Category Archives: Foreign Policy

The “Jobs for Jihadis” Issue, Taken Seriously

I wanted to address the “Jobs for Jihadists” ruckus from the past few days in a bit more detail.  The reader may remember I mentioned this in my post of earlier on President Obama’s terrorism summit.  Obama and spokespeople had suggested that one major solution to the terrorist problem was the economic situation in Islamic nations, especially for young men.  Give aid, stimulate economic development and, voila, all is well, or much better at least.  In an interview, former Vice-President… Continue Reading ››

Truth Telling Matters

Brian Williams’s leave of absence due to concerns about his truthfulness is just the highest profile of a long line of individuals who have stretched the truth.  It is interesting to me that the truth matters so much to Americans in a news anchor, but so little in our political leaders.  Politicfact.com has four pages of untruths told by our current president, but I don’t hear anyone calling for him to take a sabbatical.  President Obama’s recent comments at the… Continue Reading ››

The Twelve (Thirteen) Days of Christmas, or, a Recap of Last Year

As we approach the new year and incidentally, Old Christmas (January 6), I thought I would leave you with a few “gifts.”  These come from Federal, state and even local actions over the past year.  I don’t really wish these on anyone, but they are current reality. Release of five more Guantanamo detainees, whose threat level is unknown, following by the way an earlier release of high threat detainees likely to end up back on the terrorist battlefield. A current… Continue Reading ››

U.S. Commitment to Religious Freedom in Decline

A Sudanese woman, Meriam Ibrahim, was accused by her own father of illegally converting to Christianity.  At one point, he accused her of committing adultery because of her marriage to a Christian man, Daniel Wani, who is also an American citizen.  The story is complicated by the fact that her father is a Muslim and her mother is an Ethiopian Orthodox Christian.  Meriam argued that she had never been Muslim, having been raised by her Christian mother.  As a result,… Continue Reading ››

Islamic Radicalism Part 2

In the previous blog on Islamic ideology I focused on the historical development of the religion of Islam and of the terrorist groups that arose later.  But Islam is also a religion in its own right and is based on a written source—the Quran—which is subject to various interpretations.  It is true that for a time the Islamic caliphates attempted to uniformize interpretation of the Quran, but this effort was ultimately unsuccessful.  The Islamic radicals bear that conclusion out in… Continue Reading ››

Islamic Ideology and the Islamic State

Bereans Blog One of our Bereans colleagues e-mailed to say he wished one of us would blog on the situation in the Middle East and on Islamic radical ideology.  He had watched a Heritage Foundation event on the subject, which I had seen a part of as well.  Well, I will take up the challenge, but realizing that it is really a pretty big task, since it requires a significant examination of historical background.  So don’t be surprised if the… Continue Reading ››

Iraq and Democracy

The incomparable Thomas Sowell tackles a basic question: why have we failed in Iraq? We fought a war, at least in part, to overthrow the Iraqi government with the goal of removing it as a threat in the “war on terror.” The U.S. determined that the best way to accomplish this goal in the long-term was to democratize the country and make it a model of success and stability in the Middle East. Now, Iraq is in danger of slipping… Continue Reading ››

Poisoning Not (Necessarily) a Federal Crime under a WMD Treaty, or, Small Victories

The United States Supreme Court has issued a ruling in the little-known but important case of Bond v. U. S.  The facts are as follows:  One Carol Bond discovered that her husband was having an affair with Carol’s best friend.  She decided the best way to respond was to spread a poisoned chemical on surfaces her friend might touch (thankfully no harm resulted).  Mrs. Bond was then charged, not under a simple state criminal statute, but under the United States… Continue Reading ››

She Didn’t Make the Grade

Another commencement speaker bit the dust, as Condoleesa Rice, former Secretary of State, withdrew from her appointment to speak at Rutgers University, the New Jersey flagship institution of higher (or lower) education, due to the vocal and aggressive protests by a handful of faculty and students.  Now let me say that I was not in full agreement with some of the foreign policy decisions carried out under the Bush administration, when Rice was Secretary of State.  But then, there aren’t… Continue Reading ››

Mr. Putin and economics. What next?

Mr. Putin seems increasingly likely to get away with the effective annexation of Crimea, and many rightfully wonder what next?  The rest of the Ukraine?  The Baltic states?  The U.S. has little appetite for military response, but can we more effectively counter the Russian bear?  And should we? The first question is what should we do?  If not military action, then what kind of response would be effective?  What is likely NOT effective is the petty sanctions that were regarded… Continue Reading ››