America’s Commandos Deployed to 141 Countries

Originally posted at TomDispatch. Nick Turse began covering what might be thought of as the secret history of American war in this century – the rise and spread of American Special Operations forces – for TomDispatch in 2011. That was the year when he first revealed that special-ops deployments had doubled from 60 countries annually … Continue reading “America’s Commandos Deployed to 141 Countries”

Three Good Reasons To Liquidate Our Empire

Originally posted at TomDispatch. It’s been almost eight years since Chalmers Johnson died.  He was the author of, among other works, Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire and Dismantling the Empire. He was also a TomDispatch stalwart and a friend . As I watch the strange destructive dance of Donald Trump and his … Continue reading “Three Good Reasons To Liquidate Our Empire”

Letting the Pentagon Loose With Your Tax Dollars

Who doesn’t remember, as a child, making that Christmas wish list for Santa and his elves? As it happens, in this century – and in the post-Christmas season, no less – a Pentagon already sporting the highest budget ever is still making such wish lists, officially known as "unfunded requirements lists," for the orange-haired Santa … Continue reading “Letting the Pentagon Loose With Your Tax Dollars”

The Paradox of America’s Endless Wars

Originally posted at TomDispatch. Here’s a word that essentially dropped out of Washington’s dictionary in this century: peace. It used to be part of the rhetoric, at least, of politicians there, but in the era of the war on terror it’s barely made an appearance. In election year 2020, however, it’s back, not as a … Continue reading “The Paradox of America’s Endless Wars”

War Addicts, Inc.

Originally posted at TomDispatch. My first question is simple enough: After 18-plus years of our forever wars, where are all the questions? Almost two decades of failing American wars across a startlingly large part of the planet and I’d like to know, for instance, who’s been fired for them? Who’s been impeached? Who’s even paying … Continue reading “War Addicts, Inc.”

World War III’s Newest Battlefield

In early March, an estimated 7,500 American combat troops will travel to Norway to join thousands of soldiers from other NATO countries in a massive mock battle with imagined invading forces from Russia. In this futuristic simulated engagement – it goes by the name of Exercise Cold Response 2020 – allied forces will "conduct multinational … Continue reading “World War III’s Newest Battlefield”

Wars Without Victories, Weapons Without End

Originally posted at TomDispatch. Here was the headline that recently caught my eye: “Former Top U.S. General Dunford Joining UNICEF.” Okay, you knew it was a joke immediately, right? There’s really only one conceivable headline of that sort when you’re talking about a figure like four-star general Joseph Dunford, Jr., who commanded the 5th Marine … Continue reading “Wars Without Victories, Weapons Without End”

US Foreign Policy Goes Off the Rails

Originally posted at TomDispatch. What’s the value of an American life in the age of Donald Trump? If you were judging by the death of Nawres Hamid, an Iraqi-American contractor killed in late December after an American base in Iraq was mortared by a Shiite militia believed to have ties to Iran, the answer would … Continue reading “US Foreign Policy Goes Off the Rails”

How The Military-Industrial Complex Gets Away With Murder

Originally posted at TomDispatch. In late December 2018, when James “Mad Dog” Mattis resigned as secretary of defense after President Trump announced that he was going to pull U.S. troops out of Syria, it was a hell of a story. The former general was pundited to heaven and back as the last “adult in the … Continue reading “How The Military-Industrial Complex Gets Away With Murder”

From Obama to Trump, the Escalation of Drone Warfare

"Be assured of one thing: whichever candidate you choose at the polls in November, you aren’t just electing a president of the United States; you are also electing an assassin-in-chief… In previous eras… presidents either stayed above the assassination fray or practiced a kind of plausible deniability about the acts. We are surely at a … Continue reading “From Obama to Trump, the Escalation of Drone Warfare”