Archive of Articles in the "Pakistan" Category

The How-Many-Years' War

[ Posted Monday, May 30th, 2016 – 15:44 UTC ]

Being in the midst of history sometimes mean events are not seen in the "big picture" view that historians often later take, when looking back at the period. Case in point: what will America's ongoing war eventually be known as? To date, we've been at war since October 2001, or a mind-boggling period of 15 years. This war was initially called "The Global War On Terror" by the Bush administration, which lumped in the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq with all the skirmishes in various other North African and Middle East countries. The Obama administration has dropped the term, but they've never really replaced it with anything else. But what I wonder this Memorial Day is what it will be called in the future. Right now, it'd be the "Fifteen Years' War" -- but few expect all conflicts will end by the time the next president is sworn in, so eventually that number will likely be higher.

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How Many More Wars?

[ Posted Wednesday, May 20th, 2015 – 17:17 UTC ]

Jeb Bush certainly had a bad week last week, as he struggled to come up with a clear answer to a question he really should have been expecting in the first place. Other Republicans also struggled to admit that the Iraq War was indeed a mistake (which is somewhat understandable, because by doing so they are criticizing a former Republican president). But while the spectacle of Republicans having to admit a big Republican mistake certainly is amusing, there's an even bigger question which so far has remained unasked: "Knowing all the things we've learned in the past decade and a half, what would it take for you to send American troops to fight an overseas war?" This is the real question the voters deserve an answer to. To put it more bluntly: "How many more wars can we expect if you are elected?"

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Friday Talking Points [309] -- Meet Brian Schweitzer

[ Posted Friday, June 20th, 2014 – 17:07 UTC ]

Today, we're going to have a special edition of the talking points, where we get to know a Montana politician who seems to be seriously considering taking on Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2016. But before we do so, it was a busy week otherwise, so let's just dive right into it. First, a look at what's going with Republicans.

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Friday Talking Points [307] -- An Alternate Reality To Consider

[ Posted Friday, June 6th, 2014 – 16:43 UTC ]

This week was notable in many respects in the political world, but one subject overwhelmed almost everything else. We're going to address the prisoner swap and Bowe Bergdahl in an unusual way this week, in lieu of our regular talking points at the end of the column. But first, we're going to take a very quick look at what else happened this week, and then hand out the weekly awards.

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We Need A Geneva Convention On Cyber Warfare

[ Posted Monday, October 28th, 2013 – 15:58 UTC ]

Even though it took a long time to get to this point, it was an effort worth making. Which is why the nations of the world should now start a new conversation in some internationally-neutral city, with the expressed purpose of defining what is and what is not allowable for the future of warfare (and spying). Three major topics of such an agreement should be: passive cyberwar (spying on communications), active cyberwar (virus and other attacks), and robot warfare (drones and other automated weaponry).

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Friday Talking Points [248] -- I'd Love To Change The World

[ Posted Friday, March 8th, 2013 – 18:12 UTC ]

Our column's subtitle this week is a silent homage to guitarist Alvin Lee of the band Ten Years After, who sadly died this past week. Anyone who has seen the movie Woodstock knows of Lee's incredible talent on the electric guitar, and we just wanted to begin by noting that Alvin Lee is "Goin' Home" for the last time. Requiescat In Pace.

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What Was The Debate Subject, Again?

[ Posted Monday, October 22nd, 2012 – 21:29 UTC ]

To paraphrase an oldie but a goodie: "What if they had a debate and nobody read the agenda?" Tonight's debate was, ostensibly, supposed to be on foreign policy. However, both Mitt Romney and Barack Obama decided fairly early on that the differences between the two policy-wise were pretty small, so they both decided to hijack the foreign policy debate and instead just continue the debates on the economy, instead.

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Friday Talking Points [230] -- Biden's Big Night

[ Posted Friday, October 12th, 2012 – 16:36 UTC ]

We come to you live from the arena, the day after the vice-presidential debate. The lights are being removed, the podiums are gone, and the cleanup crew is sweeping up the tiny, tiny pieces of Paul Ryan which were left all over the stage last night.

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Friday Talking Points [226] -- Convention Talking Points

[ Posted Friday, September 14th, 2012 – 15:22 UTC ]

The second item of note is that today marks the fifth "birthday" of this column series. September 14, 2007 saw the very first Friday Talking Points column ever (although the name and the column format wouldn't solidify for a few months). Since then, almost every Friday, we've been attempting to provide Democratic talking points for politicians to use to get their point across in a snappy and memorable fashion. How much success we've had doing so is open to interpretation, but we're still here doing it, which tends to indicate that Democrats still have a ways to go to match the Republican ability to keep "on script" during interviews. To put this another way, it's the old Democratic "herding cats" problem.

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Friday Talking Points [209] -- Anniversary Week

[ Posted Friday, May 4th, 2012 – 16:36 UTC ]

If you've been hiding under a rock somewhere all week, you may have missed the fact that an anniversary just happened. One year ago this past Wednesday, special operations forces killed America's "Enemy Number One," Osama Bin Laden. When it happened, it was a time for some sober reflection -- and some unsober and spontaneous celebration on the streets. Whether such was a good thing or not, it is what happened.

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