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November 25, 2014
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Tag: Pentagon


DoD photo by Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo

A Soldier Among Chickenhawks

Chuck Hagel’s departure from his post as defense secretary has been attributed to his failure to fit in with the Obama cabinet’s crowd. Among his other reported deficiencies was that he was only a sergeant in Vietnam, twice wounded.

Posted on Nov 25, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Air Force/Master Sgt. Adrian Cadiz

Does Hagel’s Departure Pave the Way for Combat Troops to Iraq?

It’s a surprise to see President Obama actually fire someone. But I have to worry that Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel’s forced departure may signal further expansion of U.S. military involvement in Iraq and Syria.

Posted on Nov 25, 2014 READ MORE



Malarkey on the Potomac

Unlike my friend M, the well-informed and normally sober Washington Post columnist David Ignatius clings to the fantasy that “Iraq” is or ought to be politically viable, militarily capable, and socially cohesive. But surely this qualifies as wishful thinking.

Posted on Nov 24, 2014 READ MORE



Shrinking the Empire: A Session on the Imperial Couch

What follows is a transcript of a therapy session between the American Empire and a psychiatrist whose name we at TomDispatch have agreed not to disclose. Normally we wouldn’t consider publishing such a private encounter, but the probative news value of the exchange is so obvious that we decided to make an exception.

Posted on Nov 13, 2014 READ MORE



Four Months Into Iraq War 3.0, the Cracks Are Showing

What happens to a war in the absence of coherent state policy? Washington’s Iraq War 3.0, Operation Inherent Resolve, is what happens. As the mission enters its fourth month it may be time to ask, in all seriousness: What could possibly go right?

Posted on Nov 10, 2014 READ MORE



Thank You for Your Valor, for Your Service, Thank You, Thank You ...

My heart sank, my shoulders slumped. Special guests at the Concert for Valor were to include: Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, and Steven Spielberg. The mission of the concert, according to a press release, was to “raise awareness” of veterans issues and “provide a national stage for ensuring that veterans and their families know that their fellow Americans’ gratitude is genuine.”

Posted on Oct 27, 2014 READ MORE



White House/Pete Souza

President Obama’s ‘Dumb’ War

The adventure against the Islamic State increasingly resembles the sort of conflict Barack Obama launched his career opposing.

Posted on Oct 24, 2014 READ MORE



Will the War on Terror Be the Template for the Ebola Crisis?

Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that, while President Obama was sending at least 1,600 military personnel to fight ISIS, his first response to the Ebola crisis was also to send 3,000 troops into Liberia in what the media has been calling an “Ebola surge.”

Posted on Oct 23, 2014 READ MORE



Executive of ‘The Safest Place on the Internet’ Answers Privacy Exposé

The chief executive of the “anonymous” social media app that The Guardian determined was tracking its users did not dispute the accuracy of the paper’s report and said in his first public statement on the matter, “We realize that we’re not infallible.”

Posted on Oct 19, 2014 READ MORE



Seven Worst-Case Scenarios in the Battle With Islamic State

The U.S. is again at war in the Middle East, bombing freely across Iraq and Syria and searching desperately for some non-American boots to put on the ground. Here are seven worst-case scenarios in a part of the world where the worst case has regularly been the best that’s on offer.

Posted on Oct 17, 2014 READ MORE



Fred Branfman Risked His Life for Ordinary People

Fred was one of the bravest and most decent journalists I ever encountered.

Posted on Oct 16, 2014 READ MORE



Climate Change Threatens National Security, Pentagon Says

The Pentagon released a report earlier this week detailing the threats that climate change poses in the near future.

Posted on Oct 16, 2014 READ MORE



Why American Efforts to Create Foreign Armies Fail

When confronting IS and its band of lightly armed irregulars, a reputedly professional military melted back into the populace. What this behavior made clear was that U.S. efforts to create a new Iraqi army to the tune of $25 billion over 10 years had failed miserably.

Posted on Oct 16, 2014 READ MORE



White House/Pete Souza

White House Islamic State Strategy Amounts to Wishful Thinking

The notion that Iraq will “destroy” Islamic State at American behest is an illusion, and so is the notion that the coalition just formed can do it.

Posted on Oct 14, 2014 READ MORE



‘An Awfully Expensive Hammer to Hit a Couple of Cheap Nails’

“Last Saturday’s strikes” against Islamic State “are indicative of a key complexity of the U.S.-led campaign in Iraq and Syria,” Foreign Policy’s Justine Drennan writes at Stars and Stripes. “In throwing its hugely expensive 21st-century weaponry at a band of insurgents, the Pentagon is using planes that can cost nearly $200 million apiece against pickup trucks costing virtually pennies in comparison.”

Posted on Oct 10, 2014 READ MORE



Can China and Russia Squeeze Washington Out of Eurasia?

A specter haunts the fast-aging “New American Century”: the possibility of a future Beijing-Moscow-Berlin strategic trade and commercial alliance.

Posted on Oct 6, 2014 READ MORE



Global Warming and Global Warring

Hours after 400,000 people joined in the largest climate march in history, the United States began bombing Syria, starting yet another war.

Posted on Sep 24, 2014 READ MORE



Gage Skidmore (CC-BY-SA)

Republicans’ Reaction to Obama Speech Reveals Much—About Them

Minutes after President Barack Obama concluded his strong and sensible address explaining how he intends to destroy the terrorist organization the Islamic State, Republicans popped up on television like political snipers.

Posted on Sep 12, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Army/Staff Sgt. Brendan Stephens

Is This Really a Good Time for the U.S. to Send Ground Troops to Ukraine?

Next week, the United States will send 200 troops to Ukraine to participate in training exercises. Yes, the same Ukraine engaged in civil war.

Posted on Sep 3, 2014 READ MORE


Pentagon Hymn, the Shores of Tripoli

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Posted on Aug 29, 2014 READ MORE



The Guns of August

What, if anything, have we learned from the disaster of World War I? Look no farther than Gaza, or Ferguson, Mo.

Posted on Aug 27, 2014 READ MORE



Has Surplus Military Gear Wound Up in Your City?

An interactive map of American counties lets readers see how many aircraft, armored vehicles, body armor, grenade launchers, vision accessories and assault rifles left over from the military-industrial complex’s bloody adventures in the Middle East have ended up in their hometown.

Posted on Aug 22, 2014 READ MORE



Pentagon Forbids Military Personnel to Read News Website

Citing claims of a potential “new leaker,” the U.S. military has blocked and banned its employees from visiting The Intercept, the NSA-focused investigative news website founded by Glenn Greenwald and Pierre Omidyar.

Posted on Aug 21, 2014 READ MORE


Will Airstrikes in Iraq Escalate Growing Crisis?

The Pentagon announced that the U.S. military carried out airstrikes in northern Iraq on Friday targeting artillery used by the militant group Islamic State. “Democracy Now!” hears from Phyllis Bennis, a fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies and author of the recent article, “Don’t Go Back to Iraq!: Five Steps the U.S. Can Take in Iraq Without Going Back to War.”

Posted on Aug 8, 2014 READ MORE



The Fourth Branch

As every schoolchild knows, there are three check-and-balance branches of the U.S. government: the executive, Congress, and the judiciary. That’s bedrock Americanism and the most basic high school civics material. Only one problem: It’s just not so.

Posted on Aug 4, 2014 READ MORE



Why Destroying Hamas Is a Terrible Idea

According to a Pentagon intelligence official, if eliminated, Hamas would be replaced by a far more dangerous alternative; a group of scientists warns we may be witnessing the beginning of the Earth’s sixth mass extinction, the likes of which wiped out dinosaurs; meanwhile, an activist contends the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement has had significant repercussions on the Israeli economy, especially since the recent attack on Gaza began. These discoveries and more after the jump.

Posted on Jul 30, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Government Doesn’t Need Evidence to Call You a Terrorist

A key government document obtained by The Intercept confirms that the Obama administration does not require “concrete facts” or “irrefutable evidence” to brand Americans or foreigners as suspected terrorists.

Posted on Jul 24, 2014 READ MORE



James Vaughan Rights reserved

The Downside of Giving Weapons

The bodies and debris that rained from the Ukrainian sky offer a cautionary lesson about the danger of giving heavy weapons to non-state actors.

Posted on Jul 21, 2014 READ MORE



Pentagon Report Finds Litany of Problems With Effort to Recover MIAs

A draft inspector general report found that the mission lacks basic metrics for how to do the job—and when to end it.

Posted on Jul 12, 2014 READ MORE



How the Pentagon Is Flushing Our Money Down the Toilet

The Pentagon is wasting taxpayer dollars on unnecessarily overpriced items like one $600 toilet seat; meanwhile, Virginia cops want to photograph a teenage boy’s erect genitalia as part of their investigation; meanwhile, some thinkers hold that Facebook may be good for science. These discoveries and more after the jump.

Posted on Jul 10, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Nicole Sikorski

How Do You ‘Make’ Democracy?

Barring the increasingly influential isolationist/tea party wing of the American electorate, opinion is and always has been that the United States is the messenger of democracy to a world that usually hasn’t earned it and probably doesn’t deserve it.

Posted on Jul 8, 2014 READ MORE



Gays in the Military

A new photo book puts a face to the struggles of homosexual men and women in the U.S. armed forces.

Posted on Jul 4, 2014 READ MORE



Garry Wilmore (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Pentagon Finally Decides to Dig Up Remains of Long Lost Soldier

After a ProPublica story, the military will exhume a grave in the Philippines that may hold the remains of Bud Kelder, an American POW whose family has long been fighting the Pentagon to get him home.

Posted on Jul 2, 2014 READ MORE



State Department

It’s Too Late, Mr. Kerry

Secretary of State John Kerry thinks Iraq can be saved with a new prime minister to take the place of Nouri al-Maliki.

Posted on Jun 24, 2014 READ MORE



AP/Charles Dharapak

Up Close and Personal With George W. Bush’s Horrifying Legacy

The Iraq disaster remains George W. Bush’s enduring folly, and the Republican attempt to shift the blame to the Obama presidency is obscene nonsense.

Posted on Jun 18, 2014 READ MORE



AP Photo/Jerome Delay

Don’t Trust the Bombers on Iraq: ‘Shock and Awe’ Never Works

In March of 2003, we were treated to an intensive bombardment of Iraq, which the Bush White House propagandists termed “Shock and Awe.”

Posted on Jun 17, 2014 READ MORE



Defense Officials Preparing for Civil Breakdown

“A U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) research programme is funding universities to model the dynamics, risks and tipping points for large-scale civil unrest across the world, under the supervision of various U.S. military agencies,”  international security scholar Nafeez Ahmed writes at The Guardian.

Posted on Jun 13, 2014 READ MORE



Glynnis Jones / Shutterstock.com

Showtime on Benghazi

Before asking a question at the coming show trial, each self-righteous congressional inquisitor should be required to correctly locate Benghazi on an unlabeled map.

Posted on May 13, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. General in Nigeria to Aid Search for Schoolgirls

The commander of U.S. forces in Africa held talks Tuesday in Nigeria as Washington sought to help the government in Abuja trace more than 200 schoolgirls kidnapped by Islamist militants.

Posted on May 13, 2014 READ MORE



plavevski / Shutterstock.com

A Real Risk of War

Vladimir Putin’s annexation of Crimea and threat to Ukraine are causing damage he perhaps did not anticipate: disorientation of the United States and profound division in Europe, especially in Germany, and in NATO. A real risk of war.

Posted on May 6, 2014 READ MORE



Afghanistan Matters (CC BY 2.0)

Big Revamp of Pentagon’s Troubled Mission to Find Missing Soldiers Looks a Lot Like Old Revamp

Without change of leadership throughout, meaningful change could be elusive, critics say.

Posted on Apr 17, 2014 READ MORE



Advice Too Secret to Ignore

Col. Manners answers questions on CIA practices, proper cyberwar behavior, and invasion etiquette.

Posted on Mar 20, 2014 READ MORE



The Pentagon’s Phony Budget War

Despite cries of doom since the across-the-board cuts known as sequestration surfaced in Washington in 2011, the Pentagon has seen few actual reductions, and there is no indication that will change any time soon.

Posted on Mar 7, 2014 READ MORE


‘Left, Right & Center’: Ukraine, Shrinking the Military, and Gay Marriage

Truthdig Editor-in-Chief Robert Scheer and the other “Left, Right & Center” panelists talk about the threat to Ukraine’s economy and territorial integrity, the Pentagon’s intention to shrink the Army to pre-World War II levels and Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer’s veto of a law that would have allowed private businesses to discriminate against gays and lesbians.

Posted on Feb 28, 2014 READ MORE



DoD photo by Senior Airman Christopher Hubenthal, U.S. Air Force

Misremembering America’s Wars, 2003-2053

In 2012, the Pentagon kicked off a 13-year program to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War, complete with a sprawling website that includes a “history and education” component.

Posted on Feb 18, 2014 READ MORE



Drone Base Expansion Into Central Asia?

After the imminent exit of American troops from Afghanistan, the United States may attempt to maintain military control of the region by putting U.S. drones inside air bases in Central Asia.

Posted on Feb 17, 2014 READ MORE



‘Obama Administration Calmly Debates Killing More Americans’

Readers could be forgiven for thinking they stepped into a parallel universe while reading The New York Times on Monday, Jason Hirthler writes at CounterPunch, as the paper reported that “the U.S. was debating slaughtering another American by drone strike. And that this ‘debate’ was occurring in the hallowed halls of justice.”

Posted on Feb 15, 2014 READ MORE


Nick Turse on America’s Secret Soldiers

This week on Truthdig Radio in association with KPFK: The “Kill Anything That Moves” author on the clandestine commandos who operate in as many as 120 countries. Also: An NSA panel says shut it down, a little Persian history, and Arthur Yorinks.

Posted on Jan 23, 2014 READ MORE


Nick Turse on America’s Secret Soldiers

This week on Truthdig Radio in association with KPFK: The “Kill Anything That Moves” author on the clandestine commandos who operate in as many as 120 countries. Also: An NSA panel says shut it down, a little Persian history, and Arthur Yorinks.

Posted on Jan 23, 2014 READ MORE



White House/Pete Souza

Report Says Administration Wasn’t Lying About Benghazi

The bipartisan report on Benghazi released Wednesday by the Senate Intelligence Committee should finally convince conspiracy theorists of the obvious: There is no there there.

Posted on Jan 17, 2014 READ MORE


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