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Tag: William Pfaff


AP/Amr Nabil

Arab Spring Best Left Alone

Critics are expected to propose solutions. I have a radical one, which I offer in full confidence that it will be universally regarded as frivolous and certainly not adopted. It changes the scene of action to Israel-Palestine.

Posted on Aug 21, 2013 READ MORE



U.S. Army/Sgt. Derec Pierson

Endless War on Terror Far From Noble Cause

George Bush’s overwrought and misdirected war against global terror, conceived as a war of the Righteous to destroy Evil, having failed wherever it was launched, has now been reconceived under Barack Obama as a war against political dysfunction.

Posted on Aug 14, 2013 READ MORE



U.S. Army National Guard/Sgt. Joshua S. Edwards

What Does Evacuation of Yemen Say About American Policy?

The war against terror now being conducted from the White House, with the increasing use of drones, obviously is a self-perpetuating and self-enlarging undertaking that of its nature guarantees that the United States is the creator and perpetuator of the very war it fights.

Posted on Aug 6, 2013 READ MORE



U.S. Navy/MC2 Matthew D. Leistikow

Conflicts Within Islam Complicate U.S. Foreign Policy

The unforeseen consequences of American Middle Eastern policy since the Second World War are now making themselves apparent.

Posted on Jul 30, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock

U.S. Policy Is to Keep the Veil of Secrecy in Place

For some 20 years, in another and more youthful phase of my life, I was one of the (apparently) several hundred thousand Americans who possessed a “top secret” security classification.

Posted on Jul 23, 2013 READ MORE



Photo by Marcin Wichary (CC-BY)

Corporate Citizenship a Dying Concept

The conviction is new that the exclusive purpose of the business corporation is to profit its professional managers and stockholders.

Posted on Jul 15, 2013 READ MORE


Secret Intelligence Court a Precursor to Tyranny

The justification for this secret court—as is usual in the development of 20th century secret police states—is national security.

Posted on Jul 10, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock

Snowden Leaks Reveal American Trojan Horse in Europe

I am surprised that in the Edward Snowden affair no one I’ve yet seen has quoted the American statesman Henry L. Stimson.

Posted on Jul 2, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock

Global Domination and Databases

Post-Cold War world military domination has proven not enough for the U.S. Now the Obama administration has been made a laughingstock by the homespun ethical stance of the high school dropout computer geek Edward Snowden.

Posted on Jun 25, 2013 READ MORE



DoD/MC1 Chad J. McNeeley

America’s Misguided Pivot to Asia

China certainly is no military threat to the continental United States, or to its security, economy or major national interests.

Posted on May 28, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock photo of EU roundtable.

Can the EU Be Saved?

It is not simply the euro zone that is threatened by the dramatic economic discrepancies that now exist among its members. Now it is the European Union itself that is in danger.

Posted on May 14, 2013 READ MORE



U.S. Navy/MC2 Edwin L. Wriston

U.S. Weighs Syrian Intervention, Despite the Consequences

The present debate in the United States over making policy for a Middle East that has been profoundly changed by the events of the past three years unhappily echoes past policies that failed.

Posted on May 7, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock photo of EU flags.

More Union in the EU Doubtful

The “More Europe” remedy favored by German Chancellor Angela Merkel seems plausible enough as a slogan, but so did the single currency.

Posted on Apr 30, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock photo of recession.

Half-Baked Theories Continue to Direct Global History

The blood runs cold when one fully appreciates how vulnerable official policymakers and the Western policy community are to slogans and to magical thinking.

Posted on Apr 23, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock photo of the euro.

A Right and Proper Death of the Euro

A new “Alternative for Germany” political movement has erupted as a backlash against the euro, and against Germany’s fellow members of the EU.

Posted on Apr 17, 2013 READ MORE



Shutterstock illustration of a drone.

Anonymous Murder From a Safe Distance

War is war and murder is murder. The law draws the distinction. The American armed drone is a weapons system of war, not of policemen.

Posted on Apr 9, 2013 READ MORE



AP/Biswaranjan Rout

Bin Laden’s Influence Lives On After Him

A day will undoubtedly come when Osama bin Laden will occupy the same place in 21st century history books as Gavrilo Princip holds in the histories of the 20th century. Both committed acts that provoked great wars, brought down empires and profoundly altered their times.

Posted on Mar 12, 2013 READ MORE



Swiss Curb Executive Greed; Will Anyone Follow?

Switzerland just had a referendum in which it voted to give company and bank shareholders veto rights over the salaries, bonuses and overall compensation packages of senior executives and board directors.

Posted on Mar 5, 2013 READ MORE



AP/Richard Drew

Americans Fear Iran but There Is Much to Learn From Cuba

A Gallup poll issued this month says that 99 percent of the American public now has become convinced that Iran’s civilian nuclear program will threaten “the vital interests of the United States in the next ten years.” Eighty-three percent say this will be “a critical threat.” Why?

Posted on Feb 28, 2013 READ MORE


U.S. and Israel Push the Boundaries of International Law

In 2009, the former head of the international law department of Israel’s military establishment, Daniel Reisner, said that “International law progresses through violations. We invented the targeted assassination thesis and we had to push it.”

Posted on Feb 12, 2013 READ MORE


Jihadism in North Africa Gets U.S. Attention

Is the Sahara the newest great threat to the United States—“a terrorist training ground,” hotbed of extremism, the new Afghanistan—in the Great War against Islamic terrorism that still preoccupies the American political class and the foreign affairs community?

Posted on Jan 29, 2013 READ MORE



White House/Pete Souza

Obama’s Place in History Already Assured

The overall failure of American foreign policy during the first Obama presidency was foreseeable.

Posted on Jan 22, 2013 READ MORE



U.S. Navy/MC1 Eileen Kelly Fors

God Loves Us and We Will Bomb You

The utopian and missionary qualities of American political belief began in the Puritans’ Calvinist theology of “the Elect,” the chosen people.

Posted on Jan 15, 2013 READ MORE



U.S. Army/Sgt. Matthew C. Moeller

Continued American Presence in Afghanistan a Recipe for More Disaster

Not all of the world—certainly not the Islamic world—wants America’s version of global security, which has required repeated American military interventions abroad, provoking guerrilla and terrorist resistance.

Posted on Jan 8, 2013 READ MORE



U.S. Army/Specialist Ken Scar

Need for Straight Talk From U.S. Defense Department

Christmas has provided a day of distraction from war, the usual condition for most of the world, and the steady-state of the modern American nation, so to speak.

Posted on Dec 29, 2012 READ MORE


Global Governance at Heart of Failed Foreign Policies

The United States and the European Union remain impotent or irresolute observers of the most important issues of political “governance” of concern these days.

Posted on Dec 18, 2012 READ MORE


Anyone Else Find the Threat of Syrian Chemical Weapons Eerily Familiar?

In the past, the accusation of WMD possession has been the usual formulation when threatening foreign intervention or an attack.

Posted on Dec 11, 2012 READ MORE



Wall in Palestine (CC-BY-SA)

What Exactly Would Israel Like to Do With Its Palestinian Population?

If Israel has its (present) way, there will be no Palestinian state.

Posted on Dec 4, 2012 READ MORE


As Hollande Struggles, So Does the Opposition

France has a double crisis. Its ruling political party, Francois Hollande’s Socialist, is in a state of catatonia, usually defined as a condition of incoherence with alternate periods of stupor and activity. More after the jump about that.

Posted on Nov 29, 2012 READ MORE



U.S. Army/Staff Sgt. Lorie Jewell

Another Scandal Among Officers Who No Longer Win Wars

As a former serviceman, I have been long bemused by the proliferation of ribbons and other decorations on the chests of today’s high-ranking army officers, now mired in scandal.

Posted on Nov 13, 2012 READ MORE



David Drexler (CC-BY)

America’s Increasingly Diverse Electorate Is Heard

Abroad, the widely noted aspect of Barack Obama’s re-election victory was its social and class character. The president was re-elected by a majority of American minorities.

Posted on Nov 7, 2012 READ MORE


Drone Warfare: An Illegal Tactic Sure to Perpetuate U.S.-Muslim War Indefinitely

It is a profound but nearly universal mistake among Americans (and others) to think that the withdrawal of American forces from Afghanistan in 2013 or 2014 will end the American war with the Muslim world that began on September 11 in 2001.

Posted on Oct 30, 2012 READ MORE



U.S. Marine Corps/SSgt Jeff Kaus

Final Debate Offers Unclear Choice of Troubling Policies

The United States is intellectually adrift upon an exceptionally turbulent sea running in the Mediterranean and the Persian Gulf, and on the larger scene, Washington is blundering into serious trouble with Russia and probably with a China that is on the edge of both foreign and domestic crises.

Posted on Oct 23, 2012 READ MORE



Photo by Peter Pearson (CC-BY-SA)

Arab Awakening and a Failed European Aeronautics Merger

From the beginning of the Arab Awakening (“Arab Springtime,” as it was, but alas two springtimes have already passed), my opinion has been to stay out of these events, as far as possible, and certainly not to attempt to control them.

Posted on Oct 16, 2012 READ MORE



U.S. Marine Corps/Cpl. Reece Lodder

Romney’s Foreign Policy a Puzzle That Doesn’t Fit Together

It is no surprise to find a businessman who is clueless with respect to America’s international relations, but when a businessman is running for the American presidency, you would expect an effort to read and learn.

Posted on Oct 9, 2012 READ MORE



Photo by Luis Argerich (CC-BY)

Major European Aerospace Merger Sends Shockwaves Around the Globe

The West Europeans are contemplating handing their independent arms and aerospace companies over to a conglomerate that would bestow on the United States an effective veto over the greater part of Europe’s rival defense industry.

Posted on Oct 2, 2012 READ MORE



Photo by Desmond Kavanaugh (CC-BY-ND)

The ‘Unloved America’

Americans shouldn’t be looking for love abroad. The goal should be respect—and we already have that.

Posted on Sep 25, 2012 READ MORE


Egypt’s President Reasserts his Country’s Sovereignty in World Affairs

Mr. Morsi said what had not been said before, that if the United States wishes Egypt to continue to respect the Camp David agreement made 34 years ago, it must honor its own simultaneous commitment to Palestinian self-rule.

Posted on Sep 25, 2012 READ MORE


Arab Outrage Should Come as No Surprise

Mrs. Clinton, the secretary of state, appears to believe that the Arabs and Egyptians should be grateful to America, and most Americans would probably agree.

Posted on Sep 18, 2012 READ MORE


Stalemate Is Preferable to Intervention in Syria

The major threat in the Middle East to international peace is Syria’s civil war, not the rhetorical battles between Iran and an Israel that claims to be straining against its American leash.

Posted on Sep 11, 2012 READ MORE



Photo by TaxFix.co.uk (CC-BY)

The Root of Europe’s Problem

Most of the damage to the European economy was done by innocent submission of credulous policymakers to the conventional wisdom of the international marketplace.

Posted on Sep 4, 2012 READ MORE



Photo by UggBoy (CC-BY)

A Brief History of Contempt Between Germany and Greece

Greece has been the main target of German denigration, at great cost.

Posted on Aug 29, 2012 READ MORE



U.S. Marine Corps/Cpl. Isaac Lamberth

Did Someone Say ‘War’?

Nobody in the U.S. and the allied countries, except for the relatives of the victims, gives a damn about Iraq. That will be true of Afghanistan, too, when it’s over. Or when it is replaced by war with Iran.

Posted on Aug 21, 2012 READ MORE



U.S. Army/Staff Sgt. Joseph Wilbanks

Romney and Ryan Project Vague Foreign Policy

Foreign affairs will be the most important issue of all to address as the United States staggers forward into the void, yet the matter will seldom appear in what’s left of the presidential campaign.

Posted on Aug 14, 2012 READ MORE


Islam’s Walls of Language

Mitt Romney’s bumbling in Israel nonetheless introduced a subject few other American politicians know anything about, nor do, it seems, the staffs of the NSA, CIA and other American political and military planners.

Posted on Aug 8, 2012 READ MORE


The National Debate Is a Disgrace

My unexaggerated but depressed opinion of the outcome is the one that current electoral voting polls suggest: a stalemate, much like the one the nation now suffers.

Posted on Aug 2, 2012 READ MORE


The Danger of Meddling in Syria’s Turmoil

The American public does not want still another war. Surely, that is clear even to the post-neoconservatives raising their heads again in Washington.

Posted on Jul 24, 2012 READ MORE


Stalemate in Siena

The European Union is at risk of being destroyed by the euro. The credit crisis founded upon the swindle by Wall Street that was retailed to Europe’s banks has created divisions in Europe which are undermining what was supposed to be mutual confidence and solidarity among the 17 members of the euro zone.

Posted on Jul 17, 2012 READ MORE



Photo by motiqua (CC-BY)

Europe Still Trying to Squeeze Into America’s Jeans

Nearly every step in the federalist direction has produced unnecessary complication and strain in the EU. Portugal is not Iowa. Italy cannot become California.

Posted on Jul 11, 2012 READ MORE



Photo by WEF/Remy Steinegger (CC-BY-SA)

Europe Bails Itself Out, for Now

The latest, and 20th, European “summit” meeting, held last week in Brussels, was symbolically a defeat for Germany’s Angela Merkel, who agreed that Europe’s permanent bailout fund could directly recapitalize certain troubled eurozone banks.

Posted on Jul 3, 2012 READ MORE


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