Category Archives:
War on Terror

US foreign policy in the Middle East

Katie Miranda on

The U.S. is fighting ISIS, Al Qaeda, Al Nusra and the Taliban around the Middle East while continuing to water their roots.

Whistleblower: US General Sean Swindell bears responsibility for deadly Kunduz hospital attack

Wilson Dizard on

Unfair blame has come down on the heads of American soldiers and allied Afghan forces over an attack on a civilian hospital in Kunduz last year, while the general in charge of the mission, Major General Sean P. Swindell, faced no consequences, according to an Army officer who spoke exclusively to Mondoweiss, “I wish the general in charge was prosecuted for this, but that’s my personal opinion. He should be taking ultimate responsibility for it, since he set up the conditions that something like this would happen.”

Afghanistan: The forever war we never question

Charles Davis on

War is so normal in the United States of America — being in a constant state of it, somewhere else — that the longest-running foreign conflict in the country’s history is hardly even an afterthought in the race to become the nation’s next commander in chief. In 17 televised debates and town halls, the Republicans and Democrats running for president have been asked all of two questions about the war in Afghanistan, now in its 15th year. The U.S. and NATO will never get out of Afghanistan if their leaders never even have to explain why they are there.

Why does the U.S. continue to betray a courageous, dynamic Muslim leader in the Maldives?

James North on

The United States government continues to remain astonishingly quiet about the rising dictatorship in the Indian Ocean island nation of Maldives, where the charismatic, democratic Muslim leader Mohamed Nasheed has been deposed, cheated out of an electoral comeback, jailed for 13 years and finally forced into exile. Perhaps it is because last September, the Maldives regime hired the Podesta Group, an influential public relations firm that is close to the Democratic Party, to promote its image.

Taking on jihadists without taking on racism is a lost battle

Basem Ezbidi on

The west can’t defeat ISIS without dealing with colonial past. Terror is ugly not only when it reaches Paris, London, and New York, but when it takes the lives of 97 in Istanbul, 40 in a suburb of Beirut, and scores in Palestine too.

Paris and Islamophobia

Raymond Wofsy on

It feels hard to mourn in Paris for Raymond Wofsy because it is hard for him to separate the grief from French nationalism, colonialism, and Islamophobia.

A guide to the worst refugee crisis since WWII

Ben Norton on

The world is witnessing the largest refugee crisis since the horrors of World War II. There are close to 60 million war refugees, according to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, an all-time high, as people from Syria, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, and Yemen are fleeing violence in their countries. Human rights organizations warn the Gulf states, Israel, Iran, and Russia—all of whom have taken zero refugees—along with the US, Canada, and Europe—which have taken few—are not doing enough. Ben Norton presents a guide to the refugee crisis and how every country you need to know about is responding.

What we talk about when we talk about ISIS

Eamon Murphy on

As the U.S. prepares to re-engage more deeply in the Iraq War, including the likely deployment of ground troops to help retake Mosul from Islamic State, there has been a push from mainstream commentators to recommit to an ideological view of our military campaigns in the Muslim world. A splashy cover story in The Atlantic, “What ISIS Really Wants”, offers an intellectual foundation for the reenergized War on Terror, presenting full recognition of ISIS’s “very Islamic” nature as a matter of urgent strategic significance. Eamon Murphy writes the obsession with naming Islam as the enemy of the West is in fact a defense of our own side’s troubled ideology. He says the guiding principle of post-World War II foreign policy — that the course of world events should be influenced, wherever possible, by force — is imperiled by the spectacular failure of the War on Terror, which actually succeeded in creating a transnational army of Islamic terrorists. That Islamic State rose in Iraq, then spread to Syria and Libya, threatens to give war a very bad name.

Muslims’ beliefs are ‘untrue’ and ‘ridiculous,’ ‘Salon’ author says, offering support for Maher’s intolerance

Philip Weiss on

Rula Jebreal took on Bill Maher’s Islamophobia, saying that he was offering a literalist and simplistic view of the religion, like jihadists themselves. If you said this about blacks or Jews you’d be fired, she said. Now Salon has backed Maher up with a piece saying that Islamic beliefs are “untrue” and “ridiculous.” Yes and what about the parting of the Red Sea?

ISIS, 9/11, and the terrorism time loop

Deepa Kumar on

Virtually absent in the media circus around ISIS is an honest discussion of how the US War on Terror, rather than halting the growth of violent Islamist groups, actually fosters fundamentalism.

Hamas is ISIS for dummies

Philip Weiss on

The organization that pushed the latest beheading video in the press is a Zionist group, SITE. And once again, neoconservatives and Zionists are using an American journalist’s gruesome murder to put forward the nonsensical claim that Hamas, a resistance force in Palestine, and ISIS are the same. Sadly, even Chris Matthews is drumming up “nationalistic” response to the killings.

The death by drone memo: a throwback to U.S. terrorism in Nicaragua

Rémi Brulin on

The Office of Legal Counsel memo justifying the killing of U.S. citizen Anwar al-Aulaki claims that federal statutes prohibiting murder do not apply to CIA officers, who operated the drone that killed Aulaki. To bolster the claim, the memo cites a Cold War-era Justice Department memo that argues for the legality of CIA actions in the context of one of the most controversial acts of the Reagan years: the mining of Nicaragua’s harbors in April 1984, which killed several people.

In Ramallah, Palestinian Authority cracks down on Salafi anti-negotiation protests

Allison Deger on

As U.S. brokered negotiations between Israeli and Palestinian leaders nearly fell apart last week, in the West Bank the Palestinian Authority was busy cracking down on a Salafi group attempting to stage protests against the talks. Two weekends in a row, after evening prayers at a central Ramallah mosque dozens of Palestinian Authority riot police and undercover security services conducted mass arrests of members of Hizb ut-Tahrir, a marginal Islamic group that seeks the ouster of both the PA and Israel.

Anti-Defamation League exploits fear of Muslims to undermine anti-gay bill

Alex Kane on

The Anti-Defamation League’s latest dance with Islamophobia emerged in Arizona in the midst of a debate on a bill enshrining the rights of business owners to deny service to gays and lesbians. The ADL used specter of Muslims using the legislation to discriminate against non-Muslims to help kill the legislation.

Dronesplain

Katie Miranda on

Katie Miranda introduces us to a new word – dronesplain. It’s a verb for condescendingly excusing or justifying drone strikes, most commonly seen with politicians and media commentators. Above, Time magazine’s Joe Klein dronesplains to New York Times columnist Tom Friedman.

Even when US drones hit the mark in Pakistan, they’re still counterproductive

Medea Benjamin on

“We will put pressure on America, and our protest will continue if drone attacks are not stopped,” said an angry Imran Khan, leader of Pakistan’s third largest political party, the PTI (the Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaaf). He was speaking on Saturday, November 23, to a crowd of over 10,000 protesters who blocked the highway used by NATO supply trucks taking goods in and out of Afghanistan. The latest protests in Pakistan show that even when the US hits its mark, as in the case of the last two strikes in Pakistan that killed key leaders of two extremist cells, they’re still counterproductive.

Showtime’s ‘Homeland’ and the imagination of national security

Deepa Kumar on

Showtime’s hit TV series “Homeland” is about Obama’s war on terror. Similar to 24, a popular show during the Bush era, it provides a means for the national-security state to publicize fantasies of terrorist threat, while setting new norms of acceptability on issues like surveillance and political violence. It not only sells the public on the notion that the War on Terror has become a permanent state of emergency, but that educated, sober, ethical, and smart people are in charge and that we should trust them to guard us.

The Heart is Not a Weapon: My correspondence with Shukri Abu Baker

Richard Potter on

n 2009, after a previous trial resulted in a hung jury, Shukri Abu Baker was sentenced to 65 years in a United States prison after being convicted of having a role in distributing over 12 million dollars through the charity The Holy Land Foundation in material support to the designated terrorist group Hamas. Richard Potter shares his powerful correspondence with Abu Baker from prison.