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Medea Benjamin
Medea Benjamin is cofounder of CODEPINK: Women for Peace and the human rights group Global Exchange.

Entries by Medea Benjamin

The Execution of Nimr Al-Nimr: One More Reason to Rethink the Toxic U.S.-Saudi Alliance

(74) Comments | Posted January 4, 2016 | 2:15 PM

The brutal Saudi execution of Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr Al-Nimr has led to protests around the globe, as well as the burning of the Saudi Embassy in Tehran, followed by the Saudi severing of relations with Iran. This exacerbation of Sunni-Shia tensions is the result of the reckless...

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10 Good Things About the Not-So-Great Year 2015

(6) Comments | Posted December 23, 2015 | 3:18 PM

It would certainly be easy to do a piece about 10 horrible events from 2015, from the ongoing war in Syria and the refugee crisis, to the bombings in Beirut, Paris and San Bernardino, to the rise of Donald Trump and Islamophobia. But that wouldn't be a very inspiring way...

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Yemen Crisis: One More Reason to Re-evaluate the Toxic U.S.-Saudi Alliance

(3) Comments | Posted December 18, 2015 | 6:18 PM

After almost a year of civil war, the conflicting forces in Yemen sat down on December 15 in Geneva, Switzerland, to discuss the prospect of finding a political solution to the conflict that has been raging since March 2015. While this is a necessary step towards ending the violence that...

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Is Saudi Women's Vote a Step Forward?

(8) Comments | Posted December 14, 2015 | 1:18 PM

The global press has been heralding the December 13, 2015, vote in Saudi Arabia as a breakthrough for women, since it's the first time in history that Saudi women have been allowed to vote. But is this vote really a significant step forward?

First let's consider the Saudi electoral system...

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Prescription for Afghan Hospital Bombing: Independent Investigation and U.S. Troop Withdrawal

(9) Comments | Posted October 13, 2015 | 1:18 PM

On October 3, a US airstrike destroyed a Médecins Sans Frontières (also known as Doctors Without Borders) hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan, killing 22 healthcare workers and patients. On October 6, the commander of US armed forces in Afghanistan, General John Campbell, told the US Senate Armed Services committee that the...

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10 Reasons to Oppose the Saudi Monarchy

(61) Comments | Posted September 24, 2015 | 2:46 PM

During the discussion on the Iran nuclear deal, it has been strange to hear US politicians fiercely condemn Iranian human rights abuses while remaining silent about worse abuses by US ally Saudi Arabia. Not only is the Saudi regime repressive at home and abroad, but US weapons and US support...

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Who's the Real Troublemaker in the Middle East?

(1) Comments | Posted August 19, 2015 | 11:11 PM

This article was originally published in OtherWords.

Except for maybe the Affordable Care Act, nothing gets Republican politicians fired up like Iran.

In the first GOP debate alone, Scott Walker promised that he'd tear up the Iran nuclear deal on day one of his presidency. Carly...

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10 Steps to Wean U.S. Foreign Policy Off Militarism

(0) Comments | Posted August 6, 2015 | 6:05 PM

President Obama, after spending most of his time in office pursuing foreign policies similar to those of George Bush, has now discovered diplomacy. While he hasn't stopped U.S. military intervention overseas, including his signature drone strikes, he has brokered two historic deals: one with Cuba to begin the process of...

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Salvador's Draconian Abortion Laws: A Miscarriage of Justice

(14) Comments | Posted July 27, 2015 | 6:13 PM

Co-authored by Michael Avender and Medea Benjamin

"We are here to speak for them, to call for their release. When there is an injustice, silence is complicity," said Father Roy Bourgeois, founder of School of the Americas Watch and a decades-long advocate for human rights in Latin America. He was...

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Multimillion-dollar Ad Campaigns Aim to Influence Congressional Votes

(2) Comments | Posted July 10, 2015 | 1:09 PM

This content was originally published by teleSUR.

A nuclear deal with Iran could be a game changer for U.S. foreign policy and for the Middle East. The P5+1 (the U.S., China, Russia, France and the United Kingdom, plus Germany) and Iran have been developing a comprehensive agreement that...

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'While the Flotilla Didn't Make it to Gaza, Israel Didn't Win'

(145) Comments | Posted July 2, 2015 | 9:05 AM

Israel Defense Forces violently intercepted the Swedish boat named Marianne in the early hours of June 29 to prevent it from landing in Gaza, using tasers against unarmed passengers. The 18 passengers, whose mission was to break the siege of Gaza, were taken to the Israeli port of...

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Can the UN Talks Bring Peace to Shattered Yemen?

(5) Comments | Posted June 15, 2015 | 2:22 PM

This post was co-authored with Nalini Ramachandran.

Over the weekend on June 14, UN-brokered talks began in Geneva, but many Yemenis know that with the increasingly hostile armed factions, a destroyed economy and the Saudi/Iran rivalry playing itself out in their country, peace will be hard to come by.


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Pave Paradise, Put Up a Naval Base: South Korean Activists' Extraordinary Struggle to Save Jeju Island

(1) Comments | Posted May 29, 2015 | 1:48 PM

South Korea's Jeju Island is a popular tourist destination full of spas, resorts, golf courses, sandy beaches, waterfalls and hiking trails. But if you really want to get rejuvenated, skip the tourist hotspots and go directly to the village of Gangjeong to support the extraordinary community that has been opposing...

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Gyrocopter Pilot Flew for Reform, Might Land in Prison

(3) Comments | Posted May 18, 2015 | 12:13 PM

Doug Hughes, a mailman from Florida who recently made headline news for flying his gyrocopter onto the West Lawn at the U.S. Capitol Building, will be in Washington DC for his first court hearing on May 21. Hughes has been charged with operating an unregistered aircraft and violating national airspace,...

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Obama's Gulf Meeting Protocol: Shake Hands, Smile, Ignore Repression, Repeat

(12) Comments | Posted May 13, 2015 | 11:53 AM

Co-authored by Nalini Ramachandran

Washington, D.C. is presently the converging point for some of the world's most oppressive regimes. On May 13th and 14th, President Obama is hosting a billionaire conglomerate known as the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which consists of the Middle Eastern countries of Kuwait, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia,...

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Women Bridge Divide Between Koreas By Crossing the DMZ

(7) Comments | Posted May 6, 2015 | 1:45 PM

During the Bush administration, Iran, Iraq and North Korea were collectively known as the "Axis of Evil" -- common enemies of the U.S. for alleged terrorist activities and pursuit of weapons of mass destruction. Such an ominous-sounding triumvirate helped to garner public support for the U.S. "War on Terror" that...

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Hillary the Hawk

(1) Comments | Posted April 22, 2015 | 5:27 PM

Co-authored by Charles Davis

Announcing her latest campaign for the presidency, Hillary Clinton declared she was entering the race to be the champion for "everyday Americans." As a lawmaker and diplomat, however, Clinton has long championed military campaigns that have killed scores of "everyday" people abroad, from Iraq...

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No Room for Business as Usual at the Summit of the Americas

(1) Comments | Posted April 20, 2015 | 1:53 PM

While all eyes during the Summit of the Americas in Panama were on the hemisphere's presidents and political intrigues, such as the meeting between President Obama and Cuban President Castro or the hostilities between the United States and Venezuela, far more substantial was the separate meeting taking place at the...

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Cuba's Coming Out Party at the Summit of the Americas

(3) Comments | Posted April 13, 2015 | 12:33 PM

For the small island of Cuba, the VII Summit of the Americas in Panama marked a kind of "coming out" party. Banned from the for-capitalists-only gatherings from the time they began in 1994, Cuba was not only invited to participate in the Summit this year, it was the belle of...

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Menendez Downfall Could Be Diplomacy's Windfall

(2) Comments | Posted March 30, 2015 | 6:54 PM

Co-authored by Katie Powers

Senator Robert Menendez, a powerful Democrat from New Jersey, has been down on his luck lately. He is currently under federal investigation for corruption, and although the senator has denied all allegations, charges are expected to be filed against him any day now.

This is...

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