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Turkey: Why Yet Another Country Invaded Syria


The Progressive, September 2, 2016 by Reese Erlich On August 23, Turkey sent troops, tanks, and artillery into the mainly Kurdish region of northern Syria, ostensibly to fight the Islamic State (IS). Turkey joins the United States, Russia, Iran, and Lebanon’s Hezbollah in stationing troops in Syria in what has become an international proxy war. … Continue reading

Guitarist Lionel Loueke at Montreal Jazz Festival, 2016. 
(c) 2016 Reese Erlich

What’s a jazz festival with almost no jazz?


FROM THE LEFT SIDE OF THE BALCONY By Reese Erlich The East Bay Monthly, August, 2016 At the recent Oakland Jazz Festival, most of the performers weren’t jazz musicians. The event featured fine R&B and soul groups but only a smattering of jazz. I see the same phenomena at such famous events as the North … Continue reading

A Little Advice for Hollywood: What current films say about the empire’s collapse


FROM THE LEFT SIDE OF THE BALCONY East Bay Monthly, September, 2016 By Reese Erlich Movies are both a reflection of our political culture and a means to shape it. For example, the James Bond films of the ’60s and ’70s helped maintain a distain for communists, whether a cruel Soviet spy or a machine-gun … Continue reading

Woman & Poster

US Companies Are Missing Out On Billions as Iran Opens Up to International Trade


By Reese Erlich, VICE News, March 20, 2016   Chinese and European companies are scrambling to invest in Iran and bringing home multibillion-dollar deals — while US corporations, barred from doing business with a newly-opening Islamic Republic, are forced to watch as their competitors tap into a market of 80 million people.   The nuclear … Continue reading

Moving and shocking: play condemns solitary confinement in USA


Reese Erlich, East Bay Monthly, July 2016 Sarah Shourd was held in solidarity confinement for 410 days in Iran as one of the three American hikers. The experience nearly drove her insane.   “I fluctuated between rages where I beat at the walls of my cell until my knuckles were bloody,” the Oakland resident told … Continue reading

The verdict is in on Northern California’s best politically correct wines


Reese Erlich, East Bay Monthly, June 2016 The right wing has hijacked the term “politically correct.” It has become a catch-all insult to hurl at anyone left of center who dares to stand up to their bullying.   The media mashers at Fox News, for example, propagate the myth that leftist professors enforce political orthodoxy … Continue reading

Young People Hold the Key to Victory as Iran Goes to the Polls


 by Reese Erlich, VICE News, February 26, 2016  TEHRAN — Iranians vote on Friday in a momentous election in this country of 77 million, the second-largest economy in the Middle East. Whether they vote or stay home may be the deciding factor for a reformist or a conservative victory, according to Iranian experts.   About … Continue reading

Waiting for Trump: watching US elections in Tehran


Iranians ponder the possible implications of the US presidential election on the future of the nuclear agreement   Reese Erlich for Tehran Bureau, posted on Guardian webpage Monday 7 March 2016 07.34 EST As American hardliners scramble to see who can bash Iran harder, Iranians worry the power struggle for control of the United States … Continue reading

Why the Left Should Support Donald Trump


By Reese Erlich East Bay Monthly, May 2016   I know, I know, you’re thinking Erlich has gone crazy. But just hear me out. The U.S. political party system is in crisis. The Republican Party is fracturing into several parts. The Democratic primary has finally produced a real choice, but the establishment candidate will win. … Continue reading

Tehran worker

Iran’s President Is Betting Billions on Economic Reform


By Reese Erlich VICE News, April 19, 2016   Remember the $150 billion windfall from the nuclear deal that US hawks said Iran could use to sponsor terrorism? Turns out the Iranian government has brought back $7 billion, and most of it will be used for development projects, according to Iranian officials and economists — … Continue reading