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October 10, 2015
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Tag: Middle East

How Stable Is Saudi Arabia?

The kingdom faces a severe budget shortfall because of the plummeting price of petroleum, and all this instability takes place against a backdrop of substantial regional turmoil.

Posted on Jan 24, 2015 READ MORE

U.S. Freezes Drone Strikes in Yemen as That Nation’s Government Falls

Thousands demonstrated in Sanaa on Saturday morning against the Houthi takeover of the Yemeni government.

Posted on Jan 24, 2015 READ MORE

‘He Was Not a Benevolent Dictator, He Was a Dictator’

Dead at age 90, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia (at right) was praised by President Obama “as a force for stability and security in the Middle East and beyond.” But analysts accuse him of turning the Syrian uprising into a proxy war with Iran, and U.S. diplomatic cables identified the country as the world’s largest funder of militant Islamist groups.

Posted on Jan 23, 2015 READ MORE

Israel’s Netanyahu Is Being Imported by GOP to Ensure a War With Iran

Republican House Majority leader John Boehner secretly invited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to Washington to address Congress and then once it was set up he let Barack Obama know about it.

Posted on Jan 22, 2015 READ MORE

A Breakdown of the Top Foreign Policy Points in Obama’s Speech

President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address slighted foreign policy in favor of touting domestic progress and proposing new domestic initiatives. But there were some foreign policy highlights worth underlining.

Posted on Jan 21, 2015 READ MORE

Airstrike in Syria: Is Israel Trying to Help al-Qaida Fight Against Hezbollah and Iran?

There are several questions around the Israeli helicopter gunship strike on Mazari` al-Amal in Syria’s Quneitra Province, which killed Hezbollah personnel and an Iranian general.

Posted on Jan 21, 2015 READ MORE

DoD photo by Senior Airman Peter Reft, U.S. Air Force

War Mania Will Only Fan Muslim Cultural Crisis in Europe

The upheaval in non-Muslim attitudes towards Muslims presents a bigger and more urgent problem than what the Muslims think about us, even when they kill us.

Posted on Jan 20, 2015 READ MORE

AP/Marco Garcia

Letter to a Young Army Ranger (From an Old One)

Rory Fanning, an Army Ranger who served with Pat Tillman and became a conscientious objector, writes this letter to young Americans targeted by Army recruiters. (At right, a recruiter.)

Posted on Jan 13, 2015 READ MORE

Frederic Legrand - COMEO /

Paris’ Place in the Middle Eastern Wars

The recent excitement in Paris produced an occasion of great surprise to an American observer, certainly to one who witnessed the transformational fear exacted from America’s governing elite by the 9/11 attacks in 2001.

Posted on Jan 13, 2015 READ MORE

Br’er Rabbit and Br’er Fox

The folk-wisdom incorporated into the story of the Tar Baby and Br’er Rabbit applies to the Middle Eastern wars from which the United States and the West want to retreat, but again and again find themselves caught deep in the tar.

Posted on Jan 7, 2015 READ MORE

What Would Happen If the International Criminal Court Indicted Israel’s Netanyahu?

If the International Criminal Court takes up Israeli government actions in the occupied Palestinian territories, it could well find specific officials guilty of breaches of the Rome Statute of 2002.

Posted on Jan 5, 2015 READ MORE

All Forms of Life Are Sacred

As long as animals are commodities in our society, nothing but property to be funneled into vast industrial slaughterhouses, it will be easy to treat our fellow humans in a similar manner.

Posted on Jan 4, 2015 READ MORE

President Obama’s Biggest Mideast Policy Challenges in 2015

Barack Obama wanted to be the president who got the U.S. out of Afghanistan and Iraq, and turned America’s diplomatic energies to the more promising Pacific Rim.

Posted on Jan 3, 2015 READ MORE

Afghanistan War

Posted on Jan 2, 2015 READ MORE

War in Afghanistan

Posted on Dec 31, 2014 READ MORE


Fight for Our Progressive Vision

Poll after poll shows that the American people support a progressive agenda that is not shared by the corporate media personalities who dominate the airwaves.

Posted on Dec 30, 2014 READ MORE

The Year Iraq Ceased to Exist: Will It Ever Again?

In 2014, Iraq was said to lose 42% of its territory to Daesh (the Arabic acronym for what our press calls Islamic State).

Posted on Dec 30, 2014 READ MORE

Did Drought and Climate Change Cause Middle Eastern States to Collapse in 2014?

The Middle East, from North Africa to Afghanistan, has seen an unusual number of governments collapse in recent years.

Posted on Dec 29, 2014 READ MORE

Did Iran Win 2014? Top 6 Iran Developments This Year

In 2014, Iran made news on a number of important fronts.

Posted on Dec 29, 2014 READ MORE

How Bashar al-Assad’s Regime Came Back in the Syrian Civil War in 2014

In the course of 2014, two major trends, long since visible in the Syrian civil war, were strengthened.

Posted on Dec 27, 2014 READ MORE

Have the Kurds Cut the Islamic State in Two, Blocking Supply Lines?

Al-Mada newspaper in Baghdad had an interesting article in the aftermath of the fall of Shinjar to the Iraqi Kurdistan Peshmerga.

Posted on Dec 24, 2014 READ MORE

ChameleonsEye /

A Brief Military History of Israel and a Prediction for the Future

The armies of Israel once fought brilliantly and to the benefit of the state, but more recent conflicts targeting civilians only serve to isolate the country and alienate its most important allies.

Posted on Dec 23, 2014 READ MORE

Kurds Inflict First Major Defeat on Islamic State, Rescue Yezidis of Sinjar

The pan-Arab London daily, Al-Hayat reports that the Iraqi Kurdistan paramilitary, the Peshmerga, have taken Mt. Sinjar from Daesh (what Arabs call Islamic State).

Posted on Dec 22, 2014 READ MORE

Top 7 Ways Assassination Fails the U.S. as Policy

Wikileaks has released a government assessment of drone strikes aimed at assassinating top leaders.

Posted on Dec 20, 2014 READ MORE

The Senate Drone Report of 2019

Three years into a sagging Clinton presidency and a bitterly divided Congress, the 500-page executive summary of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s long fought-over, much-delayed, heavily redacted report on the secret CIA drone wars was finally released. Committee chairman Ron Wyden (D-OR) took to the Senate floor, and said…

Posted on Dec 19, 2014 READ MORE

Enter the Dragon: China Offers Iraq Aerial Strikes on Islamic State

The list of powers eager to see Islamic State defeated grew larger this weekend with a report that China would intervene against IS from the air.

Posted on Dec 16, 2014 READ MORE

Former CIA Interrogator Glenn Carle: Torture Is Unamerican

This week on Truthdig Radio in association with KPFK: CIA veteran Glenn Carle takes us behind the scenes of a black site prison, Juan Cole says there isn’t a Mideast backlash, and Kasia Anderson revisits Zero Dark Thirty.

Posted on Dec 12, 2014 READ MORE

Former CIA Interrogator Glenn Carle: Torture Is Unamerican

This week on Truthdig Radio in association with KPFK: CIA veteran Glenn Carle takes us behind the scenes of a black site prison, Juan Cole says there isn’t a Mideast backlash, and Kasia Anderson revisits “Zero Dark Thirty.”

Posted on Dec 12, 2014 READ MORE

Israel, Egypt Implicated in Torture: Middle East Reactions to Senate Report Lament Their Involvement

That the release in Washington of a dense 450 page report on CIA torture conducted a decade ago would provoke massive demonstrations in the Middle East all along struck me as unlikely.

Posted on Dec 10, 2014 READ MORE (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

GOP Squirms at Release of CIA Torture Report, Warns of ‘Violence’ (So Why Did They Torture?)

The Senate report is due out this week and is already the object of a Karl Rove style disinformation campaign by former President George W. Bush and others.

Posted on Dec 8, 2014 READ MORE

Over 100 Islamic State Fighters Killed in U.S. Airstrikes in Iraq

The U.S. war on Islamic State (also known as Daesh) in Iraq and Syria takes up less and less space in mainstream media. The group and its issues haven’t gone away, however.

Posted on Dec 8, 2014 READ MORE

No Peace On Earth

Posted on Dec 7, 2014 READ MORE

Max Blumenthal Explains Why His Critics Are the Real Anti-Semites

This week on Truthdig Radio in association with KPFK: Max Blumenthal is chased out of Germany, Robert McChesney is optimistic about revolutionary change, we speak to the creators of the new documentary “Remote Area Medical,” and Robert Scheer interviews Leslie Cockburn.

Posted on Dec 5, 2014 READ MORE

Robert McChesney Is Hopeful About Revolutionary Change

This week on Truthdig Radio in association with KPFK: Max Blumenthal is chased out of Germany, Robert McChesney is optimistic about revolutionary change, we speak to the creators of the new documentary “Remote Area Medical,” and Robert Scheer interviews Leslie Cockburn.

Posted on Dec 5, 2014 READ MORE

Party On!

Unbelievably enough, a bankrupt 13-year-old policy of war to the horizon remains ascendant in Washington, and “war fever” seems to be breaking out yet again. In this context, it’s curious that four crucial aspects of war, American-style, were missing from the blitz of Hagel reportage.

Posted on Dec 4, 2014 READ MORE (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

U.N. General Assembly Demands Israel Mothball Its Nuclear Arsenal

The United Nations General Assembly (where all 193 countries in the world get a vote) has almost unanimously demanded that Israel give up its nuclear weapons and cooperate with making the Middle East a nuclear-free zone.

Posted on Dec 4, 2014 READ MORE

Defense Secretary

Posted on Dec 3, 2014 READ MORE

Iran-Iraq War 2.0? Iran Flies Bombing Raids on Islamic State Extremists in Iraq

The U.S. Pentagon is confirming that Iranian F-4 fighter jets have flown bombing missions against Daesh or the so-called ‘Islamic State Group’ in Iraq.

Posted on Dec 3, 2014 READ MORE

Mikhail Metzel/TASS

America’s Superpower Thinking Is a Bad Habit From a Bygone Century

China is emerging as the new Number One, while the policy makers in Washington can’t get their heads out of the Cold War.

Posted on Dec 2, 2014 READ MORE

1.7 Million Syrian Refugee Food Crisis Risks Regional Instability

A funding crisis at the U.N.’s World Food Program has left more than 1.7 million Syrian refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt without food vouchers as a “disastrous” winter approaches.

Posted on Dec 1, 2014 READ MORE

The Bush Administration Spent Billions on an Iraqi Army With 50,000 ‘Ghost’ Soldiers

Iraqi Prime Minister Haydar al-Abadi announced to his parliament Sunday that inspectors had uncovered 50,000 nonexistent soldiers in four divisions of the Iraqi army.

Posted on Dec 1, 2014 READ MORE

Cairo Erupts as Mubarak Declared Innocent in Deaths of Protesters

An Egyptian court Saturday found deposed dictator Hosni Mubarak and his former Interior Minister Habib Adly not guilty (or rather just dropped the charges) in the killing of nearly 900 young protesters by police in January-February 2011.

Posted on Dec 1, 2014 READ MORE

Oil Price Fall: Saudi Arabia Targets U.S. Shale Oil, Iran, Iraq, Russia

It is clear that among the major losers in the fall in the price of Brent crude petroleum are Russia, Iraq and Iran. But the big loser will likely be shale oil producers and prospectors in the U.S.

Posted on Nov 29, 2014 READ MORE

Iran Leader Khamenei: We Are Not Opposed to Nuclear Talks and Will Accept a Just Deal

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the clerical leader of Iran, told an assemblage of volunteer paramilitary forces on Thursday that he is not opposed to nuclear talks with the P5 +1 and would accept a just and reasonable deal.

Posted on Nov 29, 2014 READ MORE

Obama Strategy

Posted on Nov 27, 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

DoD photo by Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo

A Soldier Among Chickenhawks

Chuck Hagel’s departure from his post as defense secretary has been attributed to his failure to fit in with the Obama cabinet’s crowd. Among his other reported deficiencies was that he was only a sergeant in Vietnam, twice wounded.

Posted on Nov 25, 2014 READ MORE

As Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel Exits, Let’s Take a Look at an Islamic State Scorecard

I don’t see anyone talking about how the Defense Department’s response to Islamic State has gone.

Posted on Nov 25, 2014 READ MORE

Islamic State Executes 26 Sunni Tribesmen in Campaign to Take Ramadi

Islamic State (known in Arabic as Daesh) has mounted a major offensive in a bid to take Ramadi, the capital of al-Anbar Province in western Iraq.

Posted on Nov 25, 2014 READ MORE

Bird Flu

Posted on Nov 24, 2014 READ MORE

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