Clifford May
Clifford May
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Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review
 

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If John Bolton still had the president's ear, he'd counsel against appeasing Iran

September 18, 2019  •  The Washington Times

John Bolton's sudden departure from the White House last week cheered progressives who believe America has no enemies, just friends whose grievances we've failed to address, as well as those conservatives who believe if we leave our enemies alone, they'll return the favor. And you thought there was no common ground between left and right.

Count me among those not cheered. Mr. Bolton calls himself an Americanist, meaning he believes this nation must be strong and resolute enough to daunt its enemies (because enemies we shall always have), and reassure its friends (because friends are good and useful to have).

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Another unhappy September 11 anniversary

September 11, 2019  •  The Washington Times

Eighteen years is a long time. If you were born 18 years ago, you are today a young adult, old enough to find a job, begin college, enlist in the military and vote for the first time. You also should know what happened in 2001, the year you were born. But, given the state of America's educational system, I'm not confident you do. So let me briefly fill you in.

Back then, the Soviet socialist experiment had collapsed, ending the Cold War which had followed World War II which had followed a decade of economic depression which came 11 years after the end of World War I.

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The Islamic Republic lashes out

September 4, 2019  •  The Washington Times

It's been 40 years since I've been to Iran. I'd love to return. At present, that seems inadvisable.

I went there as a reporter, in the early months of 1979, a time of revolution, a time when many Iranians, perhaps most, hoped they might soon be freer than they had been under the shah and more prosperous, too.

My media colleagues regarded Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the leader of the revolution, as an avatar of authentic Third World spirituality and social justice. The U.S. ambassador in Tehran, William Sullivan, compared him to Mahatma Gandhi.

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The anti-Israel lobby

August 21, 2019  •  The Washington Times

I'm a stickler for sovereignty. Sovereign nations have borders and their leaders decide who gets to cross them. Excluding individuals who are hostile or even just objectionable is common practice. Among those who have not been permitted to come to America: Michael Ben Ari, a far-right Israeli legislator, and Narendra Modi, accused of doing too little to prevent anti-Muslim riots in 2002, and now India's prime minister.

Unless Israel is to be held to a separate and unequal standard, its leaders must enjoy the same right, which they exercised by declining to welcome Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib.

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In Afghanistan, no deal is better than a bad deal

August 14, 2019  •  The Washington Times

Two years ago this month, Zalmay Khalilzad, the distinguished diplomat who has served as America's ambassador to both Iraq and Afghanistan, praised President Trump for adopting "a realistic position regarding peace talks" with the Taliban, "moving away from President Barack Obama's pursuit of reconciliation regardless of the deteriorating military situation."

A year later, Mr. Khalilzad was appointed U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation. Since then, he has adopted an unrealistic position regarding peace talks with the Taliban, moving toward President Obama's pursuit of reconciliation regardless of the deteriorating military situation.

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