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Clifford D. May

Clifford D. May

Clifford D. May is president of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and a columnist for The Washington Times. He can be reached at cliff@fdd.org.

Columns by Clifford D. May

Illustration on the processing of national security intelligence by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

CLIFFORD MAY: National security memo to presidential campaign advisers

This memorandum is addressed to the brave souls advising presidential candidates. As you know, the recent terrorist attacks in France -- and in Mali, Nigeria, Cameroon, Egypt, Lebanon, Turkey and Israel -- have altered the political landscape. With less than a year to go before the 2016 election, the landscape may stay altered even if there are no more attacks -- and that seems unlikely. Published November 24, 2015

Illustration on the need for America to effectively fight back against ISIS by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

CLIFFORD MAY: Lessons learned from Paris

For almost two generations, since Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution, self-proclaimed jihadis have been fighting to re-establish Islamic supremacy and domination in the world. Leaders of the nations they have been targeting have regarded them as a problem -- but mostly not as dangerous enemies who must be decisively defeated. Published November 17, 2015

Illustration on the U.N.'s 70th anniversary by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

CLIFFORD MAY: An unhappy United Nations birthday

Did it escape your attention that last month was the 70th birthday of the United Nations? Did you miss the opportunity to celebrate by following Elyx on an "exciting 70-day (virtual) trip around the world to shine light on the U.N.'s work"? Published November 3, 2015

Illustration on the Palestinian low-tech terror campaign against Israel by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

CLIFFORD MAY: Palestinian attacks in the Holy Land

JERUSALEM -- Over the years, Israelis have had to defend themselves from foreign armies, suicide bombers and missiles. Over recent weeks, they've been confronting a new threat: young Palestinians wielding butcher knives. Published October 20, 2015

Iranian Involvement in the Assassination of Alberto Nisman Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

CLIFFORD MAY: Alberto Nisman Argentine murder mystery

When heads of state gather, as they did for the United Nations General Assembly last week, you have a choice: Tune out or prepare to be bathed in blather, boilerplate and blatant lies. Published October 6, 2015

Illustration on the Putin kleptocracy in Russia by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

CLIFFORD MAY: Vladimir Putin’s progress

Not long after the implosion of the Soviet Union, I attended a conference in Moscow. The topic: how Russia would evolve in the post-communist era about to begin. Most participants were confident and optimistic. A few of us Americans -- not so much. Published September 29, 2015

Illustration on the reasons to defend Israel by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

CLIFFORD MAY: Why Republican presidential candidates support Israel

So last week during the Republican debate, hundreds of thousands of people read your tweets lambasting four of the candidates -- Gov. Chris Christie, former Gov. Mike Huckabee and Senators Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz -- for expressing their strong support for Israel. Published September 22, 2015

CLIFFORD MAY: The exodus to Europe’s promised lands

Hundreds of thousands of migrants are leaving the Middle East, heading to what they see as the promised lands of Europe and, if possible, America. Notice where they are not going. Published September 15, 2015

Iran deal: The deadly danger of appeasing Iran

"Appeasement" gets a bad rap but, strictly speaking, the word implies nothing more than an attempt to make peace. If aggrieved adversaries can be pacified by reasonable concessions, what's wrong with that? Published September 15, 2015

Illustration on remaining possibilities to unravel the Obama/Iran nuclear weapons deal by Kevin Kreneck/Tribune Content Agency

CLIFFORD MAY: Awful Iran deal can be undone

The debate over the deal President Obama has cut with Iran's rulers is supposed to end this week. The New York Times, The Associated Press and others in the media are reporting that the White House has achieved a "victory." On what basis? Published September 8, 2015

Illustration on the pitfalls of appeasement by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

CLIFFORD MAY: Peril in appeasing Iran

"Appeasement" gets a bad rap but, strictly speaking, the word implies nothing more than an attempt to make peace. If aggrieved adversaries can be pacified by reasonable concessions, what's wrong with that? Published September 1, 2015

Illustration on the Obama/Iran nuclear arms deal by Paul Tong/Tribune Content Agency

CLIFFORD MAY: The Parchin Precedent

Initially, I thought the news was beyond parody. The Associated Press last week ran a story headlined: "U.N. to let Iran inspect nuke work site." Published August 25, 2015

Illustration on Senator Chuck Schumer's opposition to the Obama/Iran nuclear weapons deal by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

CLIFFORD MAY: Chuck Schumer right to reject Iran nuclear arms empowerment deal

I've been thinking about writing you for a while regarding your vote on President Obama's Iran deal. I knew you'd recognize that, from a policy perspective, this deal doesn't get a passing grade. But, from a political perspective, I understood that voting to disapprove would not be easy. Then, last week you announced your decisions in an incisive 1,670-word essay. Kudos to you. Published August 11, 2015

Illustration on the real nature of the BDS movement by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

CLIFFORD MAY: Mounting a defense against economic warfare

Attempts to exterminate Israel through what we have come to call "kinetic warfare" began immediately following Arab rejection of the U.N. Partition Plan of 1947 -- the first offer of a "two-state solution." Published August 4, 2015

Illustration on America's radical Islamist enemies by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

CLIFFORD MAY: West needs more determination to defeat Islamic State

"The enemy has to be defeated," U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter last week told American forces stationed in the Middle East. That is a simple truth, one that, regrettably, is not heard often from officials in the current administration. Mr. Carter then added: "It will be, because the barbarians are always defeated by civilization." That is a comforting sentiment -- one that, regrettably, is not supported by historical evidence. Published July 28, 2015

CLIFFORD MAY: Scuttle Obama’s Iran deal, or surrender

The fundamental flaws in President Obama's deal with Iran have become well known. Among them: Iran's rulers will have the power to delay or even prevent inspections of suspected nuclear weapons facilities; Iran's rulers will receive tens of billions of dollars that they can spend as they please, including on terrorist groups; Iran's rulers will have several paths to nuclear weapons -- they have promised only not to rush. In the past, such promises have hardly been ironclad. Published July 21, 2015