Diplomacy, Hope, and Inspiration in Korea

History will be made this week with the summit meeting between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in. With a second summit between Kim and President Donald Trump looming in four to six weeks or so, it’s tempting to look past this first summit, but that would be a mistake. This … Continue reading “Diplomacy, Hope, and Inspiration in Korea”

Rand Paul, Pompeo, and the Koch Connection

Among the least convincing explanations ever: Sen. Rand Paul’s rationalization for changing his vote on the Pompeo nomination. When pressed, the Senator admits there were no real promises made, just a “general” sense that “we’re going to see less of these wars” after Mike Pompeo takes the helm of State. His fans were not impressed. … Continue reading “Rand Paul, Pompeo, and the Koch Connection”

VP of Iraqi Olympic Committee Kidnapped; 13 Killed in Iraq

Unknown assailants wearing military uniforms kidnapped Bashar Mustafa, vice president of the Olympic Committee in Iraq and head of the Boxing Federation, at a fake checkpoint near Mussayab. At least 13 people were killed, and seven were wounded in recent violence: Clashes in Rashad left a police officer dead and five soldiers wounded. Six militants … Continue reading “VP of Iraqi Olympic Committee Kidnapped; 13 Killed in Iraq”

The Ghost of Herut: Einstein on Israel, 70 Years Ago

Albert Einstein, along with other Jewish luminaries, including Hannah Arendt, published a letter in the New York Times on December 4, 1948. That was only a few months after Israel had declared its independence and as hundreds of Palestinian villages were being actively demolished after their inhabitants were expelled. The letter denounced Israel’s newly-founded Herut … Continue reading “The Ghost of Herut: Einstein on Israel, 70 Years Ago”

Just When You Thought ‘Russiagate’ Couldn’t Get Any Sillier…

April 20 is cannabis culture’s high holiday, and the Democratic National Committee celebrated it with fervor this year: Blaze up, get silly, file a bizarre lawsuit accusing the Russian government, Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, and transparency activist group WikiLeaks of conspiring to steal an election. The suit confirms that after more than a year, … Continue reading “Just When You Thought ‘Russiagate’ Couldn’t Get Any Sillier…”

What Will Weapons Inspectors Find in Syria… and Does it Matter?

Inspectors from the Organization for the Prevention of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) have finally arrived in Douma, Syria, to assess whether a gas attack took place earlier this month. It has taken a week for the inspectors to begin their work, as charges were thrown back and forth about who was causing the delay. Proponents of … Continue reading “What Will Weapons Inspectors Find in Syria… and Does it Matter?”

Some Lives Matter (More Than Others)

Why does the U.S. president feel inclined to attack Bashar al-Assad’s forces only in the case of chemical attacks – as opposed to more frequent conventional bombings – and why do the lives of Syrian (but not Yemeni) children matter enough to warrant missile strikes? It appears that President Trump does, in fact, have a … Continue reading “Some Lives Matter (More Than Others)”