Trump’s Grand Strategy

Originally posted at TomDispatch. If you don’t happen to be part of Donald Trump’s base and you’re a member of the “fake media,” it’s a commonplace to assume that our president is a creature of impulse, a giant id with hardly rhyme, no less reason for what he does. News headlines and those of opinion … Continue reading “Trump’s Grand Strategy”

Is a War With China on the Horizon?

Originally posted at TomDispatch. There’s no other imperial tradition like it. For two millennia, dynasty after dynasty rose and fell, spread and shrank, reaching into Southeast Asia and far out into the steppes of Eurasia, its commercial fleets — 3,500 ships in the fourteenth century — voyaging as far as Africa. It’s true that ours … Continue reading “Is a War With China on the Horizon?”

Gearing Up for the Third Gulf War

It’s already long forgotten here, but the theocratic regime in Iran was really our baby. After all, in 1953, the CIA and British intelligence engineered a coup to replace a democratic government in Iran with the autocratic Shah and so gave Iranians just what they didn’t want (including his creepy secret police, the Savak). In … Continue reading “Gearing Up for the Third Gulf War”

The New ‘Long War’

Originally posted at TomDispatch. Someday, it may seem like history’s classic example of imperial overstretch. There was, after all, only one superpower left on this planet after the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. It was challenged by… well, next to no one. Or rather by a single jihadist, his modest set of followers, and an … Continue reading “The New ‘Long War’”

Making Nuclear Weapons Usable Again

Originally posted at TomDispatch. Speaking of the situation on the Korean peninsula, he predicted that there would be "the greatest slaughter." He later requested 34 nuclear weapons for possible use in connection with the Korean situation. He would later claim that he had considered dropping "30 to 50 tactical atomic bombs" and had suggested laying … Continue reading “Making Nuclear Weapons Usable Again”

The China Syndrome

On February 4, President Bush announced a baseline military budget of $515.4 billion for the next fiscal year, not including funds for operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. This is the largest one-year Pentagon request in real, uninflated dollars since World War II. This Fiscal Year (FY) 2009 figure represents a 7.5% increase over the 2008 … Continue reading “The China Syndrome”

Beware Empires in Decline

The common wisdom circulating in Washington these days is that the United States is too bogged down in Iraq to consider risky military action against Iran or – God forbid – North Korea. Policy analysts describe the U.S. military as "overburdened" or "stretched to the limit." The presumption is that the Pentagon is telling President … Continue reading “Beware Empires in Decline”