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Ray McGovern
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Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, the publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. He served as an Army infantry/intelligence officer in the early Sixties, and then for 27 years as a CIA analyst. He is now on the Steering Group of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS). 

Current Columns and Articles

2015-07-23
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
07-23-2015 
Is the 'military option' on Iran off the table? 
   If, as seems likely, President Barack Obama retains enough support to complete the nuclear deal with Iran, it will be largely because enough members of the House and Senate are persuaded by his argument that the only other real option is war.
Send Letter to Editor
2015-05-09
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
05-09-2015 
Obama's Petulant WWII Snub of Russia 
   President Barack Obama's decision to join other Western leaders in snubbing Russia's weekend celebration of the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe looks more like pouting than statesmanship, especially in the context of the U.S. mainstream med
Send Letter to Editor
2015-04-14
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
04-14-2015 
The Nasty Blowback from America's Wars 
   Brutality thrives in American police treatment of common citizens reflecting an ethos of violence that has flourished over the past dozen years with almost no one in authority held accountable.
Send Letter to Editor
2015-04-03
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
04-03-2015 
Why Iran Distrusts the US in Nuke Talks 
   The Iranians may be a bit paranoid but, as the saying goes, this does not mean some folks are not out to get them. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his knee-jerk followers in Washington clearly are out to get them " and they know it.
Send Letter to Editor
2015-01-05
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
01-05-2015 
Rebuilding the Obama-Putin Trust 
   The year 2015 will surely mark a watershed in relations between the United States and Russia, one way or the other. However, whether tensions increase " to war-by-proxy in Ukraine or an even wider war " or whether they subside depends mostly on P
Send Letter to Editor
2014-12-23
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
12-23-2014 
Torture's Time for Accountability 
   Rather than questioning Sony's wisdom in producing a film that jokes about something as serious as assassinating a nation's leader, Obama upbraided Sony's producers for the decision to pull the movie from theaters. "I wish they had spoken to
Send Letter to Editor
2014-06-13
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
06-13-2014 
How NSA Can Secretly Aid Criminal Cases  
   Though the NSA says its mass surveillance of Americans targets only "terrorists," the spying may turn up evidence of other illegal acts that can get passed on to law enforcement which hides the secret source through a ruse called "parallel constructi
Send Letter to Editor
2014-06-03
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
06-03-2014 
The Real Villains of the Bergdahl Tale 
   Bergdahl pointed out the main problem in these words: "In the US army you are cut down for being honest… but if you are a conceited brown nosing shit-bag you will be allowed to do what ever you want."
Send Letter to Editor
2013-12-29
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
12-29-2013 
Gen. Michael ‘No Probable Cause’ Hayden  
   Ex-NSA chief Michael Hayden, who once declared that “probable cause” is not part of the Fourth Amendment, is sure to hurl more stones at NSA leaker Edward Snowden, especially after a New York judge endorsed the NSA’s “metadata” as legal, says ex-CIA
Send Letter to Editor
2013-12-11
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
12-11-2013 
Obama Urged to Fire DNI Clapper  
   Last March " before Edward Snowden revealed the NSA’s sweeping collection of phone and other data " Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said no such operation existed. Now, a group of ex-national security officials urge President Obama to
Send Letter to Editor
2013-09-14
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
09-14-2013 
How War on Syria Lost Its Way 
   What looked like another U.S. march to war in the Mideast has turned in the direction of a peaceful settlement... ...But some parties want to resume the drive toward a U.S. attack, ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern writes.
Send Letter to Editor
2013-09-02
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
09-02-2013 
An Appeal to Gen. Dempsey on Syria 
   Gen. Martin Dempsey, Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman, has spoken soberly about the dangers from any military strike on Syria, but press reports indicate President Obama is still set on launching cruise missiles in the coming days, an action that form
Send Letter to Editor
2013-08-27
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
08-27-2013 
The Broader Stakes of Syrian Crisis 
   Though some intelligence analysts still doubt that the Syrian government launched a chemical attack, the political momentum for a U.S. retaliatory strike may be unstoppable. Broader framework of the crisis involves the Israeli-Iranian dispute...
Send Letter to Editor
2013-05-13
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
05-13-2013 
The Deepening Shame of Guantanamo 
   For more than a decade, the Guantanamo Bay prison has been a blot on America’s conscience. President Obama vowed to close it but acceded to congressional demands to keep it open. Now, an emerging humanitarian crisis " a mass hunger strike " is drawin
Send Letter to Editor
2013-03-18
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
03-18-2013 
A Last-Second Appeal for Sanity 
   Ten years ago, the U.S. invasion of Iraq was only hours away, but the case for this unprovoked war was already falling apart with exposure of hyperbole, half-truths and even a forgery. On March 18, 2003, a group of U.S. intelligence veterans pleaded
Send Letter to Editor
2013-03-13
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
03-13-2013 
An Unheeded Warning on Iraq 
   Ten years ago, as the clock was ticking down to George W. Bush’s invasion of Iraq, a campaign of U.S. government lies and exaggerations had convinced many Americans that they were the ones under threat.
Send Letter to Editor
2013-03-13
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
03-13-2013 
John Brennan’s Heavy Baggage 
   After a messy confirmation " which asked new questions about drone assassinations and old questions about enhanced interrogations " John Brennan has taken over at CIA. But his past may not be so easily forgotten in a world looking for accountability
Send Letter to Editor
2013-03-05
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
03-05-2013 
‘Talking Points’ for Hagel on Iran 
   Ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern suggests, "You may wish to draw on some of the following talking points for today’s meeting, cast in the first-person, as though you were speaking."
Send Letter to Editor
                                                 Subscribers Only
2013-02-26
Magazine Article  •  Communities
Eyes Wide Shut on the Iraq War
by Ray McGovern
As the tenth anniversary of the Iraq War approaches, it’s worth recalling one moment when the curtain was prematurely lifted on the lies justifying the invasion " and how quickly government officials and the complicit mainstream press pulled it back
2013-02-22
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
02-22-2013 
Brennan’s Loose Talk on Iran Nukes 
   MEMORANDUM FOR: Senator Dianne Feinstein, Chair, Senate Select Committee on Intelligence FROM: Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity SUBJECT: Due Diligence on John Brennan
Send Letter to Editor
2013-02-12
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
02-12-2013 
To Obama: Close the Deal with Iran 
   Dear Mr. President: As you put the final touches to your State of the Union Address, I urge you to avoid overstating the “threat” from Iran.
Send Letter to Editor
2013-02-10
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
02-10-2013 
John Brennan’s Tenet-Like Testimony 
   Though false intelligence was at the center of the disastrous Iraq War, CIA Director-to-be John Brennan played fast and loose on Iran’s nuclear program in his Senate testimony, a troubling sign he might undermine the principle of honest analysis just
Send Letter to Editor
2013-02-07
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
02-07-2013 
Drone Memo Puts Brennan on Spot 
   President Obama is finally giving the congressional Intelligence Committees a look at a Justice Department legal opinion justifying the killing of Americans
Send Letter to Editor
2013-02-05
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
02-05-2013 
Colin Powell: Conned or Con-Man? 
   Ten years ago, Secretary of State Colin Powell addressed the United Nations in a speech which routed what was left of American resistance to the Bush/Cheney push for invading Iraq. The next day, the Washington Post’s editorial pages spoke for the con
Send Letter to Editor
2013-01-15
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
01-15-2013 
Post-Iraq-War US Intel Chief Praised 
   Giving the Fingar to Intelligence Fraud
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                                                 Subscribers Only
2012-12-28
Magazine Article  •  Stay or Go?
The Larger Question of Chuck Hagel
by Ray McGovern
The up-in-the-air nomination of Chuck Hagel to be Defense Secretary has become a test of whether the Israel Lobby can still shoot down an American public servant who is deemed insufficiently passionate regarding Israel, a test that now confronts Pres
2013-01-03
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
01-03-2013 
Obama needs Hagel in the Pentagon 
   Former senator would be the only Secretary of Defense in 30 years with combat experience
Send Letter to Editor
2012-12-28
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
12-28-2012 
The Larger Question of Chuck Hagel 
   The up-in-the-air nomination of Chuck Hagel to be Defense Secretary has become a test of whether the Israel Lobby can still shoot down an American public servant who is deemed insufficiently passionate regarding Israel, a test that now confronts Pres
Send Letter to Editor
2012-12-13
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
12-13-2012 
Growing Doubts About Susan Rice 
   Republicans have blasted U.S. Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice for her TV comments about the fatal attack in Benghazi, Libya, but her real unfitness to be Secretary of State rests in her excessive careerism and insufficient compassion, says ex-CIA ana
Send Letter to Editor
2012-12-03
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
12-03-2012 
Why to Say No to Susan Rice 
   Key Republicans object to Susan Rice getting a promotion from UN ambassador to Secretary of State, citing her flawed account of the Benghazi assault. But a more legitimate concern is her lack of judgment on the Iraq War and other foreign policy decis
Send Letter to Editor
2012-11-11
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
11-11-2012 
Pundit Tears for Petraeus’s Fall 
   A day after the surprise announcement that CIA Director David Petraeus was resigning because of marital infidelity, the pundits continue to miss the supreme irony. None other than the head of the CIA (and former bemedaled four-star general) has becom
Send Letter to Editor
2012-10-16
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
10-16-2012 
The Real Blame for Deaths in Libya 
   If you prefer charade to reality, inquisition to investigation, trees over forest " the House Government Oversight Committee hearing last Tuesday on “Security Failures of Benghazi” was the thing for you.
Send Letter to Editor
2012-10-01
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
10-01-2012 
Silence of the Drones 
   A report quoted several Obama admin. officials admitting that all military-age males in a strike zone are counted as combatants, unless there is explicit intelligence posthumously proving them innocent. (Yes, you read that right " posthumously.)
Send Letter to Editor
2012-09-29
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
09-29-2012 
Netanyahu Backs Off on Iran 
   Netanyahu’s stunt with the poster also brought to mind Secretary of State Colin Powell’s infamous war speech in 2003 when he displayed crude graphics depicting imaginary mobile chemical weapons labs in Iraq.
Send Letter to Editor
2012-09-17
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
09-17-2012 
Why the Mideast Exploded, Really - ex-CIA analyst Ray McGovern 
   The new conventional wisdom, in the wake of angry protests roiling the Middle East, is that Muslims are either way too sensitive or irrational. How else to explain the fury over an offensive anti-Islam video? But the video was just the spark that ign
Send Letter to Editor
2012-09-07
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
09-07-2012 
Obama Ruling Shields Torturers 
   Attorney General Eric Holder’s decision not to prosecute CIA torturers in two high-profile homicides bows to the political difficulty of going after field agents while sparing superiors, including ex-President George W. Bush. But the all-clear on tor
Send Letter to Editor
2012-08-21
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
08-21-2012 
Pussy Riot’s Appeal for Justice 
   A Russian judge has sentenced three female “punk” rockers from the group “Pussy Riot” to two years in prison for performing a protest song at a Moscow cathedral, what the judge called anti-religious “hooliganism.”
Send Letter to Editor
2012-08-12
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
08-12-2012 
Israel’s ‘Bomb Iran’ Timetable 
   As the clock ticks down to the U.S. elections in November, another clock is ticking in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, whether Israeli forces should exploit the American political timetable to pressure President Obama to support an attack on Iran’s nuclear s
Send Letter to Editor
                                                 Subscribers Only
2012-07-27
Magazine Article  •  Now What? Where Do We Go From Here...
Will Downing St. Memo Recur on Iran?
by Ray McGovern
Recent remarks by Sir John Sawers, who heads Britain’s MI6 (the Secret Intelligence Service that is Britain’s CIA counterpart), leave us wondering if Sawers is preparing to “fix” intelligence on Iran, as his immediate predecessor, Sir John Scarlett,
2012-08-02
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
08-02-2012 
A Persian Gulf ‘Hot Line’ Proposed 
   With tensions again rising in the Persian Gulf, an accident or provocation around the narrow Strait of Hormuz could precipitate a war. In this memo for President Obama, 11 former U.S. intelligence officials urge a U.S.-Iranian system for communicatio
Send Letter to Editor
2012-07-25
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
07-25-2012 
Harassing the Whistleblowers 
   Controversy generated by recent reporting by Eric Lichtblau and Scott Shane of the New York Times about Food and Drug Administration spying on its doctors and scientists focuses on the blatant invasions of privacy, with Sen. Charles Grassley, R- Iowa
Send Letter to Editor
2012-07-25
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
07-25-2012 
Will Downing St. Memo Recur on Iran? 
   Recent remarks by Sir John Sawers, who heads Britain’s MI6 (the Secret Intelligence Service that is Britain’s CIA counterpart), leave us wondering if Sawers is preparing to “fix” intelligence on Iran, as his immediate predecessor, Sir John Scarlett,
Send Letter to Editor
2012-07-11
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
07-11-2012 
The Mystery of Arafat’s Death 
   We may never know with complete certainty whether the still unexplained health crisis that suddenly did in Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat was due to natural or unnatural causes.
Send Letter to Editor
2012-07-09
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
07-09-2012 
How Iran Might See the Threats 
   In CIA jargon, “Aardwolf” is a label for a special genre of intelligence report from field stations abroad to headquarters in Washington. An Aardwolf conveys the Chief of Station’s formal assessment regarding the direction events are taking in his or
Send Letter to Editor
2012-07-09
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
07-09-2012 
Julian Assange’s Artful Dodge 
   Barring a CIA drone strike on the Ecuadorian embassy in London, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s sudden appeal for asylum there may spare him a prison stay in Sweden or possibly the United States. Assange’s freedom now depends largely on Ecuadorian
Send Letter to Editor
2012-06-29
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
06-29-2012 
How Iran Might See the Threats 
   With half of 2012 behind us and the U.S. presidential election looming in just four months, I will try to be candid and blunt about what I see as the dangers facing the Islamic Republic in the coming months.
Send Letter to Editor
2012-06-06
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
06-06-2012 
Sorting Out the Facts about Iran  
   Neocons, including the Washington Post’s editors, keep playing games with the facts regarding Iran’s nuclear program. The plan apparently is to guide the U.S. into a military confrontation whether Obama and the American people want one or not.
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                                                 Subscribers Only
2012-06-01
Magazine Article  •  Conspiracies
The Moral Challenge of ‘Kill Lists’
by Ray McGovern
So, like the Caesars of old or the generals of World War I, Obama consults a priest or minister before having folks killed. And in this case the “priest” is Brennan, “whose blessing has become indispensable to Mr. Obama, echoing the President’s attem
2012-05-30
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
05-30-2012 
The Moral Challenge of ‘Kill Lists’ 
   Counterterrorism adviser John Brennan has been called President Obama’s “priest” as they wrestle with the moral dilemma of assembling a “kill list” of “bad guys,” a role that recalls how established religions have justified slaughters over the centur
Send Letter to Editor
2012-05-18
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
05-18-2012 
Applying the Six-Day War to Iran 
   With the 45th anniversary of the Six-Day War of June 1967 coming early next month, pro-Israel pundits like syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer are again promoting Israel’s faux-narrative on the reasons behind Israel’s decision to attack its neig
Send Letter to Editor
2012-05-16
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
05-16-2012 
Honoring a ‘Terror War’ Architect 
   Since even readers of the New York Times are aware of deputy national security adviser John Brennan’s open identification with torture, secret prisons and other abuses of national and international law, Fordham University’s invitation to him to give
Send Letter to Editor
2012-04-10
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
04-10-2012 
Render to Caesar, Extraordinarily 
   Although the charges against Jesus of Nazareth were trumped up, the Romans decided to err on the safe side by going to the “dark side.” They applied enhanced torture techniques with the ultimate hanging.
Send Letter to Editor
2009-03-28
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
03-28-2009 
Welcome to Vietnam, Mr. President 
   I was wrong. I had been saying that it would be naïve to take too seriously presidential candidate Barack Obama’s rhetoric regarding the need to escalate the war in Afghanistan.
Send Letter to Editor
2012-02-27
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
02-27-2012 
CNN Silences War-Skeptical Soldier 
   By obsessing over Iran gaining a nuclear weapon “capability” " even with no actual bomb " while ignoring Israel’s undeclared nuclear arsenal, the U.S. news media proves the point of its own bias.
Send Letter to Editor
2012-02-07
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
02-07-2012 
Obama’s Super-Bowl Fumble on Iran 
   In a televised interview before the Super Bowl, President Obama had the chance to send a clear signal to Israel not to launch a preemptive war against Iran but instead offered ambiguous remarks that Israeli hard-liners might read as a partial green l
Send Letter to Editor
                                                 Subscribers Only
2012-02-01
Magazine Article  •  WAR: About that War
Divining the Truth about Iran
by Ray McGovern
Watching top U.S. intelligence officials present the annual “Worldwide Threat Assessment” before the Senate Intelligence Committee, I found myself wondering if they would depart from the key (if politically delicate) consensus judgment that Iran is N
                                                 Subscribers Only
2012-01-31
Magazine Article  •  WAR: About that War
US/Israel: Iran NOT Building Nukes
by Ray McGovern
Has Iran decided to build a nuclear bomb? That would seem to be the central question in the current bellicose debate over whether the world should simply cripple Iran’s economy and inflict severe pain on its civilian population or launch a preemptive
2012-01-26
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
01-26-2012 
US/Israel: Iran NOT Building Nukes 
   However, this joint assessment that Iran has NOT decided to build a nuclear bomb apparently represented too big a change in the accepted narrative for the Times and the rest of the FCM to process.
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                                                 Subscribers Only
2012-01-04
Magazine Article  •  Future Predictions
A Betrayal of the Founders
by Ray McGovern
Though voicing “serious reservations” about encroachments on civil liberties in a military authorization bill, President Obama signed the law anyway to avoid a nasty veto fight with Congress
2011-12-30
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
12-30-2011 
Urging Obama to Stop Rush to Iran War - By Ray McGovern and Elizabeth Murray 
   President Obama needs to put an abrupt halt to the game of Persian Roulette about to spin out of control in the Persian Gulf. If we were still on active duty at the CIA, this is what we would tell him:
Send Letter to Editor
2011-12-21
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
12-21-2011 
Pvt. Manning and Imperative of Truth 
   On Bradley Manning's birthday... nearly 300 Occupy people from around the country came to Jessup, MD Fort Meade for a rally in support of Manning.
Send Letter to Editor
2011-12-04
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
12-04-2011 
Are Americans in Line for Gitmo? 
   Ambiguous but alarming new wording, which is tucked into the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and was just passed by the Senate, is reminiscent of the “extraordinary measures” introduced by the Nazis after they took power in 1933.
Send Letter to Editor
2011-10-24
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
10-24-2011 
Switching Focus from Iraq to Iran 
   President Barack Obama’s withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq is a blow to the neocons who had long dreamt of permanent military bases. But the neocons are now trying to spin the Iraq disaster into another excuse to confront Iran, writes Ray McGovern.
Send Letter to Editor
2011-10-24
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
10-24-2011 
Plus ça change: Iraq Done; On to Iran!  
   One not-so-funny fact about Washington is that nearly all the news media stars who fell for neoconservative falsehoods about Iraq are still around to fall for new ones on Iran
Send Letter to Editor
2011-10-07
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
10-07-2011 
The Moral Imperative of ‘Activism’ 
   On Sept. 18, former CIA analyst Ray McGovern gave a talk about “activism”. He focused on the need to confront the military industrial complex. Now, as the occupation of Freedom Plaza in Washington gets under way, his words take on a special resonance
Send Letter to Editor
2011-08-29
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
08-29-2011 
The Rise of Another CIA Yes Man  
   The recent tendency at CIA to give politicians what they want to hear rather than the hard truth is not healthy for the Republic that we were all sworn to serve.
Send Letter to Editor
2011-08-21
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
08-21-2011 
Lemmingly, We Roll Along  
   “Two lemmings are chatting while standing in the line to the cliff. One says to the other, ‘Of course we have to go over the edge. Anything else would dishonor all the lemmings that have gone before us.’”
Send Letter to Editor
2011-07-08
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
07-08-2011 
Gaza and a Liturgy for Justice  
   The Audacity of Hope, the U.S. boat among a small flotilla seeking to challenge the Israeli blockade of Gaza, was turned back by Greek authorities doing the bidding of Washington and Tel Aviv.
Send Letter to Editor
2011-07-03
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
07-03-2011 
A July Fourth Shame on the Founders  
   A group of American humanitarians and activists are still trying to make their way to Gaza in protest of the harsh Israeli embargo on the 1.6 million Palestinians confined there.
Send Letter to Editor
2011-06-30
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
06-30-2011 
Gaza: Cradle of Killing " Americans Too 
   Stuffing my backpack before setting out to board “The Audacity of Hope,” the U.S. boat to Gaza, I got a familiar-sounding call from yet another puzzled friend, who said as gently as the words allow, “You know you can get killed, don’t you?”
Send Letter to Editor
2011-06-30
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
06-30-2011 
Spirits of Justice Going to Gaza 
   “There is for me an awareness of paying off a debt to the Jewish civil rights activists who faced death to come to the side of black people in the South in our time of need....
Send Letter to Editor
2011-06-30
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
06-30-2011 
Gaza and Thoughts of a Starving Ireland 
   Israeli officials have actually bragged about “putting Gazans on a strict diet” " in other words, condemning them to a subsistence living just barely above the point where they would starve and perhaps subject Israel to charges of ethnic cleansing by
Send Letter to Editor
2011-06-06
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
06-06-2011 
Gen. Keane Keen on Attacking Iran 
   ...he would lobby leaders of the 41 NATO countries who, except for three, have been “unwilling to ask their people to sacrifice” in places like Afghanistan.
Send Letter to Editor
2011-05-20
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
05-20-2011 
Obama, Tell Netanyahu " Don’t Mess With Flotilla to Gaza 
   The U.S. boat, “The Audacity of Hope,” will depart for Gaza next month with 50 on board, including Ray McGovern, who wrote this open letter to President Barack Obama after watching his speech Thursday on the Middle East.
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2011-05-05
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
05-05-2011 
What Has Bin Laden's Killing Wrought?  
   The U.S. might finally begin to wind down a near-decade-long war in Afghanistan, there is the countervailing prospect of the USA consolidating an official policy of assassination and violence as the way to impose Washington’s will on the Muslim world
Send Letter to Editor
2011-04-29
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
04-29-2011 
Petraeus: Can He Tell It Straight? 
   The news that President Barack Obama has picked Gen. David Petraeus to be CIA director raises troubling questions, including whether the commander most associated with the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan will tolerate objective analysis of those two con
Send Letter to Editor
2011-04-24
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
04-24-2011 
Surprise, Surprise! Iraq War Was About Oil 
   Afghanistan may be the graveyard of empires, but Iraq is home to a graveyard sense of humor. Iraqis wonder aloud whether the U.S. and Britain would have invaded Iraq if its main export had been cabbages instead of oil.
Send Letter to Editor
2011-04-05
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
04-05-2011 
Military Tribunal May Keep 9/11 Motives Hidden 
   The Obama administration’s decision to use a military tribunal rather than a federal criminal court to try alleged 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four others means the real motives behind the 9/11 attacks may remain obscure.
Send Letter to Editor
2011-03-28
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
03-28-2011 
Obama Muddling Thru Afghan War, But Clearly 
   Obama laced his speech of March 27, 2009, with nine uses of the words “clear” or “clearly,” but his protestations about clarity looked more like a smokescreen to obscure the image of him lurching naively into a Vietnam-style quagmire.
Send Letter to Editor
2011-03-05
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
03-05-2011 
Pvt Manning: Is Army Aping Mafia? 
   If the Mafia comparison strikes you as a tad over the top, perhaps a seven-year trip down memory lane may prove instructive.
Send Letter to Editor
2011-03-02
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
03-02-2011 
Prosecution of Ray McGovern is Dropped 
   He stood silently with his back turned to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton when she delivered her address on Feb. 15 at George Washington University, in which she insisted other governments around the world not stifle free expression.
Send Letter to Editor
2011-02-23
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
02-23-2011 
The Push of Conscience & Secretary Clinton 
   When reprinting the text of speeches by high Soviet officials, the Communist Party newspaper would regularly insert, in italicized parentheses: “Burniye applaudismenti; vce stoyat” " Stormy applause; all rise.
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2011-02-14
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
02-14-2011 
Mourning Iraqi Wives, Children on Valentine’s Day  
   Twenty years ago, as Americans were celebrating Valentine’s Day, Iraqi husbands and fathers in the Amiriyah section of Baghdad were peeling the remains of their wives and children off the walls and floor of a large neighborhood bomb shelter.
Send Letter to Editor
2011-02-09
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
02-09-2011 
America's Stay-at-Home Ex-President - by Ray McGovern 
   As the news broke on Saturday that former President George W. Bush had abruptly canceled his scheduled appearance this week in Geneva to avoid the risk of arrest on a torture complaint, my first thought was " how humiliating, not only for Bush but,
Send Letter to Editor
2010-12-14
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
12-14-2010 
'Giant' Holbrooke Flunked Afghanistan - By Ray McGovern  
   There will be many more dead and wounded in Afghanistan and Pakistan by the time you read this. Sadly, Holbrooke is one of the Establishment “giants” responsible.
Send Letter to Editor
2010-12-03
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
12-03-2010 
NYT Still Stalking Bête Noire Iran 
   It would surely be helpful to those wishing to see an Israeli and/or U.S. attack on Iran, if U.S. intelligence could produce satellite photos showing those missiles in Iran. It’s a sure bet that if Washington had such images, they’d be all over the p
Send Letter to Editor
2010-11-22
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
11-22-2010 
U.S. Intelligence Thwarted Attack on Iran - by Ray McGovern 
   As the Bush-book makes abundantly clear, that National Intelligence Estimate on Iran rammed an iron rod through the wheels of the juggernaut rolling toward war.
Send Letter to Editor
2010-08-26
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
08-26-2010 
Obama Boxed In by Generals on Afghanistan 
   back from Afghanistan, Marine Commandant, Gen. James Conway held a news conference Tuesday to add his voice to the Pentagon campaign to disparage the July 2011 date President Barack Obama set for U.S. troops to begin leaving Afghanistan.
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2010-08-03
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
08-03-2010 
Ray McGovern - "Mr. President, pre-empt an Israeli attack on Iran by..." 
   August 3, 2010 - MEMORANDUM FOR: The President - FROM: Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) - SUBJECT: War With Iran
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2009-08-21
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
08-21-2009 
Putting Out Contracts on Folks, Sans Contract 
    

CIA operative Gary Schroen said Cofer Black sent him to Afghanistan with orders to "Capture bin Laden, kill him, and bring his head back in a box on dry ice." As for other al Qaeda leaders, Black reportedly said, "I want their heads up on pikes."

Schroen had been stunned that, for the first time in 30 years of service, he had received orders to kill targets rather than to capture them.  Black would not confirm the exact words of the order to Schroen, but did not dispute Schroen’s account.


Send Letter to Editor
2009-07-15
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
07-15-2009 
Cheney Sweats Out the Summer 
   So far the summer has been mild in the Washington, D.C., area. But for former Vice President Dick Cheney the temperature is well over 100 degrees. He is sweating profusely, and it is becoming increasingly clear why.

Cheney has broken openly with former President George W. Bush on one issue of transcendent importance " to Cheney. For whatever reason, Bush decided not to hand out blanket pardons before they both rode off into the sunset.

Send Letter to Editor
2009-07-07
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
07-07-2009 
Is Texas Harboring Torture Decider? 
   Editor’s Note: Prior to giving a series of talks in Texas later this week, the author offered the following op-ed to the Dallas Morning News and the Fort-Worth Star-Telegram. Both newspapers in George W. Bush’s home state turned it down.

Seldom does a crime scene have so clear a smoking gun. A two-page presidential memorandum of Feb. 7, 2002, leaves no room for uncertainty regarding the “decider” on torture. His broad-stroke signature made torture official policy.

This should come as no surprise. You see, the Feb. 7, 2002, memorandum has been posted on the Web since June 22, 2004, when then-White House Counsel Alberto Gonzales mistakenly released it, along with other White House memoranda.

The title seemed innocent enough " “Humane Treatment of al Qaeda and Taliban Detainees” " but in the body of the memo President George W. Bush authorized his senior aides to withhold Geneva Convention protections from suspected al-Qaeda and Taliban detain

Send Letter to Editor
2009-07-07
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
07-07-2009 
Dear President Bush, 
  

Dear President Bush,

With this note I hope to make sure you know that I have been invited by the Dallas Peace Center to lecture next Thursday evening, July 9, at a dinner at FunAsia in Richardson.  You and Mrs. Bush are cordially invited.

In my remarks I plan to focus on the subject of torture.  I shall draw on my thirty years in Army Intelligence and the CIA, as well as a lifetime of trying to follow Jesus of Nazareth.  I will take issue with your decision of February 7, 2002 that the Geneva Convention Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War (August 12, 1949) does not apply to al Qaeda and Taliban detainees; and I will explore the implications of that decision.

Somehow it seemed not quite proper to come to Dallas without letting you know this in advance.  I also wanted to tell you that I would welcome a chance to discuss these issues with you"either privately or, better still, at the dinner itself.

Send Letter to Editor
2009-05-29
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
05-29-2009 
The Facts Thwart Rehab of Colin Powell 
   Watching retired Gen. Colin Powell refer to the parable of the Good Samaritan during Sunday’s Memorial Day ceremonies on the Mall in Washington, it struck me that Powell was giving hypocrisy a bad name.
Send Letter to Editor
2009-05-14
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
05-14-2009 
“Ugly” Questions for Gen. Myers - By Ray McGovern 
   Tuesday evening offered an unusual opportunity to question the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (2001-2005), Air Force Gen. Richard Myers, at an alumni club dinner.
Send Letter to Editor
2009-04-05
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
04-05-2009 
Holder and Powell Ain’t Misbehavin’ 
   Why would they want to whitewash torture, given what blacks have suffered at the hands of torturers in this country and abroad?
Send Letter to Editor
2009-03-11
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
03-11-2009 
Obama Caves to Israel Lobby 
   Freeman made it clear that he was withdrawing his “previous acceptance” of Blair’s invitation to chair the NIC because of the character assassination of him orchestrated by the Israel Lobby.
Send Letter to Editor
2009-01-15
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
01-15-2009 
What’s Hayden Hidin’? 
   CIA Director Michael Hayden is going around town telling folks he has warned Obama “personally and forcefully” that if Obama authorizes an investigation into controversial activities like water boarding, “no one in Langley will ever take a risk again
Send Letter to Editor
2009-01-08
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
01-08-2009 
Obama Picks a Conscience for the CIA 
   Leon Panetta to take charge of the CIA - First and foremost, the appointment gives hope that torture and “rendition” (a euphemism for kidnapping people for delivery to foreign torture chambers) is over " or will be in less than two weeks.
Send Letter to Editor
2008-12-20
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
12-20-2008 
Deterring Torture Through the Law - By Coleen Rowley and Ray McGovern 
   A widespread lack of understanding regarding the purposes served by the criminal justice system"and the penal system"is a major obstacle to even entertaining the thought of prosecuting administration officials for torture.
Send Letter to Editor
2008-11-23
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
11-23-2008 
Gates and the Urge to Surge 
   Every two years, if the commander-in-chief/elect says he wants to throw more troops into an unwinnable war for no clear reason other than his political advantage, panderer-in-chief Robert Gates will shout “Outstanding!”
Send Letter to Editor
2008-11-19
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
11-19-2008 
Robert Gates: As Bad As Rumsfeld? 
   Just thought the Obama folks"and non-Obama folks too"might like to learn more about Robert Gates from someone who has known and watched him for almost 40 years.
Send Letter to Editor
2008-11-08
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
11-08-2008 
Try These on Your CIA Briefer, Mr. President-Elect 
   He suggested that I focus on what I would tell President-Elect Barack Obama if I were Mike Morell, CIA’s Director of Intelligence, whom CIA Director Michael Hayden has assigned to brief Obama daily.
Send Letter to Editor
2008-10-18
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
10-18-2008 
Attack on Iran Off the Table? By Ray McGovern  
   On Sept. 23, the neo-conservative chiefs of the Washington Post’s editorial page mourned, in a tone much like what one hears on the death of a close friend, that “a military strike by the United States or Israel [on Iran is not] likely in the coming
Send Letter to Editor
2008-09-11
Feature Article
Iran’s Road Less Traveled to Nukes - by Ray McGovern 
   Yet, it is the 64-dollar question"whether or not there is evidence that Iran has resumed work on the weapons part of its nuclear program since the startling judgment of the National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) of November 2007 that it had stopped.
Send Letter to Editor
2008-09-08
Feature Article
Trickle-Down Preemption: Baghdad on the Mississippi - by Ray McGovern  
   “Borrowing from the Bush administration’s ‘preemptive war’ playbook, police agencies in the Twin Cities have made ‘preemptive strikes’ against organizations planning to protest at the Republican National Convention.”
Send Letter to Editor
2008-08-20
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
08-20-2008 
Musharraf Out, Like Nixon; Bush Still In, Like Flynn - by Ray McGovern 
   Very few newspapers carried the Associated Press item that put the real story up front; i.e., that Musharraf resigned “just days ahead of almost certain impeachment.” In other words, he pulled a Nixon.
Send Letter to Editor
2008-08-17
Feature Article
Out Damned Blot: A Letter to Colin Powell - By Ray McGovern 
   Dear Colin, You have said you regret the “blot” on your record caused by your parroting spurious intelligence at the U.N. to justify war on Iraq. On the chance you may not have noticed, I write to point out that you now have a unique opportunity to
Send Letter to Editor
2008-07-20
Feature Article
'Justifying' Torture: Two Big Lies - by Coleen Rowley and Ray McGovern 
   One can assume that former Attorney General John Ashcroft didn’t mean it to be funny, but his testimony on Thursday before the House Judiciary Committee might strike one as hilarious, were it not for the issue at hand " torture.
Send Letter to Editor
2008-07-16
Feature Article
Obama, McCain Allergic to New Iraq Reality - by Ray McGovern 
   My guess is the Israeli leaders are apoplectic. The fiasco in Iraq clearly has made the region much more dangerous for Israel. There are actually real “terrorists” and “extremists” now in Iraq, and the prospect of US troops leaving has got to be a
Send Letter to Editor
2008-06-20
Feature Article
Bomb Iran? What's to Stop Us? - by Ray McGovern 
   It’s crazy, but it’s coming soon " from the same folks who brought us Iraq.
Send Letter to Editor
2008-06-20
Feature Article
Impeach Bush now? - by Ray McGovern 
   Congressional proceedings would help prevent another mistaken war
Send Letter to Editor
2008-06-03
Feature Article
Australia Bolts Iraq Over Bush's Lies 
   Chastened because Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is now pulling no punches in decrying the subservience of his predecessor, John Howard, to Washington.
Send Letter to Editor
2008-06-02
Feature Article
Bush Replays Iraq Games on Iran - by Ray McGovern 
   "Stop! Please. Get beneath the hype over former White House press secretary Scott McClellan’s book, What Happened: Inside the Bush White House and Washington’s Culture of Deception. Don’t miss forest for trees."
Send Letter to Editor
2008-03-31
Feature Article
Delusionary, Dancing Bush - By Ray McGovern  
   It is comfortable to stay in denial, and President George W. Bush basks in it
Send Letter to Editor
2008-03-27
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
03-27-08 
Frontline's "Bush's War:" Too Timid, Too Little, Too Late 
   Viewers looked in vain for any explanation as to WHY Cheney and Bush decided to attack and occupy Iraq. Apparently, the acronym OIL (for Oil, Israel, and Logistical bases) still cannot be discussed in polite conversation, even though it is long sens
Send Letter to Editor
2009-01-31
Opinions
Ray McGovern: My Take 
01-31-2009 
From Prison to Award for Iraq War Whistleblower  
   In 2002-2003, our profession of intelligence analysis was systematically corrupted in order to deceive Congress out of its Constitutional prerogative to authorize war.
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