Jeb Bush Set to Become an Instant Foreign Policy Wonk (Updated)
May22

Jeb Bush Set to Become an Instant Foreign Policy Wonk (Updated)

Update: Should Bobby Jindal be fancying another fatuous foray into far-flung foreign fiefdoms to flaunt his fledgling foreign flair, he will first have to feud with some fastidious fellows in his legislature: Louisiana legislators clipped Gov. Bobby Jindal’s wings Thursday by inserting wording into the state budget that would require the governor’s office to pay the out-of-state travel expenses of his security detail. . Jindal spent...

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Short and Sweet
May19

Short and Sweet

No matter what you think about the results of the recent British election, you have to be impressed by how short and sweet it was. And inexpensive. If you contrast the British campaigns with those of the Americans, you realize how lucky they are not to have years of political advertisements clogging the airways and mailboxes for their general elections. The elections for Parliament must take place at least every five years, though...

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Jeb and PNAC, The Neocon Connection
May14

Jeb and PNAC, The Neocon Connection

First, what is PNAC? It stands for the Project for the New American Century. It was founded in 1997 by William Kristol and Robert Kagan. The organization had 25 original signatories to its statement of principles, a who’s who of neocon thought. Signatories included the likes of Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz and Scooter Libby. Others, including Richard Perle, R. James Woolsey and John Bolton were not original...

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Nepal: ‘Helping Hand’ Continues (Update)
May14

Nepal: ‘Helping Hand’ Continues (Update)

Update: Efforts continue to find the missing U.S. Marine Corps UH-1Y Huey helicopter, as well as to provide humanitarian aid and disaster relief for the country of Nepal. From a Joint Task Force 505 News Release: So far, two UH-1Y Hueys, two MV-22 Ospreys, one Indian Mi-17 and three Nepalese helicopters have searched for the Huey that went missing May 12 near Charikot, Nepal, while conducting humanitarian assistance and disaster...

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Meet Operation ‘Sahayogi Haat’ (Missing U.S. Helicopter Update)
May13

Meet Operation ‘Sahayogi Haat’ (Missing U.S. Helicopter Update)

Update on Missing Helicopter: The Marine Corps Times reports that the missing U.S. military helicopter has been spotted north of the capital, “But it will take time to reach the site where it has been located in the Tamakoshi region north of the capital of Kathmandu.” A U.S. military helicopter missing during an aid mission in Nepal reportedly has been spotted north of the capital, authorities said. But it will take time to reach the...

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Nepal Earthquake: Relief Efforts Continue
May06

Nepal Earthquake: Relief Efforts Continue

The web site The Humanitarian Data Exchange prominently displays the following grim figures on the human cost as a result of the magnitude 7.8 earthquake that struck Nepal April 25. All figures are estimates as of May 6. Number of People Killed: 7,675 – Number of People Injured: 16,392 – Number of IDP (Internally displaced people) Camps: 58 It also lists the funding received as $93 million. Not known if included in that...

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Of Allies and Client States
May06

Of Allies and Client States

Americans don’t understand the difference between Allies and Client States.  The Western Europeans, the Canadians and Australia qualify as allies.  It is a give and take relationship where each country looks out for the security interests of the other although there may be some minor breakdowns from time to time.  Client States on the other hand only take.  With that in mind we have no allies in the Middle East and that includes...

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Experience Counts
May05

Experience Counts

In politics, as in every other field, experience counts, and in fact may be the most important quality a candidate for an important post possesses. This is even more true for the presidency than any other position. Certainly, there are some things one can learn on the job, but a certain level of sophistication and experience are necessary in a president for his or her administration to be successful. Wisdom only comes with age, and a...

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Updates: Iran Fires at, Boards and Seizes Marshall Islands Cargo Ship – U.S. Navy Destroyer ‘Responding’
May01

Updates: Iran Fires at, Boards and Seizes Marshall Islands Cargo Ship – U.S. Navy Destroyer ‘Responding’

UPDATE May 1: U.S. Navy ships will begin accompanying U.S. commercial ships during their transit through the Strait of Hormuz to ensure they encounter no interference from Iran, according to the Stars and Stripes. The new policy is in response to the seizure earlier this week of the Maersk Tigris. Iran claims the seizure if the cargo ship is because the Maersk shipping line owes Iran money awarded in a lawsuit. The Stripes: The...

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Updates: U.S. Disaster Relief Teams Head for Nepal
Apr29

Updates: U.S. Disaster Relief Teams Head for Nepal

UPDATE II: U.S. Ambassador Peter W. Bodde, center, welcomes the U.S. Disaster Assistance and Response Team to Nepal, April 28, 2015. The team deployed to assist with relief and recovery efforts after the country was struck by a magnitude-7.8 earthquake April 25. U.S. Air Force Airmen offload relief supplies for victims of the Nepal earthquake from a USAF C-17 Globemaster III April 28, 2015. The Air Force transported relief supplies...

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Regulating Multi-national Corporations
Apr28

Regulating Multi-national Corporations

The word multi-national makes regulation of corporations and financial institutions along with equitable taxation extremely difficult. Though most of a corporation’s business may be in a particular country or countries and most of its manufacturing or investments may take place in another nation, the company may locate its headquarters and primary habitat in a completely different nation that has nothing to do with these or with its...

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DEA Scandal: Drugs, Prostitutes and ‘Grotesque’ Double Standards (La Jornada, Mexico)
Apr23

DEA Scandal: Drugs, Prostitutes and ‘Grotesque’ Double Standards (La Jornada, Mexico)

Given the corruption and duplicity with which U.S. government agencies like the DEA, ATF and Secret Service operate, to say nothing of the public lying and unconstitutional activity of the NSA, what right do U.S. officials have to complain about corruption in places like Colombia and Mexico? This editorial from Mexico’s La Jornada takes on the most recent scandal, which involves DEA agents being entertained by prostitutes at...

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About Dick Cheney’s decline
Apr22

About Dick Cheney’s decline

About Dick Cheney’s decline: Some observers believe the former vice-president is showing signs of mental illness. Others bark back, “You mean you’ve only just noticed?” Jonathan Chait slogs through the poisonous weeds of Cheneyland and takes a hard look at Cheney’s pronouncements on Iran, Obama, American decline, etc. etc. Like all Republican officeholders and some Democratic ones, Cheney thinks Obama has...

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For Democracies, Can the End Justify the Means?
Apr21

For Democracies, Can the End Justify the Means?

America and its allies had just defeated the Nazis in Europe and the Japanese in the Pacific when they were faced with a new enemy, the Soviet Union. Godless communists were viewed by many Americans as equally evil as the Nazis, and as some countries in Europe and Asia turned communist, the ideology was seen as monolithic and in thrall to the Soviets. (Unfortunately, this naive perception prevented the U.S. from taking advantage of...

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Germany: Teacher Forced High School Class to March to Nazi Song
Apr16

Germany: Teacher Forced High School Class to March to Nazi Song

A police investigation has been launched against a high school music teacher in Berlin, The Local reports Wednesday, after she forced her class of eleventh graders to march to the Nazi anthem as an alleged part of her curriculum. The song, the “Horst-Wessel-Lied,” includes lyrics that glorify Nazi leader Adolf Hitler. The teacher – who...

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Isn’t It Time?
Apr15

Isn’t It Time?

Republican candidates for president in 2016 are coming out of the woodwork and Hillary’s announcement that she is running makes it unlikely that any additional Democrats will pop up as candidates in the near future. From the look of things, America is going to be stuck with either an ultra-conservative approved by the Republican base, or Hillary. Isn’t it time for the nation to be given additional choices. Aren’t there other people...

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Obama drops veto threat as Senate moves to assert a voice on Iran deal
Apr15

Obama drops veto threat as Senate moves to assert a voice on Iran deal

Obama drops veto threat as Senate moves to assert a voice on Iran deal WASHINGTON — The Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Tuesday unanimously approved a compromise bill allowing Congress to vote on a deal to stem Iran’s nuclear program. President Barack Obama, who had threatened to veto the original bill, embraced the compromise, an acknowledgment that there’s enough bipartisan support on Capitol Hill to pass it over...

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Are These Men The Faces Of Evil? No, But Bush, Cheney & Rumsfeld Certainly Were
Apr14

Are These Men The Faces Of Evil? No, But Bush, Cheney & Rumsfeld Certainly Were

Clockwise from top left: Dustin Heard, Nicolas Slatten, Evan Liberty, Paul Slough Even as a blogger who wrote extensively about the criminal excesses of Blackwater’s patriots-for-profit mercenary army and was appalled at the slaughter of 14 unarmed Iraqis, including women and children, in Baghdad’s Nisour Square in 2007 by four of the politically powerful security contractor’s thugs, I nevertheless was saddened when...

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UN praises Blackwater judgement
Apr14

UN praises Blackwater judgement

The severe prison sentences handed down to former Blackwater Worldwide security guards should serve as an example for all governments using private firms to recruit mercenaries in war situations, a UN expert body said today. It called for a new global agreement to regulate the use and accountability of mercenaries from private military and security companies (PMSCs) such as Blackwater and others since their deployment has become...

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Appalling humanitarian situation in Yemen says UN
Apr14

Appalling humanitarian situation in Yemen says UN

Aerial bombing and the internal wars in Yemen have killed at least 364 civilians including 84 children and 25 women since March 26 in addition to hundreds of fighters, the UN human rights chief reported today. More than 681 civilians have been injured and dozens of public buildings, including hospitals, schools, airports and mosques have been destroyed in airstrikes, through shelling and other attacks. “The humanitarian situation is...

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