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John Brennan: The debate over drones | The Economist

To kill or not to kill?  Seems to be the question for a post cold war America that struggles to find a useful venue and vehicle for its newly found monolithic world power status and the ways in which that lonely status make it an irresistible target for any group looking to be taken seriously and seeking a megaphone for its cause.

No one is raising the important issue of how simple and relatively inexpensive it might be to deploy this drone technology against the US and its allies.  It seems logical that drone technology would be simpler and cheaper to create and deploy than a nuclear weapon, or a so called “dirty bomb.”  So, what is really at stake here might be who is angry at the US and why?  How can the US justify unilaterally searching out its defined enemies and taking them out gangster style no matter national sovereignty or international law.

The London Economist tackles this issue in a straightforward way yet with a focus and a lens that seems a bit ideologically myopic and perhaps a bit nostalgic for the cowboy days of George W.  

You be the judge:

“T WAS so much simpler when George W. Bush was president. Outlining America’s plans for Osama bin Laden a few days after the September 11th attacks in 2001, Mr Bush declared: “there’s an old poster out West, I recall, that says, ‘Wanted: Dead or Alive.” For all those at home and abroad made uncomfortable by sweeping assertions of American power it was a moment of predictable provocation. Without surprise, they heard a swaggering Republican president vowing to make his country’s attackers pay, and seeming to pay no more heed to legal niceties than a cowboy bent on a lynching.

Yet 12 and a half years later, the cautious, lawyerly Barack Obama—a Democratic president with nothing of the…”

MORE via John Brennan: The debate over drones | The Economist.

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Filed under: Arab Spring, Blogosphere, Culture Think, Death and Dying, drone attacks, European Alliances, geopolitical, International Relations, ,

John Brennan and the Truth About Drones : The New Yorker

There may be no more important breakthrough in warfare than the stealth, quiet and precise murder and mayhem America can deliver through its drone program.

Of course, as the drone system becomes more popular in use and infamous in its impact, regarding those whom are targeted and whose social peace is disrupted when neighbors are crushed by a drone visit, it is now getting and will continue to get increasing popular attention.

At last, the American media and the popular imagination are being challenged as the role of these gadgets becomes more and more visible in American efforts to get and crush the bad guys.  The New Yorker magazine, takes a go at the issue in its most recent issue:

“When I read the news that John Brennan was set to appear before the Senate in hopes of becoming of the C.I.A. director, I thought of the group of villagers I met at a seaside hotel in Yemen two years ago. They had driven many miles to see me, coming from the Yemen countryside in a pair of battered taxis, and they were waiting in the hotel parking lot. There were about a dozen of them in all. It was a …”

via John Brennan and the Truth About Drones : The New Yorker.

Filed under: Arab Spring, Blogosphere, Culture Think, Death and Dying, drone attacks, , , ,

Taking Shelter in Tel Aviv : The New Yorker

One step forward, two steps back, it seems in the Middle East dilemma …  A humane look at the psychological trauma perpetuated by Israel’s families as they get caught between Israel’s military policy and palestinian desperation.

“When the sirens went off on Thursday evening in Tel Aviv advising residents to seek shelter, it took my friends and family a few minutes to understand what was …”

More via Taking Shelter in Tel Aviv : The New Yorker.

Filed under: Arab Spring, Behavioral Health Outcomes, Blogosphere, Culture Think, geopolitical, International Relations, News, Political Violence, waging war, WeSeeReason, ,

Israel and Gaza: Edging closer to war | The Economist

The Obama victory and the Arab spring have ushered in a new era for the Middle East as the extremes write the next chapter …  What’s next?

“IF THE latest round of violence between Israel and Hamas, the Palestinian Islamists who run Gaza, were to end this weekend, everyone involved—except for the families of the …”

More via Israel and Gaza: Edging closer to war | The Economist.

Filed under: Arab Spring, Blogosphere, Death and Dying, drone attacks, Election 2012, ethnicity in politics, faith-based, geopolitical, human offal, International Relations, Intolerance, Masacre, Mass Media and Public Opinion, Middle East Freedom, News, political plots, Political Violence, propaganda and spin, symbolic uses of politics, symbols as swords, waging war, WeSeeReason, ,

Petraeus Says U.S. Tried to Avoid Tipping Off Terrorists – NYTimes.com

In their desperation, the Republicans tried to make a mountain out of a small hill when they tried to ride the unfortunate attack in Libya up the public opinion polls …   They lost the election and now look unpatriotic by attacking a diplomat who was doing her job and going against a President Obama who, if nothing else, has been an ace on foreign policy…

“David H. Petraeus, the former director of the Central Intelligence Agency, told lawmakers on Friday that classified intelligence reports revealed that …”

via Petraeus Says U.S. Tried to Avoid Tipping Off Terrorists – NYTimes.com.

Filed under: Arab Spring, Blogosphere, Community Tragedy, Election 2012, symbolic uses of politics, WeSeeReason, , ,

Israeli Strike Kills Hamas Commander – WSJ.com

The WSJ reports as Middle East geopolitics burns …

“Israel pounded the Gaza Strip with artillery shells and about 20 airstrikes on Wednesday, killing Hamas’s top military commander and at least seven other …”

More via Israeli Strike Kills Hamas Commander – WSJ.com.

Filed under: Arab Spring, Blogosphere, Death and Dying, Middle East Freedom, News, political plots, Political Violence, waging war, ,

Obama Wins New Term as Electoral Advantage Holds – NYTimes.com

America’s has chosen to stay on the path to fairness, embracing diversity and the working person … The 47% wins!

The New York Times reports Obama victory as “Mr. Etch a Sketch” goes down hard and for ever!

Mitt Catches Bad Loss … America’s 47% wins big!

“Barack Hussein Obama was re-elected president of the United States on Tuesday, overcoming powerful economic headwinds, a lock-step resistance to his agenda by Republicans in Congress and an unprecedented torrent of advertising as the nation voted to give him a second …”

More via Obama Wins New Term as Electoral Advantage Holds – NYTimes.com.

Filed under: access to education, African American, Arab Spring, Blogosphere, Culture Think, Demographic Change, Discrimination, Economic Recession, Education Policy, Education Reform, Election 2012, ethnicity in politics, Latinos, Medicare, Middle East Freedom, Minority Males, News, Public Policy, symbolic uses of politics, symbols as swords, Tax Policy, Teacher Power, The 47%!, The Western Imagination, Unemployment, Using Social Media, Vote, waging war, WeSeeReason, Women's rights, ,

On Eve of Foreign Debate, Growing Pessimism about Arab Spring Aftermath | Pew Research Center for the People and the Press

As next week’s third and final presidential debate on foreign policy approaches, a national survey by the Pew Research Center finds increasing public pessimism about developments in the Middle East and more support for tough policies to deal with Iran’s nuclear program and economic issues with China. However, there is no change in the consensus in support for ending U.S. military involvement in Afghanistan.

Doubts have spread about the political direction of countries swept up in the Arab Spring protests that began almost two years ago. Nearly six-in-ten Americans (57%) do not believe the changes in the Middle East will lead to lasting improvements for people living in the affected countries, up sharply from 43% in April 2011.

And a majority of Americans (54%) continue to say it is more important to have stable governments in the Middle East, even if there is less democracy in the region. Just 30% say democratic governments are more important, even if there is less stability.

via On Eve of Foreign Debate, Growing Pessimism about Arab Spring Aftermath | Pew Research Center for the People and the Press.

Filed under: Africa, Arab Spring, Blogosphere, Death and Dying, Election 2012, geopolitical, Middle East Freedom, News, , ,

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