US Officials: ‘Saudis Set to Buy Nuclear Weapons from Pakistan’

May 26, 2015

YASMIN KAYE - Saudi Arabia is said to have taken the "strategic decision" to acquire "off-the-shelf" nuclear weapons from ally Pakistan, senior US officials told the Sunday Times. Sunni Arab states are increasingly concerned of the repercussions of a deal currently being negotiated between world powers and Shi'ite rival Iran, which they fear may...

People Have The Power To Bring About Change

May 24, 2015
People Have The Power To Bring About Change

DAVID SUZUKI - Recent events in Canada have shown not only that change is possible, but that people won’t stand for having corporate interests put before their own.

A Preview of Coming Wars: Do Black Lives Matter in Africa?

May 22, 2015
A Preview of Coming Wars: Do Black Lives Matter in Africa?

DAVID SWANSON - Reading Nick Turse's new book, Tomorrow's Battlefield: U.S. Proxy Wars and Secret Ops in Africa, raises the question of whether black lives in Africa matter to the U.S. military any more than black lives in the United States matter to the police lately trained and armed by that military.

Chamber and Google Among Top Lobbying Spenders in First Quarter of 2015

May 20, 2015
Chamber and Google Among Top Lobbying Spenders in First Quarter of 2015

DANIEL STEVENS - Monday, April 20, marked the deadline for companies and organizations to file their 2015 first quarter federal lobbying disclosure reports. Below is a list of the top ten organizations and how much they spent lobbying Congress and federal agencies between January 1, 2015, and March 31, 2015.

Iran Nuclear Talks. A Fresh Tone in Washington with a Breath of Oregon

May 18, 2015
Iran Nuclear Talks. A Fresh Tone in Washington with a Breath of Oregon

PATRICK T. HILLER - It is easy to be a cynic listening to some of the more nonsensical chatter coming out of Congress. Despite the most comprehensive international agreement between the United States and its P5+1 partners (the members of the UN Security Council and Germany) with Iran on its nuclear program, the calls...

Courage Is Contagious: Manning, Snowden, Assange Stand Up for Freedom

May 16, 2015
Courage Is Contagious: Manning, Snowden, Assange Stand Up for Freedom

ABBY ZIMET - May Day saw the Berlin unveiling of Anything To Say?, a public art project and "monument to courage" featuring life-size bronze statues of Edward Snowden, Julian Assange and Bradley Manning, all of whom have "lost their freedom for the truth." The installation in Berlin's Alexanderplatz, a project conceived by American journalist...

Nuclear Weapons Protesters’ Sabotage Conviction Overturned — Court Says Jury Verdict Was Not Rational

May 14, 2015
Nuclear Weapons Protesters’ Sabotage Conviction Overturned — Court Says Jury Verdict Was Not Rational

JOHN LAFORGE - An Appeals Court has vacated the sabotage convictions of peace activists Greg-Boertje-Obed, of Duluth, Min., and his co-defendants Michael Walli of Washington, DC, and Sr. Megan Rice of New York City. The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals found that federal prosecutors failed to prove -- and that “no rational jury could...

Tennessee: Nun’s Sabotage Conviction Overturned

May 12, 2015

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS - A nun and two fellow Catholic peace activists who splashed blood on the walls of a bunker holding weapons-grade uranium — exposing vulnerabilities in the nation’s nuclear security — were wrongly convicted of sabotage, a federal appeals court ruled Friday.

U.S. Bill of Rights Rewritten to Match Today’s Reality

May 10, 2015
U.S. Bill of Rights Rewritten to Match Today’s Reality

DAVID SWANSON - There just might be a big boost in government honesty soon, as both houses of Congress have now passed with two-thirds votes and sent to the states for ratification a potential 28th amendment to the U.S. Constitution bearing the unofficial title "The Truth in Advertising Amendment." This is the text as...

Time to Ban the Bomb

May 8, 2015
Time to Ban the Bomb

ALICE SLATER - Global Momentum is building for a treaty to ban nuclear weapons. While the world has banned chemical and biological weapons, there is no explicit legal prohibition of nuclear weapons, although the International Court of Justice ruled unanimously that there is an obligation to bring to a conclusion negotiations for their total...

Arresting the Wrong Suspects

May 6, 2015
Arresting the Wrong Suspects

JOHN LAFORGE - Here at the United Nations, talk is focused on the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (N-P.T.). At about 11 a.m. Apr. 28, I was handcuffed with 21 other nuclear realists after blocking an entrance to the US Mission. I say “realists” because US media won’t pay much attention to US violations of nuclear...

Leading Whistleblowers Call for Congressional Action

May 4, 2015
Leading Whistleblowers Call for Congressional Action

JOHN HANRAHAN - On Monday, April 27, seven prominent national security whistleblowers called for a number of wide-ranging reforms — including passage of the “Surveillance State Repeal Act,” which would repeal the USA Patriot Act — in an effort to restore the Constitutionally guaranteed 4th Amendment right to be free from government spying. Several...

Pro and Con: Local GMO Ban on May Ballot

May 2, 2015

BETHANY CARLSON, RACHEL SANDSTROM and ROB GOFFINS - What does Benton County GMO measure 2-89 do? What are the pros and cons?

Wisconsin Grandmother Jailed for Opposing Drone Murders

April 30, 2015
Wisconsin Grandmother Jailed for Opposing Drone Murders

DAVID SWANSON - Joy First reports from Mauston, Wisc., that Bonnie Block, a Madison grandmother and long-time peace activist, was found guilty of trespassing in a jury trial in the Juneau County Courthouse on Wednesday, April 1, 2015, and sent to jail.

The Limits of U.S. Missile Defense

April 28, 2015
The Limits of U.S. Missile Defense

STEVEN PIFER - On March 23, 1983, Ronald Reagan announced the Strategic Defense Initiative, popularly known as “Star Wars.” After thirty-two years and tens of billions of dollars, defending the U.S. homeland against attack by strategic ballistic missiles still poses a daunting challenge. Missile defense ambitions have been regularly scaled-back. The United States should...

Seeking Truth Together: Challenging the Silence Racism Creates

April 26, 2015
Seeking Truth Together: Challenging the Silence Racism Creates

DAVID RAGLAND - When racial bias occurs it is customary to suggest that such practices are out of the norm or something only done by an individual out of touch with prevailing social values, but racism is part of American social ecology, often as unrecognized as the air we breathe.

Could Iran be Just the Start?

April 24, 2015
Could Iran be Just the Start?

ERIKA SIMPSON - The most high-profile nuclear issue is the interim accord between Iran and six world powers to restrict Iran’s development of nuclear power. And if the fundamentals of the Iranian deal could be treated as a template for all countries, the international community would be well on its way to choking off...

Earth Day Means Leave It Better than You Found It

April 22, 2015
Earth Day Means Leave It Better than You Found It

TOM H. HASTINGS - How many holidays do we have? MLK Day in January, Valentines Day in February, Easter in March or April, Earth Day in April, Memorial Day in May, and so forth. Of those few examples, two were declared in my adulthood. New holidays take time to catch on and embed themselves...

Can War Be Ended?

April 20, 2015
Can War Be Ended?

JOHN HORGAN - Fisticuffs have broken out in The Guardian between two intellectual big shots, philosopher John Gray and psychologist Steven Pinker. The fight, which features lots of rhetorical flourishes and high dudgeon, addresses a serious issue: Is humanity achieving moral progress? Or, as Gray would put it, “progress”? More specifically, are we becoming...

Meeting Einstein’s Challenge: New Thinking about Nuclear Weapons

April 18, 2015
Meeting Einstein’s Challenge: New Thinking about Nuclear Weapons

ROBERT R. HOLT - In May 1946, The New York Times reported that Albert Einstein had sent a telegram appeal to several hundred prominent Americans, asking for contributions to a fund “to let the people know that a new type of thinking is essential” in the atomic age. Einstein wrote in his telegram: “The...

$56 Billion to be Spent on Nuclear Weapons This Year

April 16, 2015
$56 Billion to be Spent on Nuclear Weapons This Year

ROBERT F. DODGE, M.D. - Following the arrival of spring each year, our nation renews its commitment to our priorities on Tax Day, April 15th, from education to health care, infrastructure and national defense. Included among these expenditures are nuclear weapons programs—weapons that can not and must not ever be used. The funding for...

Bacevich: National Security ‘Experts’ Are Bullshitting Us Into Another Quagmire

April 14, 2015
Bacevich: National Security ‘Experts’ Are Bullshitting Us Into Another Quagmire

ANDREW J. BACEVICH - Policy intellectuals — eggheads presuming to instruct the mere mortals who actually run for office — are a blight on the republic. Like some invasive species, they infest present-day Washington, where their presence strangles common sense and has brought to the verge of extinction the simple ability to perceive reality. A benign appearance — well-dressed types...

Why Corporate America is Reluctant to Take a Stand on Climate Action

April 12, 2015
Why Corporate America is Reluctant to Take a Stand on Climate Action

MARC GUNTHER - The EPA’s Clean Power Plan might be the only hope the US has to make a real dent in the climate change battle. So why aren’t more companies onboard? Many environmental groups consider the Obama administration’s plan to regulate carbon-spewing coal plants, which aims to cut carbon pollution by 30%, as...

Controversial Trade Deal’s Text Leaked by Wikileaks

April 10, 2015
Controversial Trade Deal’s Text Leaked by Wikileaks

JONATHON TASINI - This is an advanced January 2015 version of the confidential draft treaty chapter from the Investment group of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) talks between the United States, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Chile, Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, New Zealand and Brunei Darussalam. The treaty is being negotiated in secret by delegations from...

Applying The Golden Rule to All Animals

April 8, 2015
Applying The Golden Rule to All Animals

CRAIG CLINE - We humans are the most powerful members of the animal kingdom. Let us unite in both seeing “animal wrongs” and in acting to DO SOMETHING about them. Let’s become vegans and apply our Golden Rule to ALL animals, humans and non-humans alike.

Obama Admits Global Scale of U.S. Militarism

April 6, 2015
Obama Admits Global Scale of U.S. Militarism

PATRICK MARTIN - Last month President Obama dispatched a formal letter to the Speaker of the House, John Boehner, listing a series of countries where US troops were or have been engaged in military operations during 2014. The preamble explains that the document is “consistent with the War Powers Resolution (Public...

Koch-Backed Network Aims to Spend Nearly $1 Billion on 2016 Elections

April 4, 2015
Koch-Backed Network Aims to Spend Nearly $1 Billion on 2016 Elections

MATEA GOLD - A network of conservative advocacy groups backed by Charles and David Koch aims to spend a staggering $889 million in advance of the next White House election, part of an expansive strategy to build on its 2014 victories that may involve jumping into the Republican primaries.

Who Are the Nuclear Scofflaws?

April 2, 2015
Who Are the Nuclear Scofflaws?

LAWRENCE S. WITTNER - Given all the frothing by hawkish U.S. Senators about Iran’s possible development of nuclear weapons, one might think that Iran was violating the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). But it’s not.

Nuclear Legacy Calls for Action

March 31, 2015
Nuclear Legacy Calls for Action

RIVERA SUN - Nowhere is Hannah Arendt's phrase the banality of evil more potent than at Los Alamos, New Mexico. The prosperous county -one of the nation's richest - sits amongst the piñon pines and junipers in the high-altitude desert of northern New Mexico. It exists almost exclusively for the purpose of researching and...

Scientists Set Doomsday Clock Closer to Armageddon

March 29, 2015
Scientists Set Doomsday Clock Closer to Armageddon

ROBERT F. DODGE, M.D. - The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists has just announced its latest nuclear Doomsday Clock moving ahead the minute hand to three minutes till midnight. The clock represents the count down to zero in minutes to nuclear apocalypse - midnight. This significant move of two minutes is the 22nd time since...

TV Ad Airing in Las Vegas Asks Drone Pilots to Refuse to Fly

March 27, 2015
TV Ad Airing in Las Vegas Asks Drone Pilots to Refuse to Fly

DAVID SWANSON - This advertisement does a number of things in 15 seconds that U.S. television has not done before. It presents a moral case against drone murders (the U.S. government's terminology, and strictly accurate). It opposes drone murders as illegal. It shows victims. It provides the name and website of an organization opposing...

Interconnected Struggles: Jeju Island, Detroit, Sao Paulo

March 25, 2015
Interconnected Struggles: Jeju Island, Detroit, Sao Paulo

KATHY KELLY - Living, as I briefly do, in a world of imprisoned beauty, on an island inside that archipelago of U.S. prisons so unacceptably similar to that of our old superpower rival, it's no wonder I'm thinking of Prof. Yang Yoon Mo. What we do to the environment, we're doing to each other....

Intervention in Civil Wars ‘Far More Likely in Oil-rich Nations’

March 23, 2015
Intervention in Civil Wars ‘Far More Likely in Oil-rich Nations’

DAVID SWANSON - Conspiracy theorists have long insisted that modern wars revolve around oil. Now research suggests hydrocarbons play an even bigger role in conflicts than they had suspected. According to academics from the Universities of Portsmouth, Warwick and Essex, foreign intervention in a civil war is 100 times more likely when the afflicted...

Great Speech in Selma, Mr. President!

March 21, 2015
Great Speech in Selma, Mr. President!

WINSLOW MYERS - Very stirring and eloquent words at the Edmund Pettus Bridge, Mr. President, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Selma to Montgomery march. President Obama: “What they did here will reverberate through the ages. Not because the change they won was preordained; not because their victory was complete; but because they...

US Remains Top Arms Exporter, SIPRI Reports

March 19, 2015
US Remains Top Arms Exporter, SIPRI Reports

ANDREW CLEVENGER - The United States bolstered its arms sales over the last five years, solidifying its place as the world's leading arms exporter, according to a study published Monday by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).

Bank of England Issues Warning Over Looming ‘Carbon Bubble’ Threat

March 17, 2015
Bank of England Issues Warning Over Looming ‘Carbon Bubble’ Threat

DEIRDRE FULTON - 'As the world increasingly limits carbon emissions, and moves to alternative energy sources, investments in fossil fuels...may take a huge hit,' predicts one of Europe's oldest banks

How Obama’s Aggression in Ukraine Risks Nuclear War

March 15, 2015
How Obama’s Aggression in Ukraine Risks Nuclear War

ROBERT ROTH - I voted for Barack Obama for president twice, for one reason: I thought he would not get us into a nuclear war. Now I’m afraid even that reason for my vote is wearing thin, threatened by US and NATO aggression in Ukraine. As the US continues threatening to send so-called “defensive”...

Will the U.S. Government Stand Alone in Rejecting Children’s Rights?

March 13, 2015
Will the U.S. Government Stand Alone in Rejecting Children’s Rights?

LAWRENCE S. WITTNER - Within a matter of months, the U.S. government seems likely to become the only nation in the world still rejecting the 1989 UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. Sometimes called “the most ratified human rights treaty in history,” the Convention has been ratified by 195 nations, leaving the...

Petraeus won’t serve a day in jail for his leaks. Edward Snowden shouldn’t either.

March 11, 2015
Petraeus won’t serve a day in jail for his leaks. Edward Snowden shouldn’t either.

TREVOR TIMM - The sweetheart deal the Justice Department gave to former CIA director David Petraeus for leaking top secret information compared to the stiff jail sentences other low-level leakers have received under the Obama administration has led to renewed calls for leniency for NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden. And no one makes the case...

Money Pipeline Flowing Between U.S. Congress and Big Oil

March 9, 2015
Money Pipeline Flowing Between U.S. Congress and Big Oil

KATHERINE "KITTY" STAPP - With battle lines sharpening over the stalled Keystone XL pipeline, a new analysis details the intense industry lobbying of both houses of the U.S. Congress since 2013 – to the tune of 58.8 million dollars by five refinery companies alone.

It’s Time Oregon Put a Price on Carbon

March 7, 2015
It’s Time Oregon Put a Price on Carbon

CAMILLA THORNDIKE and DAN GOLDEN - Climate change hurts Oregon’s Willamette Valley. The region’s economy is heavily dependent on agriculture, viticulture and forestry — all of which are climate-dependent. Summers are hotter and drier with rains occurring as storms, rather than the typical drizzle. The snowpack is decreasing. Less water for irrigation, increasing incidence...

Growing Support for Moving Away from Nuclear Weapons

March 5, 2015
Growing Support for Moving Away from Nuclear Weapons

JAMSHED BARUAH - The 33-member Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) formally endorsed at its third annual summit in San José on January 28-29 the ‘Austrian Pledge’ delivered at the close of the Third International Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons (HINW) last December in Vienna.

Reject Endless, Worldwide War

March 3, 2015
Reject Endless, Worldwide War

DAVID SWANSON - We strongly reject President Obama’s request for the Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) of the U.S.-led war on ISIS. We urge Congress to oppose the request for a war which is endless, not the last resort, illegal by national and international standards, geographically unlimited, and unwinnable. The resultant...

This is the Real Significance of Obama’s Keystone XL Veto

March 1, 2015
This is the Real Significance of Obama’s Keystone XL Veto

CHRIS MOONEY - The Keystone fight is truly different. For environmentalists, it’s fundamentally about keeping fossil fuels in the ground, unburned, a stance that causes a more polarizing clash with industry.

CIA Evidence from Whistleblower Trial Could Tilt Iran Nuclear Talks

February 27, 2015
CIA Evidence from Whistleblower Trial Could Tilt Iran Nuclear Talks

NORMAN SOLOMoN - A month after former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling was convicted on nine felony counts with circumstantial metadata, the zealous prosecution is now having potentially major consequences -- casting doubt on the credibility of claims by the U.S. government that Iran has developed a nuclear weapons program.

China-U.S. Strategic Nuclear Stability: The Chinese View

February 25, 2015
China-U.S. Strategic Nuclear Stability: The Chinese View

CHARLES D. FERGUSON - “To destroy the other, you have to destroy part of yourself. To deter the other, you have to deter yourself,” according to a Chinese nuclear strategy expert. During the week of February 9th, I had the privilege to travel to China where I heard this statement during the Ninth China-U.S....

Obama Plays Nuclear Hardball With Israel

February 23, 2015
Obama Plays Nuclear Hardball With Israel

MARK H. GAFFNEY - Finally. After many years of official hypocrisy, a US president appears to be playing hardball with Israel. The US government has declassified a1987 report documenting Israel’s secret nuclear weapons program.

A Military Manual for Nonviolent War

February 21, 2015
A Military Manual for Nonviolent War

TINA ROSENBERG - Several years ago, before their protest movement was co-opted by violence, a group of young Syrians looking for a way to topple President Bashar al-Assad traveled to an isolated beach resort outside Syria to take a weeklong class in revolution. The teachers were Srdja Popovic and Slobodan Djinovic — leaders of...

Why Tesla’s Battery for Your Home Should Terrify Utilities

February 19, 2015
Why Tesla’s Battery for Your Home Should Terrify Utilities

JOSH DZIEZA - Earlier this week, during a disappointing Tesla earnings call, Elon Musk mentioned in passing that he’d be producing a stationary battery for powering the home in the next few months. It sounded like a throwaway side project from someone who’s never seen a side project he doesn’t like. But it’s a...

Are the U.S. and Russian Governments Once Again on the Nuclear Warpath?

February 17, 2015
Are the U.S. and Russian Governments Once Again on the Nuclear Warpath?

LAWRENCE S. WITTNER - A quarter century after the end of the Cold War and decades after the signing of landmark nuclear arms control and disarmament agreements, are the U.S. and Russian governments once more engaged in a potentially disastrous nuclear arms race with one another? It certainly looks like it.