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From Cuba to Brussels, we need a uniform standard of justice

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ISIS militants attacked a European city this week, setting off three bombs in Brussels that killed 31 and injured 260. In the United States, the response was immediate, first with the outpouring of support from the public, then, unsurprisingly, with a flurry of bellicose pronouncements from most of the remaining major-party presidential candidates.

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Photo: PROIIP Photo Archive/flickr
| March 22, 2016
Columnists

Obama questions the Washington playbook on U.S. foreign policy

Photo: Sgt. Uriah Walker/The U.S. Army/flickr

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"While most states have an army, the Prussian army has a state," said Voltaire.

Much the same could be said of the United States of America. On the world list of biggest military spenders, its total expenditure roughly equals those of the next nine countries combined.

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Why is France emulating the U.S.?

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Keep Karl on Parl

Everybody seems to speak French this week, love France and sympathize with the French. "Empathy" is now a French word. Even the British, long-time enemies of the French people, forgot about their jealousy, their rivalry in colonizing the world, their British superiority complex, and they did the undoable: on Monday The Guardian ran a long editorial en français!

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Endless war is creating an unprecedented global crisis

Photo: Syria talks. Credit: European External Action Service/flickr

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"To understand the nature of the present war -- for in spite of the regrouping which occurs every few years, it is always the same war -- one must realize in the first place that it is impossible for it to be decisive." -- 1984, by George Orwell

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Weapons sales stand in the way of solutions to refugee crisis

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The flood of people fleeing war and misery is swelling daily, reaching the shores and borders of Europe in a desperate bid for safety. They come from Syria, where a brutal civil war during the past half-decade has killed well over 200,000, and caused the displacement of 12 million people, both inside and outside the country's borders -- half of Syria's population.

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In the wake of Iran nuclear deal, give diplomacy a chance

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Cuba and U.S. flags fly side by side once again

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Open veins and conciliation on the path of U.S.-Cuban relations

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For the first time in more than half a century, the presidents of the United States and Cuba have had a formal meeting. Barack Obama met with Cuban President Raúl Castro at the 7th Summit of the Americas, held this year in Panama City. Cuba's participation has been blocked by the U.S. since the summit began in 1994. This historic moment occurs with some sadness, however: Eduardo Galeano, the great Uruguayan writer who did so much to explain the deeply unequal relations between Latin America and the U.S. and Europe, died as the summit ended.

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Faith-based policy and the West's dangerous game with Russia

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What are the consequences when elected governments make policy based on faith and imperial hubris instead of science and expertise? It's a question that is forcing itself on the world as we watch the U.S., Britain, NATO and the Harper government continue to up the ante in the confrontation with Russia over Ukraine. There are real enough geopolitical dangers in the world without actually creating them out of arrogance and ignorance but that is where we are right now, and the consequences could be catastrophic.

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