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Middle East

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In that classic compendium of American national security strategy "Get Smart," one of the more amusing episodes concerns the doings of a certain Freddie-the-Forger. Our shrewd espionage agent from CONTROL was at first reluctant to trust the good gentleman in question, given the latter's very long list of criminal convictions. But Agent Smart is finally... Read More
Bananas and Republics by Ron Unz, May 14, 2004 I must grudgingly admit that our Iraqi Adventure seems to have become in some respects a fascinating and invaluable educational experience, nearly on a daily basis. For example, today’s morning papers revealed that one or more of the prison images being shown to our august... Read More
I must grudgingly concede that even those liberal, pinko wimps over at Paul Weyrich's Free Congress Foundation occasionally propose interesting notions, such as in the latest column by William S. Lind. Lind raises a fascinating, though extremely speculative point, namely that if the current trajectory in Iraq continues in linear fashion, political certainties may suddenly... Read More
Lawrence Kaplan, a prominent neocon hawk, published a rather interesting op-ed recently in the Washington Post. The central claim of the piece is Kaplan’s somewhat counter-intuitive conclusion that our citizenry would gladly accept losing 30,000 American dead in Iraq if such losses were required to achieve neocon strategic objectives. Kaplan denounces those arguing otherwise –... Read More
Having been overly preoccupied in recent weeks with some complex software development issues, I must belatedly---but very sincerely---issue a heartfelt Thank You to the Rev. Pat Robertson, whose recent actions appear to have done so much to rescue America, and thereby have permanently established him as one of my greatest personal heroes. Consider that just... Read More
By a truly remarkable coincidence, right around the time we were digging an old has-been anti-Islamicist dictator out of his grungy foxhole, the pro-American dictator of Pakistan reportedly came within seven seconds of being blown up by a half-ton bomb in a supposedly ultra-secure portion of his capital city. President Musharaf has no obvious successor.... Read More
California newspapers recently reported that Gov. Gray Davis had now reached the lowest approval rating of any governor in the entire history of our state. That is no great surprise, since Davis is almost universally despised as an extremely distasteful lifelong politician whose policy failures are legion and whose only ideology is raising money and... Read More
As all sources indicate, the overwhelming choice of our neocon hawks to lead post-war Iraq is one Ahmed Chalabi. Now as anyone reading our newspapers should also know, Mr. Chalabi happens to be a convicted embezzler who hasn't set foot in Iraq for over forty years. This certainly doesn't prove anything. Perhaps a convicted embezzler... Read More
This morning, one of America's leading leftwing, dovish, anti-American, quasi-anti-Semitic national newspapers carried this opening phrase in its front-page coverage: "Far from being hailed immediately as liberators, invading U.S. and British forces in southern Iraq are facing deep hostility and gunfire from some residents..." These words by our own Wall Street Journal was echoed by... Read More
Yesterday's New Yorker carried a remarkable lead story by investigative reporter Seymour Hersh regarding the business dealings of uber-hawk Richard Perle. Perle, the Chairman of the Defense Policy Board, is widely characterized as the central figure in the current Iraq War plans, with his various disciples or followers being the key government officials. As you... Read More
Mohamed Atta, the apparent ringleader of the 9/11 terrorist squad that destroyed our World Trade Center and killed 3,000 Americans, was clearly a very bad man, at least by American standards. But although his attack automatically placed him beyond the reach of American (as opposed to Divine) justice, we may rest assured that he went... Read More
One of the less widely known truths about political movements is that they are frequently filled with a generous helping of lunatics. Only such individuals possess the fanatic zeal that endows them with the energy and commitment to achieve results. They are the ones still furiously debating the obscure planks of a political platform at... Read More
Any attempt to resolve the crisis in the Middle East forces us -- the American people and American Jewry -- to appraise the motives and the ultimate goals of the leaders involved. Endless disputes have raged over whether Yasser Arafat and the other Arab leaders merely seek a Palestinian state living peacefully alongside Israel or... Read More
I attach below my own analysis of the current difficulties in the Middle East, which ran in this morning's Sacramento Bee. I do not doubt that many readers will find my words quite controversial. The Middle East seems to attract controversy as easily as honey does flies. For example, Sen. James Inhofe, a prominent conservative... Read More
On September 11th, America suffered the greatest military blow to its homeland since a British army burned our national capital almost two hundred years ago. Our people and our leaders have properly treated this attack and the threat of future attacks as an extraordinarily great national crisis, during which the normal rules of politics must... Read More
In recent weeks, the rapid rise of a new and powerful military weapon---the suicide bomber---has horrified much of the world. Fanatic Palestinian militants, sometimes even teenage girls, have willingly taken their own lives in order to kill and wound as many Israeli civilians as possible, thereby bringing the terror of war to the Israeli home... Read More
The national bout of rampant Arabophobia in our media reached its zenith (or perhaps its nadir) in a recent column posted on, America's premier anti-immigrationist website, which I had previously discussed a few weeks ago: vs. the 'Goldberg' Review", December 20, 2001 In a commentary on the controversy surrounding the case of Walid... Read More
The October issue of Commentary, the neoconservative flagship publication of the American Jewish Committee, carried a powerful cover story by former editor Norman Podhoretz, making a convincing case for the complete and dismal failure of the Middle-East peace process originally set in motion by the Oslo Agreement of 1993. In response, I sent an extremely... Read More
Up through the early morning hours of September 11th, denunciation of the ethnic profiling of suspects by the police looked well on its way to becoming a near-universal component of political stump speeches, on a par with praise for the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Civil Rights revolution of the 1960s. To... Read More
About Ron Unz

A theoretical physicist by training, Mr. Unz serves as founder and chairman of, a content-archiving website providing free access to many hundreds of thousands of articles from prominent periodicals of the last hundred and fifty years. From 2007 to 2013, he also served as publisher of The American Conservative, a small opinion magazine, and had previously served as chairman of Wall Street Analytics, Inc., a financial services software company which he founded in New York City in 1987. He holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Harvard University, Cambridge University, and Stanford University, and is a past first-place winner in the Intel/Westinghouse Science Talent Search. He was born in Los Angeles in 1961.

He has long been deeply interested in public policy issues, and his writings on issues of immigration, race, ethnicity, and social policy have appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, The Nation, and numerous other publications.

In 1994, he launched a surprise Republican primary challenge to incumbent Gov. Pete Wilson of California, running on a conservative, pro-immigrant platform against the prevailing political sentiment, and received 34% of the vote. Later that year, he campaigned as a leading opponent of Prop. 187, the anti-immigration initiative, and was a top featured speaker at a 70,000 person pro-immigrant march in Los Angeles, the largest political rally in California history to that date.

In 1997, Mr. Unz began his “English for the Children” initiative campaign to dismantle bilingual education in California. He drafted Prop. 227 and led the campaign to qualify and pass the measure, culminating in a landslide 61% victory in June 1998, effectively eliminating over one-third of America’s bilingual programs. Within less than three years of the new English immersion curriculum, the mean percentile test scores of over a million immigrant students in California rose by an average of 70%. He later organized and led similar initiative campaigns in other states, winning with 63% in the 2000 Arizona vote and a remarkable 68% in the 2002 Massachusetts vote without spending a single dollar on advertising.

After spending most of the 2000s focused on software projects, he has recently become much more active in his public policy writings, most of which had appeared in his own magazine.