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Empire vs. Peace, Freedom, Morality, and Prosperity

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The justification that U.S. officials use for their assassination of people overseas, including American citizens, is that the people they’re killing are bent on killing U.S. forces. Thus, the justification is sort of a modified self-defense concept—they’re trying to kill us and so we’re assassinating them before they have a chance to kill us. Most mainstream commentators have come to passively accept this justification for the U.S. assassination program. You can especially see this when they comment on people killed who are considered “collateral damage.” They refer to those people as innocent civilians and to the targeted people as terrorists or insurgents. The notion is that the assassins were simply targeting the “bad guys” and, unfortunately, struck some innocent people in the process. But the fact is that people over there are trying to kill U.S. forces because U.S. forces are over there. They’re over there occupying Afghanistan. They’re rearming Iraq, after destroying the country and killing countless people. They have ...

Obama and Kerry Jeopardize Peace with Iran

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Barack Obama and John Kerry should make up their minds: Do they want war or peace with Iran? We should hope for peace, but Obama and Kerry make optimism difficult. Ideally, the Obama administration would simply exit the Middle East, taking all its military and economic aid with it. The U.S. government cannot micromanage events there, especially when it is no honest, neutral broker. Shamefully, it is firmly in the Israeli camp against the Palestinians (who, let us remember, are the occupied, not the occupiers), and generally in the Sunni Muslim camp against the Shi’ites, led by Iran. (Iraq is the anomaly.) As welcome as a U.S. exit would be, alas, it won’t happen anytime soon, so the best we can hope for is rapprochement with Iran. The U.S.-led economic sanctions impose an unconscionable hardship on Iranians — for example, depriving the elderly and children of medicines and nourishment. Clearly, a war would be catastrophic ...