Chris Van Buren

Chris Van Buren is an undergraduate at Harvard. He is interning with The American Prospect through the Institute on Political Journalism.

Recent Articles

Civil Liberties in an Age of Terrorism

In his new new book, the ACLU's Anthony Romero argues that the Bush administration's post-9/11 dismantling of our civil liberties has implications far beyond the "War on Terror."

In Defense of Our America: The Fight for Civil Liberties in the Age of Terror by Anthony Romero and Dina Temple-Raston (William Morrow, 252 pages, $24.95) Khaled El-Masri, a German citizen suspected of links to terrorism, was abducted by Macedonian officials while on vacation there in late 2003 and turned over to a group of CIA agents. El-Masri had fallen victim to the shadowy practice of rendition, whereby a foreign national can be taken by the CIA to a third party country. As Dan Benjamin has pointed out in Slate, renditions before 9/11 were not morally problematic because the rendered suspects were frequently taken from countries without functioning legal systems and transported to more stable countries for trial. The problem these days is that several suspects have been rendered to countries with less-functional legal systems and a penchant for "harsh" interrogations. El-Masri, for example, claims he was transported from Macedonia by men in black masks to a secret U.S.-run prison...

Practitioners of State

TAP talks to Dennis Ross, a former Clinton administration envoy to the Middle East, about neo-cons, Teddy Roosevelt and the intricacies of statecraft.

Hanging on the wall of Dennis Ross' office at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy is a map of Jerusalem, a gift from President Clinton for distinguished diplomatic service. Indeed, as a policy planner at the State Department during the first Bush administration and a chief envoy in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict for Clinton, Dennis Ross is no stranger to the complex world of American foreign relations. On a recent July morning, he sat down with me to discuss his new book, Statecraft, And How to Restore America's Standing in the World . What is statecraft exactly? It sounds Machiavellian. Statecraft is the capacity to marry your objectives and your means. If you could orchestrate and integrate the use of all your diplomatic, military, economic, and intelligence information tools effectively, it still wouldn't mean much if your objectives didn't make any sense. You write that bipartisan foreign policy is often, if not always, a chimera. Post-9/11 unity, for example, was...

The Improbable Missionary

TAP talks to Josh Rushing, former U.S. Military spokesman -- now Al Jazeera military analyst -- about bridging Arab and Western cultures and who really skews the news out of Iraq.

In 2003, Josh Rushing, a U.S. Marine captain, was a spokesman for the Pentagon's Iraq strategy. Two years later, he became a reporter for Al Jazeera English. This transformation -- from the military's representative on Arab media to a military analyst at Al Jazeera -- has been as powerful as it has been public. Whether denounced as a Benedict Arnold or lauded as an exemplary soldier and American, Rushing has courted controversy by taking on the world of American media. On a muggy, Washington day last month, this former Marine with blue eyes and Texan charm sat down with me over tea in his office to discuss his new book, Mission Al Jazeera: Build a Bridge, Seek the Truth, Change the World . How did you end up as a reporter for Al Jazeera? I'm from Lone Star, TX. Mom and Dad live there. Dad's a firefighter and Mom's on city council. I've been a Marine my entire adult life. So I came to know Al Jazeera as a spokesperson for the U.S. Military at U.S. Central Command. In 2004, after I came...