Category Archives: Analysis

Are Western wealthy countries determined to starve the people of Afghanistan?

On January 11, 2022, the United Nations (UN) Emergency Relief Coordinator Martin Griffiths appealed to the international community to help raise $4.4 billion for Afghanistan in humanitarian aid, calling this effort, “the largest ever appeal for a single country for humanitarian assistance.” This amount is required “in the hope of shoring up collapsing basic services there,” said the UN. If this appeal is not met, Griffiths said, then “next year [2023] we’ll be asking for $10 billion.” Continue reading

As Israel plots endgame in occupied Golan, Bennett must remember lessons of the past

With Syria still embroiled in its own war, Israel has been actively rewriting the rule book regarding its conduct in this Arab country. Gone are the days of a potential return of the illegally occupied Golan Heights to Syrian sovereignty in exchange for peace, per the language of yesteryears. Now, Israel is set to double its illegal Jewish settler population in the Golan, while Israeli bombs continue to drop with a much higher frequency on various Syrian targets. Continue reading

The U.S. makes a mockery of treaties and international law

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and other members of the Biden Cabinet are fond of proclaiming the “rules-based international order” (RBIO) or “rules-based order” every chance they get: in press conferences, on interviews, in articles, at international fora, for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and cocktails. Along with the terms “human rights” and “democracy,” the RBIO is routinely used to claim a moral high ground against countries that they accuse of not following this RBIO, and wielded as a cudgel to attack, criticize, accuse, and delegitimate countries in their crosshairs as rogue outliers to an international order. Continue reading

Denying the inevitable: Why the West refuses to accept China’s superpower status

An article by Gideon Rachman in the Financial Times last July is a prime example of Western intelligentsia’s limited understanding of China’s unhindered rise as a superpower. “Becoming a superpower is a complicated business. It poses a series of connected questions about capabilities, intentions and will,” Rachman wrote. Continue reading

The United States: A push toward moral decline, political extremism, political divisions and violence?

Poll after poll indicates very deep political divisions among Americans, with indications that such divisions are deepening, and even widening as a consequence of the pandemic. Indeed, according to the most recent NPR/Ipsos poll, seven in ten Americans believe the country is in crisis and is at risk of failing. Continue reading

Why is Israel amending its open-fire policy: Three possible answers

At the outset, the Israeli military decision to revise its open-fire policies in the occupied West Bank seems puzzling. What would be the logic of giving Israeli soldiers the space to shoot more Palestinians when existing army manuals had already granted them near-total immunity and little legal accountability? Continue reading

Will Congress use its unused 232-year-old power just in time to save our republic?

The Founders of this nation, and the Framers who wrote our Constitution, created (as Ben Franklin famously said) a constitutional republic: a government “deriving its just powers from the consent of the governed” through citizens’ (then white men) right to vote. Continue reading

Are we standing on the edge of a grand new progressive era?

Do we stand on the edge of a grand new progressive era, with good wages for all, racial and gender equality and justice, and a reduction of the political power of reactionary forces in America? Or will the next president gleefully overthrow American democracy, shutter the free press, and imprison those who object? Continue reading

Is the global mass psychosis a result of COVID and the far-right?

Yes, and drastic action must be taken to end it

“It” is happening with increasing frequency at school board meetings, supermarkets, the front doors of homes, and even onboard in-flight passenger jets. “It” strikes men, women, teens, blue and white collar employees, retirees and young people, and members of the military. What is “it?” “It” is a worldwide psychosis that has caused people to lose any sense of propriety, turning some into virtual mindless and often violent zombies who are willing to put others and themselves in danger. Continue reading

Chile is at the political crossroads: Social renewal or decades of painful neoliberal policy

“If [Augusto] Pinochet were alive, he would vote for me,” said José Antonio Kast in 2017, during the Chilean presidential election when he ran as an independent candidate. This was an especially provocative statement made by him out of the many he has made over the years—he had also said that “Chileans need God,” during his campaign in 2017, while proposing religious teachers in all public schools in Chile. Continue reading

Current dispute over ICBMs is a quarrel over how to fine-tune the doomsday machinery

At the level of national policy, nuclear derangement is so normalized that few give it a second thought. Yet normal does not mean sane.

Nuclear weapons are at the pinnacle of what Martin Luther King Jr. called “the madness of militarism.” If you’d rather not think about them, that’s understandable. But such a coping strategy has limited value. And those who are making vast profits from preparations for global annihilation are further empowered by our avoidance. Continue reading

Why we must defend Julian Assange

Julian Assange is one of the political prisoners that the US claims not to have. The UK is keeping him locked up for the U.S. Everyone who believes in press freedom and who opposes imperialism must be a staunch Assange defender.

December 10 is International Human Rights Day. It is always a sham holiday for the United States, which locks up its own people at rates exceeding those of every other country, and routinely makes war against the rest of the world. In 2021, the date was treated as even more of a mockery than in the past. Joe Biden convened a bizarre democracy summit, wherein he declared other nations good or bad based on whether they go along with the dictates of the U.S. empire. Although it was in London where the U.S. behaved in a particularly shameful manner, working with the United Kingdom to secure the right to extradite Julian Assange. Continue reading

“Trump’s next coup has already begun: January 6 was practice.”

“Trump’s Next Coup Has Already Begun…” is the title of an article in the Atlantic, just out, by Barton Gellman, a Pulitzer Prize winner and author of many groundbreaking exposés. He describes the various maneuvers that Trump-driven Republican operatives and state legislators are developing to overturn elections whose voters elected Democrats from states with Republican governors and state legislatures. Georgia fit that profile in 2020—electing two Democratic senators in a state with a Republican legislature and governor. Continue reading

On ‘gassing the Arabs’ and other diseases: Is Israel a ‘sick society’?

For whatever reason, some mistakenly perceive the Israeli newspaper, Haaretz, as liberal, progressive and even ‘pro-Palestinian’. Of course, none of this is true. This misconstrued depiction of an essentially Zionist and anti-Palestinian newspaper tells of a much bigger story of how confusing Israeli politics is, and how equally confused many of us are in understanding the Israeli political discourse. Continue reading

It’s no mystery: Joe Manchin represents the monied interests and nobody else

Joe Manchin, Republicans, and the Supreme Court are shafting working Americans.

The next ten days may well offer the last opportunity to enact Biden’s agenda, because once Congress returns from Christmas break it’s the new year—which is a danger zone for new legislation. Even when Democrats control all three branches—as they do now and did during first two years of Obama and Clinton—the second year is perilous because of the overwhelming gravitational pull of the midterm elections (I have a searing memory of Bill Clinton unable to summon a Democratic majority in 1994 for his healthcare bill). Continue reading

Diablo’s planet-killing nuke insanity keeps escalating

Amidst our ever-escalating climate Apocalypse, the viral insanity of atomic power gets ever worse. Now it’s spread deep into the Biden administration, with no apparent cure in sight. Continue reading

You’d better watch out: The surveillance state has a naughty list, and you’re on it

Santa’s got a new helper. Continue reading

UNGA’s latest resolution illustrates the international community’s complicity with Israel’s colonial expansion

Yet another non-binding UN General Assembly has passed, granting Palestinians permanent sovereignty over their natural resources, even as Israel has absolute dominion over their territory. The draft resolution, titled “Permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and of the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources,” is a perfect example of how the UN glosses over Israel’s colonial violence by refusing to take action, preferring to enact non-binding resolutions which do nothing to protect the Palestinian people’s political rights and their territory. Continue reading

False charges of leadership senility have always been sourced to malign players

False charges from the right-wing that President Biden is hampered by senility represents an old and worn-out tactic by malign players, who have used the tactic against elder statesmen who have served as presidents, heads of state, or heads of government. Biden finds himself in august company when it comes to the propaganda barrage directed at him, in Biden’s case, by domestic and foreign on-line troll campaigns. Charles De Gaulle, Konrad Adenauer, Deng Xiaoping, Jozef Broz Tito, Paul von Hindenburg, and other senior statesmen all faced similar false charges at specific times during their terms in office. Continue reading

Belgium is on the right track, but Europe has failed Palestine

The Belgian government’s decision on November 25 to label products made in illegal Israeli Jewish settlements is welcome, although it will ultimately prove ineffectual. Continue reading

A coup by any other name is still a coup

Notable from the tenor and direction of the House of Representatives Select Committee on January 6th’s most recent subpoenas for witness testimony and documents from Infowars’ Alex Jones and longtime Republican political dirty tricks operative Roger Stone is a clear indication that the committee’s investigators are on a trail that could ultimately point to Donald Trump being aware of the plans by insurrectionists to march on the U.S. Capitol. Those Oval Office plans could also include the physical occupation of the Capitol, as well. Continue reading

The GOP now stands for trolls, vigilantes & death

The Rittenhouse verdict sent a shudder through America as terrorists and vigilantes celebrated. One right-winger called for wholesale slaughter of Democrats saying on Telegram, “The left won’t stop until their bodies get stacked up like cord wood.” Continue reading

We do exist: Why the Palestinian voice should take center stage

At a recent New York event, the president of the Foreign Press Association, Ian Williams, declared, before an approving audience, that it is time “to reclaim the narrative on Palestine”. Continue reading

Trump regime turned Washington into a fetid and lawless version of wartime Tangier and Macao

During his four years in office, Donald Trump, accompanied by his unethical and immoral family, business associates, and advisers, turned Washington, DC, into a replica of wartime neutral cities like Tangier and Macao, where anything and everyone was for sale to the highest bidder. Fans of the 1942 film noir, “Casablanca,” which starred Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, may be surprised to know that it was not wartime Casablanca in Morocco that inspired director Michael Curtiz to develop a theme around Rick’s Café Américain, where foreigners of every political stripe — German Nazis, Vichy French, Free French, and European refugees — co-mingled in an environment of deceit and corruption. Continue reading

The high stakes of the U.S.-Russia confrontation over Ukraine

A report in Covert Action Magazine from the self-declared Donetsk People’s Republic in Eastern Ukraine describes grave fears of a new offensive by Ukrainian government forces, after increased shelling, a drone strike by a Turkish-built drone and an attack on Staromaryevka, a village inside the buffer zone established by the 2014-15 Minsk Accords. Continue reading

Hapless Biden administration is Weimar Republic on way to U.S. fascism

The soaring economic inflation and social woes under the Biden administration point to a disastrous outcome awaiting the United States.

The embrace of political extremism by the Republican Party in the United States has constitutional historians worried about the drift towards fascism. If that’s the case, then the hapless Biden administration may go down in history as the imitation of the Weimar Republic before the rise of American fascism. Continue reading

Trump’s and Bannon’s alternate world

In a reality-based world, the recent video summit between President Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping may have gone, in part, something like the following . . . Continue reading

From Pegasus to Blue Wolf: How Israel’s ‘security’ experiment in Palestine became global

The revelation, a few years ago, that the US National Security Agency (NSA) has been conducting mass surveillance on millions of Americans has reignited the conversation on governments’ misconduct and their violation of human rights and privacy laws. Continue reading

COP26: climate pledges don’t match up with policies or consumer behavior

The Glasgow Climate Pact kicks the climate can down the road.

After more than two weeks of negotiations during the United Nations COP26 climate summit in Glasgow, Scotland, diplomats from almost 200 nations finally agreed on two major points: ramp up the fight against climate change and help at-risk countries prepare. Specifically, governments agreed to meet again next in 2022 with more robust plans to slash carbon dioxide emissions by 45 percent by 2030, significantly reduce emissions of methane (which has even more global warming potential than CO2), and nearly double the aid to poor countries to help them mitigate the effects of climate change. Notably, nations agreed to initiate reductions in coal-fired power and to begin slashing government subsidies on other fossil fuels, representing the first time a COP text mentioned coal and fossil fuels. Continue reading

U.S. supremacy by any other name

Speaking at the Aspen Security Forum two weeks ago, General Milley conceded that ‘America’s century’ is over—a long overdue acknowledgement, most might venture. Yet, belated or not, his saying it nonetheless seemed to signal an important strategic shift: “We’re entering into a tri-polar—world with the U.S., Russia and China being all great powers. [And] just by introducing three versus two you get increased complexity”, Milley said. Continue reading

State-backed violence against indigenous communities in Brazil contradicts plans for protection

It is only the indigenous communities who are clarifying the importance of their inclusion in political decision-making with regards to the environment.

The Indigenous Missionary Council’s (CIMI) annual report on violence against indigenous communities in Brazil in 2020 illustrates an expansion of human rights violations committed during Jair Bolsonaro’s second year of his presidency. Under the guise of the coronavirus pandemic, land exploitation continued while indigenous communities benefited from no state protection. Continue reading

No time for complacency—January 6 was a dress rehearsal

The Trump conspirators haven't given up on overthrowing the US government—and they may yet succeed.

Location, location, location. For good or evil, history often is made in the confines of a hotel room or suite: whether the first meeting of the post-revolution Soviet government at Moscow’s Hotel National in 1918, or the drafting in 1922 of Ireland’s constitution at the lovely Shelbourne Hotel in Dublin. Continue reading