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‘The Field of Fight’

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Engaging the Muslim World

Engaging the Muslim World

By Juan Cole
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Tag: War


Donald Trump Picks Retired Gen. James ‘Mad Dog’ Mattis for Defense Secretary

“It’s fun to shoot some people. I’ll be right upfront with you, I like brawling,” Mattis said in 2005, speaking about the American invasion of Afghanistan.

Posted on Dec 2, 2016 READ MORE


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‘The Field of Fight’

Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, who is set to become Trump’s national security adviser, writes in his new book, “[Religious war] created our world. The world badly needs an Islamic Reformation, and we should not be surprised if violence is involved. It’s normal.”

Posted on Dec 2, 2016 READ MORE



Trump Loves Winning, but American Generals Have Forgotten How

Our generals have demonstrated an impressive aptitude for moving pieces around on a dauntingly complex military chessboard. But having been “at war” for virtually the entire 21st century, the United States military is still looking for its first win.

Posted on Nov 30, 2016 READ MORE


Pilot to Navigator









Posted on Nov 29, 2016 ENLARGE



Take a Close Look at Tulsi Gabbard

Journalists are weighing the positives and negatives of news that President-elect Donald Trump is considering Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, who supported Bernie Sanders during the primaries, for a position in his Cabinet.

Posted on Nov 24, 2016 READ MORE



Rebirth of a Nation?

There’s good reason to assume Donald Trump will be a Clintonesque hawk or even worse, but there is also reason to believe—due to his propensity for lies, bluster and backing down—that he could turn out to be less bellicose.

Posted on Nov 16, 2016 READ MORE



With President Trump, Is the American Experiment Over?

The empire of chaos has made the trip homeward. It’s now with us big time, all the time.

Posted on Nov 14, 2016 READ MORE



With Obama’s Help, Commander in Chief Trump Will Wield Abundant Military and Surveillance Power

An unaccountable drone program, an FBI with a record of spying on mosques and activists, and a surveillance empire are among the powers currently held in check with restraints as durable as tissue paper.

Posted on Nov 12, 2016 READ MORE



Chris Hedges Unmasks American Empire in ‘Unspeakable’

In this new book, the award-winning Truthdig columnist discusses taboo topics in America—including his experience as a radical war correspondent at The New York Times—with fellow journalist David Talbot.

Posted on Nov 9, 2016 READ MORE



War Within War: Iraq’s Prime Minister Says ‘We Don’t Want to Fight Turkey, but We’re Ready’

Iraq was alarmed by the announcement by Turk military authorities that they are sending some 30 armored vehicles, tanks and artillery to the Turkish-Iraqi border.

Posted on Nov 5, 2016 READ MORE


U.S. Army Veteran: ‘I Killed Four People in One Hour in Iraq’

Isaac Lebonte, known as “Bone” to his fellow soldiers in Iraq, is filmed talking about killing people in his first firefight, the deaths of close friends and his difficulty adjusting to life outside war.

Posted on Nov 3, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN



One Veteran’s War on Islamophobia

When I chose to serve in the military 20 years ago, I did so to protect what I viewed as our sacred foundational values of liberty, equality and democracy. Now I’ve joined forces with fellow veterans to fight again for those sacred values, this time, right here at home.

Posted on Nov 2, 2016 READ MORE



The Worst Place on Earth: Death and Life in a Lost South Sudanese Town

This is no longer a town, but a killing field—a place where human remains lie unburied, whose residents have long since fled. Its few remaining inhabitants mostly are refugees from similarly ravaged villages.

Posted on Oct 24, 2016 READ MORE



As Election Day Nears, Military Hawks Circle to Promote New Wave of War

A slew of bipartisan reports are hoping to push the former secretary of state to increased military action in the Middle East, particularly Syria.

Posted on Oct 23, 2016 READ MORE


The Hitchhiker









Posted on Oct 18, 2016 ENLARGE


Chris Hedges and Robert Scheer on War, Religion and Fighting American Neoliberalism

By Emma Niles

The Truthdig editor in chief sat down with the acclaimed journalist for an intimate conversation about their careers and the American political landscape.

Posted on Oct 17, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN



Destruction Is All We Have to Show for a 15-Year War in Afghanistan

Since 2001, the U.S. has spent more than $103 billion on the Asian country—more than it spent on the entire European continent after World War II. And there is no end in sight for the debacle that George W. Bush began and Barack Obama continued.

Posted on Oct 7, 2016 READ MORE


Assange Promises ‘Significant’ Leak Before Election, Urges Journalists to Lend a Hand

By Emma Niles

Some are calling it an “October surprise” that could affect the U.S. voting. But the WikiLeaks founder says only that the website will release a mass of secret documents on American foreign policy over the next 10 weeks. And, he adds, with “more than a million documents to get through,” WikiLeaks needs all the help it can get.

Posted on Oct 4, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN



The Pentagon Paid a British Public Relations Firm $500 Million to Produce Iraq War Propaganda Films

Material signed off by the White House and Gen. David Petraeus included fake al-Qaida propaganda videos that could be used to track viewers.

Posted on Oct 3, 2016 READ MORE



How We Could End the Permanent State of War

Despite the fact that the war state appears to be riding high, circumstances may favor a frontal challenge to that condition for the first time in many years.

Posted on Sep 30, 2016 READ MORE



We Can’t Have War Without Racism. We Can Have a World Without Both.

The U.S. military encourages terms such as “camel jockey” or “raghead” to demean freedom fighters in the deserts of the Middle East. And all the while it proclaims itself a beacon of freedom and democracy, a fairy tale not believed much outside its own borders.

Posted on Sep 29, 2016 READ MORE



My Military, Win, Lose or Draw

Although American politicians like Hillary Clinton regularly insist that the U.S. possesses “the greatest military” on the planet, they avoid addressing what the country’s armed interventions have actually accomplished when it comes to policy goals—the true measure of success in war.

Posted on Sep 29, 2016 READ MORE


Important Anti-War Films That Reveal the Uncensored History of the United States

By Frank Dorrel

The U.S. is addicted to war. Stopping this horrible situation is up to the American people. The way we do this is by getting informed. These documentaries can help.

Posted on Sep 27, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN



War, Peace and Absurdity

Nukes, bombs and a well-oiled machinery of privatized war—here are a few recent examples from the world of American-style war and peace that make me want to shout, “You must be kidding!”

Posted on Sep 24, 2016 READ MORE



Apologizing to My Daughter for the Last 15 Years of War

What I really wanted to say when I dropped her off for her last year at college was just how sorry I was that she would have to live in what 9/11 transformed into the most frightened country on earth.

Posted on Sep 22, 2016 READ MORE



Here Are Six Problems America Has That Are Worse Than Terrorism

Every time a person of Middle Eastern heritage who ought to have been committed to an insane asylum but wasn’t (because rich people who don’t want to pay taxes successfully lobbied to get rid of insane asylums) commits violence, our press and politicians hit the panic button.

Posted on Sep 21, 2016 READ MORE


Chris Hedges on the Role of the Media in Perpetuating ‘Endless War in the Middle East’

In a new interview, the Truthdig columnist explains how both political parties and the media are accountable for radical terrorism in America—and how it can be stopped.

Posted on Sep 20, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN



Talking to a 6-Year-Old About War

With armed conflicts and military action, it’s hard to know how much to say to young people, and when, how and whether to say it. Perhaps it is a universal parental urge to shield children from certain hard knowledge.

Posted on Sep 15, 2016 READ MORE



How to Stop Capitalism’s Deadly War With Nature

It’s not humanity alone that threatens life on earth. The bigger culprit is an economic and political system that relies on endless global appropriation of cheap food, energy, raw materials and labor.

Posted on Sep 13, 2016 READ MORE



15 Years After 9/11, Can We Recover Our Republic?

The Founding Fathers thought keeping a standing army was a danger to democracy. The great wars of the 20th century appear to have left the United States with a permanent standing army—a state of affairs only reinforced by the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

Posted on Sep 11, 2016 READ MORE



How Everything Became War

As the distinction between war and peace has blurred, international law has not kept pace with the smudging of this line. Unless we build legal foundations that stand some chance of containing war, we invite further chaos, endangering future generations.

Posted on Sep 10, 2016 READ MORE


Robert Scheer: U.S. Pledge of $90 Million to Laos Glosses U.S. History of Terrorizing Civilians

If the word “terrorism” has any meaning, it applies to the U.S. bombings in Laos during the Vietnam War, says Truthdig’s editor in chief.

Posted on Sep 9, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN



‘Paying the Price for Peace’ Tells an Epic Story of Courage and Commitment

S. Brian Willson’s tour of duty in Vietnam changed his views forever. “We are not worth more. They are not worth less,” he decided about those in lands where Americans go to war. Since his military service he has dedicated his life to the anti-war movement at great personal cost.

Posted on Sep 3, 2016 READ MORE



America the Illiterate

The change from a print-based to an image-based society has transformed our nation. All the traditional tools of democracies—including dispassionate scientific and historical truth, facts, news and rational debate—are useless instruments in a world that lacks the capacity to use them.

Posted on Aug 31, 2016 READ MORE



War ‘Has Become a Permanent Condition’ for the United States

At the annual Veterans For Peace convention, speakers including filmmaker Oliver Stone, historian Andrew Bracevich and journalist Ann Jones discussed public relation campaigns in support of war and the struggles American veterans face.

Posted on Aug 26, 2016 READ MORE



How Veterans Are Losing the War at Home

A Vietnam vet told me about a veteran of the Iraq War who, when some civilian said, “Thank you for your service,” replied: “I didn’t serve, I was used.” It got me thinking about the many ways today’s veterans are used, conned and exploited.

Posted on Aug 25, 2016 READ MORE



The World After Me: Eternal ‘Wartime’ in America

In this era, everything that further militarizes American foreign policy, puts the national security state in command and assures the continued demobilization of a scared and rattled citizenry creates yet more uprooted souls, more children without childhoods, more refugees.

Posted on Jul 27, 2016 READ MORE



It’s Time for an Investigation Into George W. Bush and the Invasion of Iraq

The release of a long-awaited report on the United Kingdom’s role in the Iraq War is prompting renewed calls to try former Prime Minister Tony Blair for war crimes. And many are asking: What about the war’s principal promoter?

Posted on Jul 6, 2016 READ MORE


Happy Birthday to Ron Kovic, Born on the Fourth of July

Independence Day is the birthday of the author and anti-war activist, who is also a friend and contributor to Truthdig. Today, we look back on our week with Kovic and the kind words he had for his friend Bruce Springsteen in 2009.

Posted on Jul 4, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN



Garrison Keillor’s Prophecy and Apostasy

The radio host’s decision to retire from his show “A Prairie Home Companion” on the Fourth of July weekend was likely calculated to extenuate his presumed ties to all things Americana, but it also highlighted his hypocrisies and contradictions.

Posted on Jul 4, 2016 READ MORE



We Live in an Age of Disintegration

Nowhere is the process of destabilization more evident than in the Greater Middle East and Africa, in places where it is possible to doubt that civilization will ever return.

Posted on Jun 30, 2016 READ MORE


Live at Truthdig: Does America Care About the Costs and Consequences of War?

Peace activist and veteran Ron Kovic was our guest Thursday on Facebook.

Posted on Jun 29, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN



Dominating the Skies—and Losing the Wars

U.S. pilots have total mastery of the fabled “high ground” of war. And yet throughout the Greater Middle East, America’s conflicts rage on with no endgame in sight.

Posted on Jun 22, 2016 READ MORE



Guantanamo Bay Should Be Closed Forever

The prison is the symbol of everything that is wrong with the United States’ so-called war on terror.

Posted on Jun 20, 2016 READ MORE



Batman in a Hospital Bed

With Memorial Day in the rearview mirror, many Americans have already stopped thinking about our wars and the casualties from them for another year. As for me, it’s been Memorial Day ever since I first met Tomas Young.

Posted on Jun 11, 2016 READ MORE



Bernie Sanders to Hillary Clinton: Yes, Trump’s Foreign Policy Ideas Are Scary. But So Are Yours

“We need a foreign policy based on building coalitions ... [not] perpetual warfare in the Middle East,” Sanders said in a statement.

Posted on Jun 4, 2016 READ MORE


Repeat Deployments









Posted on Jun 1, 2016 ENLARGE



Islamic State Counterattack in Fallujah: Can Iraqi Forces Maintain Momentum? (Video)

Iraqi troops are advancing on Fallujah despite facing fierce resistance from Islamic State, but fear is mounting about the fate of the tens of thousands of noncombatants inside the city who are caught in the crossfire.

Posted on Jun 1, 2016 READ MORE



Samantha Power, Former Human Rights Journalist, to Receive Award From Henry Kissinger

Although she is currently the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, in the past Power has called out Kissinger for his role in human rights abuses.

Posted on May 31, 2016 READ MORE



Obama in Hiroshima, Memorial Day and the Iran Deal (Video)

Historians will see Obama’s Iran nuclear deal as one of the greatest achievements of his presidency, and perhaps as a turning point in anti-proliferation through diplomacy.

Posted on May 29, 2016 READ MORE


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