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Analysis: Welcome to the New (Quasi-)World War

July 14, 2013 Special Feature, Syria
Russia put Israeli ships at risk, so Israel shot back. Illustrative. By Joshua Spurlock

Russia put Israeli ships at risk, so Israel shot back. Illustrative. By Joshua Spurlock

In case you missed it, the US attacked Russia on July 5. Ok, so technically Israel struck at some Russian anti-ship missiles stored in Syria, but the reality is that the proxy wars of the past are back. Israel attacked Syria for it’s own reasons. But why Israel had to worry about Russian weapons and the reason why US officials leaked to the media that Israel was behind the strike bode ill for our future. … Continue Reading

Why Should You Care about Egypt? It’s Your Money at Stake

Sea trade is one reason we're buying off Egypt. Oil Tanker. Illustrative. Photo Courtesy of U.S. Navy. Photo by Mass Communication 2nd Class Nathan Schaeffer

Sea trade is one reason we’re buying off Egypt. Oil Tanker. Illustrative. Photo Courtesy of U.S. Navy. Photo by Mass Communication 2nd Class Nathan Schaeffer

Millions are in the streets again in Egypt. One year after the new president was elected, they’re calling for him to step down. You might be thinking it’s just crazy politics and you might ignore the fidgety revolutionaries “over there.” You’d be wrong.

Egypt is a major ally in the war-torn and oil-rich Middle East, which is enough to make the events there matter to the world at large. But there are many other reasons why Americans and Europeans should care about the revolving revolutions in Egypt. Millions in fact.

For one thing, Egypt receives an enormous amount of financial aid, funded by your tax dollars. We’re talking billions of dollars. The US alone contributes about $1.5 billion every year. Europe is a little lower than that, but a cool 1 billion Euros since 2007 is nothing to sneeze at. … Continue Reading

Opinion—Don’t Reset Relations with Iran Just Yet

Radiation Warning Symbol. Public Domain.

Radiation Warning Symbol. Public Domain.

Sometimes one change can lead to another, but one mustn’t confuse opportunity with reality. When President Barack Obama was elected in the United States, he made a point of trying to “reset” relations with Russia—it was an opportunity. Unfortunately, in reality it takes two to tango, and regardless of any short-term benefits, the Russians have not been so conciliatory.

Similarly, one might be tempted to reset the relationship with Iran after the election of Hassan Rouhani. New guy, new leaf, clean slate etc. But that would be a big mistake. … Continue Reading

Opinion: Syrian Conflict Starting to Resemble Mini-World War

June 10, 2013 In Depth, Special Feature, Syria
Could US jets fight in Syria? Photo Courtesy of U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Michael Holzworth.

Could US jets fight in Syria? Photo Courtesy of U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Michael Holzworth.

If you enjoy playing with dominoes, you know that a carefully laid out pattern of the toys can make quite an impressive display once the first one is knocked over. One after another, dominoes fall at racing speed. Similarly, if you’re a history buff, you may recall that World War I began when a random member of European royalty was killed. Like dominoes, one incident quickly led to another that started the largest war the world had ever seen.

The civil war in Syria has been threatening to spread to other countries for months now. But some important dominoes are tottering and others are being set up. The Syrian conflict is on the verge of spinning out of control, and it’s mostly the fault of two Syrian allies. … Continue Reading

Opinion: US Needs to Learn from Russia

May 19, 2013 In Depth, Special Feature, Syria
Photo Courtesy of U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Michael Holzworth.

Photo Courtesy of U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Michael Holzworth.

The Syrian civil war is rapidly turning into a mini-world war, with the United States and Russia on opposite sides. The Americans have never liked Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, and the Russians find him a useful ally in the Middle East—in large part because he opposes the US and its friends. And right now, the Russian side of this quasi-cold war is winning—and it’s time the US realized that and did something new. Your tax dollars, gas budget, and quite possibly safety, depend on it. … Continue Reading

Analysis: Syria Attacks Turkey and Wins—and You Lose

May 12, 2013 Special Feature, Syria
Is Turkish leader protesting too much? Illustrative. Photo Courtesy of UN Photo/Marco Castro

Is Turkish leader protesting too much? Illustrative. Photo Courtesy of UN Photo/Marco Castro

Two cars reportedly blew up in Turkey on Saturday, killing dozens. And you should care, because it is increasing the chance for Middle East war, all while helping the bad guys win. It’s true, we don’t want terror to succeed, but sometimes terror wins. On Saturday, Syria managed to use terror to create real second-guessing by Turkey of their support for the Syrian rebels fighting a brutal dictator. And that’s bad for all of us.

The goal, it appears, of Syria’s minions setting off car bombs in a Turkish town is to turn the Turks against the Syrian rebels. It’s bringing the fight from the frontlines to the front porch, and it’s not really Turkey’s fight. Would you back and support others in their war if it meant you taking needless bullets on their behalf? … Continue Reading

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