Category Archives: Commentary

Obama strikes back at Netanyahu by declassifying 1987 nuclear weapons report

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was invited by House Speaker John Boehner to address Congress on March 3. Rather than running it past the White House, which is the usual protocol, both Boehner and Netanyahu decided to bypass the president. In diplomatic circles, this is considered an insult and/or slap in the face. Continue reading

Forced blood draws, DNA collection and biometric scans: What country is this?

Our freedoms—especially the Fourth Amendment—are being choked out by a prevailing view among government bureaucrats that they have the right to search, seize, strip, scan, spy on, probe, pat down, Taser, and arrest any individual at any time and for the slightest provocation. Continue reading

Obama’s admission not enough: US spin on Middle East violence must change

Truly, US President Barack Obama’s recent call to address the root causes of violence, including that of the so-called “Islamic State” (IS) and al-Qaeda was a step in the right direction, but still miles away from taking the least responsibility for the mayhem that has afflicted the Middle East since the US invasion of Iraq in 2003. Continue reading

International Islamist terrorism: It’s more than a mere question of semantics

Early in January, it was widely reported that President Barack Obama’s staff had said that for him or his vice president not joining other heads of state in the largest rally in the history of Paris to protest the carnage done by Islamist terrorists in their attacks against journalists and against French Jews, had been a “mistake,” made by an “unnamed senior White House staff.” Continue reading

Washington has resurrected the threat of nuclear war

Foreign Affairs is the publication of the elitist Council on Foreign Relations, a collection of former and current government officials, academics, and corporate and financial executives who regard themselves as the custodian and formulator of US foreign policy. The publication of the council carries the heavy weight of authority. One doesn’t expect to find humor in it, but I found myself roaring with laughter while reading an article, in the February 5 online issue, by Alexander J. Motyl, “Goodbye, Putin: Why the President’s Days Are Numbered.” Continue reading

Landmark federal court decision: Will it speed Diablo nuke’s demise?

New revelations about earthquake dangers have shaken the future of California’s Diablo Canyon nukes. Continue reading

Another year, another ‘terror’ ‘crisis’

Yeah, I have to keep using scare quotes, because they’re a reflection of this country and its insistence on finding a terrorist around every corner. Continue reading

We are all zombies

The most heinous thing a human can do is eat another human. Fear of cannibalism along with the other two great taboos, incest and inter-family violence, are the bedrocks of human culture. Without these taboos there is no human civilization, yet zombie cannibals are everywhere, from the most popular TV shows in the US and Europe to the most played PC games. Everywhere we look there is a zombie dragging his feet looking for human prey. The ubiquitous nature of this meme of semi-human creatures that survive only by breaking the most fundamental of human taboos is a clear indicator of a collective cultural pathology Continue reading

The awesome life of an American congressman

We could go on about the inherent contradiction of “Downton Abbey” as the biggest hit on public television—that a series about a fading, genteel (and Gentile) British aristocracy and its servants dominates the schedule of a broadcasting service mandated to promote diversity and give a voice to the underrepresented. And sometime soon, we will talk about precisely that and more. Continue reading

The imperial president—no limits on executive power

President Obama has reminded us on several occasions that what separates us from the rest of humanity and makes us “exceptional” is that we are a nation of laws and we live by the rule of law. Continue reading

Planetary suicide

Every so often a nonfiction book comes along that, because of its objective, comprehensive coverage of a hot topic, should be carefully read with a highlighter in hand by everyone. That new book is “Unprecedented” by David Ray Griffin. Continue reading

Guess whose children’s feet would be in those boots on the ground

Brrr. I’ve got the polar vortex blues. We, the Sisterhood, denounce this Siberian Express and talk about moving to a warmer zip code. Continue reading

The logic of the imperial security state

What to think of a policy that bombs countries and leaves them to their fate? Most observers of US foreign policy since 2001 regard this policy as a failure. They look upon the ruins of Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Somalia, Yemen, and see no victory parade, no reconstruction, no stable government, no democracy, and no human rights. Continue reading

Greece surrenders to Troika

Instead of renouncing its odious debt and walking away, Athens agreed to pay bankers first, maintain austerity, and let long-suffering Greeks continue taking the hindmost. Continue reading

After six years in office, Obama believes to have seen ‘the great light’

On his way from Jerusalem to Damascus, Saul of Tarsus (Christianity’s Saint Paul), the Jewish-Roman persecutor of Jesus’ early disciples, saw a “great light” which blinded him and threw him off his horse. A light which transfigured his life, and made him perhaps the most important personage in the Apostolic Age (First Century); a fundamental figure in Old Christianity. Continue reading

The Front Page Rule

After a week here in FMC Lexington Satellite camp, a federal prison in Kentucky, I started catching up on national and international news via back issues of USA Today available in the prison library, and an “In Brief” item, on p. 2A of the Jan. 30 weekend edition, caught my eye. It briefly described a protest in Washington, D.C., in which members of the antiwar group “Code Pink” interrupted a U.S. Senate Armed Services budget hearing chaired by Senator John McCain. The protesters approached a witness table where Henry Kissinger, Madeleine Albright and George Schulz were seated. One of their signs called Henry Kissinger a war criminal. “McCain,” the article continued, “blurted out, ‘Get out of here, you low-life scum.’” Continue reading

Historical cycles: are we doomed to repeat the past?

Few people have not heard the above quote, but is the reason history repeats itself because we fail to learn from it, or because history follows an unbreakable pattern we are doomed to repeat? The answer is crucial since, by all indicators, we are about to repeat the classic pattern of social collapse. This would explain why your government is preparing for the worst. Continue reading

Germany’s balancing act

Angela Merkel, Germany’s conservative chancellor, is steering a cautious course between two conflicting needs. Continue reading

Beyond the market-state: decentralising power in a sharing society

In an era of politics characterised by unconstrained corporate lobbying, a well-oiled ‘revolving door’ between industry and government, and an endless stream of campaign contributions from dirty oil and other lucrative industries, is the long-championed ideal of a truly democratic state now a lost cause? Should concerned citizens and activists turn their attention instead to establishing sustainable economic alternatives within their towns and communities? Or should we all be doing much more to ensure that “government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth,” as Abraham Lincoln once avowed? Continue reading

Tick tock: The world blunders 2 minutes closer to doomsday

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has moved the hands of the “Doomsday Clock” two minutes closer to midnight. After 3 years at 11:55, the new edition published in January shows the hands of the clock at 11:57, with the dire warning, “It Is 3 Minutes to Midnight.” Continue reading

Elimination of ‘public option’ threw consumers to the insurance wolves

Big firms and their campaign cash found a friend in Joe Lieberman

When members of Congress caved to demands from the insurance industry and ditched their plan to establish a “public option” health plan, the lawmakers also ditched one of their favorite talking points, that a government-run plan was necessary to “keep insurers honest.” Continue reading

Freedom Rider: An angry white man kills again

Craig Hicks was a human time bomb in his Chapel Hill, North Carolina, neighborhood. He was constantly spoiling for a fight, about noise or parking or anything else that he found irritating. Hicks was always armed, a resident of an “open carry” state which allowed him to wear a holstered gun anywhere at any time. On February 10, 2015, Hicks turned himself in to the police and confessed to murdering three people that day. Continue reading

Parking space terrorism: Time for action after killing of three US Muslims

The murder of three American Muslims at a University of North Carolina condominium on Tuesday, 10 February, was no ordinary murder, nor is the criminal who killed them an ordinary thug. The context of the killings, the murder itself and the media and official responses to the horrific event is a testimony to everything that went wrong since the United States unleashed it’s long-drawn-out “war on terror,” with its undeclared, but sometimes declared enemy, namely Islam and Muslims. Continue reading

Egypt and Russia cement relations

Russian President Vladimir Putin received a right royal welcome during his recent landmark two-day visit to Cairo. Streets and bridges were decked out with posters reading ‘welcome’ in Arabic, English and Russian. The leaders of Russia and Egypt have very different personalities but have developed a cordial relationship rooted in mutual interests, benefits and strategic concerns. Continue reading

Creepy, calculating and controlling: All the ways Big Brother is watching you

None of us are perfect. All of us bend the rules occasionally. Even before the age of overcriminalization, when the most upstanding citizen could be counted on to break at least three laws a day without knowing it, most of us have knowingly flouted the law from time to time. Continue reading

I read the news today, oh boy . . . (The Beatles)

This phrase comes to mind often as I click through alternative news and commentary web sites or leaf through mainstream newspapers left behind on the Metro. The disconnect between these two worlds, from my perspective, is as palpable as the Europe I met for the first time in 1966 and the Europe in which I now live, nearly fifty years later. Continue reading

The spirit of the blizzard kitten lives on

While hurrying home through an alley during what would become a major snow storm, I
heard meowing coming from . . . somewhere. Seeing nothing, I followed the repeated cries that suggested a very small, desperately fearful cat. Finally it appeared, almost completely covered and shivering. Continue reading

Will Ohioans be forced to pay the bill to keep the crumbling Davis-Besse nuke plant alive?

As the world’s nuke reactors begin to crumble and fall, the danger of a major disaster is escalating at the decrepit Davis-Besse plant near Toledo, Ohio. Continue reading

White man’s terrorism

Three Muslim American students were shot to death last Tuesday at about 5:15pm, at a residential complex of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a suspect has been arrested over the incident, according to local police. Continue reading

Another TSA agent charged with child sex abuse

Today we have news of yet another TSA agent arrested for child sexual abuse. Continue reading

Truth beneath the lies: The West finances, organizes, trains fundamentalist proxy forces in its illegal wars

If the governing media framed itself in terms of truth rather than government-sponsored lies, the root causes of terrorism could be addressed and rectified. Continue reading

Mending ‘Axis of Resistance’: Hamas returns to the start

Despite its success of repelling Israeli military advances in Gaza, Hamas’s regional political maneuvers of recent years are not bearing fruit. Jointly isolated by Israel and other Arab parties, unaided by the Palestinian Authority (PA) of Mahmoud Abbas, the Islamic Resistance Movement is once again facing difficult choices, and it seems to be choosing a cautious return to its old camp of Iran and Hezbollah. The maneuver this time is particularly risky. Continue reading