Have You Heard the One About the Middle East Peace Talks?

No? Well no one else has heard anything about them either. They could easily become the basis for a joke inside the beltway but for the fact that no one in Washington has a sense of humor. As the Chief US mediator is named Martin Indyk one would think there is sufficient fodder for an … Continue reading “Have You Heard the One About the Middle East Peace Talks?”

Obama Flips and Flops

Discussions about coup vs. revolution, democracy vs. military rule, and regime change vs. insurgency dominate the discourse about Egypt and Syria in the media, but the tendency to explain developments using easily understandable bumper sticker style labels that are derived from western political science models obscures the reality of what is taking place. Prior to … Continue reading “Obama Flips and Flops”

Homeland Security Made in Israel

If there should happen to be an al-Qaeda attack in Calhoun County Alabama, Sheriff Larry Amerson will presumably know what to do. That is because he and a number of colleagues in law enforcement have received paid trips to Israel to learn how to deal with the terrorist threat. The Washington-based Jewish Institute for National … Continue reading “Homeland Security Made in Israel”

Who Is the Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing?

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been going around the world as well as regularly appearing on American television telling everyone who might be inclined to listen that "The [Iranian] president was replaced but the goal of the regime remains obtaining nuclear weapons to threaten Israel, the Middle East and the safety of the world." … Continue reading “Who Is the Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing?”

Spinning Yarns in the Mainstream Media

The Washington Post editorial page under Fred Hiatt has long been a neoconservative bastion rivaling the Wall Street Journal, supporting every war to come down the pike while justifying every intrusion on personal rights as long as it might plausibly be justified on grounds of national security. On July 23rd, the paper’s op-ed page delivered … Continue reading “Spinning Yarns in the Mainstream Media”

The Lobby Never Sleeps

Developments in Syria and Egypt have been a godsend for Israel. The bloodshed and political turmoil have meant that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu can continue with business as usual, with no one paying much attention to what is going on as he dismembers Palestine. Amidst all the fun and games, Israel launched a new air … Continue reading “The Lobby Never Sleeps”

The Mystery of TWA 800

It is sometimes easy to forget that the principal function of government, like any other organism, is to protect itself. In a perfect world a regime that has erred egregiously would admit to its mistake, apologize to the public, and make corrections to prevent any recurrence. By that measure, the United States should have long … Continue reading “The Mystery of TWA 800”

The Meaninglessness of Elections

There seems to be a lot of confusion about the meaning of elections, constitutions, and the rule of law. One recalls that the USSR in its heyday had a beautifully crafted constitution guaranteeing individual rights and also held regular elections for the Supreme Soviet that permitted one to select from a slate of candidates approved … Continue reading “The Meaninglessness of Elections”

Independence Day Blues

The Fourth of July used to be a pleasant holiday, families at the beach, barbecues, small town parades and fireworks. It was a genuine celebration of pride in country combined with an affirmation of the good life that most Americans enjoyed. But no longer. The bloom was definitely off the rose in the aftermath of … Continue reading “Independence Day Blues”