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Syndicated Columns

Opinion: U.S. expands commitment in Syria
March 31, 2014
The Obama administration, stung by reversals in Ukraine and Syria, appears to have decided to expand its covert program of training and assistance for the Syrian opposition, deepening U.S. involvement in that brutal and stalemated civil war.
Opinion: Hobby Lobby case is slippery slope
March 30, 2014
Your right to swing your fist ends where my nose begins.
Opinion: Player quiz welcomes baseball season
March 30, 2014
“Andre Dawson,” Dodgers broadcaster Vin Scully once said, “has a bruised knee and is listed as day-to-day. Aren’t we all?” Yes, so use some of your remaining time constructively by identifying the player or players who:
Opinion: World depends on U.S. leadership
March 29, 2014
“The United States does not view Europe as a battleground between East and West, nor do we see the situation in Ukraine as a zero-sum game. That’s the kind of thinking that should have ended with the Cold War.”      — Barack Obama, March 24 Should. Lovely sentiment. As lovely as what Obama said five years ago to the United Nations: “No one nation can or should try to dominate another nation.”
Opinion: Putin’s actions spur Hitler comparison
March 28, 2014
Igor Stravinsky, the Russian composer, said of Poland, perilously positioned between Russia and Germany: “If you pitch your tent in the middle of Fifth Avenue, it is quite likely you will be run over by a bus.” Poland has been run over hard and often; indeed, between 1795 and 1918 it disappeared from the map of Europe.
Opinion: Course of history isn’t inevitable
March 27, 2014
President Obama has spoken once again during the Ukraine crisis about being on the right “side of history.” It’s one of his signature lines, but he should stop: The phrase implies there’s an inevitability to the advance of progress and justice. Would that it were so.
Opinion: No excuse for racial bias
March 26, 2014
What excuses will they make this time? Meaning that cadre of letters-to-the-editor writers and conservative pundits who so reliably say such stupid things whenever the subject is race. Indeed, race is the third rail of American conscience; to touch it is to be zapped by rationalizations, justifications and lies that defy reason, but that some must embrace to preserve for themselves the fiction of liberty and justice for all. Otherwise, they’d have to face the fact that advantage and disadvantage, health and sickness, wealth and poverty, life and death, are still parceled out according to melanin content of skin.
Opinion: West should call Putin’s energy bluff
March 26, 2014
George Santayana famously said, “Those who forget the past are condemned to repeat it.” But when it comes to Russia and Ukraine, Western leaders can’t seem to decide which century’s lessons they should take to heart.
Opinion: Russia moving into Americas?
March 25, 2014
When Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said three weeks ago that Moscow is seeking to establish a military presence in Venezuela, Nicaragua and Cuba, many of us dismissed it as a private comment by a top official who may have had one vodka too many.
Opinion: Culture’s role in poverty not new
March 24, 2014
Critics of Rep. Paul Ryan’s remarks about cultural factors in the persistence of poverty are simultaneously shrill and boring. Their predictable minuet of synthetic indignation demonstrates how little liberals have learned about poverty or changed their rhetorical repertoire in the last 49 years.
Opinion: What is alternative to two-state plan?
March 23, 2014
The prospects for reaching an Israeli-Palestinian deal by John Kerry’s April 29 deadline are about as unlikely as Vladimir Putin’s giving up Crimea.