Tag: Paul R. Pillar

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The Power of Exaggerated Fear

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida.

As the American middle class shrinks and citizens feel vulnerable and angry, politicians have found that exaggerating the dangers from some bogeyman “the Muslim terrorists are out to get you!” works wonders in distracting them from far more serious threats, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R.…

Not Taking Sides in Saudi-Iran Fights

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani celebrates the completion of an interim deal on Iran's nuclear program on Nov. 24, 2013, by kissing the head of the daughter of an assassinated Iranian nuclear engineer. (Iranian government photo)

Many U.S. pols and pundits fret that Saudi Arabia’s feelings are hurt by the Obama administration’s opening to Iran, but they conveniently forget Saudi support for terrorism and other acts harmful to the American people, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar explains.

Neocons Protest US Spying on Israel

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the United Nations in 2012, drawing his own "red line" on how far he will let Iran go in refining nuclear fuel.

U.S. neocons are livid over a report that U.S. intelligence spied on Israeli efforts to sabotage the Iran nuclear talks, though they are curiously silent on evidence that Israel spies on the U.S. Ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar says it would be…

Hyping More Fears about Iran

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

Official Washington’s neocon/liberal-hawk establishment is working itself into another lather over Iran, this time by hyping fears about a ballistic missile program as another backdoor way to sabotage the Iran-nuclear agreement, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar explains.

Dangerous Punditry on Syria

The Washington Post building. (Photo credit: Daniel X. O'Neil)

Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen has built a long record of getting nearly every major issue wrong over many decades but still eagerly dispenses the latest conventional wisdom emerging from Official Washington’s misguided “group thinks,” as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar…

Congress’ Off-Point Iran-Bashing

An Iranian man holding a photo of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. (Iranian government photo)

The U.S. Congress, still in thrall to Israeli leaders and the neocons, cited Islamic State terrorism as an excuse to clamp down on travel to Iran even though Iran has nothing to with ISIS or other Sunni jihadists, unlike Saudi Arabia…

The Myth of ‘Taking Out’ ISIS

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas.

“Tough-guy-gal-ism” remains the dominant rhetoric of Official Washington as politicians and pundits compete to outdo each other in advocating bloody remedies for “taking out” the Islamic State. But the armchair warriors misunderstand the problem and offer no solution, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R.…

The Murder of Yitzhak Rabin

Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, who was assassinated in 1995.

Israel’s decisive turn to the dark side of Jewish terrorism and religious-based repression of the Palestinians can be marked by the murder of Prime Minister Rabin by a right-wing Jewish extremist in 1995, a moment that also inflicted a fatal…

Saudis’ Anti-Terror Window-dressing

Saudi King Salman meets with President Barack Obama at Erga Palace during a state visit to Saudi Arabia on Jan. 27, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Faced with greater public awareness of its role promoting Sunni jihadist terror, Saudi Arabia has announced a 34-nation “anti-terrorism coalition,” but it may be just window-dressing for Riyadh’s anti-Shiite agenda, not a serious move against extremism, an issue addressed by ex-CIA analyst Paul R.…

A Moment of Hope on the Climate

Image of Planet Earth taken from Apollo 17

Republican politics especially the party’s growing separation from science-based reality remain a major obstacle to a global consensus on climate change, but the Paris agreement shows that the world is capable of overcoming these “climate deniers,” as ex-CIA analyst Paul…