The Oberlin Review

Trump’s Strike Against Iranian General Has Proven Ineffective

Leo Hochberg, Columnist

February 14, 2020

 You’ve doubtlessly heard that on Jan. 3, President Trump ordered an execution strike, killing Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, along with Iranian politician and commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis and several others at the Baghdad airport. In the following days, many speculated: Are we headed towards another undesirable Middle East conflict? Is this the beginning of a dangerous and illegal shadow war between Iran and the U.S., rife with rebounding political assassinations? Have years of growing tensions between the two countries now triggered an irreversible wave of violence that will kill and maim countless Iraqi and Iranian civilians? Thankfully, for the time being, the answer appears to be “no.” When Iran r...

Voters Must Be Patient

Booker C. Peek, Professor Emeritus of Africana Studies

February 14, 2020

 Four white men and two white women are now the leading Democratic candidates competing against each other to replace President Donald J. Trump in November. Many of America’s most respected and admired Black media commentators, especially those on liberal television channels, radio stations, and other media outlets, have instantly challenged all six to explain in full their questionable or checkered past of policies and actions that are clearly either racist or smell of racism. Bernie Sanders, Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar, Mike Bloomberg, Elizabeth Warren, and Joe Biden cannot cavalierly dismiss so many beloved Black scholars, social workers, and leaders.  African Americans — indeed, all Americans — should want to hear in the minutest detail wh...

Colonial Hangover, Right-Wing Populism Define Indian Democracy

Kushagra Kar, Production Editor

November 1, 2019

 History testifies that the single most influential construct in the postmodern world is imperialism. The remnants of colonial structures still loom over integral aspects of society in what we know today as ‘the third world’. India, for example, is still reeling from the consequences of the blind partition of the country that birthed modern-day Pakistan. Caught in the crosshairs of the newly-formed nations was the Kingdom of Kashmir. After a brief and bloody guerilla struggle between India and Pakistan, India absorbed the Kingdom on the condition that it be granted regional autonomy, provisional under Article 370 of the Indian Constitution.  The partition began a 72-year-long tussle between India and Pakistan that — even after ...

Fiscal Attack on Special Olympics Opens Dialogue About Impact of Sports

Jane Agler, Sports Editor

April 5, 2019

Due to President Donald Trump’s proposed budget for the 2020 fiscal year, the Department of Education is facing a potential 10 percent budget reduction and is looking for ways to effectively subsidize the loss. This is the third year in a row the President has prioritized the military and the building of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border over education, putting pressure on Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos to make up the difference. However, her resulting proposal was yet another ill-informed and ludicrous step in her long history of errors as education secretary. Last week, DeVos proposed a $17.6 million cut in funding for the Special Olympics, a move that has garnered widespread criticism from colleag...

Nation Would Benefit More From Political Unity Than Division

Booker C. Peek

April 20, 2018

To the Editors: Most of us in this part of Ohio root for the Cavs, Browns, or the Cleveland baseball team. Most people in New York, California, Texas, Boston, etc. root for their local teams. All year long there is a healthy exchange among sports fans from various parts of our nation. Occasionally, each area has its moments to brag, though some areas seem to be a lot more favored than others. The division of opinions or the rooting for this or that team has many advantages to a thriving nation. However, there should never be any division among us as a people, a nation, as far as ensuring that the poor, especially, and others receive excellent healthcare, get a fine education, have good jobs, decent homes, feel saf...

Students Should Engage in Secretary of State Race

Nathan Carpenter, Columnist

April 20, 2018

Almost immediately following President Donald Trump’s election in November 2016, political commentators and activists — particularly those on the left — turned their attention toward the 2018 elections. We now find ourselves just six months out from those elections, in which every seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, several key seats in the Senate, and many vital state-level offices will be fiercely contested. As usual, Ohioans find themselves in the thick of the political fray. Many key elections will take place in the state this November, including those for the governor’s mansion, where term-limited Governor John Kasich cannot seek reelection, and for progressive Senator Sherrod Brown’s seat, w...

Increasing Medical Marijuana Accessibility Would Help Fight Opioid Epidemic

Editorial Board

April 6, 2018

President Trump gave a speech on March 29 in Richfield, Ohio, that, among other topics, tapped into a conversation which hits home for many Ohioans: opioid addiction. As of December 2016, Ohio’s opioid-related death rate of 39 percent was second only to that of West Virginia. Out of the 4,329 general drug overdose deaths in Ohio in 2016, 83 percent of these deaths were opioid-related. Despite numerous attempts at lowering this death rate through policy, nothing seems to work. Trump’s audience, mainly union engineers and maintenance workers, and the setting, an industrial barn, were carefully chosen; his words, less so. One topic that he failed to mention — as most legislators have failed to as well — is the po...

Americans Must Resist Russian Influence

Editorial Board

February 23, 2018

In May 2016, as Donald Trump’s campaign snowballed into a force of nature, a quiet conversation at the Kensington Wine Rooms between George Papadopoulos, a foreign policy advisor to the campaign, and Australian diplomat Alexander Downer took on the distinct scent of a smoking gun. Having overindulged in the establishment’s titular offering, Papadopoulos mentioned to Downer that Joseph Mifsud — a professor with connections to Russia — had indicated that the foreign government had “dirt” on Hillary Clinton, instigating a push to connect Trump to Russian efforts to discredit the Democratic candidate. Downer was not the confidant Papadopoulos may have expected, and provided the tip that would kick off a clandes...

Accusations of Treason Threaten Democracy

Booker C Peek

February 9, 2018

To the Editors: Donald Trump is our president, and we should all root for him to succeed in doing what is best for all Americans — even though on the very day of 2009 that former President Obama was sworn in as America’s first black president, Senator Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, expressed publicly that he was rooting for Obama to fail. He is our president because he was duly elected, though Hillary Clinton received far more of the popular — not electoral — vote than he. Surely, there can be a good debate over which is the better way to choose our president. Regardless, Trump is our president, and we want him to be successful, especially in making America greater than ever for all Americans. Tru...

Trump Abandons Precedent in Israel, Endangers Citizens

Marah Ajilat, Contributing Writer

December 8, 2017

All Americans, Jewish or otherwise, should oppose Trump’s decision to relocate the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. The truth is, Trump is only invested in Jews because he thinks the holy city of Jerusalem is his ticket to a second presidential term. It should come as no surprise that Trump only seeks to serve himself and his self-interest. He banned Muslims from seven countries from entering the U.S., claiming fear of terrorism, but did not include Saudi Arabia, the country where some 9/11 hijackers were citizens, on that list, because he did not want to compromise his business relations with Saudi Arabia — from whom he had a received a $100-million check months before. Similarly, Trump and the American Israel P...

Trump Reverts to Republican Orthodoxy

Ben Silverman, Columnist

April 28, 2017

Former Breitbart News editor and President Donald Trump’s right-hand man Steve Bannon was ousted from his role on the National Security Council on April 5 and has continued to fall in standing in Trump’s inner circle since then, according to reports from The Hill and Vanity Fair, among others. Recent events have large implications for the remainder of the Trump presidency, as Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump and other establishment Republicans have replaced Bannon at the president’s side. This changing of the guard has influenced Donald’s recent budget proposals, which include a tax cut disproportionately benefiting the wealthy and a lack of funding for his proposed border wall. The divides within Donald’s circle o...

Trump Recklessly Tempts War

Russell Jaffe, Columnist

April 21, 2017

International tensions are on the rise as North Korea and the United States trade increasingly threatening demonstrations of military power. In one deliberate provocation, President Donald Trump supposedly sent an aircraft carrier to the Korean peninsula in a move that North Korea condemned as “reckless.” However, on Saturday’s “Day of the Sun,” a festival celebrating the birthday of Kim Il-Sung, North Korea’s founder, Kim Jong Un responded by publicly flaunting his military arsenal, and is currently rumored to be planning further nuclear tests to advance North Korea’s place in the arms race. For the first time since the Cold War, World War III looms as a serious threat on the horizon. It is difficult...

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