Peace and Security

Manna from Hell

Manna from Hell

War is hell. Unless, of course, you happen to be a global corporate peddler of rockets, drones, bombs, and all the other hellish weaponry of military conflict. In that case, war is manna from hell. So bring it on. Indeed, it seems as if Beelzebub himself is in charge...

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Your Fear of Terrorism Could Get You Killed

Your Fear of Terrorism Could Get You Killed

One in 3.5 million: That’s the risk you’ll die from a terrorist attack in the United States, Ohio State professor John Mueller estimates. Rounded generously, that chance comes to 3 one-hundred thousandths of a percent. That’s not how most Americans see it, though. In...

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A Formula for More Murder

A Formula for More Murder

Picture a world in which most of the people you encounter — on the street or at work, in stores or classrooms, at the movies or in church — are openly carrying guns. That’s the world Second Amendment absolutists are promoting when they repeat their mantra, "The only...

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We Shouldn’t Take Their Oil

We Shouldn’t Take Their Oil

Donald Trump’s first presidential campaign ad pledges to “take their oil.” That’s what President (gasp) Trump would do after having “quickly cut the head off the Islamic State,” says the deep-voiced narrator. Along with political decapitation, there are many...

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Outrage in Oregon

Outrage in Oregon

The armed men occupying an isolated federal building in a remote Oregon bird sanctuary say they won't leave until the federal government stops its "tyranny." Yet it's not clear what that tyranny is, exactly. One of the group’s leaders is Ammon Bundy, who, along with...

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Border Boondoggle

Border Boondoggle

Good fences, wrote Robert Frost, make good neighbors. But an 18-foot high, 2,000-mile wall? That's another story. It just antagonizes your neighbor — and shows your own fear and weakness. Yet this is what self-described conservatives running for president propose to...

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The GOP Candidates Know Nothing about Syria

The GOP Candidates Know Nothing about Syria

Like many political animals, I was glued to the latest Republican presidential debate. For the most part, there were no surprises: Donald Trump railed against Muslims, Chris Christie lamented that the NSA can’t intercept Americans’ phone calls and emails as easily as...

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In Dark Times, Poetry Can Enlighten Us

In Dark Times, Poetry Can Enlighten Us

Following the Paris terrorist attacks, the colors of the French flag appeared on American computer screens, in the icons of apps and the faces of friends on Facebook. As this solidarity with the people of France surged, Americans with connections to the Middle East...

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