Articles by: Juan Cole

Displaced Afghans from the northern provinces are evacuated from a makeshift IDP camp in Share-e-Naw park to various mosques and schools on August 12, 2021 in Kabul, Afghanistan. People displaced by the Taliban advancing are flooding into the Kabul capital to escape the Taliban takeover of their provinces. (Photo: Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)

US Empire’s Afghan Ponzi Scheme Comes to Ignoble End

The United States lost the Afghanistan War a long time ago, as is quickly becoming apparent as the Taliban take city after city. After 2002, it was never clear what the US war aim was. You can’t win a war if you don’t have a clear objective. The war is lost before it begins. The initial US military action against the[Read More…]

by 14/08/2021 2 comments World
Excellent vivid images of flags for you. With the texture of fabric at 100 percent view.

COVID-19: Iran and the U.S., An Irony of Curious Affinity

This spring, the novel coronavirus pandemic has raised the issue of the relationship between the blindest kind of religious faith and rational skepticism — this time in two countries that think of themselves as polar opposites and enemies: Supreme Leader Ali Khameini’s Iran and Donald Trump’s America. On the U.S. side of things, New Orleans pastor Tony Spell, for instance, has[Read More…]

by 20/05/2020 Comments are Disabled World
The Saudi Axis and Israel’s Drone War on the Shiite Crescent

The Saudi Axis and Israel’s Drone War on the Shiite Crescent

In the past week, Linah al-Saafin at Al Jazeera English points out, an Israeli drone hit a Hizbullah target in Lebanon, Israeli fighter jets bombed a base in Syria with Iranian personnel, and Israel somehow hit bases of a Shiite militia in Iraq, including one on the Syria-Iraq border, killing a militiaman. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu claimed that the Iraqi[Read More…]

by 29/08/2019 1 comment World
Climate Crisis: Panic as 74,000 Amazon Wildfires Plunge Sao Paulo into Darkness, Can be Seen from Space

Climate Crisis: Panic as 74,000 Amazon Wildfires Plunge Sao Paulo into Darkness, Can be Seen from Space

Brazil’s big commercial hub, Sao Paulo, went dark on Wednesday afternoon. I’ve been to Sao Paulo in late August. It is bright. Accu-Weather quoted Brazilian meteorologist Josélia Pegorim from an O Globo interview: “The smoke didn’t come from fires in the state of Sao Paulo, but from very dense wildfires that have been happening for several days in Rondônia and Bolivia.” That[Read More…]

by 23/08/2019 1 comment Environmental Protection
“I Am a Nationalist”: Donald Trump Apes Mussolini in Drive to Destroy America

“I Am a Nationalist”: Donald Trump Apes Mussolini in Drive to Destroy America

Trump proudly says he is a “nationalist.” He is, of course, saying this to shore up support among white nationalists. The Nazi sites on the web were all having wet dreams in the aftermath. From the 1990s, polling has found that about 10% of Americans support far right militias. These are the white nationalists. Trump came to power by mobilizing[Read More…]

by 25/10/2018 2 comments World
Torture Works…To Produce Fake News (And That’s How We Got Into Iraq)

Torture Works…To Produce Fake News (And That’s How We Got Into Iraq)

I told this story back in 2005 but it is a good story, has held up, and bears repeating now that President Trump is again promoting torture as “effective.” Torture is a good way to get people to tell you what they think you want to hear so that you will stop torturing them. That is, torture may occasionally turn[Read More…]

by 29/01/2017 2 comments Imperialism
Trump's inauguration speech had unsettling echoes of 1930s Germany. (Photo: Stephen Melkisethian/flickr/cc)

Translating Trump’s Inaugural Speech From the Original German

Donald Trump’s inaugural speech, like the candidate himself, was a chain of falsehoods, saber-rattling and scary Neofascist uber-nationalism. But it could be difficult to follow because so much of it seemed stolen from the mass politics of the 1930s in central and southern Europe. So here is a plain English translation of some key passages. Today’s ceremony, however, has very[Read More…]

by 22/01/2017 3 comments World