Extra! Extra! Read Nil About It!

“‘It’s a finesse to give power to Rumsfeld – giving him the right to act swiftly, decisively, and lethally,’ the first Pentagon adviser told me. ‘It’s a global free-fire zone.’” (Seymour Hersh, "The Coming Wars," the New Yorker magazine) George Bush’s all-foreign-policy inaugural address offered a globe-enveloping neocon version of a Pax Americana world. Analyses … Continue reading “Extra! Extra! Read Nil About It!”

What Is Wrong With Torture

Recently, I wrote once again about the spread of torture as a way of life in the Bush administration’s offshore imperium. I offered my version of a national “self-portrait” for the New Year (“American Gothic”) and considered the latest torture news, now practically pouring through leaks in the Washington and Pentagon bureaucracy. While I was … Continue reading “What Is Wrong With Torture”

Does the Future Stand a Chance?

Here’s a strange, small tale of our times, as reported from Washington by Guy Dinmore in the sober British Financial Times. According to an anonymous counterinsurgency expert Dinmore evidently interviewed, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has a “brutally accurate” picture of the deteriorating situation in Iraq and “its potential dangers.” But, writes Dinmore, “a member … Continue reading “Does the Future Stand a Chance?”

Desolate Fallujah: City Without a Future?

The other day I posted a Dahr Jamail piece entitled, Iraq: The Devastation, but another word has recently come to mind that, I suspect, might apply no less aptly to Iraq and other areas where the Bush administration is exerting its muscle. That word is “desolation.” Let’s forget for a minute the recent Newsweek report … Continue reading “Desolate Fallujah: City Without a Future?”

Iraq: The Devastation

Measure Iraq any way you want and it adds up to disaster: Less electricity is now being delivered than in the Saddam Hussein years; infant malnourishment has, according to a Norwegian study, doubled in the same time period (“It’s on the level of some African countries,” says the deputy director of the institute that conducted … Continue reading “Iraq: The Devastation”

American Gothic: Self-Portrait With Shackles

Here we are, because time has some of the qualities of a tsunami, deposited in 2005, whether we like it or not. As the year changed, nature trumped the Bush administration in an appropriately, if horrifyingly Biblical, way, with a preemptive strike against shorelines jammed with rich tourists and poor peasants alike. And even in … Continue reading “American Gothic: Self-Portrait With Shackles”

In the Zone With GI Joe

You come out of the subway at Times Square across the street from the Gap and catty-corner to ESPN Zone, walk past the Drug Enforcement Agency’s temporary museum (“Freedom is … Drug Free!”) with its “Target America: Drug Traffickers, Terrorists, and You” show, stroll past the New York Police Department’s office, its name outlined in … Continue reading “In the Zone With GI Joe”

Giving the Gift of War

For the Pentagon, Xmas is an everyday affair. And the wonderful thing – for those who make its presents – is that there’s never a December 26th. Unlike the rest of us, the Pentagon, which evidently doesn’t keep its sales slips, never rushes to its nearest arms manufacturer and returns that crush of unwanted or … Continue reading “Giving the Gift of War”