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Obama’s Wars

Obama’s Wars

By Bob Woodward
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Tag: Policy


Help Needed Now for Climate Refugees

A United Nations University report urges governments worldwide to draw up plans urgently to avoid conflict and insecurity by helping populations that are being forced to move because of climate change.

Posted on Jun 12, 2014 READ MORE



Shortly After Mother’s Day, U.N. Says U.S. ‘Losing Out’ Over Paid Maternity Leave

The United States is one of just three countries not to guarantee any paid maternity leave, a policy that costs the nation dearly.

Posted on May 13, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Companies Doze as Climate Change Threatens

The advances of science and the rapid changes in the economy are leaving the U.S. corporate world far behind, say researchers, who warn that the sector must change urgently.

Posted on May 8, 2014 READ MORE



The Energy Revolution Is In Reverse

The world should be moving to a clean energy future, the IPCC says. The recent record of global greenhouse emissions show it’s heading in entirely the wrong direction.

Posted on Apr 18, 2014 READ MORE



‘Forget the Cost—Tackle Climate Anyway’

If we want to be sure the world will remain habitable we should stop trying to work out the cost and just take action anyway, two researchers say—and in any case, the cost is unknowable.

Posted on Apr 4, 2014 READ MORE



AP/ISNA, Amin Khosroshahi

War With Iran: Nothing Is What It Seems

The war being promoted in the United States against Iran is (or would be) a war of aggression disguised, by but also to the leaders themselves, as a preventive war necessitated by threat.

Posted on Apr 2, 2013 READ MORE



Flickr / Physicians for Human Rights - Israel (CC-BY-SA)

Israel-Born Daughter of Foreign Worker Faces Deportation

The Israeli Interior Ministry announced Tuesday that it will deport the 4-year-old daughter of a foreign worker despite the fact that the girl was born and attended school in Israel. (more)

Posted on Aug 16, 2011 READ MORE


The Policy Bracket

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Posted on Mar 19, 2011 READ MORE


Gorbachev’s ‘New Policy Forum’ Hints at the Future

No one attending the New Policy Forum in Sofia was very interested in Washington’s present military and geostrategic preoccupations.

Posted on Oct 13, 2010 READ MORE


Magic Mushrooms

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Posted on Apr 7, 2010 READ MORE    



Staff Sgt. Cohen A. Young, U.S. Air Force

U.S. Contemplates More of the Scarcely Believable in ‘Af-Pak’

The people who are running the war in Afghanistan are contemplating an air attack on one of Pakistan’s principal cities, the capital of its largest province, for reasons that defy logic.

Posted on Dec 15, 2009 READ MORE


Blue Red Black White

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Posted on Sep 16, 2009 READ MORE    


The Right’s Twisted Blame Game

Listening to the president’s critics, it would be easy to believe that Obama is responsible for the deficits, bailouts, bonuses, nationalized institutions and careening markets. It would be easy to believe but it’s entirely false.

Posted on Mar 26, 2009 READ MORE



AP photo / Elizabeth Dalziel

Obama’s Plan to Save the World

Forget about terrorism for a moment. The potential catastrophe that climate change could unleash on America makes every other national security crisis pale in comparison. President Obama cannot secure the homeland without addressing this global emergency.

Posted on Mar 24, 2009 READ MORE


Sarkozy’s Courtship of NATO Defies Rationality

France’s president has lived up to the stereotype that his people, fond as they are of home vacationing and generally convinced of their own superiority, not infrequently fail to know what they are talking about when dealing with foreign countries.

Posted on Mar 17, 2009 READ MORE



AP photo / Lynne Sladky

A Changing Community Now Wants Softer U.S. Policy on Cuba

A majority of Florida’s Cuban-Americans, including many former hard-liners, have come to oppose a U.S. embargo strategy that has proved futile over the decades.

Posted on Mar 11, 2009 READ MORE



AP photo / Andy Wong

We Are Breeding Ourselves to Extinction

All efforts to save the planet will be useless if we do not cut population growth. By 2050, the planet will have between 8 billion and 10 billion people, according to a recent U.N. forecast. And yet studies, books and documentaries that deal with various crises fail to discuss the danger of all those billions of hungry people looking for a better life.

Posted on Mar 8, 2009 READ MORE


America’s ‘Strong Commitment to Error’

John Kenneth Galbraith once warned that U.S. foreign policy suffers from institutional rigidity with a “strong commitment to error.” What better proof than the planned surge in Afghanistan?

Posted on Feb 3, 2009 READ MORE


Foreclosure
Flickr / respres

Fed Takes a Swing at Foreclosures

After pumping hundreds of billions into the banking system with not much to show for it, Fed chief Ben Bernanke says he will try to reduce the number of foreclosures. As he put it to Rep. Barney Frank: “The goal of the policy is to avoid preventable foreclosures on residential mortgage assets that are held, owned or controlled by a Federal Reserve Bank.”

Posted on Jan 27, 2009 READ MORE


Beware, Mr. Obama, of Tax-Cut Seduction

Much of the business-tax package Obama contemplates fails his own test of cutting business taxes “where it makes sense and is going to work.”

Posted on Jan 8, 2009 READ MORE


Our Cuba Policy: A Failure at 50

President-elect Obama will have more urgent matters to deal with after he takes the oath of office. But somewhere on his long to-do list, he should make a note to finally bring five decades of counterproductive American policy toward Cuba to a definitive end.

Posted on Jan 1, 2009 READ MORE


Choice for Education Secretary Marks a New Path

  Because Arne Duncan gets along with teachers unions but is also seen as a reformer, his selection was interpreted as a politically shrewd, split-the-difference choice by Obama. But that is not the whole story.

Posted on Dec 19, 2008 READ MORE


Bill Clinton
Flickr / Photo Mojo

Pondering the Inner Meanings of Bill’s Big List

It’s far-fetched to think Hillary Clinton’s performance as secretary of state would be influenced by foreign donations to her husband’s charitable foundation. But it is naive to think that the newly revealed list of donors won’t provoke suspicion and give rise to conspiracy theories.

Posted on Dec 19, 2008 READ MORE


Settlement Extremists Threaten Israel’s Moral Substance

The steady expansion of nominally illegal colonies into the Palestinian territories has gone on to the point where the political parties are now incapable of disengaging from the settlement enterprise.

Posted on Dec 11, 2008 READ MORE


Breathing New Life Into Health Care

Over the past 10 months, as the hemorrhage of jobs began to push the national unemployment rate toward its October level of 6.5 percent, about 3 million Americans were thrown off the insurance rolls or had their incomes fall so much that they became eligible for Medicaid or the State Children’s Health Insurance Program.

Posted on Dec 4, 2008 READ MORE


Not a Team of Rivals at All

When the journalistic pack bites into a tasty cliché, they often refuse to let go, lazily chewing and regurgitating a phrase like “team of rivals” long after the flavor is gone.

Posted on Dec 4, 2008 READ MORE



highereducation.org

Report Fails 49 States on College Affordability

Because of its inexpensive community colleges, California was the only state to earn a passing grade in the affordability category of the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education’s annual report. Just as the demand for quality education is expected to spike, too many students are priced out of college, the center found.

Posted on Dec 3, 2008 READ MORE


Our Dear Leader

Judging by the proliferation of capital letters in the e-mail correspondence I receive, many seem worried that Barack Obama may not deliver the promised “change we can believe in.”

Posted on Nov 28, 2008 READ MORE



Richard Ellis on ‘Diagnosis: Mercury’

Thinking of whipping up another tuna casserole? You may change your mind after reading this convincing expose by Jane M. Hightower, a San Francisco doctor.

Posted on Nov 28, 2008 READ MORE


Obama’s Shrewd Choices

Barack Obama’s appointees will implement the Obama program, not only because that is what he tells them to do but because that is what they have come to believe is best for the country.

Posted on Nov 26, 2008 READ MORE


Bush’s Hoover Impression Flirts With Depression

At the earliest, it is likely to be at least February or March before the first dollar of an Obama recovery plan is felt. This is a national disgrace.

Posted on Nov 26, 2008 READ MORE


Unions for Obama
my.barackobama.com

Where’s Labor?

Not only is Barack Obama packing his inner circle with neo-liberal Clinton stalwarts, he’s also avoiding the question of labor by not including any representative of workers in the economic policy team he announced Monday. What gives?

Posted on Nov 26, 2008 READ MORE



change.gov

Obama Rolls Out Economic Team

To fix the ailing economy, Barack Obama has turned to two men who helped break it. On Monday, the president-elect announced Timothy Geithner as his choice for treasury secretary, and Giethner’s former mentor in the Clinton Treasury Department, Lawrence Summers, as his pick to head the White House Economic Council.

Posted on Nov 24, 2008 READ MORE


Why Obama Can Keep Gates

If the prospect of appointing Hillary Clinton as secretary of state irritates the Obama base, what will they make of keeping the man who has executed President Bush’s policies at the Pentagon?

Posted on Nov 20, 2008 READ MORE


Obama
AP via YouTube

Obama Offers Change on Climate Change

How will an Obama administration differ its predecessor in terms of climate change? President-elect Barack Obama made a virtual appearance at a Los Angeles climate conference to drop some hints.

Posted on Nov 18, 2008 READ MORE


Retired Military Leaders Denounce ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’

One-hundred-and-four retired admirals and generals have signed a statement calling on the military to allow gay soldiers to serve openly. “Don’t ask, don’t tell” has lost support since the Clinton administration originally negotiated the compromise, but Barack Obama will likely avoid resurrecting one of his predecessor’s biggest headaches.

Posted on Nov 18, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Hasan Sarbakhshian

With Iran, Obama Needs More Carrot, Less Stick

Now that the presidential election has liberated Barack Obama from the need to play to the fickle whim of domestic politics, he should put away the saber and take a more enlightened approach to Iran.

Posted on Nov 13, 2008 READ MORE


Afghanistan Girl After Acid Attack
AP photo / Allauddin Khan

How Bloody Can Bush’s Legacy Be?

The legacy of George Bush’s two “wars of liberation” may already be judged as foreign policy blunders, but the real costs of war remain even after the truism of failed empire. In Afghanistan, acid attacks on at least 15 female students mark a worrisome trend in women’s rights there. And in Iraq, an Iraqi soldier opened fire on a patrol of U.S. troops, killing two.

Posted on Nov 12, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / Matthias Winkelmann

Obama in Charge

For all the talk of checks and balances, the president has sweeping powers. Barack Obama is expected to demonstrate that by quickly reversing as many as 200 of President Bush’s executive orders after taking the oath of office Jan. 20. The president-elect has reportedly had scores of advisers working on the matter for months.

Posted on Nov 9, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Carolyn Kaster

Hell to Pay

Sen. John McCain’s ideological ties to the Bush-Cheney administration have mostly passed beneath the radar of the mainstream media, but if McCain loses the presidential race to Barack Obama, his neoconservative legacy could erupt into the open with a force that should not be underestimated.

Posted on Oct 30, 2008 READ MORE



commons.wikimedia.org / Manfred Brückels

Reality Catches Up to the Free Market

Karl Marx, were he still about, would surely be interested in the report that unregulated free-market capitalism has died in a flash, by its own hand; whereas it took 70 years and a Cold War to bring down the Marxist economy established in the Soviet Union following the Bolshevik Revolution.

Posted on Sep 18, 2008 READ MORE


The Cost of Saakashvili’s Folly

The West’s response to the situation in Georgia evades acknowledgement of the damage Georgia’s President Mikheil Saakashvili has done to the United States and NATO, and to Georgia itself, which for the foreseeable future will now be a nation of limited sovereignty, and an awkward embarrassment to its Western allies.

Posted on Aug 26, 2008 READ MORE



amazon.com

Obama to Release New Book in September

Book browsers will get plenty of face time with the Democratic candidate this fall when “Change We Can Believe In: Barack Obama’s Plan to Renew America’s Promise” arrives in stores. It’s a collection of speeches, policy papers and a foreword from the man himself. Proceeds will go to an unspecified charity.

Posted on Aug 11, 2008 READ MORE


Donald Rumsfeld
DoD photo / Chad J. McNeeley

The Return of Rumsfeld

Is the master of the rhetorical question back? Well, in spirit at least. Truthdig contributor Allen McDuffee warns that a group of Democratic foreign policy hawks is pushing one of Donald Rumsfeld’s big ideas for overhauling the U.S. military. These are the same security-obsessed Democrats, by the way, who helped sell the Iraq war to the American people.

Posted on Jul 30, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Hasan Sarbakhshian

Iran Shows Its Cards

Iran’s recent missile tests should remove all doubt that an attack by either the United States or Israel would be a terrible mistake.

Posted on Jul 14, 2008 READ MORE


Obama
Flickr / Allison Harger

Obama’s Plan for Iraq

Barack Obama has an Op-Ed article in Monday’s New York Times outlining his vision for Iraq. It’s mostly a rehashing of positions he has stated over and over again, but it’s interesting to read the quilt work of stump speeches, debate sound bites and policy papers assembled into one document.

Posted on Jul 13, 2008 READ MORE


Obama’s Iraq Flap

Barack Obama recently promised to “refine” his withdrawal policy. His detractors called it a flip-flop. Team Obama said revision is different from reneging. The usual lineup of Sunday morning chatterboxes is here to sort things out.

Posted on Jul 7, 2008 READ MORE


marijuana
commons.wikimedia.org

So Much for the War on Drugs

Despite spending countless billions and passing draconian laws, the United States is anything but a drug-free zone. The percentages of those in the U.S. who have tried marijuana or cocaine are greater than the percentages of any other country surveyed, according to a new study. The Netherlands, which has notoriously lax drug policies, had less than half the percentage of marijuana users and an even lower level of cocaine dabblers relative to the U.S.

Posted on Jul 1, 2008 READ MORE


McCain

Educating McCain on Iraq

John McCain likes to brag about his foreign policy chops and his many visits to Iraq, but these two prominent Iraqi lawmakers find that the Republican nominee just doesn’t get the complexities of their country.

Posted on Jun 17, 2008 READ MORE



National Archives / White House Staff Photographers

Carter Sheds Light on Israel’s Nukes

Israel’s nuclear arsenal is something of a mystery. In fact, it doesn’t officially have one, but it doesn’t officially not have one either (wink wink). Former President Jimmy Carter lifted the shroud of secrecy over the weekend when he revealed that “Israel has 150 or more” nukes. Carter was attempting to put Iran’s alleged nuclear shenanigans in perspective.

Posted on May 26, 2008 READ MORE


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