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Illustration on the aggressive strategic future of Syria by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

The new ‘great game’ in Syria

In the second half of the 19th century, the British and Russian empires competed for domination of Central Asia in what history labels “The Great Game.” A new “great game,” with the entire Middle East at stake, is now being played out in Syria. The opponents are Russia and Iran on one side and the U.S. and Israel on the other. Both sides will try to use Arab states and Turkey as pawns.

Logical Progression of a Gun Ban Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

More laws do not a moral people make

This past Valentine’s Day, Nikolas Cruz entered a classroom in Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, and proceeded to murder 17 people and wound 15 others. Before any meaningful criminal investigation could even begin, our nation’s cultural elites rushed to their respective podiums, finding fault and casting aspersions. Scoring political points is the name of the game. Removing personal rights embedded in our Constitution and replacing them with more laws and less freedom seems to be the only way they know to keep score.

Chart to acccompany Moore article of Feb. 19, 2018.

Obama’s real debt and deficit legacy

- The Washington Times

Congressional Republicans have been raked over the coals in the last two weeks for slamming through budget caps and inflating government spending and debt by another $300 billion. The criticisms are well deserved.

Unrest in India Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

India’s democracy and Modi’s reforms

If there’s one thing we’ve learned about Prime Minister Narendra Modi is that he’s not afraid of using radical maneuvers to accomplish his economic agenda for India.

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In this frame grab from video provided by WRTV in Indianapolis, Manuel Orrego-Savala, a citizen of Guatemala, leaves a court hearing Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018, in Indianapolis. Orrego-Savala is suspected of causing a collision Sunday, Feb. 4, that killed Indianapolis Colts linebacker Edwin Jackson. (WRTV6 via AP)

If Edwin Jackson were Malia Obama, borders would be closed

- The Washington Times

Colts' linebacker Edwin Jackson and his Uber driver Jeffrey Monroe are dead, and an illegal immigrant with previous deportations and court convictions has been arrested and charged. But how about Congress gets tough on border controls so we, the American people, don't have to keep grieving over such senseless deaths? Fact is, if someone as notable as Malia Obama were killed by an illegal, you better believe borders would snap shut.

Illustration on sexual relationships as a nexis for culture, religion and politics by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

'Moral combat' is a game any number can play

The debate over the #MeToo movement continues. The ladies keep coming out of the confessional with "J'accuse," but some of the players are missing. They're the women who slept their way to starring roles in the movies and powerful positions in politics and the media and didn't talk. We don't know who they are, nor are we likely to learn the details of success on the road to the top, because they played by the old rules of Hollywood and Washington, keeping their dalliances to themselves.

ADVANCE FOR RELEASE SUNDAY, DEC. 31, 2017 AND THEREAFTER -FILE - In this Saturday, April 26, 2014 file photo, the sun shines through concertina wire on a fence at the Louisiana State Penitentiary in Angola, La. Nearly two years after the January 2016 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that prison inmates who killed as teenagers are capable of change and may deserve eventual freedom, the question remains unresolved: Which ones should get a second chance? (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

Prison reform, the time is now

It didn't seem to fit in President Trump's State of the Union address, perhaps something tossed in at the last minute, like a garnish. But there it was: "As America regains its strength, opportunity must be extended to all citizens. That is why this year we will embark on reforming our prisons, to help former inmates who have served their time get a second chance at life."

Bad Times for Medical Marijuana Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Marijuana laws and gun ownership

- The Washington Times

Advocates for and against the legalization of marijuana for recreational use have been sparring for decades in part at least because there are merits on both sides of the argument, but the same cannot be said about whether doctors should be free to prescribe marijuana for medical purposes.

Illustration on corruption of the FISA court by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Why FISA-gate is scarier than Watergate

The Watergate scandal of 1972-74 was uncovered largely because of outraged Democratic politicians and a bulldog media. They both claimed that they had saved American democracy from the Nixon administration's attempt to warp the CIA and FBI to cover up an otherwise minor, though illegal, political break-in.

Illustration on the abuses of government surveillance in a free society by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

'It can happen here'

We remain embroiled in a debate over the nature and extent of our own government's spying on us. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which was enacted in 1978 as a response to the unlawful government spying of the Watergate era, was a lawful means for the government to engage in foreign surveillance on U.S. soil, but it has morphed into unchecked government spying on ordinary Americans.

Obstruction of Justice in Colorado Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Obstruction of justice, Colorado style

Sen. Cory Gardner, Colorado Republican, has taken it upon himself to obstruct the efficient functioning of the U.S. Department of Justice in order to protect marijuana dealers in Colorado.

Illustration on modernization of our nuclear arsenal by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Dereliction of duty at the Department of Energy

Albert Einstein in 1939 warned President Franklin Roosevelt that Nazi Germany might develop an atomic bomb and conquer the world. Thus, the 20th century's greatest scientist showed all scientists they have a duty to help defend Western civilization.

A woman sits in a cell and listens to a recording of Nigerian Fela Kuti that is part of the installation called Stay Tuned during a preview of the art exhibit @Large: Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz Island Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2014, in San Francisco. Revealing unexpected perspectives on Alcatraz and its layered legacy, the exhibit by the Beijing-based artist prompts visitors to consider the implications of incarceration and the possibilities of art as an act of conscience. The exhibit opens Friday and runs through April. Stay Tuned invites visitors into 12 individual cells in A Block, where they can sit and listen to spoken words, poetry and music by people who have been imprisoned for the creative expression of their beliefs. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

'Sympathy for the criminal'

My wife and I visited our daughter and her Air Force pilot husband in California recently, and we spent a day at the famous former federal prison on Alcatraz Island.

Exploring the great divide between proof and truth

Much of intellectual life seems to operate within -- and sometimes run around in -- circles. In "Exact Thinking in Demented Times," Viennese-based professor Karl Sigmund, himself a pioneer of evolutionary game theory, tells the story of the influential group of 20th century philosophers and savants who launched the movement or school of thought known as logical positivism. It is no coincidence that it found its home in post-World War I Vienna and came to be called the Vienna Circle.

Dawn breaks over the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018, as House GOP leaders are proposing to keep the government open for another six weeks by adding a year's worth of Pentagon funding to a stopgap spending bill. But Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer says that approach, fully funding the Defense Department but only providing temporary money for the rest of the government, won't go anywhere. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

The sins of a bloated, unaccountable government

A new audit about a Pentagon agency losing hundreds of millions of dollars is reported by Politico as an "exclusive." While that's technically correct, a government agency losing or wasting or misplacing millions, billions and even trillions of dollars (this is not hyperbole, folks) is nothing new.

Illustration on Russian meddling in U.S. affairs by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Russia's disinformation offensive

Just so there's no confusion: This column is not about Americans conspiring or colluding or coordinating with Russians. That's a separate controversy about which I don't have a lot to say at this moment.

Episcopal Reforms Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Pope Francis falls behind the Episcopalians

I have never met the pope, but I have followed his activities sedulously, as might be expected of a Roman Catholic. Pope Francis is an agent for change in his 2,000-year-old church, change in what Catholics believe and change in how they worship. Notwithstanding my never having met him, my guess is that he was a bit embarrassed by a decision announced recently by the Episcopal Church in Washington, D.C. The Episcopalians got the jump on him in the realm of change.

The State of World Affairs Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Guarding maritime chokepoints against worldwide disruption

Returning to Washington recently after consecutive keynote presentations at several major investor events, before hundreds of highly-educated and well-informed finance executives, I was struck by their focus on the turbulent shifts in geopolitical relations on a global scale of recent decades.

Illustration on putting Giuliani into position at the Department of Justice by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Setting the travesties straight

Suddenly, everything in Washington is the opposite of what it is supposed to be. Instead of Donald Trump colluding with the Russians to defeat Hillary Clinton, it was Hillary Clinton who colluded with the Russians against Mr. Trump. She paid over $10 million to Fusion GPS, who hired a former British intelligence officer with ties to Russian intelligence, which provided fabrications about Mr. Trump that ended up in the supposed Trump "dossier."

Water's Effect on our Climate Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

'In climate we trust'

Many religious people want to be at the forefront of the fight against climate change. They believe it is their spiritual duty. Acting on climate forecasts and analysis, they are inspired to save people and the planet from the evils of fossil fuels.

Illustration on Kurdistan's Prime Minister's worthiness for the Nobel Peace Prize by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Why Kurdistan's prime minister deserves the Nobel Peace Prize

After Kurdistan's Independence Referendum, most countries did not respect the right of the Kurdish people to declare themselves an independent state. The Americans were disturbed that the timing was not right for the referendum. The Turks, the Iraqis, the Iranians and the Syrians were hostile to the idea from the onset as they feared the possibility of losing territory to Kurdish national aspirations.

Illustration on how a carbon tax would adversely affect the poor by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Why a carbon tax does not work

The tax cut Congress and President Trump delivered to the American people in late December is already paying dividends. Retirement funds and stock portfolios have boomed, corporations are repatriating billions of dollars they sheltered overseas, multiple companies have indicated they are going to invest right here in America with new factories and business expansion, and millions of workers have reaped benefits totaling thousands of dollars each in tax cut bonuses, stock options and wage increases.

Helping Europe rebuild their economies

Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin abruptly ended wartime years of alliance with other nations with a February 1946 speech condemning capitalism as the "engine of modern war." He foresaw "inevitable conflict with the capitalist West."