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Tag: Military

The Corporate State and the Subversion of Democracy

Chris Hedges gave this keynote address on Wednesday, May 28, in Furman University’s Younts Conference Center. The address was part of protests by faculty and students over the South Carolina college’s decision to invite George W. Bush to give the May 31 commencement address.

Posted on May 31, 2008 READ MORE


Cluster Bombs Feet
lemonodor.com

U.S. Truant as Cluster Bomb Treaty Is Signed

One hundred eleven countries have signed a comprehensive ban on the use, production, transfer and stockpiling of cluster bombs, concluding a 12-day meeting on the issue in Dublin. Notably absent from the list of signatories was the U.S.—the largest cluster bomb manufacturer in the world—as well as military heavyweights Israel, Russia, China, India and Pakistan.

Posted on May 30, 2008 READ MORE


The Lamont Lesson

Though he lost in the general election, Ned Lamont showed that representing the public’s anti-war sentiment and ignoring Washington’s self-appointed gurus wins national elections. And as the current campaign unfolds, the Lamont Lesson is resurfacing.

Posted on May 29, 2008 READ MORE


Israel’s Self-Destruction as a Jewish State

Israel’s colonization and annexation of the Palestinian territories over the last 40 years, and opposition to the creation of an independent Palestinian state, have turned Israel into an Arab-Jewish state under Jewish control.

Posted on May 28, 2008 READ MORE


Defense Auditors Can’t Keep Up

Thanks to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the privatization of the military and the surge in defense spending since 9/11, individual Pentagon auditors now have to keep track of more than three times as much money as they did 10 years ago. Because of limited resources, the Defense Department inspector general revealed in a recent report, about half of the military’s $316 billion weapons budget went under the radar last year.

Posted on May 28, 2008 READ MORE


Kovic protest
AP Photo/Reed Saxon

Stopping the War Machine: Military Recruiters Must Be Confronted

As a former United States Marine Corps sergeant who was shot and paralyzed from my mid-chest down during my second tour of duty in Vietnam on Jan. 20, 1968, I am sending my complete support and admiration to all those now involved in the courageous struggle to stop military recruitment in Berkeley and across the country.

Posted on May 28, 2008 READ MORE


Clintons on Memorial Day
AP photo / Brennan Linsley

Memorial Day: Campaign Trail Edition

Democratic candidates Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama observed Memorial Day in Puerto Rico and New Mexico, respectively, paying tribute to U.S. military men and women from the past and the present and making their cases for becoming commander in chief.

Posted on May 26, 2008 READ MORE


Marulanda
AP photo

Colombian Army Reports FARC Leader Dead

The demise of Manuel “Sureshot” Marulanda has been rumored many times before, but this time the Colombian army has announced that the long-time leader of the rebel group FARC is dead and has challenged FARC to disprove the report. Sources close to Marulanda have yet to confirm the news.

Posted on May 24, 2008 READ MORE


Iron Man still
gizmodo.com

Torturing Iron Man

Those who haven’t seen this summer’s biggest blockbuster (so far, at least—this weekend’s “Indiana Jones” sequel may well change that) “Iron Man” and are planning to hit the multiplex might want to take a gander at this review. The article points out how “Iron Man” is the latest in a string of “pro-military” movies served up for youngsters’ consumption—even as two disastrous wars rage on overseas.

Posted on May 24, 2008 READ MORE


Presidential Race Ignores Arms Race

Obama’s stated willingness to unilaterally strike nuclear-armed U.S. ally Pakistan, Clinton’s promise to Iran to “totally obliterate” the nation of 70 million (should it attack Israel), and McCain’s hard-line position on Russia, including the deployment of a missile defense in Eastern Europe, all point to a reliance on military solutions.

Posted on May 21, 2008 READ MORE


Chiroux
breitbart.tv

U.S. Sergeant Refuses to Serve in ‘Illegal’ War

On Thursday, a group of U.S. soldiers spoke before members of Congress about the failings of the Iraq war and the immeasurable toll it has taken on Iraqis and American troops. Afterward, Sgt. Matthis Chiroux announced that he is refusing to serve in Iraq.

Posted on May 16, 2008 READ MORE


book cover
press.princeton.edu

Chalmers Johnson on Our ‘Managed Democracy’

Sheldon Wolin’s new book offers a controversial but ultimately convincing diagnosis of how America’s democracy has succumbed to an unacknowledged totalitarian temptation.

Posted on May 15, 2008 READ MORE


Toward a New Washington Consensus

What passes for smart economic policy is actually a set of right-wing globalization measures that destabilizes the world economy. For the sake of Americans and others, our politicians need to wise up.

Posted on May 15, 2008 READ MORE


boy and soldier
AP photo / Anja Niedringhaus

Trading Spaces, Iraq Edition

Sectarian violence has driven millions of Iraqis from their homes. Now that the violence has abated in one formerly upscale Baghdad neighborhood, residents are returning to find squatters who refuse to leave and a government and occupying army unwilling to kick them out.

Posted on May 15, 2008 READ MORE


The Face of Torture

Seven years after the 9/11 attacks, if we were to seek a portrait that is emblematic of the way the U.S. has tried—and failed—to bring those responsible for the heinous plot to justice, we would have to produce a photograph of Mohammed al-Qahtani.

Posted on May 14, 2008 READ MORE


Whistle-Blower Points to Target List in U.S. Attack on Hotel

A veteran of Army intelligence has shed new light on the military’s 2003 shelling of the Palestine Hotel, a Baghdad home to many journalists, including two who were killed by that attack.

Posted on May 14, 2008 READ MORE


Iraq’s Mosul a ‘Ghost City’

Mosul looks like a city of the dead. American and Iraqi troops have launched an attack aimed at crushing the last bastion of al-Qa’ida in Iraq and in doing so have turned the country’s northern capital into a ghost town.

Posted on May 14, 2008 READ MORE



news.bbc.co.uk

Reporting From Burma: A Thriller

BBC reporter Paul Danahar had to go to great lengths in order to report from Burma. A secret identity was just one method for avoiding the military intelligence agents who scoured the country looking for the journalist who dared to report on the devastation of Cyclone Nargis, which struck May 3.

Posted on May 14, 2008 READ MORE


Chicago skyline
Wikimedia Commons / AllyUnion

Taking a Stand Against War

The Chicago City Council is debating a resolution urging the Illinois congressional delegation to oppose a war with Iran. Scott Ritter, who has been called as an expert witness on the matter, explains why the resolution should be supported—and not just by the citizens of Chicago.

Posted on May 11, 2008 READ MORE


Blackwater helicopter
flickr.com

Blackwater Bounces Back

Over the last year, Blackwater Worldwide has been under fire from critics at home and abroad, but that hasn’t stopped the private security firm. In fact, the State Department has just re-upped Blackwater’s Iraq contract, thanks in part to the magic of lobbying. Also, State Department officials don’t seem to think they have much choice.

 

Posted on May 10, 2008 READ MORE


Ryan Maseth
post-gazette.com

Warning Fails to Prevent Electrocution of U.S. Soldiers

More than a dozen American soldiers have died or received severe electrical shocks in Iraq, reportedly as a result of faulty electrical work often done by ill-trained Iraqis and Afghans under the supervision of Houston-based contractor KBR.

Posted on May 9, 2008 READ MORE


Burma Cyclone Aftermath
Agence France-Presse

U.N. to Resume Burma Aid

The U.N. has announced it will resume aid to Burma after conflicts over how food and equipment were to be distributed grounded relief flights. Cyclone Nargis has killed at least 22,000 Burmese, and the ruling junta has been categorically criticized for its ineptitude in dealing with the disaster.

Posted on May 9, 2008 READ MORE


Hillary Plays the Crazy Card

In this protracted and often dispiriting prelude to the general election, few remarks have been as poorly chosen as Sen. Hillary Clinton’s threat to “totally obliterate” Iran.

Posted on May 8, 2008 READ MORE


The U.S. War on Journalists

Sami al-Haj is a free man today, after having been imprisoned by the U.S. military for more than six years. His crime: journalism.

Posted on May 7, 2008 READ MORE


Woman Fleeing With Child
nytimes.com / Michael Kamber

Preparations Made for Sadr City Assault

After a seven week surge in violent street clashes and an estimated 1,000 civilian deaths in the Sadr City neighborhood of Baghdad alone, U.S. and Iraqi forces are now preparing an overwhelming military offensive they hope will completely annihilate active Shia resistance movements and pacify the area, making it safe for occupation.

Posted on May 7, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Maya Alleruzzo

Mission Impossible

On the fifth anniversary of George W. Bush’s infamous stroll across the flight deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln, The New York Times asked a group of “experts” how they would accomplish the mission in Iraq. Unfortunately, the newspaper turned to some of the same geniuses who thought the war was a good idea in the first place.

Posted on May 6, 2008 READ MORE



DoD / U.S. Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Chad J. McNeeley

The Pentagon vs. America

Former Marine and U.N. weapons inspector Scott Ritter has spoken out vehemently against the war, so it surprises some that he still embraces military service. In this article, Ritter explains why opposition to a war doesn’t mean lack of patriotism or a failure to “support the troops” and the services in which they serve.

Posted on May 5, 2008 READ MORE


Top Al-Qaida Operative Killed in Somalia

The U.S. military carried out an overnight airstrike in Somalia, targeting the country’s primary al-Qaida cell—and by Thursday morning the man considered the group’s leader, Aden Hashi Ayro, was confirmed dead, along with 10 others.

Posted on May 1, 2008 READ MORE


Afghanistan Mini Surge
army.mil

A ‘Mini Surge’ in Afghanistan

Pouncing on the rhetorical success of the U.S. “surge” in Iraq, the U.S. military launched operations Tuesday in the south of Afghanistan as part of a “mini surge” against strongholds of Taliban fighters.

Posted on Apr 30, 2008 READ MORE


soldiers line up for grub
AP photo / Chris Tomlinson

Bloated in Baghdad

Truthdig foreign correspondent Sarah Stillman reports from Iraq, where she finds parallels between America’s fast food fortresses and the general engorgement of the war.

Posted on Apr 28, 2008 READ MORE


Obama
Flickr / Joe Crimmings Photography

Hope for Corporate America

The corporate state is our shadow government. Candidates who aspire to higher office get corporate money if they promote corporate interests. Barack Obama’s campaign message, filled with lofty promises of change and hope, is also filled with repeated reassurances to the corporate elite.

Posted on Apr 28, 2008 READ MORE


Map of Iran
opendemocracy.net

Pentagon Eyeing Military Option Aganst Iran

On Friday, a day after an American cargo ship fired warning shots at two small boats off the coast of Iran, Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Adm. Michael Mullen said the Pentagon is considering various options, including military action, to deal with what he characterized as the Iranian government’s “increasingly lethal and malign influence” in Iraq.

Posted on Apr 25, 2008 READ MORE


Petraeus
DoD / Robert D. Ward

Promoting Petraeus

Defense Secretary Robert Gates thinks Gen. David Petraeus should succeed Adm. William Fallon as head of U.S. Central Command. “I don’t know anybody in the United States military better qualified to lead that effort,” said Gates.

Posted on Apr 23, 2008 READ MORE


Robert Gates
ideologyofantiterrorism.blogtownhall.com

Gates: Another Mideast War Would be ‘Disastrous’

Here’s a statement that should be preserved for posterity: Defense Secretary Robert Gates told an audience at West Point that, although he believes Iran is “hellbent” on developing nuclear weapons, the last thing the U.S. needs is to get into another war in the Middle East. Gates got misty toward the end of his speech, telling cadets he feels “personally responsible” for their lives.

Posted on Apr 22, 2008 READ MORE


For the GOP, a Tough Sell

How on earth is the Republican Party going to sell John McCain? Once the Democrats stop doing the job, I mean.

Posted on Apr 21, 2008 READ MORE


Carter Was Right to Meet With Hamas

What separates Jimmy Carter from the neocons, other than a Nobel Prize, is his genuine desire to negotiate a Middle East peace settlement, and that means talking to everyone.

Posted on Apr 21, 2008 READ MORE


New York Times report
nytimes.com

NYT: Pentagon Primed TV Military Experts

The Bush administration’s skill in working the media to promote its interests is not a new story, but The New York Times has just uncovered a new twist: According to the paper, administration insiders courted a troop of retired military men to serve as trained PR agents for the White House on major broadcast outlets. 

Posted on Apr 19, 2008 READ MORE


memorial
Flickr / Kevindooley

The $3-Trillion War

Harvard scholar Linda Bilmes speaks about the book on the Iraq war’s costs that she wrote with Joseph Stiglitz. The two former Truthdiggers of the Week have been working hard to uncover even more hidden expenses for the war, which they estimate will cost the taxpayers and their children trillions of dollars.

Posted on Apr 16, 2008 READ MORE


Basic Training

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Posted on Apr 14, 2008 READ MORE    


Steve Wasserman on Fidel Castro

What will history say about the implacable anti-imperialist and unrepentant revolutionary who has held power in Cuba for nearly 50 years? The publication of Fidel Castro’s and Ignacio Ramonet’s “My Life: A Spoken Autobiography” helps us understand the man and his myth.

Posted on Apr 10, 2008 READ MORE


The Long, Sorrowful Ludlow Legacy

A straight line can be drawn between the 1914 labor massacre in Colorado and today’s killing fields in Colombia. And one of the villains in both cases is the U.S. government.

Posted on Apr 10, 2008 READ MORE


Road to Nowhere

The problem with the debate over our future course in Iraq is that the two sides are not even talking about the same things.

Posted on Apr 10, 2008 READ MORE


Petraeus
Staff Sgt D. Myles Cullen, U.S. Air Force

Petraeus: ‘There Are Risks Beyond Iraq’

Gen. David Petraeus tells NBC‘s Brian Williams that if ordered by the president to get out of Iraq, he could: “Absolutely. ... I firmly believe whoever it is that is elected in the fall will sit down and look at the various interests, try to figure out the competing risks, because there are risks beyond Iraq.”

Posted on Apr 10, 2008 READ MORE


Powell
abcnews.go.com

Powell Salutes Obama, Worries About Wars

Gen. Colin Powell won’t say who will get his vote this November, but on Thursday’s “Good Morning America,” the former secretary of state put in a good word for all three front-runners, praised Obama’s Rev. Wright speech and worried that the U.S. armed forces are becoming “very, very stretched” by the protracted wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Posted on Apr 10, 2008 READ MORE


Failing the Troops

The same kinds of mismanagement and dysfunction that are at work in Iraq continue to plague veterans when they seek medical care at home.

Posted on Apr 9, 2008 READ MORE


Are We Closer to ?Victory??

Gen. David H. Petraeus, commander of the American forces in Iraq, is more candid than his publicity agents. Unlike the senators and editorial writers who claim that the glorious “surge” should be hailed as one of the most successful military campaigns in history, he warns that the escalation’s achievements are mixed at best.

Posted on Apr 9, 2008 READ MORE


A Torture Debate Among Healers

The American Psychological Association is in the midst of its own heated presidential campaign. The central issue is whether APA members should be banned from participating in “harsh interrogations.”

Posted on Apr 9, 2008 READ MORE


John Yoo
Washington Post / Karen Ballard

Torture’s Poet Laureate

A recently declassified memo shines the spotlight once again on John “Take Them to the Point of Death” Yoo, a UC Berkeley law professor and once deputy legal counsel in the Justice Department.

Posted on Apr 2, 2008 READ MORE


submarine
AP photo / Carol Phelps

A Submarine to Fight al-Qaida?s Navy

A trillion dollars here, a trillion dollars there, and soon you’re talking real money. But when it comes to reporting on what the Bush war legacy has cost American taxpayers, the media have been shockingly indifferent to the highest run-up in military spending since World War II.

Posted on Apr 1, 2008 READ MORE


Consider Iraq Defined

Quite a “defining moment” in Iraq, wasn’t it? At this rate, John McCain is going to be proved right: The war will last a century.

Posted on Mar 31, 2008 READ MORE


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