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Tag: Military

Jet fighter
AP photo / LM Otero

Inside the Military-Industrial Complex

Former Assistant Secretary of Defense Philip Coyle knows a thing or two about the “staggering” amounts of money the U.S. funnels into the military-industrial complex, and why it is so difficult to stanch the profiteering.

Posted on Sep 25, 2007 READ MORE


marching monks
AP Photo

Burma Protest Goes Massive

An estimated 100,000 people marched through the streets of Yangon on Monday in an ongoing protest that has rapidly swelled from just dozens of people. Burma’s notoriously inhumane military government has traditionally been quick to stanch dissent but has yet to seriously confront the demonstrators, who were led by roughly 20,000 Buddhist monks.

Posted on Sep 24, 2007 READ MORE


Team Bush Wants $50 Billion More for ‘08 Military Budget

Add another $50 billion to the tab the Bush administration is looking to run up in military costs for the  ‘08 fiscal year, bringing the potential total to around $200 billion if this latest request goes through. 

Posted on Sep 23, 2007 READ MORE


Silent Guardian
raytheon.com

Raytheon’s New ‘Silent Guardian’ Brings the Pain

Reporting on cutting-edge new military gadgetry gives this UK journalist, the Daily Mail’s Michael Hanlon, an unpleasant dose of the reality of modern warfare—and leads him to wonder about the significance, and possible uses of, Raytheon’s new “Silent Guardian” mega-zapper.

Posted on Sep 20, 2007 READ MORE


Privatizing Murder

There is no set piece more emblematic of the tragic farce that is the American involvement in Iraq than the grotesque episode of Blackwater USA and the killing of civilians in Baghdad—at least nine and as many as 28—on Sunday.

Posted on Sep 20, 2007 READ MORE


The Illusion of Progress in Iraq

Following two days of carefully staged theatrics on Capitol Hill and cable television, the essential facts about Iraq remain unchanged. Despite the big charts and the blustering fanfare highlighted by Fox News, neither Gen. David H. Petraeus nor Ambassador Ryan Crocker could convincingly claim that the American military escalation in Iraq is achieving its original goals.

Posted on Sep 14, 2007 READ MORE


Bush with veteran
AP Photo / Charles Dharapak

Letting Our Veterans Down

The sorry state of care of American veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan is not accidental. It’s on purpose. Since the invasion of Iraq in 2003, the Bush administration has fought every effort to improve care for wounded and disabled veterans.

Posted on Sep 13, 2007 READ MORE


Petraeus and Crocker
AP Photo / Gerald Herbert

The General Lies

Of course Gen. David Petraeus predicts success in the Iraq war. What wonders couldn’t generals achieve with more troops and more time? The battle is always going well until it is lost, and then they blame defeat on the politicians and the public.

Posted on Sep 11, 2007 READ MORE


Fixing the Numbers

The Defense Intelligence Agency has prepared a briefing chart using data drawn from Gen. Petraeus’ command that shows that violence in Iraq against security forces, including the U.S. military, has barely diminished. Petraeus, using the same information, is expected to argue that there has been a major drop in attacks.

Posted on Sep 9, 2007 READ MORE


Lost Nukes Headed to Iran?

Remember that B-52 that accidentally took some nukes on a joyride? The whole episode doesn’t make much sense to Larry Johnson, a former employee of the CIA and the State Department’s counterterrorism office, who wonders if it’s more than a coincidence that the plane landed at Barksdale Air Force Base, which a former B-52 pilot friend tells him is “a jumping off point for Middle East operations.”

Posted on Sep 7, 2007 READ MORE


Bush at Ground Zero
news.bbc.co.uk

Faludi on 9/11 and American Mythology

Journalist and author Susan Faludi is back with another book, “The Terror Dream: Fear and Fantasy in Post-9/11 America,” an ambitious look into the formative mythology, driving forces and fears of the U.S.‘s national psyche. 

Posted on Sep 7, 2007 READ MORE


female soldier
vcorps.army.mil

Female Troops Speak Out About Sexual Assault

In addition to the inherent hardships and risks that come with serving in the military, many female soldiers are dealing with the potential trauma of sexual assault and rape, according to a PBS investigation for its “NOW” TV series.

Posted on Sep 6, 2007 READ MORE


Pentagon
DoD / Tech. Sgt. Andy Dunaway, USAF

China Denies Hacking Pentagon

China has denied responsibility for a large raid on the Department of Defense’s computer network, attributing the accusation to a “Cold War mentality.” A senior U.S. official was quoted in the Financial Times as implicating the People’s Liberation Army in the attack, which forced the Pentagon to shut down its network for more than a week.

Posted on Sep 4, 2007 READ MORE


Peter Pace
latimes.com

Joint Chiefs Chairman Likely to Back Big Cut in Troops

It looks as though Gen. Peter Pace, whose term as Joint Chiefs chairman and the president’s top military adviser is about to expire, may go out with a bang. While Gen. David Petraeus is expected to back the White House’s push for an extended surge, Gen. Pace is likely to call for a major reduction—by almost half—of U.S. forces in Iraq in order to address the long-term needs of an overextended military.

Posted on Aug 24, 2007 READ MORE


Troops Still Waiting for Armored Vehicles

Throughout the war, getting the troops the equipment they need to stay alive has been more of a goal than a reality. The latest example is the expected delivery shortfall of MRAPs—the specially designed armored vehicles that have proved particularly resistant to roadside bombs. The Pentagon had hoped to deliver 3,500 of the vehicles to Iraq, but it looks as if only 1,500 or so will make it there by year’s end.

Posted on Aug 22, 2007 READ MORE


The War as They Saw It

With the Bush administration set to offer a progress report on Iraq—assuredly an attempt to make the case for a prolonged surge—seven active-duty GIs have offered their own assessment in The New York Times. Their view, though bleak, is not cynical, but instead a practical approach to the many problems they’ve witnessed during their time in the quagmire.

Posted on Aug 20, 2007 READ MORE


Baghdad burning
AP Photo / Dusan Vranic

Bye-Bye Baghdad

A self-confessed “overpaid Department of Defense contractor” writes about his experiences living and working in Baghdad and the suffering of his Iraqi friends, who risk life and limb every day to get by in the “sinking ship” of Iraq.

Posted on Aug 17, 2007 READ MORE


Army Suicide Rate at Quarter-Century High

According to the U.S. military, 99 active-duty soldiers committed suicide in 2006, a number that may rise after ongoing investigations into other cases conclude, making last year’s suicide rate the highest in 26 years. 

Posted on Aug 16, 2007 READ MORE


Gul
news.bbc.co.uk

Political Danger in Turkey

Turkey’s Abdullah Gul says he will once again run for the presidency, which could lead to a crisis in the politically and religiously complex nation. Turkey’s avowedly secular military has already announced its willingness to intervene should Gul win the post, because of his Islamist background.

Posted on Aug 14, 2007 READ MORE


recruiters
msnbc.com

Army Throws Cash at Recruitment Problem

In an effort to combat ever dwindling enthusiasm among America’s youths for a career in the military, the Army is enlarging its recruitment staff, loosening age and criminal record restrictions and offering more cash bonuses, such as $45,000 tax-free to buy a house. Last year the Army spent $1 billion on bonuses and advertisements.

Posted on Aug 9, 2007 READ MORE


Pentagon Sold Banned Jet Equipment

The Government Accountability Office has found that the Defense Department sold roughly 1,400 parts that could be used to repair Iran’s aging air force, despite a crackdown on such sales.

Posted on Aug 2, 2007 READ MORE


Out How:  The Economics of Ending Wars

In this 10-point essay, originally delivered as a speech at the 2007 conference of the Allied Social Science Association, economics expert Dr. Intriligator tallies up the astronomical costs of the Iraq war (one estimation put the price tag for the war at $2.267 trillion) and rips apart the Bush administration’s list of purported “benefits.”

Posted on Jul 27, 2007 READ MORE


Iraq: A War

Posted on Jul 19, 2007 READ MORE


basra girl
AP Photo / Toni Nicoletti

Iraq Vets Break Silence on Devastating Realities of War

Truthdig contributor Chris Hedges teamed up with Laila Al-Arian for The Nation’s shocking report “The Other War: Iraq Vets Bear Witness,” in which American vets describe, in graphic detail that will challenge even the least fainthearted readers, “the disparity between the reality of the war and how it is portrayed by the US government and American media.”

Posted on Jul 12, 2007 READ MORE


Carnage From the Air

Civilian deaths as a result of ground operations (see Haditha) often evoke cries of barbarism from the media, but the killing of innocents in airstrikes is routinely characterized as “collateral damage” and a cold fact of modern warfare. Tom Engelhardt of Tomdispatch proposes that we start to speak honestly about the devastation American military operations have rained down on Afghanistan and Iraq and see “collateral damage” for what it really is: carnage.

Posted on Jul 9, 2007 READ MORE


flag burning
AP Photo/Hatem Moussa

A Declaration of Independence From Israel

The former New York Times Mideast bureau chief warns that America’s foreign policy, particularly under the Bush administration, has been subverted by an aggressive and dangerous Israeli agenda that could launch a nightmarish regional war.

Posted on Jul 2, 2007 READ MORE


Eddie Slovik
detnews.com

Pentagon Mostly Ignores Deserters

Although desertions from the Army have gone up, the military has apparently taken little interest.  There is no active program for finding those who simply walk away, and when deserters are caught (usually they turn themselves in), most face merely a less than honorable discharge.  According to the AP, just 5 percent of Army deserters were court-martialed in 2006.

Posted on Jun 29, 2007 READ MORE


soldiers
U.S. Army photo by Spc. Ben Brody

Military Chiefs Have ‘Surge’ Doubts

At the core of the “surge” strategy is the notion that once U.S. troops clear a particularly hostile patch of Iraq, the Iraqi army and police will move in to maintain order. But senior American officers are now raising serious doubts about Iraqi forces’ ability to take over.

Posted on Jun 26, 2007 READ MORE


Gen. Pace
news.bbc.co.uk

Gen. Pace Isn’t Going Quietly

Outgoing Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Peter Pace says he did not resign voluntarily, but “I’ve been told I’m done.” Defense Secretary Robert Gates openly admitted that he would not seek another term for Pace in order to avoid a difficult confirmation. Pace has been closely tied to the Iraq war and its fortunes from the start, and only made matters worse recently with a public declaration of homophobia.

Posted on Jun 15, 2007 READ MORE


GOP debate

No Debate on Gays in the Military

Whatever happened to that Republican spirit of individual liberty? During the recent GOP debate, none of the candidates came out against the military’s “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy on homosexuals.  According to John McCain, “the policy is working,” despite frequent reports that the “Don’t ask” requirement is often ignored.

Posted on Jun 8, 2007 READ MORE


Hypocritical Oath: Psychologists and Torture

First, do no harm. This tenet of medicine applies equally to psychologists, yet they are increasingly implicated in abusive interrogations, dare we say torture, at U.S. military detention facilities like Guantanamo.

Posted on Jun 5, 2007 READ MORE


The Next Cold War?

The Pentagon, possibly suffering from a superpower complex, has accused China of spending substantially more on its military buildup than publicly stated. In a report to Congress, the U.S. military also warns of advanced nuclear capability and a possible conflict over Taiwan. Still, even if China spends two or three times the $46 billion on defense it claims, it couldn’t hope to keep pace with the hundreds of billions the U.S. throws at the military every year.

Posted on May 25, 2007 READ MORE


Iraq Prepares for U.S. Withdrawal

Iraqi Defense Minister Abdul-Qader al-Obeidi revealed Monday that his government is planning for a rapid pullout of American forces: “The army plans on the basis of a worst-case scenario so as not to allow any security vacuum. ... There are meetings with political leaders on how we can deal with a sudden pullout.”

Posted on May 21, 2007 READ MORE


Bush
tcsdaily.com

White House ‘Strongly Opposes’ Extra Pay for Troops

The House of Representatives wants to boost soldier pay by 3.5 percent in order to close the gap with private sector wages, but the White House opposes an increase beyond 3 percent. The White House has also come out against new benefits for disabled veterans and survivors of military retirees.

Posted on May 17, 2007 READ MORE


Harry’s Setback

Share
Posted on May 17, 2007 READ MORE    


If at First You Don’t Convict, Try, Try Again

A federal appeals court is looking into the legitimacy of “do-overs” for detainee tribunals at Guantanamo Bay. Critics say the practice is unfair because it effectively allows the government to retry cases until it gets the results it wants, but there may not be much the high court can do under current legislation.

Posted on May 16, 2007 READ MORE


Lute
news.bbc.co.uk

Meet the War Czar

Lt. Gen. Douglas Lute has agreed to be President Bush’s first “war czar.” Lute will answer directly to the president, although it’s still not entirely clear how much authority he’ll have. The White House had offered the job to a number of nominees who turned it down.

Posted on May 15, 2007 READ MORE


Kangaroos
theglobalguy.com

Australia Has Had Enough of Kangaroos

The Australian military says it intends to kill some 3,000 kangaroos, citing a population boom that threatens several endangered species.

Posted on May 15, 2007 READ MORE


Search for Missing Troops Continues Despite Threats

U.S. and Iraqi forces are continuing their search for three missing American soldiers, despite threats from the Sunni insurgent coalition that claims to have taken them as hostages. Some 4,000 troops along with helicopters, jets and unmanned aerial vehicles are involved in the effort. The Pentagon said on Monday that it believed the soldiers had fallen into enemy hands.

Posted on May 15, 2007 READ MORE


YouTube Banned on Military Computers

YouTube, MySpace and 11 other popular websites will no longer be accessible via U.S. military computers. A military spokesman says the move is meant to address bandwidth issues, but it’s no secret the military has been less than thrilled with the content sometimes posted by soldiers. Service members with personal computers will be unaffected, free to visit the Pentagon’s own YouTube channel.

Posted on May 14, 2007 READ MORE


Bush
aftonbladet.se

Bush Has Veto Fever

President Bush has already decided to veto a second war funding bill that the House Democrats haven’t even finished drafting. The measure would require the White House to report on progress in Iraq in order to free up funds past July.

Posted on May 9, 2007 READ MORE


China and Russia Deny Involvement in Darfur Genocide

Amnesty International has accused China and Russia of violating a U.N. arms embargo against Sudan. The human rights organization says the weapons end up in Darfur, where they are used against civilians in the ongoing genocide. The two Security Council members deny any wrongdoing.

Posted on May 8, 2007 READ MORE


Karzai
irfwp.org

Furor in Afghanistan Over Civilian Deaths

Afghan President Hamid Karzai berated foreign military leaders after local police reported roughly 50 civilian deaths, including women and children, from a U.S.-led operation. He told the top brass his people’s patience was “wearing thin.” The U.S. says it is not aware of any civilian deaths, but a U.N. team investigated and found the report credible.

Posted on May 2, 2007 READ MORE


Kristol

Military Wife to Kristol: How Do You Sleep at Night?

A military wife whose husband is deployed in Iraq corners conservative pundit William Kristol over his support for the war.

Posted on Apr 30, 2007 READ MORE


Religious Tension Mounts in Turkish Politics

Turkey’s leading presidential candidate has Islamist roots, a cause for concern among the country’s many secularists. The Turkish military has even weighed in on the issue, saying the armed forces were troubled by the election and would display their “positions and attitudes” as “a staunch defender of secularism” at the appropriate time.

Posted on Apr 27, 2007 READ MORE


Russia Won’t Budge on Missile Defense

Defense Secretary Robert Gates was dispatched to Russia on Monday to smooth over relations with Vladimir Putin, who is upset over U.S. plans to locate missile defense sites in Europe. Russia has repeatedly voiced its opposition to such plans, and Monday’s meeting between Gates and his counterpart was no exception.

Posted on Apr 23, 2007 READ MORE


Jim Lehrer

Shortchanging Veterans

Jim Lehrer reports that the Army may be underestimating the severity of disabilities, denying servicemen and -women lifetime benefits. The Veterans Disability Benefits Commission found that disability ratings made by the Veterans Affairs Department were typically higher than those of the Army.

Posted on Apr 16, 2007 READ MORE


Turkish planes
militaryphotos.net

Another Iraq War

The Bush administration finds itself in a difficult position as tensions between two regional allies threaten to escalate to war. The Turkish military is fed up with Kurdish rebels it says have safe harbor in northern Iraq, and now wants to mount an assault across the border. One of Iraq’s Kurdish leaders has said such an attack would trigger retaliation.

Posted on Apr 13, 2007 READ MORE


Soldier
AP Photo / Darko Vojinovic

Stretched Military Extends Tours to Keep Surge Going

Defense Secretary Robert Gates announced Wednesday that the Pentagon is likely to extend the tours of duty of some 100,000 soldiers currently deployed in Iraq by three months. The new policy would enable the surge to last for a year.

Posted on Apr 11, 2007 READ MORE


Tillman and Lynch

Congress Will Investigate Misinformation on Tillman, Lynch

The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform will investigate the Pentagon’s handling of the death of Pat Tillman and the rescue of Jessica Lynch to determine “why inaccurate accounts of these two incidents were disseminated, the sources and motivations for the accounts, and whether the appropriate administration officials have been held accountable.”

Posted on Apr 10, 2007 READ MORE


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