ON IRAQ, A STATE OF DENIAL - CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER (WASHINGTON POST, NOVEMBER
23): The turnabout of American fortunes in Iraq over the past several months is
of a war seemingly lost, now winnable. Al-Qaeda in Iraq is in disarray, the
Sunni insurgency in decline, the Shiite militias quiescent, the capital city
reviving. Are we now to reverse course and abandon all this because parliament
cannot ratify the reconciliation already occurring on the ground?
HALF FULL WRETCHAQ (BELMONT CLUB, NOVEMBER 21): The current calm in Iraq
represents not only a 'partial peace' but a huge victory.
NONE DARE CALL IT 'VICTORY' - CAL THOMAS (WASHINGTON TIMES, NOVEMBER 23):
Securing Iraq's capital city would be both a substantive and symbolic success.
UN-SELLING THE SURGE - MATTHEW DUSS (AMERICAN PROSPECT, NOVEMBER 20):
Despite growing disenchantment with the war in Iraq, the well-organized
conservative propaganda machine has been hard at work selling the "success of
the surge." But the stated goal of the surge was Iraqi national reconciliation.
There is no evidence that we have moved any closer to this goal -- in fact there
is evidence for the opposite.
THE FAILED MARRIAGE BROKER - H.D.S. GREENWAY (BOSTON GLOBE, NOVEMBER 20):
The mother of all failed marriage brokering has to be the administration's
efforts to bring Sunni and Shia together in Iraq. Relations with the
democratically elected Shi'ites have sunk so low that some Americans are saying
that the Iraqi government is more of a problem for American hopes for Iraq than
Al Qaeda or even Iran.
SMELLS LIKE DESPERATION, MICHAEL RUBIN - TRITA PARSI (HUFFINGTON POST,
NOVEMBER 20): Last year, Secretary Condoleezza Rice disclosed the existence of a
$75 million State Department "democracy promotion" program in Iran. In response
to the disastrous impact this decision has had on Iran's civil society, National
Iranian American Council (NIAC) teamed up with human rights and foreign policy
groups to educate Congress about its implications for Iranian NGOs. Today, both
lawmakers and the U.S. government have started to see the realities of this
LOOK WHO'S DOWNPLAYING IRAN'S NUCLEAR THREAT LEON HADAR (ANTIWAR.COM,
NOVEMBER 22): There is now a growing recognition among Israeli officials that
the Americans don't have the capability to decimate Iran's nuclear military
sites and that a U.S. strike against Iran would, in all probability, lead to a
U.S.-Iran military confrontation that could ignite a bloody regional war
involving Hezbollah and Syria.
FIVE REASONS TO BOMB IRAN NOW MICHAEL FREUND (JERUSALEM POST, NOVEMBER 20)
AMERICA HOLDS THE KEY TO MIDEAST PEACE - ANATOL LIEVEN (FINANCIAL TIMES,
NOVEMBER 22): If the American establishment really does value American interests
and lives and sees these as seriously endangered by Islamist extremism, then to
give the Islamists the kind of help they receive from the continuing
Israeli-Palestinian conflict is insane.
TRYING TO SAVE LEBANON, AGAIN - EDITORIAL (NEW YORK TIMES, NOVEMBER 22): The
United States and its European allies will have to begin a serious dialogue with
Syria to see if it can be coaxed and pressured to rein in Hezbollah.
SPARK IN LEBANON: A CONFLICT OVER THE PRESIDENCY COULD EXPLODE A POLITICAL
STALEMATE ? EDITORIAL (WASHINGTON POST, NOVEMBER 22): US inaction has left
France as the would-be rescuer of Lebanon.
NEXT WEEK'S MIDEAST PEACE CONFAB IN U.S.: BIG HOPES OR MORE HOT AIR?
EDWARD M. GOMEZ (WORLD VIEWS, SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE, NOVEMBER 23)
DIGGING IN DEEPER IN PAKISTAN - EDITORIAL (NEW YORK TIMES, NOVEMBER 23):
Before plunging American forces more deeply into Pakistan?s remote borderlands,
Washington needs to deal with the critical political crisis threatening that
country?s very core and America?s strategic interests.
MUSHARRAF AND THE CON GAME: DICTATORS DON'T BESTOW DEMOCRACY - ROBERT KAGAN
(WASHINGTON POST, NOVEMBER 22): President Bush's claim that Musharaf can be
trusted to lead Pakistan toward democracy is not credible.
CAREFUL WISHING ON PAKISTAN - VIOLA HERMS DRATH (WASHINGTON TIMES, NOVEMBER
23): What beleaguered Pakistan needs now is tranquility, a state of mind that
must be restored before another Islamic revolution breaks new ground. Abandoning
Gen. Musharraf, who is in need of support because he dared to be loyal to the
United States, would not necessarily unlock democracy but would nourish
prospects of Islamists making the rules.
COLORED REVOLUTIONS: HIGH HOPES AND BROKEN PROMISES -- THE ROSE AND ORANGE
REVOLUTIONS USHERED IN A WAVE OF OPTIMISM THAT SIMILAR "COLORED REVOLUTIONS"
WOULD SOON SPREAD WESTERN-STYLE DEMOCRACY THROUGHOUT THE SOVIET UNION - SALOME
ASATIANI (RFE/RL, NOVEMBER 21)
TALKING TO OURSELVES ON CHINA - WILLIAM HAWKINS (WASHINGTON POST, NOVEMBER
23): China won't voluntarily change its successful trade policy. America needs
to change its unsuccessful one. Talking about an imaginary world of cooperation
is not an effective substitute for acting in the real world of strategic
FIRST LOOK: 'RAMBO' IS ON A MISSION IN BURMA - ANTHONY BREZNICAN (USA TODAY,
NOVEMBER 21): Sylvester Stallone's Green Beret, who started as a tragic
representation of Vietnam veteran neglect in the original film and morphed into
a superhero soldier by the third, is back for a fourth outing. This one plunges
John Rambo into the gun sights of the brutal military dictatorship of Myanmar,
the Southeast Asian nation formerly known as Burma, where in real life the
ruling junta recently received international condemnation for its violent
suppression of a pro-democracy uprising led by Buddhist monks.
FIRST KOSOVO, AND THEN WHAT? EDITORIAL (BOSTON GLOBE, NOVEMBER 20): The
Kosovo majority's impatience for independence is understandable, particularly
since it has been subjected to a corrupt and inefficient UN tutelage. But the
European, American, and Russian mediators should keep Serbia and the Kosovars at
the negotiating table as long as it takes to hammer out a resolution to which
both sides agree.
THE 'OMNIPRESIDENT'S' CRUCIBLE: FRANCE'S NICOLAS SARKOZY, STIFFENING HIS
SPINE AGAINST STREET PROTESTS ? EDITORIAL (WASHINGTON POST, NOVEMBER 23): What
Sarkozy offers is largely new thinking and a new direction for a country that
remains, for all its problems, one of the engines of Europe's economy. For that
he deserves encouragement and support from his allies on the continent and in
ERCI, DANKE, CHEERS - SUZANNE FIELDS (WASHINGTON TIMES, NOVEMBER 22):
?Since Thanksgiving is about friendship as well as family, I'd invite leaders
from three countries who have renewed and reaffirmed their friendship with us --
Great Britain, France and Germany.?
GITMO LAWYERS KEEP TRYING - WILLIAM FISHER (OPEDNEWS, NOVEMBER 21): The
Bush Administration's legal justification for continuing to hold prisoners
without charges at the US naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, will be back in
the U.S. Supreme Court -- again -- early next month. And the decision of the
nine Justices could bring the entire Bush Administration's detention policy down
in flames -- or not.
TERM LIMITS - DANIEL LARISON (AMERICAN CONSERVATIVE, NOVEMBER 19): Use of
propagandistic terms like ?Islamofascism? and ?Islamophobia? is an attempt to
wield power through confusion and intimidation: they aim to mislead about the
nature of our actual enemies on the one hand and invent new heresies against
?tolerance? on the other.
NTEREST GROUP FOREIGN POLICY DOUG BANDOW (ANTIWAR.COM, NOVEMBER 23): The
conduct of US foreign policy seems remote to most Americans. But when the
government acts it effectively commits the entire nation in a collective and
coercive endeavor. So acting should be reserved for cases in which all
Americans, and not just a few Americans, have something significant at stake.
Foreign policy should be more than just another arena of interest group
REPORT URGES FOREIGN AID STRATEGY THAT BRIDGES SECURITY, ALTRUISM - WALTER
PINCUS (WASHINGTON POST, NOVEMBER 22): 'The president should design a national
foreign assistance strategy that explains both the national security requirement
and the humanitarian imperative that drive our government's investments in
foreign aid," says report prepared by the Republican staff of the Senate Foreign
Relations Committee. The report also criticizes the State Department, arguing
that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's establishment last year of a director
of foreign assistance to centralize decision-making has resulted in a "lack of
transparency" for aid staff in the field, and "weeks of extra paperwork,
differing priorities between post and headquarters as well as inconsistent
PRESIDENT JONAH, MEET OLIVER CROMWELL! - GORE VIDAL (TRUTHDIG, FEB 7, 2006):
?I must confess that I have a proprietary interest in anyone who refers to the
United States as an empire since I am credited with first putting forward this
heretical view in the early ?70s.?