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Can Karzai Save Us?

After a year of talks over the post-2014 US military presence in Afghanistan, the US administration announced last week that a new agreement had finally been reached. Under the deal worked out with Afghan President Hamid Karzai, the US would keep thousands of troops on nine military bases for at least the next ten years.

It is clear that the Obama Administration badly wants this deal. Karzai, sensing this, even demanded that the US president send a personal letter promising that the US would respect the dignity of the Afghan people if it were allowed to remain in the country. It was strange to see the US president go to such lengths for a deal that would mean billions more US dollars to Karzai and his cronies, and a US military that would continue to prop up the regime in Kabul.
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Terrorism and the Bill of Rights

Constitution Day

In the aftermath of the Boston bombings last spring, GOP Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham and others called on Barack Obama to treat the surviving suspect in the bombings, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, as an “enemy combatant” rather than as a criminal defendant. The episode highlighted the revolutionary change in the relationship of the American people to the federal government that took place in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. For while Obama rejected the plea to treat Tsarnaev as an enemy combatant, no one can dispute the fact that the president of the United States now wields the discretionary authority to go either way — enemy combatant or criminal defendant — with respect to people who are suspected of being terrorists.

Ever since 9/11 the president of the United States, together with the Pentagon and the CIA, has been wielding extraordinary emergency powers that historically have been wielded by the most powerful dictators in history. They include the power of the government to seize people, including Americans, cart them away to a military dungeon or concentration camp, torture them, keep them incarcerated indefinitely, and even execute them, perhaps after some sort of kangaroo military tribunal — all without judicial process to determine whether the person had done anything to warrant such treatment.
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P5+1 Talks With Iran Headed For Failure?

Yesterday, while taping a discussion of the latest round of P5+1 nuclear talks with Iran on Russia Today’s CrossTalk that was broadcast today (see here or, on You Tube, here), Flynt said:

I hope I’m wrong, but I’m not particularly optimistic about a deal being reached this week. I don’t think that there’s been a lot of progress on the issues that kept agreement from being reached the last time the parties Obama Iranconvened in Geneva. There’s the issue of Iran’s nuclear rights, and how they get acknowledged or not acknowledged in an interim agreement. There is disagreement about how to handle, during an interim deal, this heavy water reactor facility at Arak which the Iranians are building. There are still disagreements about the disposition of Iran’s stockpile of near-20 percent enriched uranium.

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Free Speech Repressing Bureaucrat Threatens Alex Jones and Hundreds at Dallas Gathering

Kennedy

Wednesday night in front of the headquarters of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas I witnessed bureaucratic tyranny in action. There a mild-mannered and soft-spoken representative of the Dallas police threatened talk show host Alex Jones and over 200 people with $500 fines if they held signs too close to the road and handed out leaflets. Watch her in action in the first two videos here.

Irrespective of whether anyone is fined, the threat of fines alone — especially multi-hundred dollar fines — is enough to prevent many people from speaking freely. People may also fear that arrest and jail time may come along with fines.

From around 7:30pm to 9:00pm Wednesday night, over 200 people gathered at the sidewalk by the Federal Reserve building to receive from Jones leaflets and signs related to today's 50 year anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and the city government's restrictions on free speech for the time period around the assassination's anniversary. While there, many of those gathered participated in a rally spanning issues from ending the Federal Reserve, to questioning the "lone nut" view of the Kennedy assassination, to criticizing free speech restrictions.
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Obama Сhanges Direction in the Middle East

Obama Talks Rouhani

The politics of the Middle East are undergoing a period of great turbulence emanating out of the changes in direction of the regional policies pursued by the United States. When the ship makes a turnaround, it has to be over an arc, and it is now possible to discern the reset of the compass.

This is primarily being felt in the Obama administration’s rethink on the Syrian conflict and its decision to constructively engage with Iran. Neither is an afterthought, but rather they took time to mature…

To take Syria first, Leslie Gelb, President Emeritus at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York needs no introduction as an influential voice in the US foreign policy establishment. His views on the Syrian conflict will always merit attention – especially when aired through the Voice of America.
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Veterans Day and Foreign Interventionism

Cemetery Flag

Commemorating Veterans Day, people honored Americans who have served in the U.S. military, especially those who have fought and died in America’s foreign wars. In doing so, however, it’s easy to forget the fact that what the soldiers fought for and died for in those foreign wars wasn’t all that it’s cracked up to be.

Consider World War I. American soldiers fought and died in that war under the notion that it would finally be the war that would end all European wars into the future. It was also a democracy-spreading war — that is, the war that was supposed to make the entire world safe for democracy.

Alas, it was not to be. Within a relatively short time, Europe was it again, this time with World War II, which really was just a continuation of World War I.
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Exclusive: Watch Ron Paul's 'Plea For Peace'

Ron Paul's incredible video, " A Plea for Peace," is now available in its entirety to RPI viewers. Listen to Ron Paul explain how the war machine always benefits special interests and the government, hear how war is always undertaken at the expense of those who fight and those innocent victims killed overseas. Why are so many attracted to something so hideous, Ron Paul asks. Ron Paul has written a moving poem for peace, beautifully produced by the folks at the  Ron Paul Channel. Watch this video. You will not regret it. And don't forget to become a member of the Ron Paul Channel.
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Drones, Tanks, and Grenade Launchers: Coming Soon to a Police Department Near You

Why does a police department which hasn’t had an officer killed in the line of duty in over 125 years in a town of less than 20,000 people need tactical military vests like those used by soldiers in Afghanistan?  BearcatFor that matter, why does a police department in a city of 35,000 people need a military-grade helicopter? And what possible use could police at Ohio State University have for acquiring a heavily-armored vehicle intended to withstand IED blasts?

Why are police departments across the country acquiring heavy-duty military equipment and weaponry? For the same reason that perfectly good roads get repaved, perfectly good equipment gets retired and replaced, and perfectly good employees spend their days twiddling their thumbs—and all of it at taxpayer expense. It’s called make-work programs, except in this case, instead of unnecessary busy work to keep people employed, communities across America are finding themselves “gifted” with drones, tanks, grenade launchers and other military equipment better suited to the battlefield.
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Ron Paul: The US is in the Middle of an Intellectual Revolution


RPI Chairman and Founder Ron Paul, in an interview Thursday with John Stossel on Fox Business, explains that the United States is in the middle of an intellectual revolution powered by the "message of liberty." Paul points to grassroots opposition preventing a US government attack on Syria as a manifestation of the revolution.

Watch the 6 minutes report and interview here:
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Understanding Media Propaganda About Recent Talks Over Iran’s Nuclear Program

Irangeneva

There are a couple points worth noting about recent reporting on the recent talks between the U.S. and its Western allies and Iran over its nuclear program.

1) The first is that the media effectively accepts the U.S. government’s framework that Iran’s rights derive from Washington, D.C. Here’s the New York Times this week:
As Secretary of State John Kerry and foreign ministers from other world powers sought to work out an interim agreement to constrain Iran’s nuclear program, the Iranian government’s insistence on formal recognition of its “right” to enrich uranium emerged as a major obstacle, diplomats said Sunday…. Iran has asserted repeatedly that it has the right to enrich uranium, a necessary step in producing nuclear fuel both for power plants and, at a much higher level, for weapons…. The Obama administration is prepared to allow Iran to enrich uranium to the low level of 3.5 percent as part of an interim agreement, as long as Iran agreed to other constraints on its nuclear activity. But the administration is not prepared to acknowledge at this point that Iran has a “right” to enrich…. “The United States does not believe there is an inherent right to enrichment, and we have said that repeatedly to Iran,” a senior administration official said before the latest round of talks in Geneva.
The Times uncritically parrots the government position, leaving readers with the impression that Iran’s claim lacks any basis. Naturally, there’s not one word in the article about the nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT), to which Iran is a party. How can this be? How can the Times report about the issue of Iran’s right to enrich uranium and the U.S.’s rejection of that right without presenting readers with a discussion of what the NPT has to say about it?
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