Lew Rockwell, founder and Chairman of the Ludwig von Mises Institute, discusses his “War and Inflation“speech at a 2008 Future of Freedom Foundation conference;” how central banking allows governments to fund wars and empire through money printing instead of direct taxation, keeping a lid on internal dissent; why deflation is a normal and desirable condition of productive economies; and why Keynesianism is best summarized as the economics of state power.
Globetrotting journalist Pepe Escobar discusses his article “Syria and Turkey’s Phantom War;” Turkey’s violation of Syrian airspace in a purposeful, measured provocation and test of Syria’s defenses; the near-invocation of NATO Article 5 and a wider war (an attack on one NATO country is an attack on all); looking for ways to bypass the UN on Syria, since China and Russia won’t let an interventionist resolution pass the Security Council; grand plans for NATO expansion in the official “Assured Security, Dynamic Engagement” plan; counterrevolutions in the Middle East and South America, as the US looks to rebuild its portfolio of client states; and how Qatar has become the new superpower in the Middle East, surpassing even Saudi Arabia.
Jacob Hornberger, founder and president of the Future of Freedom Foundation, discusses his article “Needed: A National Debate on U.S. Support of Dictatorships;” the 1953 CIA-supported coup in Iran, leading to the hostage crisis, 1979 Islamic Revolution, and poor relations to this day; the US-supplied Iraqi weapons of mass-destruction; the conditional US anti-dictator policy (cooperative dictators needn’t fear regime-change); why Americans may finally be catching on to the War on Terrorism farce; and cutting the federal budget by eliminating aid to foreign dictators.
Gareth Porter, investigative historian and journalist specializing in U.S. national security policy, discusses why the Obama administration is leaking their diplomatic strategy to the media prior to commencing Iran talks; how Obama’s hard-line on Iran sanctions allows him to claim that Israel’s demands are his demands; the IAEA’s real job: make Iran look uncooperative and suspicious; why the alleged “clean-up” at Iran’s Parchin site is as unbelievable as Iraq’s mobile germ warfare labs in 2003; and how election-year politics queered an Iran deal and hindered Obama’s ability to negotiate (but isn’t it always an election year, or something?)
IPS News journalist Adam Morrow discusses how Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohammed Morsi’s presidential victory averted a crisis in Egypt; the Egyptian military’s continued supremacy, as the parliament remains dissolved and the national constitution unfinished; valid suspicions that Egypt’s prominent Islamists could have ties to the CIA; Washington’s fear that Egypt is developing an independent foreign policy; and why Israel might not dare carry out another Operation Cast Lead rampage in Gaza.
Winslow Wheeler, director of the Straus Military Reform Project at the Center for Defense Information, discusses his article “The Jet That Ate the Pentagon;” the large portion of procurement money earmarked for the F-35; why single-purpose planes are better and cheaper than multipurpose ones; and the price/performance penalty inherent in stealth aircraft.
Former CIA officer Philip Giraldi discusses his article “Terrorism Arithmetic;” the National Counter Terrorism Center’s annual Report on Terrorism, which statistically proves that Americans are more likely to be killed by televisions than terrorists; the political realities that push Democratic presidents toward ultraviolence (which Obama seems to really enjoy); how international terrorists groups like al-Qaeda have given way to small franchises focused on local issues; the mainstream media’s better-late-than-never reporting on covert US support for Syrian regime change; and the self-perpetuating cycle of US foreign policy, where a new intervention is undertaken to fix a previous botched job, ad infinitum.
Marjorie Cohn, Professor of Law at Thomas Jefferson School of Law, discusses her article “Hope Dies at Guantanamo;” how the landmark Boumediene v. Bush SCOTUS decision on habeas corpus rights for Guantanamo prisoners became meaningless; and the DC Appeals Court’s invention of “presumption of regularity,” which asserts government infallibility and denies defendants a “meaningful opportunity” to contest their detentions.
Dr. Stephen Zunes, Professor of Politics and International Studies at the University of San Francisco, discusses the US Congress’s push for war with Iran on the eve of P5+1 talks in Moscow; the Sudanese migrant laborers and political refugees who risk mass-deportation from Israel; and the self defeating US anti-terrorism policy in Africa.
Thomas E. Woods, author of Rollback: Repealing Big Government Before the Coming Fiscal Collapse, discusses Ron Paul as an economic prophet of sorts (revered by devout followers, scorned by the majority); Woods’s personal transformation from party-line Republican to peace and liberty advocate; Paul’s paradigm shifting moment, where he stood up to Rudy Giuliani’s ignorant tirade about 9/11 in the 2008 Republican primaries; and how the college kids who are reading Mises instead of Keynes – thanks to Ron Paul – could change academia for a generation.
Reza Marashi, Research Director for the National Iranian American Council, discusses the failed P5+1 Iran talks in Moscow; why there was a diplomatic breakdown and unwillingness to compromise, even though Obama seems eager to avoid war; how the default US position – that Iran is building a nuclear weapons program – dooms negotiations to failure; and the root cause of conflict (the US wants Middle East client states, while Iran removed the imperial yoke in 1979 and isn’t going back to it).
Michael Klare, professor and author of Rising Powers, Shrinking Planet, discusses his article “Is Barack Obama Morphing Into Dick Cheney;” the Bush and Obama administrations’ striking policy similarities on oil geopolitics; peak oil theory and the disappearance of “easy” oil; Cheney’s National Energy Policy of 2001, which adivsed more oil imports from Africa; and Obama’s expansion of AFRICOM to pursue terrorist threats on the continent (of course limited to the oil-producing regions).
Jason Ditz, managing news editor at Antiwar.com, discusses the comical chronic legal problems of successive Pakistani prime ministers; the evolution of Boko Haram from a “loopy sect” to a US-designated international terrorist group; and the blowback from Nigeria’s military massacre of Boko Haram members (who quickly swapped their bows and arrows for machine guns).
Regular Antiwar.com columnist Kelley B. Vlahos discusses her article “The CIA and Polio in Pakistan;” how Dr. Shakil Afridi set up a fake immunization campaign to help the CIA in their effort to pinpoint Osama bin Laden’s location in Abbottabad; how the immunization ruse further undermined public confidence in vaccinations in one of the last countries with Polio cases; and the reality of life in an iron lung.
Ivan Eland, Senior Fellow at The Independent Institute and regular contributor to Antiwar.com, discusses his new book No War For Oil: U.S. Dependency and the Middle East; why it isn’t necessary to secure oil supplies with military force; how US meddling in the Middle East increases oil prices and destabilizes regional governments; why national energy independence is a foolish pursuit; his article “Smoke and Mirrors in Energy Policy;” and how sanctions on Iranian oil exports help China and India get a discount on their energy needs.