Some of our special stories from October, focusing on the last weeks of the U.S. presidential campaign, the controversy over the Benghazi deaths, and historical mysteries from the Cuban Missile Crisis and JFK’s assassination to the October Surprise cases of 1968 and 1980.
A Congolese rebel group, M23, has won a series of victories against the disorganized troops of the central government, raising the prospect of more turmoil in that troubled African country. But more division of Congo – and even partitioning – may not be the worst outcome, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.
Cracks are forming in the old U.S. political paradigm of support for Israel whatever it does. Israeli leaders may compare mowing down each new generation of Palestinian militants to a chore like trimming the grass, but the moral depravity and diplomatic damage are growing too severe, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.
In an age of spin and propaganda, one trick is to falsify the chronological order of events to turn reactions into instigations and vice versa, like when George W. Bush says he went to war in Iraq in response to bad intelligence when his decision predated the manufacturing of that intel, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul…
The United States tends to view itself as the gold standard for democracy and bristles at international criticism of its electoral flaws. But recent corrosion of democratic principles, caused mostly by Republicans, has lowered the quality of U.S. democracy, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.
France, which governed what is now Syria after World War I, has stepped forward as the first Western power to recognize the opposition as the legitimate government. But the future course of the Syrian civil war remains dangerous and complicated, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.
The new round of violence between Israel and Palestinians in Gaza is receiving the typical U.S. media treatment, blaming Hamas and absolving Israel. But the origins of the latest clashes are much more complex than that simplistic and one-sided version, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.
Freed from pressures of reelection, President Obama has the opportunity to chart a more daring foreign policy in his second term, taking chances for peace. But he will still face determined political opposition if he crosses powerful lobbies, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.
With President Obama’s reelection, prospects for progress in Middle East disputes have brightened but no one expects the resolution of crises in Syria, Iran, Israel, Palestine and elsewhere to be easy. An offhand remark by a Palestinian leader shows how complex some issues remain, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.
Before the Right began demonizing government, there was a bipartisan consensus on the wisdom of federal action to build important national projects, like the Interstate Highway System. Today, the need for a strengthened infrastructure has become a national security concern, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.