Clifford May
Clifford May
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Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review

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The Mr. Rogers Doctrine

April 27, 2016  •  The Washington Times

Barack Obama last week visited Saudi Arabia, an unusual nation with which the United States has had a relationship that can be accurately characterized as both strategic and strange — and one that is now severely strained. To understand how we got to this juncture requires at least a smattering of modern history.

It's polite to say that Ibn Saud, in the first third of the 20th century, united most of the tribes living on the Arabian Peninsula. It's more accurate to say he defeated those tribes, conquering their lands, along with a source of enormous future wealth that lay under some of them.

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A spy's story

April 20, 2016  •  The Washington Times

After a long and extraordinary career, Gen. Michael Hayden has written "Playing to the Edge: American Intelligence in the Age of Terror." Both a memoir and a primer on modern espionage, it also attempts to correct the historical record and maybe settle a few scores. Nothing wrong with that, if you ask me.

Readers of this column are probably familiar with Gen. Hayden but to refresh your memory: He is a proud son of Pittsburgh and an avid Steelers fan. His father was a welder. He studied history at Duquesne University where he joined the Air Force ROTC. Commissioned as a second lieutenant, he was drawn into military intelligence, eventually earning four stars.

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Can America change course?

April 13, 2016  •  The Washington Times

As you watch the circus that is the 2016 presidential campaign, which candidate strikes you as having a coherent vision of national security for the post-Obama era? Who has told you what he (or she) will do about the rise of jihadi regimes and groups in the Middle East and well beyond? Who has made clear how the United States should respond to North Korea's nuclear weapons, Chinese neo-imperialism and Russian revanchism?

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Obama's dollar deal

April 6, 2016  •  The Washington Times

President Obama's critics charge that he's never developed a strategy to defeat terrorism, the weapon of choice for those waging what they call a global jihad. The Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg, the journalist whose ear Mr. Obama most likes to bend, says that's wrong — that the president does have a strategy. "He is, after all, killing jihadists at a frenetic pace."

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Our man in Havana

March 30, 2016  •  The Washington Times

"I have come here to bury the last remnant of the Cold War in the Americas." That was Barack Obama's "historic" announcement in Cuba last week. But was it true? What is the Castro regime if not a vestige of communism's 20th century struggle against the capitalist enemy — also known as the Free World? And, self-evidently, President Obama had come not to bury the Castros but to normalize relations with them.

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