Joe Biden Faces a Dilemma Over Iran

August 05, 2021

Everything old is new again, at least when it comes to US President Joe Biden’s deterrence credibility problem with Iran. This must seem like déjà vu to him, since he witnessed similar dynamics play out during an earlier stint at the White House. Several weeks ago came news that the FBI had...

QAnon: A Conspiracy for Our Time

September 22, 2020

Those of us who, in the late 1980s and 1990s, frequently traveled in the United States might recall being approached by young men, dressed for business in suits and ties, at major airports. They distributed tracts and asked for contributions. No, they were not Mormons but followers of Lyndon...

The Latest Version of Russiagate

July 31, 2020

The New York Times keeps slogging away at a four-year-old theme that it refuses to allow to die a natural death. Should we call it Russiagate 2.0 or 3.0 or 7.0? Whatever we call it, Russiagate has made its way back into The NYT’s headlines. Perhaps we should adopt the same convention as the...

The Trump Campaign Fears John Bolton

June 25, 2020

Unreliable narrators are a staple of literature. Consider the delusional, self-serving narrator of Gillian Flynn’s “Gone Girl” or the way Humbert Humbert used his cultured references and gorgeous prose to dress up his crimes in Vladimir Nabokov’s “Lolita.” Now along...

The Limits of Western “Creativity” Facing China

May 20, 2020

The disastrous numbers produced by the coronavirus crisis in the US have generated a second pandemic, one that will predictably last for just the next six months: the virus of electoral rhetoric focused on blaming an overseas enemy. Whereas the Democrats, clinging to their Cold War nostalgia,...

The President as Political Hit Man

March 13, 2020

Donald Trump filed his paperwork to run for reelection only hours after his inauguration in January 2017, setting a presidential record, the first of his many dubious achievements. For a man who relished the adulation and bombast of campaigning, it should have surprised no one that he...

CNN and the Art of Overstatement

March 03, 2020

After echoing a report leaked by The Washington Post a day before the Nevada caucuses claiming that an intelligence briefing a month earlier had informed members of Congress that Russia was once again interfering in US elections to get President Donald Trump reelected, CNN made an effort to find...

You Can’t Teach an Old Donkey New Tricks

February 07, 2020

Not so long ago, John Kerry was the Democrats’ presidential candidate. Although he emphatically denies it, he appears ready — in case of an emergency — to have another go. Why would he do so? The reason should now be obvious. So obvious, in fact, that he explained it to a friend on a phone...

Hillary Clinton’s Imaginary Russian Assets

October 21, 2019

For many Americans — both Republican and Democrat — the drama of 2016 consisted of deciding not so much who to vote for, but rather who to vote against, and how. There were basically two ways to handle the “how.” You could abstain or vote for the candidate of the other party you would...

Facts Speak Louder Than Words

October 18, 2019

The impeachment narrative is going well at the moment. The Democrats in the House of Representatives are making daily headlines about both substance and process. They throw in a few Ukraine facts and witnesses that support the narrative and move on to the next process issue, resisted...

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