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Electrical lines will be used for broadband Internet access as IBM Corp. partners with a smaller firm to improve access for rural areas not served by cable or DSL. They plan to work with local electric cooperatives. (Getty Images)

Breaking up the public broadcaster monopoly

The notion of a profound “digital divide” between urban and rural areas in America is hardly new. The real issue is what America should do about it — and whether the government or private sector should take the lead.

Phishing Moscow Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Mueller in hot pursuit

Last Friday, a federal grand jury sitting in Washington, D.C., indicted 13 Russian nationals and three Russian corporations for conspiracy and for using false instruments and computer hacking so as to influence the American presidential election in 2016. The indictment alleges a vast, organized and professional effort, funded by tens of millions of dollars, whereby Russian spies passed themselves off as Americans on the internet, on the telephone and even in person here in the U.S. to sow discord about Hillary Clinton and thereby assist in the election of Donald Trump.

Russia's Puppet Candidate Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

The great strategic deception

The underlying theme promoted by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee (DNC), supported by the mainstream media, that there was collusion between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin to ensure a Hillary Clinton defeat, never made any strategic sense.

President Barack Obama laughs with Vice President Joe Biden during a ceremony in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 12, 2017. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) ** FILE **

Tracking the real collusion: Obama knew foreign entities were interfering; he did nothing

There is a lot of noise lately, and less signal, about the now debunked “Trump colluded with Russia” narrative. After special counsel Robert Mueller indicted 13 Russians for trolling Americans during the 2016 election, Democrats and various malcontents are in a tizzy to move their narrative goalposts. “Well,” they insist, “Trump said the whole Russian thing was a hoax. Now it’s proven it wasn’t,” or some such nonsense.

Nervous in North Africa

Officials in Morocco are apprehensive. “Africa is approaching a dangerous moment,” one of the Kingdom’s most senior political figures told me recently in Rabat. His bleak assessment, which I heard in virtually every meeting during my recent visit to the country, stems from what are essentially two factors.

Ottoman Slap Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Turkey’s violence-tinged foreign policy

Speaking recently about his military’s ongoing invasion of the Kurdish-ruled Afrin region in northern Syria, Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan taught much of the world a rather bizarre term.

Illustration on Poland's new Holocaust law by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Why Poland’s new Holocaust law is a mockery

The French philosopher Voltaire said, “History is nothing but a pack of tricks that we play upon the dead.” Poland’s new Holocaust law is yet another pack of tricks played upon the millions of murdered Jews in the Holocaust.

Illustration on Trump's Goldilocks economy by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Trump’s Goldilocks economy

President Trump may have a bear market, but he has a Goldilocks economy. While it is too early to definitively know about the former, each passing day shows the latter growing more certain. His critics who are seizing on recent stock market volatility are missing the bigger picture of the economy underlying it.

Illustration on sexual misconduct and opera by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Sexual harassment in opera

Opera has it all. Love. Murder. Rape. And most fascinating, in the case of Puccini’s “Tosca” a peek into the rapist’s thinking. In fact, he tells all. In church.

Vladimir Putin. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

Everybody’s playing the new game in town

- The Washington Times

Washington measures everything and everyone by politics, and dysfunction is the new game in town. Rant and rage has become the lingua franca of the nation’s capital. Taking the measure of Robert Mueller’s indictment of 13 Russian cybernauts for interfering on Vladimir Putin’s behalf in the 2016 presidential campaign is easy.

China's Jack Ma, Alibaba Group founder and executive chairman, speaks during a panel session during the 47th annual meeting of the World Economic Forum, WEF, in Davos, Switzerland, Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2017. (Laurent Gillieron/Keystone via AP) ** FILE **

Artificial intelligence can read! And now customer service reps must go

- The Washington Times

An economic boom just dropped on the world — and most, no doubt, aren’t even aware. What happened? China’s retail and technology conglomerate, Alibaba, developed an artificial intelligence model that beat the humans it competed against in a Stanford University reading and comprehension test. This is historic.

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Russian President Vladimir Putin shakes hands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, right, during their meeting in the Novo-Ogaryovo residence, outside Moscow, Russia, Monday, Sept. 21, 2015. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev, Pool) **FILE**

Israel should be America's ally, not Russia's

For its own preservation, Israel under Mr. Netanyahu has been forced to cozy up to the Kremlin and Russian President Vladimir Putin, who has made himself the kingmaker in the region after Mr. Obama's abdication of responsibility.

Former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn leaves federal court in Washington, Friday, Dec. 1, 2017. Flynn pleaded guilty Friday to making false statements to the FBI, the first Trump White House official to make a guilty plea so far in a wide-ranging investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller.  (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

The Michael Flynn guilty plea stinks to high-heaven

- The Washington Times

Former Trump National Security Adviser Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn pled guilty to providing false information to FBI agent in December and the more we learn about the events leading up to that plea, the more it stinks to high-heaven.

Parents meet at a hotel in Coral Springs, Fla., Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018, to pick up their children, following a shooting at nearby Marjory Stoneman Douglas High in Parkland, Fla. A former student opened fire at the Florida high school Wednesday, killing more than a dozen people and sending scores of students fleeing into the streets. (Jim Rassol/South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP)

Can teachers carry guns now? How 'bout now?

- The Washington Times

Nikolas Cruz, a 19-year-old former student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida -- a former student who was expelled for disciplinary reasons -- was arrested for the shooting deaths of 17 students. Can teachers, staffers and administrators concealed-carry on school grounds now? How 'bout now?

This Feb. 19, 2013, file photo shows OxyContin pills arranged for a photo at a pharmacy in Montpelier, Vt. The maker of the powerful painkiller said it will stop marketing opioid drugs to doctors, a surprise reversal after lawsuits blaming the company for helping trigger the current drug abuse epidemic. OxyContin has long been the worlds top-selling opioid painkiller and generated billions in sales for privately held Purdue. (AP Photo/Toby Talbot, File)

Opioid regulation not the way to fight ODs, cure addiction

- The Washington Times

The country's gone head-over-heels nuts on opioids, the drug of effectiveness for long-time pain sufferers. As if cracking down on producers, distributors, insurers and sellers will cure the underlying roots of addiction -- the psychological and emotional factors that lead to a practice of self-destruction.

Illustration on female empowered nudity by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Uncovering the naked truth

Playboy magazine, now a relic in the legacy of its founder, Hugh Hefner, was not so long ago the sex educator of the young men of America. So pervasive was its influence that someone joked that "a generation of men, having learned about the female body from Playboy's famous centerfolds, are astonished on their wedding nights to discover that their wives don't come with staples in their navels."

Illustration on the national debt by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Don't worry about the national debt

"If something cannot go on forever, it will stop," said Herbert Stein, President Nixon's chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors. America's national debt has grown from 32 percent of GDP in 1981 to 68 percent in 2008 and 108 percent in 2017. The national debt is high, and some components are growing on autopilot. Still, Washington keeps adding to it.

Illustration on welfare and poverty by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

The war that never ends

There is a war that has lasted longer than the one in Afghanistan. It is the so-called "war on poverty," launched by President Lyndon Johnson during his State of the Union address on Jan. 8, 1964.

Illustration on the downsides of bipartisanship by Linas Garsys/the Washington Times

The downside of bipartisanship

The House and Senate's passage of "a two-year budget deal," (plus an appropriation to avoid a "government shutdown" for a month, during which the details of that deal may be negotiated) is news because the "deal" spends 13.5 percent more for the coming two fiscal years than the Obama administration had proposed for them, and expands the government at an unprecedented rate. By comparison, President Obama was a conservative. Who'd a thunk it?

The End of the Bitcoin Era Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Why bitcoin is for gamblers and bad actors

Bitcoin recently lost about two-thirds its value in seven weeks — the fifth such collapse in recent years. Severe volatility ruins its utility as an alternative to national currencies, and ordinary investors who would prefer not to finance criminals, rogue states and terrorists should stay clear of it too.

FILE - In this Jan. 11, 2018, file photo, Chinese and American flags fly outside of a JW Marriott hotel in Beijing. Politics weighs more heavily on foreign companies in China than it has in nearly three decades, as companies face pressure on many sides from Chinese President Xi Jinping's more nationalistic stance and twin campaigns to tighten the ruling Communist Party's political control and have it play a more direct role in business. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein, File)

How to counter a deliberate Chinese confrontation

Aside from failing to provide any meaningful support to curb North Korea's destabilizing nuclear weapons programs, China continues with its bullying and aggressive tactics to advance its totalitarian control of both the South and East China Seas. China's claims to nearly all of the South China Sea clash with those of Taiwan, the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia and Brunei — but only China is trying to impose control on the whole region.

Faucet Money Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

A million dollars a minute

Imagine you open the faucet of your kitchen sink expecting water and instead out comes cash. Now imagine that it comes out at the rate of $1 million a minute. You call your plumber, who thinks you're crazy. To get you off the phone, he opines that it is your sink and therefore must be your money. So you spend it wildly. Then you realize that the money wasn't yours and you owe it back.

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, right, and Gambia's President Adama Barrow speak during a joint press conference at the presidential palace in Ankara, Turkey, Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018. Barrow is in Turkey for a two-day state visit.(Kayhan Ozer/Pool Photo via AP)

The U.S. alliance with Turkey

The ongoing war in Syria coupled with the United States' failure to extradite Fethullah Gulen, a radical Muslim cleric indicted by Turkish prosecutors for, among a plethora of other grave offenses, staging last year's attempted coup d'etat against the democratically elected government of Turkey, have badly deteriorated bilateral cooperation between the two nations.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., asks a question of Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin during a Senate Banking Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018, on the Financial Stability Oversight Council. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) ** FILE **

Spurning the Pocahontas connection

When is a slur a slur? We've become the apologetic society, mindlessly trading in regrets, amends and excuses, demanding pardons for often meaningless or unintended affronts and transgressions. An apology asked for is no apology at all, but this never occurs to the bruised snowflakes among us.

Hearing on gender informative

Other than to report a he-said-she-said exchange between one legislator and one witness, your Feb. 9 article on a hearing in the Maryland General Assembly ("Maryland explores 'unspecified' gender option for driver's license applications," Web) raised but did not really discuss a matter very important to many Marylanders. The hearing delved deeply into gender-related issues, and a video of it is posted on the Maryland.gov website. The testimony, which begins at the 9:10 mark, is followed by 45 minutes of informative give-and-take between the first three witnesses (two of whom are medical doctors) and several Republican legislators.