Ken Ballen

Nota: Este archivo abarca los artículos publicados por el autor desde el 1 de mayo de 2009. Para fechas anteriores realice una búsqueda entrecomillando su nombre.

A traditional grand conclave of elders, a Loya Jirga, convenes Thursday in Kabul, Afghanistan, to decide whether U.S. forces can remain in the country past 2014. But events this past weekend illustrated the continuing perils and myopia of American policy.

On Saturday, just a few hundred yards from the site of Thursday’s critical meeting, expected to be attended by 2,500 people, a car bomb exploded, killing at least 13 people. The Taliban took responsibility. At the same time, at Georgetown University in Washington, former first ladies Laura Bush and Hillary Clinton took the stage together to exhort Americans not to abandon the women of Afghanistan.…  Seguir leyendo »

There are many unanswered questions about the motivations of the alleged Boston Marathon bombers, Tamerlan Tsarnaev and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. But it is becoming increasingly clear that they were inspired by faith in a radical Islamist ideology. Dzhokhar has told investigators that, among other things, he and his brother wanted to defend Islam, while Tamerlan’s social media accounts are replete with clips by extremist clerics.

As the investigation continues to unravel the seeming paradox of how two apparently normal young men could commit acts of violence, classmates, neighbors and relatives of those who knew them have expressed surprise and disbelief.

I have interviewed over the past seven years more than a hundred radical extremists, including numerous al Qaeda and Taliban members, and it appears the Tsarnaev brothers fit the profile of many young men who turn to radicalism.…  Seguir leyendo »

The election results in Iran may reflect the will of the Iranian people. Many experts are claiming that the margin of victory of incumbent President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was the result of fraud or manipulation, but our nationwide public opinion survey of Iranians three weeks before the vote showed Ahmadinejad leading by a more than 2 to 1 margin — greater than his actual apparent margin of victory in Friday’s election.

While Western news reports from Tehran in the days leading up to the voting portrayed an Iranian public enthusiastic about Ahmadinejad’s principal opponent, Mir Hossein Mousavi, our scientific sampling from across all 30 of Iran’s provinces showed Ahmadinejad well ahead.…  Seguir leyendo »