Pardoning War Criminals Is a Monstrous Way to Honor Memorial Day

How are you spending Memorial Day? Ordinary people may attend parades, host cookouts, or take the long weekend to visit loved ones. Donald Trump, on the other hand, may pardon a few war criminals. The president recently requested the files of several accused and convicted U.S. war criminals, a possible step toward expedited pardons for … Continue reading “Pardoning War Criminals Is a Monstrous Way to Honor Memorial Day”

People Who Care About Democracy Don’t Plot Coups Abroad

For some months now, Venezuela’s socialist government has lurched through a series of escalating crises – hyperinflation, mass protests, political violence – while both the government and its opposition have flirted with authoritarianism. It isn’t pretty – and to hear the right wing tell it, it’s the future the U.S. left wants for our own … Continue reading “People Who Care About Democracy Don’t Plot Coups Abroad”

Does the Super Bowl Feel Too Political? Thank Militarism

Super Bowl season is like the holidays – a celebration shared by people more accustomed to arguing than sitting down together. As one of the few transpartisan, mass media events left to our tribal culture, the biggest TV night of the year can’t help but channel the political tensions most of us endure all year … Continue reading “Does the Super Bowl Feel Too Political? Thank Militarism”

It’s Good to Argue About Dead Presidents

Our death rituals for public figures are evolving. For a moment, obituaries favored the late President George H. W. Bush with the banal pleasantries usually afforded to deceased presidents. Well-wishers from both sides of the aisle hailed Bush’s patriotism, service, decency, and other traits we think we want leaders to have. Then came the counter-narratives: … Continue reading “It’s Good to Argue About Dead Presidents”

There Was Nothing Humanitarian About Our Strikes on Syria

Just after midnight on April 14, the U.S. and its allies bombed three Syrian regime targets. The reason, they said, was to punish Syria’s alleged use of chemical weapons in the town of Douma. Now, the Syrian regime’s brutality has been well documented. Maybe the allegations are true. But there’s a lot about this that’s … Continue reading “There Was Nothing Humanitarian About Our Strikes on Syria”

A US Soldier Died in Niger. What on Earth Are We Doing There?

In our military-revering culture, it’s a strange thing for a president to start a war of words with the grieving families of slain soldiers. Strange, yes. But from Donald Trump’s campaign season feud with the parents of Humayun Khan, who died protecting fellow soldiers in Iraq, to his recent feud with the mourning widow of … Continue reading “A US Soldier Died in Niger. What on Earth Are We Doing There?”

A Bipartisan Vote To Put the Brakes on War

One of the few things I recall fondly about the Trump campaign – a short list, I’ll admit – was the candidate’s apparent glee in ridiculing the warmongering of his rivals and predecessors. In early 2016, Trump (correctly) summed up George W. Bush’s legacy this way: “We’ve been in the Middle East for 15 years, … Continue reading “A Bipartisan Vote To Put the Brakes on War”

The Sacrifice Captain Khan Shouldn’t Have Had To Make

It was impossible not to be moved as Khizr and Ghazala Khan, two Muslim immigrants from Pakistan, stood before the Democratic National Convention and mourned their son Humayan, a U.S. soldier who’d been killed in Iraq. Humayan, his grieving father recalled, was “the best of America.” Yet if it were up to Donald Trump, Khan … Continue reading “The Sacrifice Captain Khan Shouldn’t Have Had To Make”

Military Intervention Is the Problem, Not the Solution

The Islamic State’s latest atrocities are a calculated effort to bring the war in Syria home to the countries participating in it By Peter Certo “Hillary Clinton declared that ISIS “must be destroyed” with “all of the tools at our disposal.” Ted Cruz called for “overwhelming air power” and condemned the Obama administration for having … Continue reading “Military Intervention Is the Problem, Not the Solution”

5 Reasons Congress Should Reject Obama’s ISIS War

At long last, the Obama administration has submitted a draft resolution to Congress that would authorize the ongoing U.S.-led military intervention against the Islamic State, or ISIS. The effort comes more than six months after the U.S. began bombing targets in Iraq and Syria. Since then, some 3,000 U.S. troops have been ordered to Iraq, … Continue reading “5 Reasons Congress Should Reject Obama’s ISIS War”