In a recent piece on Foreign Policy, titled, “No One Talks About Liberating Mosul Anymore,” Michael Knights wrote about the necessity of training better Iraqi forces and unleashing U.S. airpower in Iraq to fight the so-called Islamic State (IS).

“It’s time to let the US military get creative with partners on the ground – and let pilots above open a can of whoop-ass on the Islamic State,” reads the epigraph of the piece.

Knights couldn’t be more wrong about a prescription for the situation. He’s doing what neoconservatives usually do in situations like this – ignore history itself.

This kind of bravado associated with caricatures of the American military has no foresight about the consequences of increasing military action. Let’s say we follow through on Knight’s proposal and bomb Mosul back to the Stone Age – then what? Reoccupy the country? And then what?

Knight would most likely respond that he favors drastically increasing the Iraqi Train and Equip Fund from its purportedly meager sum of $1.6 billion in 2015 to its previous levels during the 2005-2008 surge. But how successful was that strategy that he proposes for our Commander-in-Chief?


If the onsite horrors of the war and embargo against Yemen are not reason enough for us to advocate an American withdrawal from that foreign conflagration, hopefully this is: our government’s support for the Saudi war in Yemen entails aggression in the United States.

I am not here referring to anti-American blowback from bereaved Yemenis, although that sort of aggression could very well materialize in the future. I am instead talking about the ongoing and presently verifiable aggression against all American taxpayers forced to subsidize our government’s adventurism in the Arabian Peninsula. As common sense tells us, every bomb, every missile, and every tracer that the United States sends to the Saudi coalition is a bomb, a missile, and a tracer for which somebody somewhere will be compelled to pay. That "somebody" will probably be an American taxpayer who, given the nature of taxation, will risk imprisonment or property seizures should she ever decide not to genuflect to the unshackled military apparatus.

The American war in Yemen therefore extends all the way back home, albeit in a substantially diluted form. Pursuant to its military objectives, the American government threatens to aggress against any of its taxpaying citizens who refuse to aggress against Yemeni civilians. In what world is this not an abomination?


As the neocons continue to bombard Congress demanding that the deal with Iran be killed, a group of former senior US military officers and a group of former Iranian political prisoners living in the US have both signed letters in support of the deal. Who will US lawmakers listen to? Today on the Ron Paul Liberty Report:

Reprinted with permission from the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.

When it comes to Iraq, Jeb Bush was for it before he was against it, and is now for it again.

Speaking at a National Security Forum in Iowa, Bush sought to distance himself from his previous attempts to distance himself from his brother’s invasion of Iraq, saying he believed the multi-trillion dollar war with the massive death toll was a “pretty good deal” since it ousted Saddam Hussein.

Bush had previously faced a pretty major backlash for saying he’d have invaded Iraq like his brother did, and faced with that insisted he “misunderstood” the question and was actually against it.

Jeb Bush went on to talk torture, saying he believes “in general” torture isn’t appropriate, but refusing to rule out a return to torture if he was elected, saying he “didn’t want to make any blanket statements” about who he is or isn’t going to brutally torture in detention in the future.

At the same time, Bush conceded that he understands torture is “not effective” and said he believes President Obama’s ban on torture was “the proper thing to do.” He then claimed that torture was effective when his brother’s administration did it, and that torture “made the country safe.”

Most candidates haven’t taken official stances on torture, though Sen. Marco Rubio (R – FL) has gone on the record as opposed to the torture ban, believing it is important to keep the torture card “in the deck,” though he was not actually present for the vote on the torture question in the Senate.

Railroaded into a military prison for 35 years, whistleblower Chelsea Manning is now facing “indefinitely solitary confinement” for a handful of trivial charges, which stem entirely from allegations by one of the guards (termed “specialists”) that she swept food on the floor in the dining area. This led to a charge of “disorderly conduct.”

That “violation” on the books, Manning was placed in “administrative segregation” and her room searched. They found a handful of magazines, including the issue of Cosmo she had an interview published in, and political books, unsurprising since she’s working on a degree in political science. They dubbed this “Prohibited Property.”

They also found a tube of “anti-cavity toothpaste may-keep-in-cell,” which upon further inspection was a couple of months outdated. This led to the charge of “medicine misuse.”

Taken together, the toothpaste tube, the alleged food on the floor, and the magazines are enough to send Manning even further up the river, apparently, and officials are spurning calls to make the hearing open to the public.

Manning was already in solitary confinement for months pending the initial trial, and saw deteriorating health during that time. As someone who leaked evidence of government abuse and has publicly been calling for reforms during her time in prison, there seems to be a concerted effort to cut Manning even further off from the public, and given her health problems in the past solitary confinement period, it’s no guarantee she’ll even survive the 35-year sentence to keep calling for reforms throughout.

Former Defense Intelligence Agency head Gen. Michael Flynn is not backing down from his claims that elements of the US government were aware of and supported the rise of jihadists in Syria as a means by which to overthrow its president, Bashar Assad. As the US moves ever closer to a full-out invasion of Syria the lack of media interest in Flynn’s story is reminiscent of the one-sided (pro-war) coverage of the run up to the 2003 Iraq War. More on the disturbing new revelations in a special edition of the Ron Paul Liberty Report:

Reprinted from the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.