New York Times
In Burning Country, journalist Robin Yassin-Kassab and human rights activist Leila Al-Shami make plain that no matter how long the Syrian war rages or how distant a political settlement may appear, the world owes it to the Syrian people to hear their stories and support their cause. The book portrays the opposition as a movement of protest against Bashar al-Assad's brutal regime, something missed abroad amid the factionalism and power politics driving the conflict.
Not only is ubiquitous surveillance ineffective, it is extraordinarily costly. Not just the budgets, which will continue to skyrocket, or the diplomatic costs, but the cost to our society. It breaks much of what our society has built. It breaks our political systems, our legal systems, our commercial systems, our technical systems, as the very protocols of the Internet become untrusted. And it breaks our social systems, with loss of privacy, freedom, and liberty.
The parts of the border that take the form of an actual, physical barrier are an intrusion on the landscape, an eyesore to many — and to millions, a deadly obstacle to overcome. Just as immigrant rights activists see the border as a violent social barrier, environmentalists see the border fence as an assault on the integrity of regional ecologies.
It would take great powers of imagination to blame any part of our recent military debacles on leaks and whistleblowers. If someone had leaked the full National Intelligence Estimate on Saddam Hussein’s alleged weapons of mass destruction, would more people have decided—like then-Senator Bob Graham, who voted against the invasion after reading the unredacted report—to oppose the war before it began?
Rosenberg Fund for Children
Subscribe to national security
The Miami Herald