Ready To Work With Netanyahu: Mansour Abbas Splinters Arab Vote in Israel

At a glance, it may appear that the split of Arab political parties in Israel is consistent with a typical pattern of political and ideological divisions which have afflicted the Arab body politic for many years. This time, however, the reasons behind the split are quite different. As Israel readies for its fourth general elections … Continue reading “Ready To Work With Netanyahu: Mansour Abbas Splinters Arab Vote in Israel”

The Talented Mr. Bin Salman

Mohammed bin Salman is a charming fellow. The tall, dark, and handsome Saudi prince known as MbS has seduced world leaders and eager pundits left and right. To his supporters, MbS became first in line to the Saudi throne by championing reform in a deeply conservative Gulf kingdom, taking on corruption, confronting religious extremists, and … Continue reading “The Talented Mr. Bin Salman”

Blood for Oil: Remembering the First Gulf War

Thirty years ago, when the United States launched Operation Desert Storm against Iraq, I was a member of the Gulf Peace Team. We were 73 people from fifteen different countries, aged 22 to 76, living in a tent camp close to Iraq’s border with Saudi Arabia, along the road to Mecca. We aimed to nonviolently … Continue reading “Blood for Oil: Remembering the First Gulf War”

Trump and Biden’s Secret Bombing Wars

On February 25th, President Biden ordered U.S. air forces to drop seven 500-pound bombs on Iraqi forces in Syria, reportedly killing 22 people. The US airstrike has predictably failed to halt rocket attacks on deeply unpopular US bases in Iraq, which the Iraqi National Assembly passed a resolution to close over a year ago. The … Continue reading “Trump and Biden’s Secret Bombing Wars”

Biden’s Bombing of Syria Is a Dangerous Step Backward

For the first time, the Biden Administration ordered a cross-border military attack in the Middle East. On February 26, seven US missiles slammed into a facility used by Iranian-backed militias in Syria. Washington was retaliating for the February 15 attack on a US base in northern Iraq. The Pentagon claims self-defense. "We have acted in … Continue reading “Biden’s Bombing of Syria Is a Dangerous Step Backward”

Military Cancel Culture: Rewarding Failure

Originally posted at TomDispatch. Cancel culture is a common, almost viral, term in political and social discourse these days. Basically, somebody expresses views considered to be outrageous or vile or racist or otherwise insensitive and inappropriate. In response, that person is “canceled,” perhaps losing a job or otherwise sidelined and silenced. In being deplatformed by … Continue reading “Military Cancel Culture: Rewarding Failure”

We Need To Talk About Chad: Franco-America’s Favorite Hired Gun

After some hints to the contrary, it turns out French troops in the Sahel aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. So said President Emmanuel Macron in Paris on February 16, even before his virtual summit with France’s former-colonial "partners" – Burkina Faso, Niger, Mali, Mauritania, and Chad – comprising the G5 Sahel Joint Force. Formed in … Continue reading “We Need To Talk About Chad: Franco-America’s Favorite Hired Gun”

Biden’s Foreign Policy: No Joy in Mudville

Well, at least he hasn’t started any NEW wars! For four years, that was the excuse I got from antiwar Donald Trump supporters every time he escalated one of the several wars he inherited from George W. Bush and Barack Obama. I expect to start hearing it from antiwar Joseph Biden supporters soon. Trump was … Continue reading “Biden’s Foreign Policy: No Joy in Mudville”

American Coups: Biden’s First Tests

The Biden administration promised that things would change. The first month has already offered a few opportunities for an early measure of whether that change includes coups. It hasn’t been a great start. Ukraine One of the early signs that coup plotters were still welcome in the club was Biden’s nomination of Victoria Nuland for … Continue reading “American Coups: Biden’s First Tests”