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November 27, 2015
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Tag: History

VIDEO: John Oliver Welcomes Students Back to School by Telling Them All the Things They Won’t Learn

HBO’s “Last Week Tonight” is on hiatus, but that hasn’t stopped John Oliver from releasing two funny Web exclusives that focus on history and education.

Posted on Sep 7, 2015 READ MORE

Hiroshima and Nagasaki, 70 Years After the Atomic Bombs Were Dropped

While the world has avoided nuclear attacks since those two days in 1945, the potential for nuclear devastation is forever hanging over us.

Posted on Aug 5, 2015 READ MORE

From the Truthdig Archives: The Terror America Wrought

This week marks the anniversary of a U.S. attack that deliberately took the lives of thousands of children on their way to school.

Posted on Jul 31, 2015 READ MORE

Piketty on Germany’s Hypocrisy: It ‘Has No Standing to Lecture Other Nations’

“Those who want to chase Greece out of the eurozone today,” the French economist says, “will end up on the trash heap of history.”

Posted on Jul 6, 2015 READ MORE

Our Mania for Hope Is a Curse

Our corporate masters know that our obsession with hope—the irrational belief we are headed toward some glorious future—causes us to ignore reality and remain disempowered. And this is why they peddle the myth of inevitable progress across the cultural and political spectrum.

Posted on May 24, 2015 READ MORE

Writing History Before It Happens

With an emphasis on the U.S. national security state and its follies, here are my top nine American repeat headlines, each a surefire news story guaranteed to appear sometime, possibly many times, between June 2015 and the unknown future.

Posted on May 20, 2015 READ MORE

Luke Bowerman

That’s All, Folks

Lest some colleague accuse me of burying the lede, here it is up front: I’m leaving Truthdig.

Posted on Mar 1, 2015 READ MORE

Ancient Landscapes Point to Dramatic Climate Change

Scientists believe Chinese civilization could have been founded by climate refugees after the collapse of an Inner Mongolia-area culture over 4,000 years ago.

Posted on Feb 26, 2015 READ MORE

Will Prison Eventually Kill America’s Activists as It Did Oscar Wilde?

When a magistrate sentenced the literary genius to two years of hard labor for the crime of being gay, he said it was the maximum punishment allowed by law. That turned out to be truer than the judge might have imagined. It killed him.

Posted on Feb 25, 2015 READ MORE

White House/Pete Souza

Patronizing at the Prayer Breakfast

The admonition not to “get on our high horse” about jihadist terror as a “unique” phenomenon rings hollow, coming from a leader who routinely sends missile-firing drones to blow suspected militants to bits.

Posted on Feb 11, 2015 READ MORE

Howard Zinn: Have a More Interesting Life

The late historian, who studied injustice and action through the centuries, offers this wonderful insight.

Posted on Feb 4, 2015 READ MORE

Fire May Have Damaged 1 Million Documents in a Cultural ‘Chernobyl’

A fire is believed to have damaged more than 1 million historic books and papers in a Moscow library said to contain some of the richest collections of work in the Slavic language.

Posted on Feb 1, 2015 READ MORE

pcruciatti /

A Whining Wall Street Banker Pleads for Pity

J.P. Morgan was recently socked in the wallet by financial regulators who levied yet another multibillion-dollar fine against the Wall Street baron for massive illegalities.

Posted on Jan 30, 2015 READ MORE

Mark Yarchoan /

Culture Wars, Old and New

The old culture war politics is dying but new culture wars are gathering force. The transformation of the battlefield will change our public life.

Posted on Jan 26, 2015 READ MORE

AP/Markus Schreiber

How Free Is Free Speech in America?

The uncomfortable truth is that here, as elsewhere around the world, freedom of expression has never come easily and is nearly always threatened in one way or another.

Posted on Jan 13, 2015 READ MORE

Attila JANDI /

A Win for the Cuban People

President Obama’s historic opening to Cuba is long overdue—and has a chance of hastening the Castro dictatorship’s demise.

Posted on Dec 19, 2014 READ MORE

Truthdig’s Books of the Year: Part One

Whether on climate change, soaring wealth inequality, or the surveillance state, this has been a year of calls to action.

Posted on Dec 12, 2014 READ MORE

CIA Crimes Without Punishment

With the release of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence report on the use of torture by the CIA after 9/11, the final defense of the indefensible by its perpetrators, advocates and publicists is falling apart before our eyes.

Posted on Dec 10, 2014 READ MORE


Why Some of the Most Conservative Republicans Are Pro-Immigration

Take, for example, studies arguing for a liberalized immigration policy by the Cato Institute, a conservative libertarian think tank started by the vast wealth of right-wingers Charles and David Koch.

Posted on Dec 2, 2014 READ MORE

AP/Anja Niedringhaus

Gratitude in a Warring World

As my children’s seventh Thanksgiving rolls around, I want to teach my boys that the holiday is about more than football and stomachaches.

Posted on Nov 27, 2014 READ MORE

Joan of Arc

In a new biography of the French girl freedom-fighter, it isn’t the maid of Orleans who receives the blazing light of scrutiny so much as the society that engulfed her and the literary imagination in which she endures.

Posted on Nov 21, 2014 READ MORE

AP/Evan Vucci

Immigration: Presidents Have the Power, but Does Obama Have the Guts?

Protecting immigrants from deportation, permitting them to come out of the shadows, is the right thing to do.

Posted on Nov 19, 2014 READ MORE

Photo by Marion S. Trikosko, U.S. News & World Report, via Wikimedia Commons

American Hero; American Story

John Doar died last week at the age of 92. If there was a Greatest Generation, he was one of its greatest men.

Posted on Nov 14, 2014 READ MORE

Oregon Shakespeare Festival/UNIVERSES

Black Panthers: The Musical

“Party People” examines the complexity and struggle of the Black Panthers and Young Lords.

Posted on Nov 13, 2014 READ MORE


What to Do About American Plutocracy

All is not lost. Change has happened in the past, against severe resistance, three times since the Civil War.

Posted on Nov 11, 2014 READ MORE


In Need of a Rebuilding Plan

All right, all right, I didn’t see the wave coming. And it turned out to be a genuine wave—one with serious implications for 2016 and beyond.

Posted on Nov 7, 2014 READ MORE

Maximum Progress on the Minimum Wage

The movement toward a higher minimum wage prevailed in Tuesday’s elections, even in some of the reddest of states.

Posted on Nov 5, 2014 READ MORE

‘When Google Met WikiLeaks’: An Exclusive Excerpt

In 2011 WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange was visited by Google Chairman Eric Schmidt. Here, from Assange’s new book, is part of the extraordinary conversation that resulted.

Posted on Oct 29, 2014 READ MORE

AP/Eric Gay

Is Voter Suppression an American Tradition?

Today’s ID laws are driven by an old purpose—undermining genuine majority rule and deflecting threats to the established order.

Posted on Oct 28, 2014 READ MORE

A Revisionist Take on President Obama

There is no shortage of bad news for President Obama, but history may be kinder to the man.

Posted on Oct 24, 2014 READ MORE


Meet the Alabama Judge Who Figured Out How to Unravel Roe v. Wade

ProPublica profiles Alabama Supreme Court Justice Tom Parker, whose “rulings over the last nine years have fueled the biggest threat to abortion rights in a generation.”

Posted on Oct 10, 2014 READ MORE

U.S. Air Force/Tech. Sgt. Joseph Swafford Jr.

More Questions Than Answers in War With Islamic State

The decision of President Barack Obama to wage air war against the Islamic State still is swimming in a sea of confusion and doubt.

Posted on Oct 7, 2014 READ MORE

AP/Amira Mortada, El Shorouk Newspaper

Women in Egypt After the Arab Spring: Gains and Losses

Women played a significant role in the 2011-2013 revolutions that shook the heart of the Arab world, as well as in the succeeding turmoil.

Posted on Oct 7, 2014 READ MORE

Zvonimir Atletic /

Seattle Replaces Columbus Day With Indigenous Peoples’ Day

Christopher Columbus was a genocidal maniac who is celebrated annually for “discovering” a land that was already inhabited by a people he would go on to enslave, torture and kill.

Posted on Oct 6, 2014 READ MORE


Marriage Equality: Surrender to the Inevitable

By deciding not to decide, the Supreme Court may have decided: If history is a guide, same-sex marriage will soon be the law of the land.

Posted on Oct 6, 2014 READ MORE

A Force More Powerful in Jefferson County, Colo.

“Don’t make history a mystery” read one of the signs at a rally in Jefferson County, Colo. High-school students in this suburban district, referred to locally as “JeffCo,” have been walking out of class en masse this past week, protesting the planned censorship of the district’s Advanced Placement (AP) United States history curriculum by the local school board.

Posted on Oct 1, 2014 READ MORE

TonyV3112 /

China and Its Challenges

China may be said to confront four current categories of challenge, with a possible return to horrors past.

Posted on Sep 30, 2014 READ MORE

Ryan Johnson (CC-BY-SA)

Eric Holder and RFK’s Legacy

When he announced his leave-taking last week, Attorney General Eric Holder spoke of Robert F. Kennedy as his inspiration for believing that the Justice Department “can and must always be a force for that which is right.”

Posted on Sep 29, 2014 READ MORE

War on Extremism

Posted on Sep 28, 2014 READ MORE

U.S. Navy/MC1 Chad J. McNeeley

Bookends of a Presidency

President Obama began his presidency with a call for a “new beginning between the United States and Muslims around the world.” He will end it as a reluctant but unapologetic warrior.

Posted on Sep 26, 2014 READ MORE

Global Warming and Global Warring

Hours after 400,000 people joined in the largest climate march in history, the United States began bombing Syria, starting yet another war.

Posted on Sep 24, 2014 READ MORE

A Climate Week to Change Everything

The climate crisis is worsening faster than predicted, by every scientific measure, and is paralleled by another crisis: the failure of the U.N. climate negotiation process.

Posted on Sep 17, 2014 READ MORE

BasPhoto /

For the Love of Scotland

Scotland’s referendum on independence will be decided by voters whose hearts say yes but whose heads say no.

Posted on Sep 17, 2014 READ MORE

Urban Outfitters

Urban Outfitters Pulls Bloody Kent State Sweatshirt

The trend-chasing retailer has apologized for selling a “vintage” Kent State sweatshirt, but insists the red splotches that look remarkably like bloodstains were not meant to allude to the 1970 national guard shooting.

Posted on Sep 15, 2014 READ MORE

Center For American Progress (CC-BY-ND)

Can Congress Be Responsible?

There was a moment in the last quarter-century when the Congress of the United States made the nation proud. It did so across all its usual lines of division: Republican and Democratic, conservative and liberal, hawk and dove.

Posted on Sep 15, 2014 READ MORE

Remembering Hiroshima in an Age of Neoliberal Barbarism

Once an emancipatory project predicated on the right to study and engage the past critically, history under the reign of neoliberalism has receded into a depoliticizing culture of consumerism, a wholesale attack on science, the glorification of military ideals, an embrace of the punishing state, and a nostalgic invocation of the greatest generation.

Posted on Sep 12, 2014 READ MORE

AP/Hasan Jamali

Terrorizing a Family of Human Rights Champions

Bahrain, a key U.S. ally in the Mideast, is building a symbolic wall against freedom. Part of that odious effort is the longtime persecution of Abdulhadi al-Khawaja and two of his daughters.

Posted on Sep 11, 2014 READ MORE

The Climate Marches On

“Unjust laws exist.” So wrote Henry David Thoreau in his 1849 essay, “On the Duty of Civil Disobedience.” The naturalist and pacifist asked, “Shall we be content to obey them, or shall we endeavor to amend them, and obey them until we have succeeded, or shall we transgress them at once?”

Posted on Sep 10, 2014 READ MORE


President Poroshenko’s Gift to America

It seems evident that Barack Obama today still does not understand how much he owes to President Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine.

Posted on Sep 9, 2014 READ MORE


Our Challenge With Islam

Destroying, degrading or containing the Islamic State—whichever goal President Obama chooses—will be the easy part. Finding ways for fundamentalist Islam to express itself peacefully is a bigger, tougher and more important project.

Posted on Sep 5, 2014 READ MORE

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