The Islam Catastrophe Continues

Islam - The DC

Former FBI special agent John Guandolo has written a strong and sobering essay at his website, UnderstandingTheThreat, called “Unfit for Duty.” Diana West The Daily Caller It argues that two senior Trump administration officials, H. R. McMaster and Sebastian Gorka, are “catastrophically wrong” in their assessment of Islam as publicly stated and that this is “leading America down a disastrous road… The Islam Catastrophe… Read More »

A warning from the Middle East

Middle East - BS

AFTER LIVING in Turkey for years, I concluded that Turkish democracy was deeply enough rooted so that no demagogic leader could throw it off track. Stephen Kinzer Boston Globe I was wrong. Now I believe… A warning from… Read More »

The Next 9/11: What’s the Next Impossible Terror Threat?

9-11 - The NI

The 9/11 Commission Report warned of an “imagination gap.” Jacqueline R. Sutherland The National Interest We’re still two steps behind global terrorism. Over the past… The Next 9/11… Read More »

Donald Trump and the end of American exceptionalism?

Trump - BBC

When a German Chancellor feels the need to explain the refugee convention to an American president, the speaker of British House of Commons says the leader of its closest ally is not welcome to address parliament, China positions… Nick Bryant BBC News That is, the credo pushed by successive presidents that the United States is a beacon of democracy, an exemplar of human rights, an indispensable country imbued with special values and beliefs that grants it the moral authority… Donald ... Read More »

Let’s Settle the Russia Question Once and for All

RUS - The NI

A nonpartisan commission can finally shed light on Trump’s problem that just won’t go away. Gary Hart The National Interest Presidents in the past, most notably Bill Clinton with Boris Yeltsin and George W. Bush with Vladimir Putin, have committed what might be called the “buddy fallacy” where U.S.-Russian relations were concerned. That is, they… Let’s Settle the… Read More »

To improve our political climate, change the questions we ask

Eurek Alert

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Our fractured political climate in the United States might be made worse by how we approach difficult problems, researchers say in the journal Science. Ohio State University Eurek Alert A team of political scientists suggests rather than asking citizens “What do you want,” questions should be asked in a deliberative frame: “What should we do?” “Even this small… To improve our… Read More »

May and Merkel: splitting differences

May Merkel

For all their similarities, the two leaders are unlikely to become close. Tom McTague and Janosch Delcker Politico LONDON/BERLIN — The penny dropped during a phone call. In a telephone… May and Merkel… Read More »

IS supporters free to return to Australia despite tough law changes

Pruc 1a

AUSTRALIA faces the return of some of the world’s most radical terrorists after tough laws to keep them out of the country… SHARRI MARKSON, The Daily Telegraph The Herald Sun Intelligence experts have warned the federal government nothing is stopping more than 100 homegrown terrorists — including those who have been fighting with Islamic… IS supporters free… Read More »

Europe eyes to replace US as China’s prime foreign partner

China - European Sting

Last Tuesday, Rex Tillerson, the US Secretary of State, received in Washington the top Chinese diplomat Yang Jiechi, in an effort to establish a “regular high-level engagement” with China, after President Donald Trump has practically destroyed the until recently multiple channels of problem solving and interaction between the two super powers. Dennis Kefalakos European Sting Obviously, Tillerson felt he had to urgently invite State Councilor Yang to the US to sort out the mess between the two countries. Reportedly, the ... Read More »

Veni, vidi but does he have what it takes to vici?

epa05757700 Italian former prime minister, Matteo Renzi, speaks during his speech at the National Assembly of Local Administrators in Rimini, Italy, 28 January 2017.  EPA/PASQUALE BOVE

Matteo Renzi will have to reinvent himself if he wants a shot at leading the country again. Giuliano Ferrara Politico If Matteo Renzi is to successfully relaunch his political career, the former Italian prime minister needs to reinvent himself. The “strong young man” of… Veni, vidi but… Read More »

Basque novel evokes unresolved history of violence

epa05717347 Thousands of people protest during a demonstration against the dispersion of terrorist group ETA's prisoners held in Bilbao, Basque Country, Spain, 14 January 2017. The protest was held against the government's decision to disperse the some 350 imprisoned ETA members and sympathizers to some 40 prisons in order to hamper communication among them.  EPA/Javier Zorrilla

Fictional account of lives shattered by Basque terrorism rekindles debate about memory and reconciliation. Diego Torres Politico BARCELONA — A novelist’s “brutal” portrayal of the impact of Basque terrorism on ordinary people’s lives has stepped in to fill the post-conflict vacuum in the northern Spanish region where there has been no peace process… Basque novel evokes… Read More »

Lies, propaganda and fake news: A challenge for our age

Media - BBC

With news sources splintering and falsehoods spreading widely online, can anything be done? Richard Gray BBC News Richard Gray takes an in-depth look at how we got here – and hears from the researchers and innovators seeking to save the truth. Who was the… Lies, propaganda and… Read More »

From Kissinger’s Playbook: Flynn is Gone, His Russia Policy Lives On

Jaue 2b

Amid demonstrations against his first choice, President Donald Trump named Lieutenant General Herbert McMaster, whose book claiming the US was too soft on Vietnam is now required reading for US officers, as… Dan Glazebrook CounterPunch McMaster’s appointment came after Michael Flynn, Trump’s original choice, was forced to resign earlier this month after it… From Kissinger’s Playbook… Read More »

Turkish court upholds free speech … for Erdogan

A photo taken on July 20, 2016 shows a Turkish flag on the Istanbul Justice Palace (Adalet Sarayi).
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on July 20 chaired a crunch security meeting for the first time since the failed coup, as global alarm grew over a widening purge that has seen around 50,000 people either detained or sacked. / AFP / BULENT KILIC        (Photo credit should read BULENT KILIC/AFP/Getty Images)

The botched coup attempt that rattled Turkey on July 15, 2016, marked a double setback for the country’s democracy. Ali Bayramoglu Al Monitor As the academic Vahap Coskun succinctly described it, the failed putsch “was an insurrection against the democratic order by a group that had infiltrated the state. Those in the… Turkish court upholds… Read More »

All politicians lie but it’s better if not mentioned

Politicians - Al Jazeera

We don’t need to be relativistic about it, we don’t need to introduce knee-jerk equivalences, we just need objectivity. Larry Beinhart Al Jazeera News If you are broadcasting, reporting, writing, or just repeating a story that Donald Trump lied, or that some other public figure lied, please do not tack on the tagline, “Of course, all politicians lie”. Or anything similar… All politicians lie… Read More »

What would a wise democracy look like? We, the people, would matter

Democracy - The Con-ion

All governments would like to overcome impasses caused by contentious issues. Janette Hartz-Karp The Conversation Particularly when they turn into a political slanging match, the result is loss of money, time and public trust. Take the decades-old… What would a… Read More »