It Doesn’t Matter Who Controls the Military

There are more than 8,000 troops still fighting in America’s longest war. According to Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, we need about 3,000 more. The idea that 3,000 troops will change a decade and a half long stalemate seems dubious, but that’s the number Mattis suggests. Others in the administration are reportedly arguing that that … Continue reading “It Doesn’t Matter Who Controls the Military”

Corbyn and Kelly: Two Very Different Responses to Terrorism

While he was a guest on Fox News’ Fox and Friends, Department of Homeland Security Chief John Kelly described the current safety of US citizens: "if [you] knew what I knew about terrorism, [you’d] never leave the house in the morning." Anywhere, any time, a terrorist attack can happen, according to Kelly. His very job … Continue reading “Corbyn and Kelly: Two Very Different Responses to Terrorism”

Justice for No One Except Jeff Sessions

Donald Trump is “America” in the most pejorative sense. "Make America Great Again" is a bitter, depressed motto that worked beautifully as the perfect slogan for a country that pushes other nations around, then plays innocent when the result is anger or even violence. Somewhere like Iran couldn’t possibly have a legitimate distrust of the … Continue reading “Justice for No One Except Jeff Sessions”

Yemen, Syria, the Press, and Trump the War President

How can you tell that Donald Trump is just another war president? Because in spite of the administrative chaos, the executive branch with its ever-shifting staff, and the half-conspiracies that surround him, the meat of the matter is the question, which near-war should the public pay attention to? The recent gas attack on civilians in … Continue reading “Yemen, Syria, the Press, and Trump the War President”

Is Trump Another Obama on Foreign Policy?

United States foreign policy involves miserable choices. Were George W. Bush’s two boots on the ground wars worse than Barack Obama’s dabbling in six different countries with war robots, and his precedent-setting assassinations of American citizens? Was FDR worse than Harry Truman for pure body-count, even though the latter is responsible for the only use(s) … Continue reading “Is Trump Another Obama on Foreign Policy?”

Trump Is the Enemy of Neocons, But He’s Not Our Friend

The enemy of my enemy is my friend is a Cold War-like mentality that the United States has operated under for decades and decades. Perhaps it’s natural, human, tribalism to do this. Or at the very least, it’s coldly pragmatic. If your enemy is the Godless Soviet Union, then your friend are the Muslim "freedom … Continue reading “Trump Is the Enemy of Neocons, But He’s Not Our Friend”

Believing That War Has Consequences

A February NBC news poll reveals some dramatic diversity within the minds of Donald Trump’s America. The topics covered are varied, and include Americans’ current feelings about Russia, and their worries over a future major war (56 percent are very or somewhat worried). One other question caught my eye, however, and that was a choice … Continue reading “Believing That War Has Consequences”

The Wretched Beginning of Donald Trump’s Presidency

Maybe Donald Trump is a different kind of politician. Maybe he will keep his promises. Unfortunately, since January 20, Trump has pursued a nasty collection of priorities. Any hope that the political newbie would be dazed and timid in his first 100 days went out the window after his clunky, legally-dubious executive order stopping immigration … Continue reading “The Wretched Beginning of Donald Trump’s Presidency”

Banning Refugees From Countries America Destroyed Is Wrong

President Donald Trump has been busy during his first week. The speed of his executive orders, and the confidence with which he has signed plans to build a wall, and to replace ObamaCare with… something else has been shocking, considering how shellshocked he looked when he actually won. Trump also followed through on his campaign … Continue reading “Banning Refugees From Countries America Destroyed Is Wrong”

What the Clemency of Chelsea Manning Means About Obama

I was desperately hoping to be wrong last week. I was delighted and surprised that I was indeed mistaken about President Obama being unlikely to pardon army whistleblower Chelsea Manning. My cynicism in the previous column was a challenge to the president, almost an act of reverse psychology. Wonder of wonders, Manning will be free … Continue reading “What the Clemency of Chelsea Manning Means About Obama”