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Category: USA

Iran and the Downward Spiral of Transatlantic Relations

Written by Azriel Bermant & Wyn Rees

Image credit: Public_Domain_Photography (

The United States and Europe find themselves in a growing crisis with Iran. The US is funnelling military assets to the region following a series of incidents that have caused damage to petroleum tankers in the Persian Gulf. Although Iran has denied involvement, many suspect that Tehran has been the instigator of these attacks. Adding fuel to this combustible picture is Iran’s signal that it will breach the threshold on nuclear enrichment that was imposed by the 2015 nuclear agreement. President Trump has indicated that he does not want war but others in his administration see things differently and crises have the potential to escalate beyond the designs of rational policymaking.

“Mosaic” versus “Melting Pot”: Passing the Mantle of “A Nation of Immigrants”

Written by Francesca Speed.

On November 8th, the United States elected Donald Trump as its forty-fifth president. Just six days earlier, the Chicago Cubs won the 2016 World Series, ending a record-setting 108-year drought. The last time the Cubs won the World Series, Israel Zangwill’s The Melting Pot had just made its theatre debut, and with the election of Trump, one must ask whether the era of using “the melting pot” as a metaphor for the multiculturalism of American society has come to an unceremonious end.

Super Tuesday: Clinton and Trump lift off as rivals straggle behind

Written by Todd Landman.

The results of “Super Tuesday”, when a clutch of US states voted to choose the two parties’ nominees, have seriously ironed out both the Republican and Democratic primary campaigns. Both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton scored major gains, and their rivals are now fully on the ropes. It may be that the campaigns are finally stabilising after a truly wild start to the primaries.

Donald Trump has bounced back remarkably from his loss in Iowa. He went into Super Tuesday having won New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina; he’s also seen off experienced Republican candidates including onetime frontrunner Jeb Bush and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie – who has made the shocking move of endorsing Trump, to widespread disgust.

Keeping it real? Corbyn, Trump, Sanders and the politics of authenticity

Written by Mathew Humphrey and Maiken Umbach. 

His words have not been scripted or prepared for the press; he speaks from the heart.

It’s now clear to every voter that [he] is nothing but himself.

No Bullshit. Unvarnished opinion and beliefs.

One of these statements recently was made about Donald Trump, the man causing upset in the race to become the Republican presidential candidate. Another was made in reference to Bernie Sanders, the candidate causing similar upset among the Democrats. Another referred to Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the British Labour party. But which statement refers to which politician? It is, of course, impossible to tell.

Despite the radically different stances of these candidates on all kinds of issues, the statements about them are entirely interchangeable. They all refer to a single quality, taken by many to be a great asset in political life. All of these candidates are considered “authentic”.

Who watches the Watchmen?: The Democratic Debates, CNN and The Fifth Estate

Written by David Porter.

In the aftermath of the First Democratic Debate, CNN gave a resounding endorsement of Hilary Clinton – despite their own evidence to the contrary. And the Berners didn’t let them forget. What does this mean for the future of news?


The Roman poet Juvenal, when he penned his Satires, probably didn’t expect it to still be referenced over 18 centuries later. But oneline in particular has permeated western thought upon the nature of political authority ever since: “Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?” Literally translated, it reads ‘Who guards the guardians themselves?’ More popularly, it is reduced to one simple phrase – 

Paul Ryan just accepted the worst job in American politics

Written by Anthony J Gaughan.

Republicans voted overwhelmingly to make Paul Ryan the new speaker of the House of Representatives last week, but the Wisconsin congressman has no reason to celebrate. He just got the worst job in American politics.

In theory, the House speaker is an immensely powerful office. Among other things, the House speaker controls when and whether legislation gets voted on.

But since the late 1980s, the job of House speaker has been a career killer for most of the people who have held the position.

And today the job is harder than ever.

Clinton parries Biden, Benghazi and Bernie Sanders to reclaim pole position

Written by Tom Packer.

After a summer spent dealing with stumbles, weak campaign messaging and surprisingly strong challenges from other candidates, Hillary Clinton suddenly seems to be back in gear.

Following a sterling debate performance that seems to have already improved her poll numbers, which were already high among Democrats, she displayed her remarkable grit at a gruelling all-day hearing before a committee set up to investigate the 2012 attack in which four Americans were killed in Benghazi, Libya.

The saga over her supposed responsibility for the deaths, which occurred at the end of her tenure as secretary of state, has been unwinding for almost three years. But despite an 11-hour onslaught of sharp personal and political attacks, she skillfully worked to rise above the questions, helping her supporters continue to decry it as a partisan fishing expedition.