Hoping for a Spontaneous Regime Change in Iran

With the new U.S. administration comfortably situated and setting political goals and policies, looming Iranian elections cast a long shadow over one of its thorniest issues: how to deal with the Islamic Republic. "We will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist," U.S. President Barack Obama told adversaries of the U.S. … Continue reading “Hoping for a Spontaneous Regime Change in Iran”

Iraqi Elections Dawn on Changed Political Landscape

Despite the possibility of isolated violence and other problems, close watchers of Iraq’s upcoming provincial elections say that a relatively smooth process there could be a bellwether for better days ahead, according to a new report [.pdf]. "Whereas the January 2005 elections helped put Iraq on the path to all out civil war, these polls … Continue reading “Iraqi Elections Dawn on Changed Political Landscape”

Jewish Organizations Call For End to Gaza Bombings

With a fresh outbreak of violence between Israel and Palestine, a battle of a different sort is being waged in Washington between various interests in Mideast policy circles. As Israeli air strikes continue to pummel the Gaza Strip for a fourth day and crude homemade rockets launched by Palestinian militants land in Israeli towns near … Continue reading “Jewish Organizations Call For End to Gaza Bombings”

Overcoming the Zero-Sum Hurdle in Israel-Palestine Negotiations

It seems as if the Palestinian-Israeli conflict has been dissected from every possible angle. But despite these various close examinations, there has been relatively little progress made toward a lasting peace deal between the two parties, discouraging some peace activists. Many observers, still abiding that by the well-worn adage that "the road to peace runs … Continue reading “Overcoming the Zero-Sum Hurdle in Israel-Palestine Negotiations”

Deaths Down, But Iraq Still Top Danger Zone

The improved security in Iraq has had benefits for everyone there. This has included fewer Iraqi civilian deaths, US casualties, and, says a new report, journalists. The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) release said that 41 journalists worldwide were killed this year. And while Iraq has improved, it is still the deadliest nation in the … Continue reading “Deaths Down, But Iraq Still Top Danger Zone”

US Arms Deployed in Wars Around the Globe

Pundits these days warn of a Middle East arms race if Iran brings its alleged nuclear weapons program to fruition, while others fear that missile defense in Eastern Europe could spark escalation involving Russia. But despite all the fear in Washington, it turns out that the US need look no farther than its own shores … Continue reading “US Arms Deployed in Wars Around the Globe”

An Outside Insider Probes the Iranian Psyche

While in New York this fall for the UN General Assembly, conservative Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad admitted to National Public Radio that he watches Western television: "Of course, I’m like the rest of the people. People like movies and shows." Though most Western media is banned or censored, it’s well known that many Iranians regularly … Continue reading “An Outside Insider Probes the Iranian Psyche”

Hawks Campaign to Preempt Iran Talks

Anticipating the ascent of President-elect Barack Obama to the Oval Office, groups of hawks, among them neoconservatives, have begun to offer public advice on just exactly what the new administration should do to deal with Iran. Accusing Iran of a covert plan to pursue nuclear weapons under the guise of peaceful ambitions, most Washington voices … Continue reading “Hawks Campaign to Preempt Iran Talks”

Regional Players Key to Salvaging Peace Process

One of the biggest foreign policy challenges facing the incoming administration of President-elect Barack Obama will be reinvigorating what looks like a completely stalled Palestinian-Israeli peace process. Repeated failures in the struggle for peace make clear that a change in direction is needed. And many observers think that taking advantage of the Arab Peace Initiative … Continue reading “Regional Players Key to Salvaging Peace Process”

No Amnesty for Bush Administration, Say Torture Opponents

Judging by the rare leaks from President-elect Barack Obama’s transition team, investigations and prosecutions of high-level George W. Bush administration officials for torture and war crimes are a distant prospect. But likely or not, that won’t stop pundits from debating the question of whether those officials responsible should be held accountable. Irrespective of whether Vice … Continue reading “No Amnesty for Bush Administration, Say Torture Opponents”