Robert C. Koehler

Robert C. Koehler

Robert Koehler is an award-winning, Chicago-based journalist and nationally syndicated writer. His new book, Courage Grows Strong at the Wound is now available. Contact him at koehlercw@gmail.com or visit his website at commonwonders.com.

Articles by this author

We’re the greatest military superpower on the planet, and this fact is consuming our ability to think and act in a rational and humane manner.  (Photo: Ralf Schlesener/ICAN) Views
Thursday, January 16, 2020
Nuclear Hubris
One thing that becomes clear to me when I wander into the world, and the minds, of geopolitical professionals—government people—is how limited and linear their thinking seems to be. When I do so, an internal distress signal starts beeping and won’t stop, especially when the issue under discussion...
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A Syrian man carried a child who was retrieved from a collapsed building following a reported U.S. coalition air strike on the rebel-held neighborhood of Sakhur in the northern city of Aleppo in July 2016. (Photo: Thaer Mohammed/AFP/Getty) Views
Wednesday, January 08, 2020
Will the US Always Be This Hungry for War and Carnage?
“The people do not want war!” These were the words that did it, that knocked the composure out of me. I was standing at what felt like the heart of Chicago on a January afternoon, corner of Wabash and Wacker, next to the river and beneath the tower known as Trump. The crowd had swelled by this time...
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The aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) leads a formation of ships from Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 12 during a maneuvering exercise. (Photo: US Navy/Public domain) Views
Thursday, December 19, 2019
Given $738 Billion, US War Budget Hits the Motherlode (Again)
The annual defense budget, passed recently by both the House (377-48) and Senate (82-8), came in at $738 billion for 2020, up from last year a sweet $22 billion. War hits the motherlode every year. “The money just isn’t there” for virtually anything that matters — you know, healthcare for all, free...
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Where do we find the awareness we need to save the planet and save ourselves? (Photo: Jeff J. Mitchell/Getty) Views
Thursday, December 12, 2019
Letting Our Values Out Of Their Cage
My God, they put Jesus and his parents in cages , as though that’s what U.S. Customs and Border Patrol agents would do — you know, keep the spirit of love and compassion from entering the United States of America. Are they suggesting there’s an equivalence here between the divine family and a bunch...
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"Should a U.S. election not involve most people on earth? What would American political discourse look like, if it had to satisfy voters in Iraq or Afghanistan?" (Photo: Indy Media) Views
Thursday, December 05, 2019
Envisioning a United World
Let’s bomb Iowa! Or maybe Texas or Michigan or Nebraska . . . Oh wait, I got confused for a second. Those places are part of America and we love them. We would never bomb them. These are places we would bomb : Guatemala, Indonesia, Cuba, Congo, Vietnam, Cambodia, Grenada, Libya, El Salvador,...
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Omar understands that punishment perpetuates crime; that healing, repairing harm and creating peace are not simplistic matters to be dumped into the trash bin of the prison-industrial complex. (Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) Views
Thursday, November 21, 2019
Ilhan Omar's Call for Restorative Justice Gives Me Profound Hope for the Future
“Somebody ought to put a bullet in her skull. Back in the day, our forefathers would have put a bullet in her [expletive].” These words , uttered by some lost soul—no, wait, I mean a proud American—were directed at U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar earlier this year. He had called her office and talked to a...
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In 1954, Armistice Day was replaced with Veterans Day, and so our public celebration of peace and an end to war became a rally to “support the troops,” a state and federal day off, and a platform for military recruitment. (Photo: Archive/File) Views
Thursday, November 14, 2019
Celebrating Peace: A Work in Progress
Veterans For Peace , an organization that speaks truth to war like nobody else, is attempting to reclaim Armistice Day, the Nov. 11 holiday that was flipped on its head 65 years ago when it was renamed Veterans Day — and became a celebration not of the end of war but of its perpetuity. The name...
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Nuclear stockpiles have shrunk, not grown, and nuclear-armed nations number nine. (Photo: Lamerie/flickr/cc) Views
Thursday, November 07, 2019
A Tight Grip On Our Nuclear Toys
“Everyone wants to play with the big boys, and the only way to become one of the big boys is to have nuclear toys .” Attention Planet Earth! Attention Planet Earth! It is time to grow up. The words are those of Mohamed ElBaradei , then director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency,...
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Compassion, policing—these words don’t go together! (Photo:  Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) Views
Thursday, October 31, 2019
Keeping the Peace Is Far More Complicated Than Waging War
Another shocking, divisive police video pops up in the news. This one shows a 16-year-old boy getting shot in the back of the head as he runs from the officers about to arrest him. And as he lays dying—unconscious, bleeding to death—a second officer cuffs the boy’s hands behind his back, kicking...
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Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks at Georgetown University September 27, 2019 in Washington, DC .Clinton delivered remarks before recognizing the winners of the 2019 Hillary Rodham Clinton Awards for Advancing Women in Peace and Security. (Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images) Views
Thursday, October 24, 2019
Clinton, Stein, Gabbard, and the Deconstruction of RussiaGate
Oh, how the simplistic certainty resonates. Russsiagate, recently stoked by Hillary Clinton , comes saturated in ironies, which are usually media-invisible. The Democrats’ winning-but-nonetheless-losing presidential candidate of 2016 loosed some pent-up fury at democracy the other day, as well as...
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