• Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Subscribe
  • RSS

Francois Hollande’s Quest For A United Front Against ISIS May Be Doomed To Fail

Hollande Putin

France’s President has spent the week trying to forge and agreement on an anti-ISIS policy, but the two nations that matter the most also disagree the most.

Tensions Between Russia And Turkey Remain High In Wake Of Russian Jet Incident

Turkey Russia Flags

Tensions between Russia and Turkey remain high in the wake of yesterday’s incident, but there are some signs that things are starting to cool down.

Hillary Clinton’s Ideas On How To Fight ISIS Are As Incoherent And Flawed As Everyone Else’s

Clinton CFR Speech

Hillary Clinton’s recently announced policies toward the ISIS fight are as incoherent and misguided as President Obama’s and those of her Republican opponents.

Turkey Downs Russian Jet

Turkey Russia Flags

A potentially big complication in an already complicated situation.

Just Some Perspective


Andrew Shaver writing at The Monkey Cage:  You’re more likely to be fatally crushed by furniture than killed by a terrorist. I am not saying ignore it.  I am saying have some perspective.

Poll Finds American Fearful Of Terrorism, Distrustful Of Obama And Syrian Refugees

Terrorism Word Cloud

A new poll taken in the wake of the Paris attacks finds Americans increasingly fearful of ISIS attacks in the U.S., opposed to the admission of Syrian refugees, and not very confident in President Obama’s ability to deal with the ISIS threat.

Are The Intelligence Reports On ISIS Being Cooked, And If So Why?

ISIS Fighters

Disturbing reports over the weekend that American leaders may not be getting the kind of unbiased intelligence analysis about ISIS that they need to make decisions.

Washington Post Reporter Jason Rezaian Sentenced By Secret Iranian Court

Iranian And American Flags

Jason Rezaian, the Washington Post reporter who has been held by Iran on espionage charges that most everyone agrees are nonsense, has apparently been sentenced, although it’s unclear what his sentence actually is: TEHRAN, Iran — Iran has sentenced detained Washington Post journalist Jason Rezaian to an unspecified prison term following his conviction last month on charges […]

Some Hard Truths about Terrorism (and Anti-Terrorism Policy)


Rosa Brooks, writing at Foreign Policy offers some truth on the issue of terrorism:  The Threat Is Already Inside (And 9 other truths about terrorism that nobody wants to hear.) The while thing is worth readings, but here are some excerpts: Occasional terrorist attacks in the West are virtually inevitable, and odds are, we’ll see more […]

ISIS is Winning


The United States and Europe are giving everything the perpetrators of the Paris attacks hoped for.

Brussels On ‘High Alert’ Over Fears Of Paris-Style Attack

Another European capital is on edge over fears of a terror attack.

Up To 170 Taken Hostage In Hotel In Capital Of Mali


An apparent ongoing terrorist attack in Central Africa.

Jonathan Pollard Released From Federal Prison After Thirty Years

Jonathan Pollard

After thirty years in Federal Prison, Jonathan Pollard is a free man. Make no mistake, though. Pollard is not, and never has been, a hero and he deserves to be remembered as nothing but the criminal that he is.

Syrian Refugees: Separating The Truth And The Facts From Myth, Paranoia, Fear, And Xenophobia

A collection of material that tries to separate the facts of the U.S. Syrian refugee screen process from the fear, myth, paranoia, and xenophobia.

Chief Suspect In Paris Attacks Killed In Police Raid, French Authorities Report

Paris Attack November 13-2

French officials have confirmed that Abdelhamid Abaaoud, the man believed to be the plotter of last Friday’s attacks in Paris, was killed in a police raid early Wednesday morning. This doesn’t mean authorities in France or elsewhere in Europe are any less concerned about future attacks, though.

On The Syrian Refugee Issue And The Internment Of Japanese-Americans During World War II

Japanese Interment Poster

Remarks by a Democratic politician in Virginia regarding the Administration’s Syrian refugee program have brought up disturbing reminders of a shameful time in American history.

Poll Shows Majority Of Americans Oppose Administration’s Syrian Refugee Policy

Syrian Refugees Coming Ashore In Greece

Not surprisingly, a new poll shows that most Americans are at the very least skeptical about the Administration’s plans regarding Syrian refugees.

ISIS Runs Its Own Help Desk

ISIS Fighters

ISIS apparently has a round-the-clock help desk for terrorists: ISIS is using a 24-hour Jihadi Help Desk to help spread its message, recruit followers and launch more attacks on foreign soil, NBC News reports. The help desk manned by a half-dozen senior operatives was established to help would-be jihadists use encryption and other secure communications […]

Even Ben Carson’s Own Advisers Admit He’s Clueless On Foreign Policy

Republican Presidential Candidate Dr. Ben Carson at National Press Club

Even the people hired to advice Ben Carson on foreign policy seem to recognize that he is clueless on the subject, and has no apparent desire to educate himself.

Paul Ryan Joins Republican Calls For Halt To Accepting Syrian Refugees

Paul Ryan Speaking

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan is the latest Republican to call for a halt to the processing of Syrian refugees who may eventually be brought to the United States: WASHINGTON — House Speaker Paul D. Ryan called Tuesday for the suspension of a program to accept Syrian refugees into the United States, and two […]

Soccer Match Canceled In Germany Over Discovery Of “Serious Plans” For Explosions


A soccer match in Hanover, Germany between the national teams from Germany and The Netherlands was canceled at virtually the last minute this evening local time due to what seems to be a serious security concern: Germany’s exhibition soccer match against the Netherlands was canceled less than two hours before kickoff on Tuesday, becoming the […]

What, Exactly, Does Uttering The Words “Radical Islamic Terrorism” Accomplish?

Obama ISIS

Republicans insist that uttering the words “Radical Islamic Terrorism” is somehow important in the fight against ISIS and other terror networks, but it is entirely unclear what doing so would accomplish.

Jeb Bush Breaks With Most Other Republicans On Refugee Policy


Jeb Bush seems to split with nearly all of the Republican Governors in the United States, and most of his fellow candidates for President, Jeb Bush told Bloomberg’s Mark Halperin that the United States shouldn’t bar Syrian refugees regardless of religion absent any evidence for concern: Jeb Bush said he wouldn’t ban Syrian refugees from entering the […]

No, Americans Should Not Feel Guilty For Showing Solidarity With France

Eiffel Tower French Tricolor

In the wake of the attacks in Paris, some people have argued that American solidarity with France, in contrast to seeming disregard for tragedy elsewhere, is something we should feel bad about. That argument is ridiculous.

War Refugees And Public Opinion: Some Historical Perspective

Syrian Refugees

In the context of the ongoing discussions about Syrian refugees, a look at some past polling about refugees from a different time and a different conflict are instructive. These tweets come from the Twitter Account Historical Opinion, which curates poll results on issues of interest from the past: US Dec 12 ’38: College students: Should […]

Refugees and Terrorism (Some Numbers)


Via The Economist:  Of the 745,000 refugees resettled since September 11th, only two Iraqis in Kentucky have been arrested on terrorist charges, for aiding al-Qaeda in Iraq. (The whole piece is worth a read).

This is How Terrorism Works

ISIS Fighters

Violence leads to irrational policy responses. Who does that help?

Thanks To Pandering And Fearmongering, Syrian Refugees Are Now Pawns In American Politics

Syrian Refugees Coming Ashore In Greece

Syrian refugees have quickly become political footballs in the United States in the wake of the Paris attacks, and it’s become an exceedingly shameful display of pandering and fearmongering by a group of largely Republican politicians.

Russia Confirms Metrojet 9268 Brought Down By Bomb

Metrojet A321 Wreckage

Confirming speculation that had already been all but confirmed, we now know that it was a bomb that brought down a Russian passenger jet on October 31st.

Even After Paris, A Syrian No-Fly Zone Is A Foolish Idea

Obama ISIS

In the wake of the attacks in Paris, there’s a strong impulse to do “something,” but that doesn’t mean we should do something utterly foolish. And a no-fly zone would be utterly foolish.

The 2016 GOP Race And The Battle To Define What ‘Conservative’ Means

Fourth Republican Debate Nov 10 2015

Much more so than in the past, the race for the Republican Presidential race has become a battle to define what it means to be a ‘conservative.’ Especially on issues like immigration and national security, one side seems to be winning the battle.

France Strikes ISIS As Investigation Into Paris Attacks Continues

Paris Attack November 13-2

France launched its first attacks against ISIS even as the investigation into Friday’s attacks continues, but it’s not clear that the retaliation really accomplished anything.

Ben Carson’s Foreign Policy Incoherence Continues

Dr. Ben Carson Speaks At Launch Of New Media Online Network In Scottsdale, Arizona

Like many of the Republican candidates for President, Ben Carson’s appearance on Fox News Sunday this morning was dominated by questions about the attacks in Paris and what they mean for American foreign policy going forward. As with many of Carson’s previous comments in this highly complex policy area, what we got was another incoherent mess […]

The GOP Candidates And The Attacks In Paris

Fourth Republican Debate Nov 10 2015

The initial responses of the Republican candidates for President to the attacks in Paris are about what you’d expect, but it’s far too early to tell what impact the events of the weekend will have on the race for President here in the United States.

Paris + GOP Primary Electorate = ??


We are going to learn a lot about the GOP electorate in the coming weeks.

The Paris Attacks Have Made The Syrian Refugee Crisis Much More Complicated

Syrian Refugees Coming Ashore In Greece

The news that at least some of the men who were involved in the terrorist attacks in Paris were among the refugees who have arrived in Europe since the summer is likely to complicate an already complicated situation.

French Suicide Bomber Posed as Refugee


This was not only predictable but predicted.

Attack on France Is an Attack on the United States

A man holds up a sign which reads, "Je Suis Paris" ("I Am Paris") during a rally of solidarity outside the Consulate of France in Montreal, Quebec, Canada on Saturday, Nov. 14, 2015, to show his support to victims of the Paris attacks. (Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press via AP)

We are legally, morally, and practically obligated to respond. Let’s not do so stupidly.

In Case Anyone Asks…


…via Quartz:  Muslims around the world condemn terrorism after the Paris attacks and USAT:  Muslims strongly condemn Paris terror attacks.

An Account of ISIS Activity


An list and map via the NYT:  click. On the one hand, a concerning list.  On the other, most of the items seems to be arrests linked to people trying to join the group rather than being specific plots or threats. The more concerning issue is the number of countries where the group currently has military […]

Something to Consider Going Forward


We can draw a rather direct line from the Iraq war to the rise of ISIS.

French President Blames ISIS For Paris’s Night Of Terror, Vows French Response

Paris Attack November 13-2

France’s President blames ISIS, vows response, as death toll from Paris terror attacks stands at at least 127.

A Night Of Terror In Paris

Paris Attack November 13

Reports of at least up to sixty dead, a hostage situation, and attacks at multiple locations in Paris.

Ben Carson’s Incoherence And Ignorance On Foreign Policy Should Be Disqualifying

Republican Presidential Candidate Dr. Ben Carson at National Press Club

Ben Carson displays incoherence and ignorance on foreign policy issues that disqualify him from being considered a serious candidate for President of the United States.

Majority of Americans Oppose Ground Troops In Syria And Iraq

Obama ISIS

In the wake of President Obama’s to send Special Forces to Syria, a new poll finds the public doesn’t like the idea very much.

You Can Forget About Obama’s Promise To Close The Guantanamo Bay Prison

Guantanamo Bay Camp Entrance

President Obama is set to sign a military spending bill that effectively guarantees that his 2008 campaign promise to close the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba will go unfulfilled.

Federal Judge Rules N.S.A. Mass Data Collection Unconstitutional

National Security Agency

A Federal Judge has ruled that the N.S.A. metadata collection program is unconstitutional, but it’s unclear if the ruling will have much of an impact.

Russia Appears Ready To Deliver Sophisticated Anti-Aircraft System To Iran

Iran Nukes

With the Iran nuclear deal in place and sanctions being slowly lifted, Russia is announcing that a stalled weapons deal with Tehran is moving forward: MOSCOW — Russia’s most senior arms executive said Monday that a contract to supply Iran with powerful S-300 air defense missiles was now active. But with no delivery date or […]

Consensus Continues To Grow That Russian Airliner Was Taken Out By A Bomb

Metrojet A321 Wreckage

The investigation continues, but the consensus seems to be growing that Metrojet 9268 was taken out by a bomb.

Politinerds: Andrew Malcom On Russia, China, ISIS, And Syria


Our guest this week on Politinerds was a Andrew Malcom, who makes a return appearance this time to talk about foreign policy issues ranging from Syria and Russia’s intervention in that conflict, the direction or lack thereof in American policy in the war against ISIS and the Syrian Civil War, and the issues at stake […]

« Older Posts