Romney Condemns The Movie That The U.S. Consulate Criticized, After Which Romney Condemned For The Criticism

Ken AshfordElection 2012, Middle East, War on Terrorism/TortureLeave a Comment

And now Romney's campaign is desperately circulating talking points to supporters, to try to deal with the fallout from his crass statements. Expect all of these to immediately start spouting from the right wing media and blogs:Romney Camp Tries to Manage Fallout From Libya Response. From the "Questions and Answers" section: Questions & Answers: Don't you think it was appropriate … Read More

The Attacks On U.S. Ambassador

Ken AshfordElection 2012, Foreign Affairs, Middle East, War on Terrorism/TortureLeave a Comment

Well, it's ugly no doubt.  As you probably know by now, families are in mourning, and the diplomatic corps is dealing with the tragedy of four Americans — including the U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens — being killed in the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.  It is the first time a U.S. ambassador has been killed in 33 years. Obviously, there … Read More

Romney’s Stupidity Tour Continues

Ken AshfordElection 2012, Middle EastLeave a Comment

And in Israel: In a breakfast meeting this morning, the Republican presidential candidate told about 40 wealthy donors who breakfasted at the King David Hotel: "As you come here and you see the GDP per capita, for instance, in Israel which is about $21,000 dollars, and compare that with the GDP per capita just across the areas managed by the Palestinian Authority, … Read More

Worse Than Sheen

Ken AshfordMiddle EastLeave a Comment

Christiane Amanpour: I interviewed Col. Moammar Gadhafi this evening, when he told me he could not step down because he is not a president or king, and denied there were demonstrations against him anywhere in Libya.    

Getting Into The Israeli-Gaza Waters

Ken AshfordMiddle East2 Comments

As you may have heard, Israeli commandos killed as many as 16 peace activists and wounded over 50 others as they boarded and commandeered six ships heading toward the Gaza Strip carrying relief and aid in the form of water purifiers, in violation of Israel's self-imposed blockade of Gaza.  CNN: Israeli soldiers rappelled onto the deck of the ships from a helicopter. … Read More

Vietnam Was “The Television War”; Meet “The YouTube War”

Ken AshfordMiddle East, YoutubeLeave a Comment

I don't have anything to say about the outbreak of fighting in Israel/Gaza, other than you can put me down in the "Israel's-responsive-was-disproportionate-and-therefore-counterproductive" camp, that the Bush Administration's silence on the issue is (once again) negligent, and the only way this will end (and not escalate) is some serious efforts at diplomacy — and soon. Okay, I guess I do have … Read More

Arming Future Enemies

Ken AshfordMiddle EastLeave a Comment

A new proposal for the Pakistani crisis: A new and classified American military proposal outlines an intensified effort to enlist tribal leaders in the frontier areas of Pakistan in the fight against Al Qaeda and the Taliban, as part of a broader effort to bolster Pakistani forces against an expanding militancy, American military officials said. Again with the arming tribal … Read More

America To The Rescue

Ken AshfordMiddle EastLeave a Comment

I think much of this was lost on the audience, but this is brilliant. Jon Stewart talks about U.S. intervention in the Middle East over the past 3 decades and our absurd policies where we provide billions of money, arms, and military training to people who later become our mortal enemies.  Bin Laden?  Yeah, the U.S. gave him guns and … Read More

The Unauthorized “Christians United For Israel” Tour

Ken AshfordGodstuff, Middle East1 Comment

Max Blumenthal has done it again. He attended a conference of the "Christians United for Israel" people, and brought his camera.  What he saw was alarming.  Watch it. Rapture Ready: The Unauthorized Christians United for Israel Tour from huffpost and Vimeo. There is, of course, nothing inherently wrong with anybody being pro-Israel.  What makes me squirm about these people is … Read More

A Unique Solution To The Middle East Problem

Ken AshfordMiddle EastLeave a Comment

Why didn’t somebody think of this before? Reuven Zelinkovsky was a colonel in the Israeli army, but now he has renounced military might to join a squadron of yogic flyers at the Sea of Galilee to throw a "shield of invincibility" around the Jewish state. As Hezbollah rockets fired from nearby Lebanon boomed in the background, he explained that the … Read More