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Fit to Serve

Fit to Serve

By James C. Hormel and Erin Martin

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Tag: William Pfaff


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



White House/Pete Souza

Obama Remains High-Handed—And Wrong—About Ukraine

For a man who had taken a stunning electoral blow two weeks earlier, Barack Obama completed his Asian trip with an air of unperturbed leadership of the world.

Posted on Nov 19, 2014 READ MORE



Shutterstock

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



Shutterstock

How Ronald Reagan and the Supreme Court Turned American Politics Into a Cesspool

The dominating significance of the midterm elections has been the occasion’s dramatic confirmation of the corruption of the American electoral system.

Posted on Nov 5, 2014 READ MORE



Shutterstock

Western Masters Now Terrorized by Victims of Imperialism

The threat of terror produced by past victims of American Middle Eastern imperialism is alarming, but not new, and not historically isolated to the Middle East.

Posted on Oct 28, 2014 READ MORE



White House/Pete Souza

White House Islamic State Strategy Amounts to Wishful Thinking

The notion that Iraq will “destroy” Islamic State at American behest is an illusion, and so is the notion that the coalition just formed can do it.

Posted on Oct 14, 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



TonyV3112 / Shutterstock.com

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



Shutterstock

The Mideast Horrors Grow

Cutting off the heads of aid workers and journalists is nothing in comparison with the degradation and dehumanization being inflicted on the pathetic people of the Middle East by all sides.

Posted on Sep 23, 2014 READ MORE



State Department

U.S. Coalition Excludes Countries Already Fighting Islamic State

A hollow laugh might be permitted at the alliance now announced as the result of Secretary of State John Kerry’s latest journey through the Middle East.

Posted on Sep 16, 2014 READ MORE



Shutterstock

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



1000 Words / Shutterstock.com

Neo-Liberal Austerity Keeps Europe Down

Given the current dismal state of the European Union economy, which is now firmly under German control, one must ask why Angela Merkel and her government continue to champion austerity, seemingly against all reason.

Posted on Aug 26, 2014 READ MORE



Shutterstock

Israel and the United States Are Headed for a Breakup

Nearly every intelligent witness to the nearly seven decades of Israel’s alliance with the United States and Western Europe now understands that the affair is about to be over.

Posted on Aug 19, 2014 READ MORE



White House/Pete Souza

President Obama, Choose Your Words Carefully

President Barack Obama, in the interview given last weekend to The New York Times’ Thomas Friedman, provided illumination on his foreign policy thinking, at this moment of fraught drama in both Iraq and Ukraine, but the counsels concerning the two didn’t match.

Posted on Aug 13, 2014 READ MORE



Frederic Legrand / Shutterstock.com

A Hot War Is Not Inconceivable

The antagonization of the Russian people and the betrayal of Russian leaders by the United States and NATO Europe could have very dangerous consequences.

Posted on Aug 5, 2014 READ MORE



This Is Why War Goes On

When Israel’s President Benjamin Netanyahu and his propagandists repeat and repeat that Gaza’s Hamas is responsible for this crisis, they are wrong.

Posted on Jul 15, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Nicole Sikorski

How Do You ‘Make’ Democracy?

Barring the increasingly influential isolationist/tea party wing of the American electorate, opinion is and always has been that the United States is the messenger of democracy to a world that usually hasn’t earned it and probably doesn’t deserve it.

Posted on Jul 8, 2014 READ MORE



Carl Pietzner

History Moves, but Not Always Ahead

The weekend past saw the centenary of the assassination of the Archduke Franz-Ferdinand, with as consequence the First World War.

Posted on Jul 1, 2014 READ MORE



State Department

It’s Too Late, Mr. Kerry

Secretary of State John Kerry thinks Iraq can be saved with a new prime minister to take the place of Nouri al-Maliki.

Posted on Jun 24, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Marine Corps/Cpl. Zachary Scanlon

Keeping America’s Baghdad Swimming Pools Safe From Fanatics

The Marines—250 of them, together with carrier air support and Marine Corps Osprey support craft—have been dispatched to save the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, the “biggest in the world,” “the size of the Vatican City,” with its swimming pools and skating rinks, from the menace of the offensive directed at Baghdad by the forces of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.

Posted on Jun 17, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Air Force/Staff Sgt. Evelyn Chavez

Robert Kagan and the Ruin of Ideas

Neoconservative commentator Robert Kagan, co-founder in 1997 of the Project for a New American Century, and after that institution crashed amid the ruins of Iraq, founder of its 2009 successor, the Foreign Policy Initiative, is continuing his crusade for a new Reaganism—which he construes as American world domination.

Posted on Jun 10, 2014 READ MORE



Obama Could Spare Israel Terrible Outcome

As long as Benjamin Netanyahu is prime minister and the character of the Israeli government remains unchanged, the Jewish state is locked into self-destruction.

Posted on Jun 3, 2014 READ MORE



Shutterstock

Hype and Hysteria Drown Out Europe’s Real Concerns

The outcome of the recently concluded European Parliament elections is described in press and political circles in Europe and North America as a shock or crisis, which is sheer nonsense.

Posted on May 27, 2014 READ MORE



Shutterstock

The Election of a New European Parliament

Elections like those taking place this weekend are traditionally unsatisfactory, but this year they may provide an unprecedented shock.

Posted on May 23, 2014 READ MORE



S'J / Shutterstock.com

What Ukraine Really Needs

The United States has a recent history of going to war for dubious reasons promoted by interested groups, for which afterward Americans are sorry.

Posted on May 13, 2014 READ MORE



plavevski / Shutterstock.com

A Real Risk of War

Vladimir Putin’s annexation of Crimea and threat to Ukraine are causing damage he perhaps did not anticipate: disorientation of the United States and profound division in Europe, especially in Germany, and in NATO. A real risk of war.

Posted on May 6, 2014 READ MORE



White House/Pete Souza

A Third Obama Disappointment Seems Imminent

The record of the president’s first four years proved decidedly mixed, and the second Obama turn has been one of disappointments, danger and amateurism.

Posted on Apr 29, 2014 READ MORE



Denis Kornilov / Shutterstock.com

Not Time to Turn Virtual War Into a Real One

A correspondent of the conservative Le Figaro, Adrien Jaulmes in Donetsk, reports Tuesday that what is taking place in the contested Russia-speaking areas resembles a “Potemkin” war, waged in the press and social media and on wall posters, but that has yet to produce any discernible popular movement.

Posted on Apr 22, 2014 READ MORE



Next Step in Ukraine Crisis Is Unknown

The American people don’t want to fight the Russians, and the Russians would be mad to attack NATO forces or the Baltic States. But I am sure there are people in Moscow just like the people in Washington who say “if we don’t follow through—if we don’t ‘stand our ground’—we’ll lose our credibility.”

Posted on Apr 15, 2014 READ MORE



Alexander Ishchenko / Shutterstock.com

Ukraine and Russia Have Created an International Disorder

An international disorder unmatched since the interwar 1930s has been created by the drama of Ukraine and the Russians, combined with the inherent self-destructive forces of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the developing civil war over theological as well as political issues inside the Islamic states, and the serious risk of collapse in the European Union.

Posted on Apr 8, 2014 READ MORE



Shutterstock

Ukraine Debacle Threatens Europe’s Union

The issue of rightist nationalism as a threat to the European Union and the peace of the new Europe has preoccupied Europeans since 1945, when the predecessors of the EU—the West European Union and then the Coal and Steel Community—were created to assure that Nazism or some totalitarian counterpart would not again rise in Europe.

Posted on Apr 2, 2014 READ MORE



AP/Sean Gallup

What Do the U.S. and Europe Now Want?

Washington says, “punishment” of Vladimir Putin and his Russian government. I presume that it is not by way of war, although that risk exists as both sides demonstrate their determination and self-righteousness.

Posted on Mar 26, 2014 READ MORE



plavevski / Shutterstock.com

Ukraine Promises Only Trouble for Russia

After Vladimir Putin’s speech in the Kremlin justifying and welcoming Russian annexation of Crimea, the Western press now asks what next will Putin do? How far will he go?

Posted on Mar 18, 2014 READ MORE



Shutterstock

To Achieve Peace, the Past Must Not Be Forgotten

The Ukraine crisis has slowed to a temporary halt as none of the significant actors will speak directly to anyone else in a position to break the stalemate.

Posted on Mar 11, 2014 READ MORE



Mykhaylo Palinchak / Shutterstock.com

What Happens Now in Ukraine?

What did Washington expect to gain from a successful coup d’état in Ukraine?

Posted on Mar 4, 2014 READ MORE



White House/Pete Souza

The Obama Method: Combine Threats With Accommodation

The Obama government has taken a Cold War stand on the crisis in Ukraine.

Posted on Feb 25, 2014 READ MORE



DoD photo by Cpl. Paul Peterson, U.S. Marine Corps

American Departure Will Leave Behind Carnage and Ruin

This is probably, but not certainly, the year that sees the end to the United States’ three-decades-long effort to establish permanent American strategic bases in the Muslim Middle East and in Muslim Asia.

Posted on Feb 18, 2014 READ MORE



thisisbossi (CC-BY-SA)

Western Europe’s Growing Resistance to Immigration

The immigration problem in Europe seems, to me, real but ill-understood. Switzerland is completely untypical, and comparisons with immigration in the United States are totally misleading.

Posted on Feb 11, 2014 READ MORE



Photo by Sasha Maksymenko

Ukrainians Rebel Against Russia to Join ‘Europe’

The popular Ukrainian effort to be associated with Western Europe has produced rebellion and spilled into violence.

Posted on Feb 4, 2014 READ MORE



Jean-Marc Ayrault (CC-BY)

French President Dismisses Companion Amid National Struggle Over Social Norms

The French have been shaken by François Hollande’s curt, 18-word termination of his relationship with “the woman of my life.” The whole matter has taken a significant political turn with the unexpected and noisy anti-Hollande street demonstration that followed the president’s statement. This protest was unanticipated and heterogeneous in composition and turned seriously violent.

Posted on Jan 28, 2014 READ MORE



Postwar Era Has Ended, but Not Appetite for War

It was Britain, not the United States, which took the initiative in creating a new political order and a new security system after the Second World War.

Posted on Jan 23, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Marine Corps/Staff Sgt. Ezekiel R. Kitandwe

Why Are Iraq and Afghanistan Not Looking After Themselves?

The United States has invested heavily in its conquered nations. So what’s the problem?

Posted on Jan 15, 2014 READ MORE



AP

Americans’ Isolationist Instincts Are Sound

The Washington Post and the International New York Times had the same front-page headlines today. Both had to do (as the Times put it) with the “Power Void” in the Mideast, deploring that America’s decade of attempting to create a new order in the region now is blowing up in its face.

Posted on Jan 7, 2014 READ MORE


We Need Your Prayers This Season, Pope Francis

Christmas this year seems more the occasion of religious war than of the peace to which the greeting cards routinely allude.

Posted on Dec 26, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock

Invitation for America to Go Home Is Inevitable

The Ukraine crisis and the German-American dispute over American intelligence and National Security Agency practices are without much doubt the beginning of the end of the American-dominated Europe we have known since the collapse of Communism.

Posted on Dec 18, 2013 READ MORE



Juli Hansen / Shutterstock.com

How History Will Remember Obama (Hint: Not Well)

The man elected to end war and turn the page on George W. Bush instead expanded American militarism and persecution of dissidents.

Posted on Dec 10, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock

U.S. Determined to Mend Fences With Iran, Critics Notwithstanding

Why do Americans hate the Iranians? Most Americans probably do not.

Posted on Dec 3, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock

Ukraine Halts Eastward Expansion of NATO

Russia’s relations with the Western countries are troubled and dangerous in the Ukraine dispute, and an important opportunity may be lost.

Posted on Nov 27, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock

U.S. Pushing New Treaties at Expense of National Sovereignty

Being negotiated right now are American-sponsored corporate efforts to alter trans-Atlantic and trans-Pacific international trade relations through new agreements that undermine or effectively nullify many countries’ existing national legislation on health, environment, pricing, food safety and other issues.

Posted on Nov 19, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock

Discredited Economic Theory Holds Europe in Deflationary Thrall

Why there is such iron fidelity to neoliberal austerity in the contemporary community of official, semiofficial and even academic economists? It can’t be that it works. It doesn’t work.

Posted on Nov 5, 2013 READ MORE


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