Robert C. Koehler

Robert C. Koehler

Robert Koehler is an award-winning, Chicago-based journalist and nationally syndicated writer. His book, "Courage Grows Strong at the Wound" (2016). Contact him or visit his website at commonwonders.com.

Articles by this author

We cannot prepare to kill others without first dehumanizing them. (Photo: flickr/cc/Takver) Views
Thursday, July 04, 2019
Trouble at the Border
Yes, we have a serious problem at the border—indeed, at every border we create and defend with force of arms and bureaucratic indifference. “‘If you want water, just drink from a toilet.’ That’s what border patrol told one thirsty woman we met on today’s #DemsAtTheBorder trip. These are the same...
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A bus transporting immigrants leaves a temporary facility at a US Border Patrol Station in Clint, Texas, on June 21, 2019. - Lawyers who were able to tour the facility under the Flores Settlement, which governs detention conditions for migrant children, said they witnessed inhumane conditions of overcrowding, and about 250 children being held over the limit of 72 hours, some saying they were there for weeks in overcrowded cells. (Photo: Paul Ratje / AFP) Views
Thursday, June 27, 2019
American Concentration Camps
“These aren’t people. These are animals .” These words alone set off the alarm — the fascism alarm, you might say. Donald Trump is by no means the sole source of America’s democracy nosedive, but he’s its current, deeply troubling manifestation. Should I write this week about the wars he wants to...
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The absence of "we are one planet" voices at the highest levels of government guarantees that the government will pretty much always make simple, impulsive—wrong—decisions about national security. (Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images) Views
Thursday, June 20, 2019
War Begets War... and Nothing Else
Bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran . . . Thanks, John McCain ! Let’s mix a little humor in with war. It’s so much easier to take when we do. By the way, have you noticed that we’re always on the verge of war? “The bombing will be massive, but will be limited to a specific target.” So said a U.N...
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The researchers "found officers bashing immigrants and Muslims, promoting racist stereotypes, identifying with right-wing militia groups and, especially, glorifying police brutality." (Photo: Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images) Views
Friday, June 14, 2019
The Armed Bureaucracy
This is hardly a surprise: A recent study by the Missouri attorney general’s office shows that black drivers are at least twice as likely — in some towns, much more than that — to be stopped by police as white drivers. And a few days before the study came out, something called the Plain View...
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Johnstone describes this debate as "fighting to control the position of an on/off switch that isn’t connected to anything." (Photo: flickr/cc) Views
Thursday, June 06, 2019
The Quiet Killer at the Core of Patriotism
What? Another mass murder? Almost missed this one: Virginia Beach. Twelve killed on May 31, plus the killer himself, who was a city employee—an engineer. He had legitimate access to the building where he shot people on three floors. His guns were legally purchased. Nothing about him, prior to the...
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Julian Assange at the Ecuadorian Embassy. Views
Thursday, May 30, 2019
Assange Indictments Hide the Context of War
The U.S. government protects itself , not democracy. That's what is most apparent about its 18-count indictment of Julian Assange, not to mention the ongoing imprisonment of Chelsea Manning, for the leaking and release of State Department and military documents and videos a decade ago. The current...
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 The harm begins with the dehumanization itself—the stripping of one’s rights. (Photo: a katz / Shutterstock) Views
Thursday, May 23, 2019
Politicizing a Woman’s Body
White men rule! That’s the uber-message quietly emerging from the new anti-abortion laws recently passed in Alabama, Georgia, Ohio and Missouri, no matter that the public remains predominantly supportive of safe, legal abortions. That doesn’t matter, see. The fact that the Republican Party controls...
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Why is war a top-down directive rather than a collective, public decision? (Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) Views
Thursday, May 16, 2019
War's Unanswered Questions
“Over these last few years, given the wars it has waged and the international treaties it has arbitrarily reneged on, the U.S. government perfectly fits its own definition of a rogue state.” — Arundhati Roy You have the world’s largest military, you’re going to use it, right? Donald Trump and his...
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Venezuelan opposition leader and head of the National Assembly Juan Guaido declares self interim president as thousands of people protest against Nicolás Maduro on January 23, 2019 in Caracas, Venezuela. Many countries including the US, Canada and Chile have recognized officially recognized Guaido as the legitimate president of Venezuela. (Photo: Edilzon Gamez/Getty Images) Views
Friday, May 10, 2019
What's Next: War With Venezuela?
Mix a little socialism in with the oil and war may be unavoidable. Thus, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo , talking about Venezuela: “The president has been crystal clear and incredibly consistent. Military action is possible. If that’s what’s required, that’s what the United States will do.” He goes...
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Sunday, May 05, 2019
Nonviolence or Nonexistence
The day before he died, Martin Luther King said these words at a packed church in Memphis: “Men for years now have been talking about war and peace. Now no longer can they just talk about it. It is no longer a choice between violence and nonviolence in this world, it is nonviolence or nonexistence...
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