Clifford May
Clifford May
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Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review

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A final stab at resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict

October 19, 2016  •  The Washington Times

You're probably familiar with the old story about the inebriated guy looking for his wallet at night under a streetlight — not because that's where he dropped it but because what would be the point of poking around in the dark? This, in essence, has been the American approach to resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict for years.

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The problem with processed peace

October 12, 2016  •  The Washington Times

When peace-loving people sit down together in a spirit of compromise they can find ways to resolve their conflicts. Does it follow that negotiations with those who don't care a fig about peace and reject compromise also lead to good results?

Logic says no, and evidence to the contrary is scarce. Yet this dubious proposition was the basis for the Nobel Committee awarding its Peace Prize to Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos last week. His achievement: He had concluded a "peace accord" with FARC, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, a Marxist-Leninist militia that for longer than half a century has waged a guerrilla war that has taken more than 200,000 lives.

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Sometimes, strategic counterterrorism is counterintuitive

October 5, 2016  •  The Washington Times

For almost eight years, I've waited for Congress to stand up to President Obama, to demonstrate that the legislative branch is still -- as the Founders envisioned -- coequal to the executive branch, that senators and representatives are more than a commentariat, a Greek chorus appearing on the cable TV stage.

I'd particularly hoped Congress would take a strong stand against Mr. Obama's deal with Iran. The most consequential nuclear arms agreement of this century, it should have been framed as a treaty requiring congressional advice and consent. Instead, it was presented as a non-binding executive agreement. A Democratic filibuster prevented Congress even from registering its disapproval.

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Coming to America

September 28, 2016  •  The Washington Times

Millions of people want to come to America. Actually, it's tens of millions or perhaps hundreds of millions. Some Americans believe our borders should be open — that everyone has a "right" to live in the United States. That seems to me both mistaken and impractical.

But I also disagree with those who would shut the doors to all refugees, asylum seekers and immigrants. Such people have enriched and enlivened the United States in the past and can do so long into the future.

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'Political correctness' finds a new target

September 21, 2016  •  The Washington Times

In "Nineteen Eighty-Four," George Orwell's classic novel about a totalitarian and dystopian future, the ruling Party develops "Newspeak" as way to limit freedom of expression and thought. So, for example, "goodthink" refers to thoughts approved by the Party. That which is not "goodthink" is apt to be "crimethink."

In the real world of today, we use a different but no less Orwellian vocabulary. On university campuses and in the mainstream media we now have a growing body of rules, both written and tacit, mandating that only "politically correct" views be expressed.

I maintain that "political correctness" has as much to do with what is correct — i.e. true — as "ethnic cleansing" has to do with personal hygiene.

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