Will Technology Stamp a ‘Forever’ on America’s Wars?

Originally posted at TomDispatch. More than a decade ago, I saw the future – and it sure looked bleak. I was in Orlando, Florida (like I said, bleak!), for the 26th Army Science Conference, a showcase for emerging military technologies that was nothing if not underwhelming. All these years later, only a few memories leap … Continue reading “Will Technology Stamp a ‘Forever’ on America’s Wars?”

No Need To Whisper, AFRICOM Isn’t Listening In

Originally posted at TomDispatch. What is it about the U.S. military and TomDispatch? Last August, I discovered (thanks to a correspondent in that military) that the Pentagon’s computer networks had blocked this website. (The message you received if you tried to get to it: “You have attempted to access a blocked website. Access to this … Continue reading “No Need To Whisper, AFRICOM Isn’t Listening In”

How To Make Yourself an Exception to the Rule of Law

Originally posted at TomDispatch. If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? The advent of sound recording deep-sixed this age-old thought experiment and offered a definitive answer: Yes! I’ve got another one for you, though: if you water-torture someone at a secure military … Continue reading “How To Make Yourself an Exception to the Rule of Law”

US Counterterror Missions Across the Planet

Originally posted at TomDispatch. “Training.” It sounds so innocuous. It also sounds like something expected of a military. All professional soldiers undergo some sort of basic training. Think: calisthenics, negotiating obstacle courses, and marksmanship. Soldiers require instruction, otherwise they’re little more than rabble. Sometimes soldiers from one country even train the troops of another, imparting … Continue reading “US Counterterror Missions Across the Planet”

Bases: One Down, Who Knows How Many To Go?

Originally posted at TomDispatch. As TomDispatch’s Nick Turse reminds us today, the United States remains an imperial military presence unlike any other – not just in this moment but in the history of empire. Never has a single country had so many military bases on so many parts of Planet Earth. Consider that a striking … Continue reading “Bases: One Down, Who Knows How Many To Go?”

The US Military is Winning. No, Really, It Is!

Originally posted at TomDispatch. In 2010, H.R. McMaster wasn’t the former national security advisor to you-know-who but a brigadier general and senior adviser to General David Petraeus, then commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan. At that time, he came up with a striking name for America’s twenty-first-century wars in the Greater Middle East, … Continue reading “The US Military is Winning. No, Really, It Is!”

The Legacy of Infinite War

Originally posted at TomDispatch. It looks like TomDispatch may have a few less readers from now on. Perhaps it will surprise you, but judging by the mail I get, some members of the U.S. military do read TomDispatch – partially to check out the range of military and ex-military critics of America’s wars that this … Continue reading “The Legacy of Infinite War”

Special Ops: 133 Countries Down, 17 to Go?

Originally posted at TomDispatch. Give them credit. As TomDispatch’s Nick Turse has so vividly reported over the last decade, America’s previously “elite” Special Operations forces — once small, specially trained units in a large military — have now essentially become a military in their own right, all 70,000 of them (larger, in fact, than many … Continue reading “Special Ops: 133 Countries Down, 17 to Go?”

Tomorrow’s Terror Today

Originally posted at TomDispatch. Once upon a time, dystopian fiction was left to the novelists: Aldous Huxley, George Orwell, Margaret Atwood, Philip K. Dick. And once upon a time, the futuristic dreams of the military were distinctly upbeat. They were of generals leading armies to victory, of air power causing the morale of enemy nations … Continue reading “Tomorrow’s Terror Today”

The US Military’s Drug of Choice

Originally posted at TomDispatch. Donald Trump has, it seems, finally offered his plan for dealing with the opioid crisis in America. He did so during his State of the Union address to Congress, filled with Republican applause (none louder than The Donald’s), introducing the country to an Albuquerque policeman who had decided to adopt the … Continue reading “The US Military’s Drug of Choice”