Playing With Fire in Ukraine

Originally posted at TomDispatch. As Alfred McCoy suggests today, we’re now in the latest version of a “cold war” when it comes to Russia and China. Let’s take a minute, though, to think about that grim term, which, until relatively recently, seemed to be a relic of history. During the original Cold War, it had … Continue reading “Playing With Fire in Ukraine”

A Graduation Speech to Air Force Cadets

Originally posted at TomDispatch. It’s that moment again. Graduation time in high schools and colleges across the country. Because I’ve always thought that graduation speeches had a certain je ne sais quoi, I’ve given a number of them at TomDispatch to… well, I must admit, never anyone actually graduating from anyplace anywhere, but only, as … Continue reading “A Graduation Speech to Air Force Cadets”

Arsenal of Autocracy?

Originally posted at TomDispatch. There really isn’t a word for it. Bonanza hardly does the trick. Stroke of luck? Not appropriate, given the subject. Hit the jackpot? Well, it wouldn’t be inaccurate, that’s for sure. Not in recent memory has there been a U.S. arms transfer to another country quite like the latest one designated … Continue reading “Arsenal of Autocracy?”

Ukraine: An Antiwar Dilemma

Originally posted at TomDispatch. As we think about the nightmarish war in Ukraine, let me just offer you a few figures: almost a million dead, nearly 400,000 of them civilians; at least 38 million people turned into war refugees or internally displaced; and perhaps $8 trillion in money squandered on that hell on Earth. Oh … Continue reading “Ukraine: An Antiwar Dilemma”

The Civilian Deaths You Haven’t Heard About

Originally posted at TomDispatch. My father was in the U.S. Air Force in World War II when it was still the Army Air Corps. He was operations officer for the First Air Commandos in Burma. Years later, when I was boy, I can still remember sitting in the back seat of our car with our … Continue reading “The Civilian Deaths You Haven’t Heard About”

How Pentagon Contractors Are Cashing in on the Ukraine Crisis

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has brought immense suffering to the people of that land, while sparking calls for increased military spending in both the United States and Europe. Though that war may prove to be a tragedy for the world, one group is already benefiting from it: U.S. arms contractors. Even before hostilities broke … Continue reading “How Pentagon Contractors Are Cashing in on the Ukraine Crisis”

Will the Pentagon Budget Ever Shrink?

Originally posted at TomDispatch. I have a question for you: What would it take in today’s world for America’s military spending to go down? Here’s one admittedly farfetched scenario: Vladimir Putin loses his grip on power and Russia retrenches militarily while reaching out to normalize relations with the West. At the same time, China prudently … Continue reading “Will the Pentagon Budget Ever Shrink?”

Washington Should Think Twice Before Launching a New Cold War

Originally posted at TomDispatch. A growing chorus of pundits and policymakers has suggested that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine marks the beginning of a new Cold War. If so, that means trillions of additional dollars for the Pentagon in the years to come coupled with a more aggressive military posture in every corner of the world. … Continue reading “Washington Should Think Twice Before Launching a New Cold War”

Arsenal of Democracy or Simply an Arsenal?

Originally posted at TomDispatch. When it comes to bravery in relation to the war in Ukraine, let me just tip my cap to all the antiwar protesters in Russia who have taken to the streets across that ever more autocratic land. They’ve risked arrest to say “no to war” and “shame on you!” to the … Continue reading “Arsenal of Democracy or Simply an Arsenal?”

Ukraine, Taiwan, and Other Flashpoints in a New Age of Geopolitics

Originally posted at TomDispatch. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has been widely described as the beginning of a new cold war, much like the old one in both its cast of characters and ideological nature. "In the contest between democracy and autocracy, between sovereignty and subjugation, make no mistake – freedom will prevail," President Biden asserted … Continue reading “Ukraine, Taiwan, and Other Flashpoints in a New Age of Geopolitics”