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Tag: Military


U.S. Air Force / Tech. Sgt. Erik Gudmundson

Pakistan PM: U.S. Airstrikes ‘Intolerable’

American airstrikes in Pakistan aren’t sitting so well with the locals. Pakistan PM Yousuf Raza Gilani summoned the U.S. ambassador for a refresher course in “sovereignty and territorial integrity” on Thursday. But according to The Washington Post, the two countries have a tacit agreement that the U.S. can keep bombing Pakistan if Pakistan can keep complaining about it.

Posted on Nov 20, 2008 READ MORE


A View From the South

Evo Morales knows about “change you can believe in.” He also knows what happens when a powerful elite is forced to make changes it doesn’t want.

Posted on Nov 19, 2008 READ MORE


Retired Military Leaders Denounce ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’

One-hundred-and-four retired admirals and generals have signed a statement calling on the military to allow gay soldiers to serve openly. “Don’t ask, don’t tell” has lost support since the Clinton administration originally negotiated the compromise, but Barack Obama will likely avoid resurrecting one of his predecessor’s biggest headaches.

Posted on Nov 18, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Morry Gash

America’s Wars of Self-Destruction

War is a poison. It is a poison that nations and groups must at times ingest to ensure their survival. But, like any poison, it can kill you just as surely as the disease it is meant to eradicate.

Posted on Nov 17, 2008 READ MORE



U.S. Army / Spc. Richard DelVecchio

Iraq Cabinet OK’s Occupation Deal

To the great relief of U.S. military commanders, Iraq’s cabinet approved an agreement that would provide a legal basis for the occupation beyond Dec. 31. The deal, which still must clear a vote in parliament, maintains partial immunity for U.S. soldiers and calls for the withdrawal of American forces by 2011. Update

Posted on Nov 16, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Hasan Sarbakhshian

With Iran, Obama Needs More Carrot, Less Stick

Now that the presidential election has liberated Barack Obama from the need to play to the fickle whim of domestic politics, he should put away the saber and take a more enlightened approach to Iran.

Posted on Nov 13, 2008 READ MORE



U.S. Air Force / Staff Sgt. Aaron Allmon

Secret Rumsfeld Order OK’d Raids in All Nations

Since 2004, U.S. operatives have been crossing the borders of friends and foes alike in a secret global hunt for al-Qaida. According to a bombshell report in The New York Times, a dozen or so raids have been conducted in Syria, Pakistan and elsewhere since Donald Rumsfeld issued a secret order with the backing of the president.

Posted on Nov 10, 2008 READ MORE


Neocons Plot to Co-Opt Obama

The president-elect is a foreign policy novice and will find himself under great pressure to follow Middle Eastern and China and Russia policies inherited from George Bush, even though these are what Barack Obama was elected to change or terminate.

Posted on Nov 6, 2008 READ MORE


The Red Is Fading in a Virginia Bellwether

The line for early voting wound up one side of a corridor in the Loudoun County voter registration office and down the other. Those in line were, collectively, the face of change in Virginia that could tip the state into the Democratic column for the first time since the LBJ landslide of 1964.

Posted on Nov 3, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Jose Luis Magana

Only Nader Is Right on the Issues

Tomorrow I will go to a polling station in Princeton, N.J., and vote for Ralph Nader. I know the tired arguments against a Nader vote. But there is little disagreement among liberals and progressives about the Nader and Obama campaign issues. Nader would win among us in a landslide if this was based on issues.

Posted on Nov 3, 2008 READ MORE



DoD / Sgt. Freddy G. Cantu, USMC

Troops Have to Fight for Their Right to Vote

Active-duty military members arguably have more to lose than anyone else in Tuesday’s election, but voting can be an obstacle course for servicemen and -women overseas. The Dallas Morning News reports that in 2006 only one-third of the absentee ballots requested by U.S. armed forces personnel abroad were counted.

Posted on Nov 2, 2008 READ MORE


‘What Happens in Syria Stays in Syria’

The Mosaic Intelligence Report investigates whether the recent U.S. attack in Syria was motivated by John McCain’s sagging polls.

Posted on Nov 2, 2008 READ MORE


Guantanamo
AP photo / Brennan Linsley, pool

Closing Guantanamo

The U.S. government’s failure to close the Guantanamo Bay detention center for alleged terrorists continues to haunt and color our standing in the world.

Posted on Oct 31, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Al Grillo

Homeland Security Pays Dividends for Alaska

When Sarah Palin brags about the self-reliance of her state, she doesn’t mention the mobile command communications vehicle, bought with federal dollars to help keep her home town of 7,028 safe from terrorism. Thanks in part to an anti-terrorism bonanza, Alaska is one of the greatest per-capita beneficiaries of federal funding among the 50 states.

Posted on Oct 31, 2008 READ MORE


The Unlearned Lessons of Vietnam Continue to Haunt The U.S.

Governments, like corporations and modern organizations of all kinds, make much of systematically teaching “lessons learned” to those newly arrived to responsibilities, yet they seem infrequently to succeed.

Posted on Oct 30, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Carolyn Kaster

Hell to Pay

Sen. John McCain’s ideological ties to the Bush-Cheney administration have mostly passed beneath the radar of the mainstream media, but if McCain loses the presidential race to Barack Obama, his neoconservative legacy could erupt into the open with a force that should not be underestimated.

Posted on Oct 30, 2008 READ MORE


Obama Is the Superior Decider

The real issues of the American presidential election are the future of the economy and the future of American foreign policy. The one seems already settled. The second seems to unite John McCain and Barack Obama in support of a program doomed to fail.

Posted on Oct 30, 2008 READ MORE



Collage: AP photo / Chip Somodevilla, pool / Wikimedia Commons

Virtual JFK: The 44th President’s Foreign Policy Challenge

The leading issue in the current face-off between Barack Obama and John McCain is the economy. Once elected and inaugurated, however, a U.S. president’s politics become global literally overnight.

Posted on Oct 29, 2008 READ MORE



goarmy.com

U.S. Attack in Syria Kills 8

Syrian authorities have demanded to know why U.S. forces crossed the Iraq-Syria border and killed eight people. A U.S. official said the raid—the first ever on Syrian soil—targeted foreign fighters. Damascus said the dead were Syrian civilians.

Posted on Oct 26, 2008 READ MORE



npr.org / youtube

Citizen Tim Takes On Obama by Himself

The one form of political advertising that’s completely unregulated and free is the speech of an individual citizen, even when money amplifies that speech by putting it on the airwaves. Tim D’Annunzio, who describes himself as a “concerned North Carolina businessman,” is doing just that.

Posted on Oct 23, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / James Gordon

Time Is Running Out for Iraq Occupation Deal

Here’s one way to get U.S. troops out of Iraq: The tediously negotiated status-of-forces agreement between the U.S. and Iraq has met yet another snag. The current legal justification for the occupation of Iraq is about to expire, and the U.S. is eager to pass new guidelines, but the Iraqi Cabinet is hitting the brakes.

Posted on Oct 21, 2008 READ MORE


Iraqi police in Ramadi
Flickr/Jim Gordon

Brokering a Fragile Peace in Iraq

A key overlooked fact about the much-ballyhooed “surge is working” argument in Iraq is that the U.S. military actually paid some former insurgents $10 a day to help American troops keep the peace in parts of the country. But what happens when that setup changes in volatile regions like Anbar?

Posted on Oct 21, 2008 READ MORE



Simon Lewis on Traumatic Brain Injuries

A devastating and growing problem is explored in Michael Paul Mason’s riveting new book, “Head Cases.”

Posted on Oct 17, 2008 READ MORE


U.S. Loses Its Grip on Europe

Military and economic disasters have caused Europeans and European governments to view the United States in a new, unflattering light.

Posted on Oct 16, 2008 READ MORE



U.S. Navy / Petty Officer 3rd Class Joshua Scott

Bush Doctrine Becomes DoD Dogma

The Pentagon’s new National Defense Strategy statement says nothing directly about American national defense. It is a strategy for intervening in other countries, and preventing others from blocking or resisting American interventions.

Posted on Oct 14, 2008 READ MORE



DoD / CWO2 Michael A. Lujan, USMC

Turkey Bombs Northern Iraq

The Turkish military launched an airstrike aimed at Kurdish rebels in northern Iraq on Sunday. It was the latest in a series of cross-border attacks authorized by the Turkish parliament in response to what it has criticized as the Iraqi government’s lack of attention to the Kurdish fighters.

Posted on Oct 12, 2008 READ MORE



Rosa Lowinger on Cuba Before Castro

Two new books resurrect the seductions and corruptions of pre-revolutionary Cuba.

Posted on Oct 10, 2008 READ MORE


Pillow Talk
thirdphaze.com

Report: NSA Listened In on Americans’ Phone Sex

Just what kind of interpretation of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act would allow U.S. National Security Agency linguists to eavesdrop on Americans’, er, pillow talk? That’s the charge being leveled by more than one such NSA interpreter who worked at an NSA listening station at Fort Gordon, Ga.

Posted on Oct 9, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Jim Bourg, pool

Third-Party Blues

Ralph Nader is right: The two-party system is failing America. There isn’t time between now and Election Day to create a viable third-party candidate, and so the sad reality is one of two deeply flawed men, the byproduct of a deeply flawed political system, will serve as president for the next four or eight years.

Posted on Oct 9, 2008 READ MORE


Nowhere for McCain to Go

Tuesday night’s debate, a town-hall discussion dominated by economic questions, made it clear that John McCain’s effort to change the campaign’s focus to the culture wars of the 1960s is not going to work.

Posted on Oct 7, 2008 READ MORE


What McCain and Obama Just Don’t Get About Central Asia

There are only two real issues left in the foreign policy debate between John McCain and Barack Obama. Yet neither the Iraq nor the Afghanistan issue is within the power of any American president to resolve.

Posted on Oct 7, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo

Investigating John McCain’s Tragedy at Sea

Troubling questions hover over Lt. Cmdr. McCain’s actions in the catastrophic 1967 fire aboard the aircraft carrier Forrestal and the period immediately afterward. His later accounts of events following the accident also raise issues. American voters, after hearing so much from the senator’s campaign about his military record, deserve to know all the facts.

Posted on Oct 7, 2008 READ MORE



DoD / Michael L. Casteel

British Commander Calls Taliban Unbeatable

Victory in Afghanistan? That’s “neither feasible nor supportable,” according to the outgoing commander of British forces there, who tells The Times of London that the Taliban “seems relatively impervious to losses.” The Afghan government must instead reach some political settlement with more moderate insurgents, concluded Brigadier Mark Carleton-Smith.

Posted on Oct 5, 2008 READ MORE


Will the Pentagon Be the Next U.S. Institution to Crash?

Less apparent to most people than the economic crisis, but just as real, are the signs of an impending crash of an American military system in which, since the end of the Cold War, Pentagon dysfunction has metastasized so uncontrollably as to scandalize the men who have overseen it.

Posted on Oct 2, 2008 READ MORE


Invasion of the Sea-Smurfs

If the economy does collapse, if people can’t go down to the bank to withdraw their savings, or get cash from an ATM, there may be serious “civil unrest,” and the 3rd Infantry Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team may be called upon sooner than we imagine to assist with “crowd control.”

Posted on Oct 1, 2008 READ MORE



White House / Eric Draper

Newspaper: Bush Told Israel Not to Bomb Iran

The Guardian is reporting that outgoing Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert sought and was denied President Bush’s blessing for an airstrike on Iran’s nuclear facilities. Bush was reportedly concerned that Iran would retaliate against U.S. targets in the region and that the benefits of such an attack would be insufficient.

Posted on Sep 26, 2008 READ MORE


book cover

Does the Cold War Have Lessons for Today?

Carolyn Eisenberg takes a close look at Melvyn Leffler’s “For the Soul of Mankind” to ask whether our current troubles are rooted in a history that continues to haunt us.

Posted on Sep 19, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Dusan Vranic

Farewell, General—but Did You Bring Iraq Hope?

Gen. Petraeus’ oft-declared uncertainty about the future stability of Iraq is genuine. It is the Shiites and their Iranian backers, not the Americans, who are the true victors in the Iraqi war.

Posted on Sep 17, 2008 READ MORE


Robert Gates
usip.org

Gates Sorry, Continues Dropping Bombs

It seems that “personal regret” is deemed sufficient to exculpate the U.S military after the deaths of civilians in U.S. airstrikes in Afghanistan. Defense Secretary Gates offered his hollow apologies and promised more accurate targeting in future attacks.

Posted on Sep 17, 2008 READ MORE


Remembering 9/11 and Moving Forward

America must move from the errant, retributive justice of 9/11 to a healing, restorative process of truth and reconciliation.

Posted on Sep 11, 2008 READ MORE


Quagmire, Phase 2: The Invasion of Pakistan

The United States has just invaded Cambodia. The name of Cambodia this time is Pakistan, but otherwise it’s the same story as in Indochina in 1970.

Posted on Sep 11, 2008 READ MORE


KC-45/30
Northrop Grumman

$40 Billion Tanker Contract Grounded

Unnecessary and extraordinarily expensive, the once-green-lit controversial KC-X midair refueling tanker program has stalled, according to the Pentagon. Any movement on the $40 billion contract to purchase new Air Force tankers will have to wait for the next U.S. administration, a clear sign that military-industrial complex spending is an institutional, rather than administrative, problem.

Posted on Sep 10, 2008 READ MORE


Obama on O'Reilly

Obama and O’Reilly Square Off

The first installment of Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama’s interview with Bill O’Reilly aired Thursday, during which the Fox News host drove a hard line about Iran’s nuclear program and the success of the “surge” in Iraq. “Why can’t you just say, ‘I was right in the beginning and I was wrong about the surge?’ ” asked O’Reilly.

Posted on Sep 5, 2008 READ MORE



White House photo by Eric Draper

What’s a Billion Dollars Between Friends?

The U.S. is giving Georgia $1 billion in aid, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has announced. That could be just a friendly donation, or, seen in the light of America’s meddling in the Caucasus, perhaps something more sinister. Sorry we didn’t go to war with Russia, baby, but here’s a billion dollars. Buy yourself something nice.

Posted on Sep 3, 2008 READ MORE


Russia Calls NATO’s Bluff

NATO has now been broken because it was used by the United States and the European NATO members as a tool for expanding Western power into the Russian “near abroad,” and after that, to make an inexplicably rash and dangerous effort to break into and split off portions of the Russian empire as it existed in the 19th century—long before the Soviet Union existed.

Posted on Sep 2, 2008 READ MORE


book cover

Jonathan Shapiro on the Hamdan Case

In Jonathan Mahler’s new book, George W. Bush emerges as the most lawless president in American history, the first to usurp the law as a matter of policy.

Posted on Aug 29, 2008 READ MORE


Cleaning Up After Bush

The Bush administration has lived by a strategy of tension, and will go out of office bequeathing the wars it has started and the ill will it has created to its successors, to compromise those who come after.

Posted on Aug 28, 2008 READ MORE


Showstopper

Bill Clinton reminded Democrats on Thursday why he’s one of the brightest stars in the political universe—and a great cheerleader to have on your side—with a rousing speech in support of Barack Obama.

Posted on Aug 27, 2008 READ MORE


military service
AP photo / William B. Plowman

U.S. Military Keeping Secrets About Female Soldiers’ ‘Suicides’?

Since I posted on April 28 the article “Is There an Army Cover Up of the Rape and Murder of Women Soldiers,” the deaths of two more U.S. Army women in Iraq and Afghanistan have been listed as suicides—the Sept. 28, 2007, death of 30-year-old Spc. Ciara Durkin and the Feb. 22, 2008, death of 25-year-old Spc. Keisha Morgan. Both “suicides” are disputed by the families of the women.

Posted on Aug 26, 2008 READ MORE


The Cost of Saakashvili’s Folly

The West’s response to the situation in Georgia evades acknowledgement of the damage Georgia’s President Mikheil Saakashvili has done to the United States and NATO, and to Georgia itself, which for the foreseeable future will now be a nation of limited sovereignty, and an awkward embarrassment to its Western allies.

Posted on Aug 26, 2008 READ MORE


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