WASHINGTON - This week's meeting between Pope Francis and President Barack Obama holds great promise in a time of turmoil, though not necessarily in the ways some may hope.
Will everyone please stop talking about a new Cold War?
WASHINGTON - "Once an agent, always an agent."
SAN DIEGO - As someone who is often prodded to declare my allegiance to the United States, I'm envious of a group of Americans that no longer has to put up with such demands.
WASHINGTON - The president of the Los Angeles World Affairs Council challenges critics of President Barack Obama's Ukraine policy by saying "What are you going to do, send the 101st Airborne into Crimea?" Not exactly subtle. And rather silly, considering that no one has proposed such a thing.
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Our withdrawals from Iraq, and now imminently from Afghanistan, are not the reason that we find ourselves dealing with governments in both these countries that are not doing as we think they should.
WASHINGTON - Former secretary of state, national security adviser and Nobel Peace Prize winner Henry Kissinger is, by all measures, a foreign policy heavyweight. At a recent black-tie dinner, he stood - stoop-shouldered and peering imperiously over his signature thick, black-frame glasses - and remarked: "Unilateral withdrawal is not victory."
WASHINGTON - There's nothing quite so helpful as a fatwa and threats of a Christian boycott to create buzz in advance of new movie.
In case you hadn't heard, young people these days - aka "the millennials" - are the most cynical and distrusting generation ever recorded. Only 19 percent think most people can be trusted.
It's on! Ostensible allies for the last couple years, Sens. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Rand Paul, R-Ky., have commenced the battle for the unofficial title of conservative front-runner.
SAN DIEGO - Mexicans have a graphic saying that should serve as a warning to today's parents, not only south of the border but also in the United States. It loosely translates as: "If you raise crows, they'll scratch out your eyes."
WASHINGTON - I must need to smoke pot.
SAN DIEGO - You have to be careful with flags. They're not just harmless pieces of cloth meant to inspire patriotism and national pride. Those seemingly innocent sheets of fabric can lead to all sorts of trouble.
WASHINGTON - Vladimir Putin is a lucky man. And he's got three more years of luck to come.
WASHINGTON - When the going gets tough, well, why not just make the going easier?
The lone wolf is the new national nightmare, dramatized and amplified last week by the hostage-taking attack in Sydney, Australia. But there are two kinds of lone wolves - the crazy and the evil - and the distinction is important.
The first issue of Captain America came out on Dec. 20, 1940. It shows Cap slugging Adolph Hitler in the mouth.
Old habits die hard. The media are so enamored of the continuing (and largely contrived) story about the great Republican civil war that they fail to appreciate that the real internecine fight is being waged on the other side of the aisle.
Dec. 7 is the day every year when most everyone stops to mark "that day" in 1941 when Pearl Harbor was attacked and the world changed forever.
As the curtain closes on the latest episode of "Ferguson," the media series, it is fair to wonder whether events might not have spiraled out of control to the extent they did had the media settled on another topic.
Maybe President Barack Obama is just trolling?
Historic. Such is the ubiquitous description of the climate agreement recently announced in Beijing between Barack Obama and Xi Jinping in which China promised for the first time to cap carbon emissions.
The European Space Agency's Rosetta project accomplished one of the most impressive scientific feats in our lifetime. It essentially moved a clunky machine from one speeding bullet onto another, by remote control, from 310 million miles away. It's hoped this achievement will help usher in a new era of space exploration by teaching us how to exploit the raw materials swirling around the solar system. Also, it was really cool.
News that Pope Francis will visit the U.S. next year for the triennial World Meeting of Families brings elation to Catholics, excitement to pope watchers - and perhaps a little chagrin to some who too soon interpreted Francis' broad compassion as a precursor to doctrinal changes related to marriage.
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