Winds of change are blowing in the Caribbean, and warming the historically rigid and frigid relations between Cuba and the United States. On Dec. 17, U.S. President Barack Obama announced plans to resume diplomatic relations, along with an exchange of imprisoned individuals.
Barbarism and the law collide in war. The law is vital for mitigating the most brutal aspects of collective killing.
Over the past several weeks, Taliban attacks have markedly increased. At least a dozen strikes have occurred, many in capital Kabul, with foreigners clearly priority targets. So far this year, 36 aid workers have been killed and 95 wounded.
U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel's sudden resignation has significance beyond the immediate event. Media commentary has primarily focused rather narrowly on the personalities involved, in particular alleged reported conflicts with national security adviser Susan Rice.
2014/11/30, 1 Comment
Bad vibrations, as hip types used to say way back in the 1960s.
The immediate aftermath of Veterans Day, and all the related media commentary, is a good time for reflection on our military and our democratic nation. National Public Radio interviews with two leaders are especially instructive.
While U.S. midterm elections provided a distraction, Russia President Vladimir Putin solidified control of eastern Ukraine. Rebel forces opposed to the national government organized elections in Donetsk and Luhansk on Nov. 2. Not surprisingly, those favoring independence scored an estimated eighty percent of the votes.
'Be careful what you wish for' comes to mind when reflecting on the ongoing waves of public protest, revolt, violence and war in the Middle East and North Africa. Across the broad region, long-ruling dictatorships have collapsed.
Turkey has announced a major shift in policy, in a direction strongly desired — and strongly pressed — by the United States and our allies in the war against ISIS (the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria). The government in Ankara has agreed to allow Kurd forces from Iraq to cross Turkey's borders to battle ISIS terrorists in Syria.
Leon Panetta, after twenty months as U.S. Secretary of Defense and before that two years as director of the CIA, has brought forth memoirs. The volume is blunt in criticizing others, including President Barack Obama. This imitates Robert Gates, Panetta's immediate predecessor at the Pentagon.
2014/10/19, 1 Comment