal, raising questions about secrecy, double standards and diplomacy, an issue addressed by ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Anti-Iran Hardliners Seek New Excuse

U.S. hardliners seeking to disrupt negotiations that would constrain but not eliminate Iran’s nuclear program are citing Iran’s efforts to evade U.S. oil sanctions as their latest excuse. But Iran has no obligation to submit to U.S. sanctions, notes ex-CIA analyst…

US Triumphalism and the Ukraine Mess

Besides the misleading simplicity of Official Washington’s narrative on Ukraine, the “good guy/bad guy” storyline ignores important lessons of world history and human nature, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar explains.

Israeli-Palestinian Talks Founder, Again

President Obama pondered freeing Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard to keep Israeli-Palestinian negotiations sputtering along, but Israel’s demand to be called a “Jewish state” and its refusal to free more Palestinian prisoners have pushed the talks to the brink, notes ex-CIA…

Forgetting the Lessons of Deterrence

“Tough-guy/gal-ism” is rampant again in Official Washington with many New Cold Warriors lusting for a military confrontation with Russia. But few of these hawks have a clear idea how deterrence worked during the real Cold War, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul…