Tag Archives: critical thinking

Putin’s Surprising Comparison of Nazism and Stalinism

Yesterday’s Moscow Times had an article by one of my favorite Russian commentators, Fyodor Lukyanov, which highlighted a very surprising moment in Putin’s four-hour address to the nation. In Lukyanov’s words: Continue reading

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NBC Fell for Syrian False Flag Operation: Increased Nuclear Risk

Bias in our media’s international reporting is one of the greatest risks to our national security. Read on to find out why I say that, and to see the latest example to come to light. In this new instance, NBC’s Chief Foreign Correspondent Richard Engel fell hook, line, and sinker for a false flag operation which blamed Syrian President Assad for Engel’s harrowing kidnapping, when in fact, it was Assad’s opponents who were at fault. Engel blamed not only Assad, but also Iran for his kidnapping. While he has now retracted those allegations, it’s hard to repair the damage. “Confirmation bias” causes his initial, false accusations to find a more prominent place in the American psyche than his retraction because we emphasize evidence which confirms our current beliefs, no matter how wrong they might be. Continue reading

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US Hawks Unwittingly Aid Iranian Hardliners

While it is the opposite of their intent, hawks in the US who suggest attacking Iran provide ammunition to Iran’s hardliners, including those who want to develop nuclear weapons. The most recent example to come to my attention is a radio interview in which Senator Tom Cotton argued that “if military action were required … it would [not involve boots on the ground, only] several days of air and naval bombing.” Continue reading

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Putin the Moderate??

In a recent talk following a visit to Russia, former Nixon advisor on Soviet matters Dimitri Simes told his audience that Putin is not ideologically driven and is the West’s best hope for a negotiated settlement to end the Ukrainian crisis. Simes went on to warn that, if we fail to take advantage of Putin’s moderate stance, we risk empowering reactionary elements within Russia who “want to do crazy things.” That, in turn, he warned could end in a disastrous military confrontation similar to the way World War I started. Continue reading

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Germany Warns of “Dangerous American Propaganda”

History shows that catastrophe tends to follow when the US media fail to do their job by not questioning statements fed them by our government. Vietnam and Iraq are Exhibits A and B in that argument, and as I’ve argued repeatedly on this blog, Ukraine should be Exhibit C. With respect to Ukraine, the German government is assuming the role abandoned by our media, but almost no Americans are aware of it. This post lays out what Germany is saying and, if you agree that more people need to hear that perspective, please share this post via email, Facebook, or other means. Continue reading

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Time to Stop Playing Nuclear Roulette

In Russian roulette, there’s one chance in six you’ll be killed – if you pull the trigger only once. If you pull it once a day, or even once a year, it’s not a question of IF you’ll be killed, only WHEN. After the Cuban Missile Crisis, Pres. Kennedy said he thought the odds of war were somewhere between 1-in-3 and even. If he was right, that crisis was equivalent to playing nuclear roulette – a global version of Russian roulette – with a 2- or 3-chambered revolver. Fortunately, most events have a much smaller chance of escalating to nuclear war, but even a small probability per event can add up to an unacceptable risk if repeated often enough. Continue reading

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Ambassador Matlock Questions Putin Involvement in Nemtsov Murder

I have found Ambassador Jack Matlock to be an invaluable source of information on modern-day Russia and have quoted him here a number of times, primarily on the Ukrainian Crisis. Having served as Ronald Reagan’s Ambassador to Moscow, “When Jack Matlock speaks, people should listen.” Unfortunately few do because the major media rarely cover news which conflicts with the prevailing narrative that Putin is guilty until proven innocent, no matter what the crime. That kind of group think got us into both the Vietnam War and the Iraq War. It’s time we started questioning our assumptions before getting caught up into the drumbeat to war, especially with a nation that possesses thousands of nuclear weapons. As part of that process of becoming more informed and more objective, I highly recommend Ambassador Matlock’s latest post “Is Nemtsov’s Murder a Replay of Kirov’s?” Continue reading

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