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George Kenney
George Kenney is a writer and consultant based in Washington, D.C. He produces and hosts a podcast at Electric Politics ( and is on the Board of Editors of the magazine In These Times.

Mr. Kenney has written over sixty articles on the Balkans and on US national security policy for major national and international papers, including The New York Times, The New York Times Sunday Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, USA Today, The Nation, In These Times, The New Republic, The Christian Science Monitor, The Washington Times, The International Herald Tribune, Le Monde, Die Woche, Gaiko Forum, Mainichi Shimbun, Living Marxism, The Guardian, and The Foreign Service Journal.

He has also appeared frequently on television and radio as a commentator on foreign policy. He has been a guest on ABC, NBC, and CBS evening news; on the McNeil/Lehrer News Hour; on the Lehrer News Hour; on CNN international, world and main evening news; on CNN’s Crossfire; on Larry King Live; on two ABC Peter Jennings’ specials on the Bosnia crisis; on the Today Show, Good Morning America, and Face the Nation; on the Charlie Rose Show; on C-Span; on NPR; on VOA radio and television; on Monitor Radio; on NET; on BBC radio and television; on CBC radio and television; on CTV; and many other domestic and foreign programs.

From October 1992 until September 1994 Mr. Kenney was a consultant at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. In February 1993 Mr. Kenney testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He has lectured at over one hundred colleges, universities, and organizations, including Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Stanford, the University of Chicago, UCLA, the National War College, Westpoint, the National Foreign Affairs Training Center, the White House Fellows Association, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Atlantic Council, the Brookings Institution, the National Geographic Society, and Wilton Park. He is profiled in Marquis’ Who’s Who in America.

George Kenney resigned from the U.S. Department of State in August 1992 to protest policy towards the Yugoslav crisis. He was a career Foreign Service Officer. He last served in Washington in the European Bureau as acting officer in charge for Yugoslav affairs. In prior postings Mr. Kenney served as finance and development officer and deputy chief of the economic section at the U.S. Embassy in Kinshasa, Zaire; during the Gulf War as an international economist responsible for oil security issues in the Office of Global Energy, Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs; and as chief of the non-immigrant visa section in the U.S. Consulate General, Marseille, France. He had joined the State Department in 1988.

Mr. Kenney received his MA (1985) from the University of Chicago in Economics. At the University of Chicago he was also a Ph.D. student in Public Policy Studies. His BA is from the University of Washington, Seattle, where he received the Taraknath Das award for outstanding undergraduate in Asian Studies. He was born in 1956 in Algiers, Algeria.

Since 1997 Mr. Kenney has been battling a life-threatening hereditary illness, hemochromatosis, or iron overload. Physical constraints have much reduced his participation in public policy formation.

Entries by George Kenney

The Nuclear Crisis Nobody Mentions

(2) Comments | Posted May 7, 2015 | 1:51 AM

Those congressmen beating the war drums against Iran have reached new heights of hypocrisy considering their total disregard for the more dangerous, more immediate problems created by Pakistan's nuclear arsenal. It is noteworthy and also downright strange that no one else--from any political persuasion--is paying attention.

The trouble is, Pakistan...

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A Case for Neorealism

(3) Comments | Posted March 18, 2014 | 9:13 AM

Americans against war should know that Washington's neoconservatives are busily fanning the flames of a confrontation with Russia over Ukraine. [1] But there's more than this to the story. A different, also somewhat behind-the-scenes group passionately believes that the breakup of the Soviet Union didn't go far enough, that Russia...

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On Bombing Syria

(1) Comments | Posted August 27, 2013 | 12:36 PM

Let's say, hypothetically, that the Syrian regime did, in fact, use chemical weapons. Because the international community as a whole has a profound vested interest in banning the use of chemical weapons it would not, then, be completely unreasonable to exact a price from the Assad regime in the form...

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Considerations on Abolishing the Senate

(2) Comments | Posted June 10, 2013 | 11:18 AM

On the second to last day of the Philadelphia Convention, Saturday, September 15, 1787, in the second to last discussion of a substantive revision to the by then already printed up, nearly final draft [1], Roger Sherman of Connecticut raised his fear of the hypothetical possibility that, even if they...

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On Demythologizing Guns

(13) Comments | Posted February 9, 2013 | 6:30 AM

For as long as anyone can remember, whenever liberals try to regulate guns conservatives whinge that the government secretly wants to confiscate them. Invariably, liberals respond by bending over backward to show that they respect an American constitutional right to own guns and then, just as surely as day follows...

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It's Not About the Constitution

(17) Comments | Posted December 18, 2012 | 4:15 PM

The mass murder of innocent children is the price we pay for our constitutional system. And that price is too high. Mass murder, now horrifyingly routine in this country, should be a political problem. But it isn't. Whenever and wherever the most mild gun control law gets passed it immediately...

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A Modern Greek Tragedy

(5) Comments | Posted February 9, 2012 | 9:08 AM

Greece makes up about two percent of the European Union's economic activity. A rough comparison may be the greater Miami area within the United States. Municipal mismanagement in Miami, of course, could not in one's wildest imaginings bring down the dollar. So how is it possible that the Greek debt...

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Miscommunications With Iran

(86) Comments | Posted January 4, 2012 | 4:10 PM

The market for oil is a global market. Not perfectly homogenized, but global. So if the U.S. and Europe say that they plan to further "punish" Iran for its nuclear program by implementing a European boycott of Iranian oil or sanctions generally against those who buy Iranian oil, well, that's...

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The Dynamics of Economic Hostage Taking

(0) Comments | Posted May 2, 2011 | 1:35 AM

In 1917, the Congress passed, and the President signed, the Second Liberty Bond Act. Their intention was to help the Treasury Department better respond to rapidly changing World War I conditions when issuing government debt. For ninety four years that law has remained continually in effect, from time to time...

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Nixon Now!

(1) Comments | Posted April 11, 2011 | 4:27 PM

After a tough week, I collapsed in my leather recliner and drifted into a reverie. It smelled of wax, polish, sweat and stale cigar smoke. A voice spoke to me, "Uh, What are you doing in my bowling alley?" The voice belonged to none other than Richard Nixon. Somehow we...

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War Number Three

(0) Comments | Posted March 21, 2011 | 1:37 PM

Demonstrating the law of unintended consequences, the UN Security Council's Resolution 1973, adopted last Thursday evening, drew a swift response from Colonel Muammar Gaddafi's government: it launched the battle for Benghazi. Further unintended consequences will surely follow the UN/NATO coalition's use of its brand new license for military force....

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The U.S. Should Not Make War on Libya

(8) Comments | Posted March 7, 2011 | 4:44 PM

In the early phases of the Bosnian civil war I thought — wrongly, in retrospect — that the west had a narrow window of opportunity to throw in our lot with a genuinely multi-ethnic Bosnian government, to bring the war to a swift and just resolution. One of my mistakes...

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America Needs a New Constitution

(6) Comments | Posted October 22, 2010 | 8:33 AM

The narrative arc of American history covers a singularly fierce struggle between the wealthy and the rest. Aside from brief interludes, the wealthy prevail. But that's not because of the peculiarities of American political culture, or the frequently smaller than real life character of our political leaders, or the continental...

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Further Parsing "Birthright"

(105) Comments | Posted August 16, 2010 | 2:43 AM

Liberals should take care not to feign too much outrage against those who question birthright citizenship. The meaning of the citizenship clause of the 14th Amendment — if one stops for a moment to think about it — did not, when it was ratified in 1868, absolutely, unambiguously, and unconditionally...

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Matthew Hoh Speaks Grim Truth To Power

(85) Comments | Posted November 27, 2009 | 8:44 PM

The rare resignation on principle is always telling in American government. When Matthew Hoh recently left the State Department -- a Marine Captain in Iraq who became a diplomat in Afghanistan -- his act was significant far beyond the first reports.

Hoh speaks grim truth to power. His message is...

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