General

TNRtv: On the Eve of Elections, the "Taliban Are Winning"
August 18, 2009

In this TNRtv exclusive, Bruce Riedel contends that the "Taliban are winning" the war in Afghanistan (General McChrystal denied such claims earlier this month), and he reveals his specific time estimate for when U.S. policies in the region will bear fruit. Bruce Riedel is a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and chaired Obama's strategy review of Afghanistan and Pakistan. --Ben Eisler Check out the latest on TNRtv: Kauffmann: The Reviews I Wish I Hadn't Written Johnson: What Obama Must Do To Pass Regulatory Reform Eisler: Does Improvisation Signal The End of Classical Music?

The General As Rock Star
August 17, 2009

The WaPo's Rajiv Chandrasekaran has a long article on the sacking of David McKiernan, formerly the top U.S. commander in Kabul. The main reason for McKiernan's removal, according to Chandrasekaran: The decision was not discussed at length within the White House but was endorsed by Obama.

Where Are We Going With Darfur?
July 31, 2009

There was something surreal about General Scott Gration's testimony at Thursday's congressional hearings on Darfur. "We are aiming high and we are thinking big. Failure cannot be an option," the broad-faced Air Force general intoned, his tinny voice making him sound like a distant air-traffic controller.

Susan Rice And Scott Gration, Sitting In A Tree?
July 30, 2009

At today's Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearings on Sudan, questions came up about an open disagreement between General Scott Gration, Obama's Darfur envoy, and Susan Rice, the U.S.

How Stupid Talking Points Get Started
July 13, 2009

Ed Kilgore is managing editor of The Democratic Strategist, a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute, and a frequent contributor to a variety of political journals.  In looking for something else this morning, I ran across a couple of conservative blog posts that almost perfectly illustrated how rapidly routine information can be distorted into talking points used in attacks on the Obama administration, the Democratic Congress, and in this case, state and local governments. The original source of those talking points was a General Accounting Office report on how state and local gove

She's No Sanjay Gupta. And That's Probably Good.
July 13, 2009

There are a few things we know about President Obama’s pick for Surgeon General, Regina Benjamin. She is a well-respected family practice doctor, the winner of a $500,000 MacArthur “genius” grant, and the first black woman to head a state medical association in the U.S. She is the founder of a medical clinic in rural Bayou La Batre, Alabama, where many of the patients are poor, uninsured and unable to pay their bills--and Benjamin is known for treating them anyway.

Back Pak
June 03, 2009

Earlier this spring, Nawaz Sharif threatened to topple Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari's government. Since taking power in September, Zardari had been promising to reinstate Iftikhar Chaudhry, the chief justice of the supreme court, whom Pervez Musharraf had sacked on March 9, 2007. But Zardari, who feared that Chaudhry would try to either curb executive power or dredge up corruption cases, balked repeatedly. This annoyed Sharif--and many of his fellow countrymen--to no end.

The Shah of Venezuela
April 01, 2009

The ideas that keep Hugo Chavez in power.

Sanjay Gupta Walks The Ethical Line
January 07, 2009

Sanjay Gupta, Obama's reported choice for surgeon general, is no stranger to the ethically sticky situation physicians often find themselves in with drug companies. Speaking with Paula Zahn in 2005, he noted that "there is a lot of nudge, nudge, wink, wink going on, as far as some of these freebies, giveaways, trips to Aspen for performing a certain number of procedures or prescribing these medications. ...

Sanjay Gupta Treads The Ethical Line
January 07, 2009

Sanjay Gupta, Obama’s reported choice for surgeon general, is no stranger to the ethically sticky situation physicians often find themselves in with drug companies. Speaking with Paula Zahn in 2005, he noted that “there is a lot of nudge, nudge, wink, wink going on, as far as some of these freebies, giveaways, trips to Aspen for performing a certain number of procedures or prescribing these medications.

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