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Argo's Asinine Auteur and his American Audience

A defaced Great Seal of the United States at the former U.S. embassy, Tehran, Iran, as it appeared in 2004Are We Hostages to Hollywood History?

Ben Affleck's new film, Argo, hit theaters today. It tells the tale of six American diplomats who, having escaped the besieged Embassy in Tehran in late 1979 and taken shelter at the home of the Canadian ambassador Ken Taylor, were successfully smuggled out of Iran in a daring Hollywood-produced CIA operation under the guise of being a Canadian film crew.

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Persisting Syrian Dilemmas

violence in SyriaHope, Wisdom, Law, Ethics, and Spirituality in relation to Killing and Dying

In appraising political developments most of us rely on trusted sources, our overall political orientation, what we have learned from past experience, and our personal hierarchy of hopes and fears. No matter how careful, and judicious, we are still reaching conclusions in settings of radical uncertainty, which incline our judgments to reflect a priori and interpretative biases. As militarists tends to favor reliance on force to resolve disputes among and within sovereign states, so war weary and pacifist citizens will seek to resolve even the most extreme dire conflict situations by insisting on the potentialities of non-violent diplomacy.

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Why Obama Now

Why Obama NoThere's a new video out “Why Obama Now” Check it out before reading further.

I will be so happy when this election is finally over and the BS fusillade ends. I have promised to cease any and all interest in national politics and other follies beginning November 7th, 2012. (Of course we know what happens to our best-laid plans.) For a more detailed description of many of the legal, moral and spiritual issues I have with Obama, you can check out my essay “Let’s Kick Obama While He’s Down.”

Read more: Why Obama Now


Was it Wrong to Support the Iranian Revolution?

Ayatollah Mahmoud Taleghani (left) with Ayatollah Khomeini.I have often reflected upon my own experience of the Iranian Revolution. In the aftermath of the Vietnam War I believed that the United States would face its next major geopolitical challenge in Iran: partly because of its role via CIA in overthrowing the Mohammad Mosaddegh elected constitutional government so as to restore the repressive Shah (Mohammad Reza Pahlavi) to power in 1953, partly because there were 45,000 American troops deployed in Iran along with a network of strategic assets associated with Cold War anti-Soviet priorities, partly because there was a generation of young Iranians, many of whom studied abroad, who had experienced torture and abuse at the hands of the SAVAK, Tehran’s feared intelligence service, partly by the intense anti-regime opposition of an alienated middle class in Iran that was angered by the Shah’s reliance on international capital in implementing the ‘White Revolution,’ and partly because the Shah pursued a regionally unpopular pro-Israel and pro-South Africa (during apartheid) policy. Against this background, and on the basis of my decade long involvement in opposing the American role in Vietnam, I helped form and chaired a small, unfunded committee devoted to promoting human rights and opposing non-intervention in Iran. I was greatly encouraged to do this my several students who were either Iranian or political activists focused on Iran.

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The Glaring Contradiction in Anti-Iran Policy

nuclearPresident Barack Obama, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have at least one thing in common when it comes to Iran. All are guilty of flagrant self-contradiction.

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