Thank General Clark for His Straight Talk, Tell Him To Not Back

Sunday, on Face the Nation, General Wesley Clark spoke honestly and bluntly about what it takes to be Commander in Chief.  In doing so, while he said Senator John McCain’s service made him a hero to millions, including Clark himself, that experience does not trump the poor judgment that Senator McCain has shown on some of the most important issues in recent years.

What General Clark said was right, but the right-wing has been in an uproar. And even CNN accused Clark of “swift-boating” McCain. We need to fight back.


Let’s show General Clark that we have his back, and will not stand for any attempts to shut down this important debate.

Published in: on July 1, 2008 at 7:45 am  Comments (14)  

All the President’s Nazis (real and imagined): An Open Letter to Bush

Dear Mr. Bush,

Your speech on the Knesset floor today was not only a disgrace; it was nothing short of treachery. Worse still, your exploitation of the Holocaust in a country carved out of the wounds of that very crime, in order to strike a low blow at American citizens whose politics differs from your own is unforgivable and unpardonable.

Published in: on May 16, 2008 at 3:08 pm  Leave a Comment  

Obama criticizes McCain, Bush on appeasement talk

“I’m a strong believer in civility and I’m a strong believer in a bipartisan foreign policy, but that cause is not served with dishonest, divisive attacks of the sort that we’ve seen out of George Bush and John McCain over the last couple days, ” Obama told about 2,000 voters at a town hall-style meeting in a livestock barn.

Obama said McCain had a “naive and irresponsible belief that tough talk from Washington will somehow cause Iran to give up its nuclear program and support for terrorism.”

Published in: on May 16, 2008 at 1:18 pm  Comments (1)  

Dems fire back at Bush’s ‘appeasement’ accusation

Democrats on Thursday condemned President Bush’s accusing them of appeasing terrorists, with one [Biden] going so far as to call his remarks “bullsh**t.”

The president, at Israel’s 60th anniversary celebration in Jerusalem, suggested some Democrats were acting in the same way some Western leaders did when they appeased Hitler in the run-up to World War II.

Published in: on May 15, 2008 at 2:50 pm  Leave a Comment  

Hillary’s Adventures Abroad

We find some exaggerations in Clinton’s claims of foreign policy experience.

  • On March 6 Hillary Clinton claimed that, unlike Barack Obama, she and likely Republican nominee John McCain have “cross[ed] the commander-in-chief threshold.” In a CNN interview the day before, Clinton had listed five foreign policy accomplishments. We can’t determine how much behind-the-scenes work Clinton did while first lady, and she certainly took an active interest in foreign policy when her husband was president. Moreover, her time as first lady plus her longer Senate career do give Clinton more foreign policy experience than Obama. But the public record of her actions shows that many of Clinton’s foreign policy claims are exaggerated.
  • Clinton claims to have “negotiated open borders” in Macedonia to fleeing Kosovar refugees. But the Macedonian border opened a full day before she arrived, and her meetings with Macedonian officials were too brief to allow for much serious negotiating
  • Clinton’s activities “helped bring peace to Northern Ireland.” Irish officials are divided as to how helpful Clinton’s actions were, and key players agree that she was not directly involved in any actual negotiations.
  • Clinton has repeatedly referenced her “dangerous” trip to Bosnia. She fails to mention, however, that the Bosnian war had officially ended three months before her visit – or that she made the trip with her 16-year-old daughter and two entertainers.
  • Both Bill and Hillary Clinton claim that Hillary privately championed the use of U.S. troops to stop the genocide in Rwanda. That conversation left no public record, however, as U.S. policy was explicitly to stay out of Rwanda, and officials say that the use of U.S. troops was never considered.
  • Clinton’s tough speech on human rights delivered to a Beijing audience is as advertised, though Clinton herself has been dismissive of speeches that aren’t backed by solutions.

This is a summary only. The full article with analysis, images and citations may be viewed on their Web site:FACTCHECK.ORG

Published in: on March 13, 2008 at 11:57 pm  Comments (1)  

Bhutto ready to share power if Musharraf drops military role

Published in: on July 30, 2007 at 10:53 pm  Leave a Comment  

Analyst counters Bush on Al Qaeda

Says biggest threat is in S. Asia, not Iraq

Published in: on July 27, 2007 at 11:26 am  Leave a Comment  

Cuba embargo costs U.S. farmers $176 million to $350 million

Pablo Bachelet |WASHINGTON — Eliminating U.S. trade and travel restrictions on Cuba could double U.S. agricultural exports to the island, according to a new government report that’s sure to add fuel to the debate over U.S. sanctions on Cuba.

Published in: on July 20, 2007 at 8:49 pm  Leave a Comment  

Britain expels Russian diplomats over Litvinenko row

Russia vows expulsions ‘will not go unanswered’

Published in: on July 16, 2007 at 10:49 pm  Leave a Comment  

Kremlin tears up arms pact with Nato

Russia’s relations with West hit a new low point

Luke Harding in Moscow

Published in: on July 15, 2007 at 5:55 pm  Leave a Comment  

Quietly, US Strategy In Iraq Shifting

A report on the ‘surge’ could help determine momentum.
Howard LaFranchi, Christian Science Monitor, July 09, 2007

With little fanfare, at least so far, the stage is being set for a post-“surge” Iraq strategy that reduces US ambitions for the Iraq project, even while keeping some US forces there for years to come.

Published in: on July 9, 2007 at 10:55 pm  Leave a Comment  

Abbas to Bush: Time to resume talks

Mahmoud Abbas told President Bush on Monday that now is the time to renew Mideast peace talks, as the emergency government he installed reaped its first windfalls when the United States and Europe promised to restore crucial aid.

Published in: on June 18, 2007 at 10:45 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Cry of the Disappeared

June 13, 2007
Guest Columnist
International Herald Tribune


To disappear became a transitive verb in Latin America. Military dictatorships “disappeared” their opponents. That is to say, they kidnapped, tortured, murdered and disposed of them, leaving only an inconsolable absence in the place of a human being.

Published in: on June 14, 2007 at 12:24 am  Comments (1)  

Carter blasts Bush on his global impact

“I think as far as the adverse impact on the nation around the world, this administration has been the worst in history,” President Carter said Saturday.

Published in: on May 19, 2007 at 7:18 pm  Leave a Comment  

Slowly, Slowly, the Ship of State Turns Realist

With just over 18 months left in office, the administration of U.S. President George W. Bush appears once again to be moving in a more “realist” direction in its dealings with the rest of the world, including the Middle East.

[Thx JRB]

Published in: on May 5, 2007 at 11:23 pm  Comments (1)  

Six Questions for Laura Rozen on Iran

She’s better informed and sourced than just about anyone writing on Iran, and consistently breaks news and offers smart analysis. Ken Silverstein recently asked her six questions about the Bush Administration’s Iran policy.

Published in: on May 5, 2007 at 10:25 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Hail Mary Pass

May 2, 2007
Op-Ed Columnist

On Thursday there will be a regional conference in Egypt to discuss stabilizing Iraq, and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will represent the U.S. President Bush should go instead and give this speech:

I want to take this opportunity to speak to the Arab and Muslim nations gathered here today and to the world at large. I begin with a simple message: I’m sorry. I’m sorry that I rushed into the invasion of Iraq. I honestly believed that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction. I was wrong, and I now realize that in unilaterally launching the war the way I did, you all feel that I breached a bond of trust between America and the world. Not only did that alienate you from us, it made us less effective in Iraq. We had too few allies and too little legitimacy. I apologize — sincerely. (more…)

Published in: on May 2, 2007 at 9:32 am  Comments (1)  

Pelosi Meets Syria’s Assad

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi challenged the White House on Middle East policy Wednesday, meeting with Syria’s leader and insisting “the road to Damascus is a road to peace.”

Published in: on April 5, 2007 at 1:49 am  Leave a Comment  

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall…

As the wheels continue to come off Mr. Bush’s Iraq War machine, look for the White House to engage in even more heated and fear-mongered rhetoric – their apparent specialty.

Published in: on March 30, 2007 at 12:46 pm  Leave a Comment  

Hubris and Obscenity:Imperial Ambitions on Naked Display

Rarely has the imperial hubris that lies at the basis of U.S. foreign policy – the unspoken, unquestioned assumption of America’s right to global domination by force – been so nakedly revealed than in the recent Washington Post story decrying the degraded state of the Pentagon’s military preparedness. (“Military is Ill-Prepared for Other Conflicts.“)

Published in: on March 21, 2007 at 12:47 am  Leave a Comment  

Gary Hart: The Lessons of Iraq

Very soon a new industry called “The Lessons of Iraq” will be born, even as the search for the end-game continues against the back-drop of the theme “who lost Iraq.” Partisan strategists will be allocating blame while more thoughtful citizens will try to draw lessons for future generations.

Some lessons are apparent.

Published in: on March 19, 2007 at 2:41 pm  Leave a Comment  

Let it Bleed?


Published in: on March 14, 2007 at 6:53 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Value of Their Values

March 7, 2007
Guest Columnist

I began my career as a Foreign Service officer in Indonesia. There, journalists, diplomats and aid workers emphasized that local government was “incompetent, inefficient and corrupt.” I heard the same when working in the Balkans, Afghanistan and Iraq. My colleagues often seemed contemptuous of the nations where they served. They overlooked the cultures’ virtues and strengths, which are the keys to rebuilding nations, particularly after insurgency and civil war.

Published in: on March 6, 2007 at 11:18 pm  Comments (1)  

An Afghan Policy Built on Pipe Dreams

March 3, 2007
Guest Columnist

The international community’s policy in Afghanistan is based on the claim that Afghans are willing partners in the creation of a liberal democratic state. Senator John McCain finished a recent speech on Afghanistan by saying, “Billions of people around the world now embrace the ideals of political, economic and social liberty, conceived in the West, as their own.” (more…)

Published in: on March 3, 2007 at 1:43 pm  Comments (1)  

It All Comes Down to Control

Noam Chomsky, the noted linguist, author and foreign policy expert, interviewed on the latest developments in US policy toward Iran, Iraq, North Korea and Venezuela.

Published in: on February 22, 2007 at 9:03 am  Leave a Comment  

Edwards urges direct talks with Iran

“It’s a huge strategic mistake not to be dealing directly with Iran,” Edwards told the Associated Press in an interview before a campaign event in Dubuque.

Published in: on February 19, 2007 at 9:48 pm  Leave a Comment  

Russian General Warns on Missile Defense

“If the governments of Poland and the Czech Republic take such a step … the Strategic Missile Forces will be capable of targeting these facilities if a relevant decision is made,” Solovtsov told reporters in Moscow, asserting the U.S. plan could upset strategic balance of power in the region.

Published in: on February 19, 2007 at 9:09 pm  Leave a Comment  

Murtha’s Strategy to End War Moving Forward

Congressman John Murtha’s plan to impose impossible readiness requirements for troops being deployed to Iraq, to mandate increased time off between stints in combat, and to end the construction of “enduring” bases in Iraq has the endorsement of Nancy Pelosi and will likely face a vote in mid-March. “This vote will limit the options of the president and should stop the surge,” says Murtha.

John Murtha’s “Slow Bleed” Plan to End the Iraq War Explained

Published in: on February 19, 2007 at 3:45 am  Comments (1)  

Unilateral force has nothing to do with global democracy

The US has overstepped its borders in every way. We must build a new world order to ensure security and prosperity for all

By Vladimir Putin

Published in: on February 14, 2007 at 7:40 pm  Leave a Comment  

America’s ‘Tarzan’ Foreign Policy

Still driven by a neoconservative ideology, the Bush administration is leading the United States into a foreign-policy jungle where George W. Bush may think of himself as the world’s most powerful predator today but where that supremacy may not be long lived. Ivan Eland uses another jungle metaphor, likening Bush’s foreign policy to a chest-thumping Tarzan declaring “we good, you bad.”

Published in: on February 14, 2007 at 7:39 pm  Leave a Comment  

Bad Feith

Feith is claiming vindication because the report doesn’t conclude that he did anything illegal. Talk about clutching at straws.

Published in: on February 10, 2007 at 1:13 am  Leave a Comment  

Canadian, U.S. and Mexican officials held secretive meeting on integration

The partnership’s stated goal is to protect North America from security threats such as terrorism and flu pandemics as well as economic threats from new global-market giants such as China.

Many of the accord’s measures are not contentious, such as plans to improve water quality, reduce sulphur in fuels, and co-ordinate efforts to fight pandemics and avian flu. But it also covers a host of hot-button issues such as plans to enhance data-sharing on high-risk travellers, revamp safety and environmental regulations, centralize the assessment of new chemicals and rework food safety standards.

Published in: on February 8, 2007 at 11:01 pm  Leave a Comment  

A Sane Way Forward

It is an interesting irony that the most comprehensive and concise overview of the Iraq puzzle, and a possible way out — while preserving the best of America’s intentions — was recently presented by a man named Zbigniew Brzezinski. This Eastern European born gentleman and scholar, who was national security advisor to Jimmy Carter, has outlined what many think is the most enlightened view of the Iraq war and Middle East conundrum to date. He certainly seems no ideologue, but a true realist and pragmatist who in recent testimony to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (available here) began by describing the war in Iraq as a “historic, strategic and moral calamity…. driven by imperial hubris…”

Published in: on February 8, 2007 at 11:07 am  Leave a Comment  

Stumbling Around the World

January 14, 2007
Op-Ed Columnist

With Iraq sliding off a cliff, and now tugging another 20,000 young Americans along as well, it’s worth wrestling with a larger question: Why are we so awful at foreign policy? (more…)

Published in: on January 14, 2007 at 2:39 am  Comments (3)  

Economic Apartheid Kills

How ironic that the Bush administration successfully talked up the global threat from terrorism while it pursued domestic and foreign policies promoting economic apartheid, a far greater and more pervasive threat to national and global stability.

Published in: on December 13, 2006 at 1:57 am  Leave a Comment  

Neo-toddler foreign policy

If we give the Iraqis a timetable for withdrawal, they will have to stop relying on our good graces (look where that’s gotten them) and take responsibility for their own destiny.

Published in: on December 11, 2006 at 12:34 am  Leave a Comment