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Index » Regional/Local » USA/Canada » Anti-War Page: 1, 2, 3 ... 19, 20, 21  Next
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black321

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Location: A sunset in the desert
Gender: Male


Posted: Jun 24, 2019 - 8:33am



 R_P wrote:
These respectable American war criminals reveal that many Americans live in an alternative reality, where their government’s war crimes, if ever mentioned by mainstream media, are usually called “mistakes,” and rarely investigated or persistently challenged. In calling America ”the greatest nation on earth” and “the exceptional nation” and saying “Make American Great Again,” Presidents Bush and Obama and Trump are attributing to America a moral superiority, which conveniently serves to cover up the U.S. government’s imperialistic war crimes. A moral superiority which many Christians especially have been conditioned to believe because of their own exceptional Christian self-image. People need to be morally diminished to justify their subjugation.

Respectable American war criminals count on respectable people of faith. These political leaders could not get away with their war crimes and then be honored in high – and holy — places without the accommodation of people of faith. This is not to discount the immeasurable good works people of faith perform. But when it comes to speaking truth to the U.S. government’s criminal global wars against so-called “terrorism,” more often than not people of faith remain respectable chaplains of the status quo, rather than prophets of all the people. It is about power, not morality.

 
I dont disagree with any of the facts in this piece, but perhaps the one-sided narrative...U.S. as some careless imperialist nation.    Yet, the end, when right, should not justify the means.  

westslope

westslope Avatar

Location: BC sage brush steppe


Posted: Jun 23, 2019 - 4:29pm

from the same piece below:


Edward S. Herman, now deceased American economist, media scholar and
social critic, wrote that “the ratio of dead Iraqi children to deaths in
the WTC/Pentagon bombings was better than 80 to 1,”
but “the mainstream
media and intellectuals have not found Albright’s rationalization of
this mass killing of any interest whatsoever.” Their interest is about
“who” not “why.” Herman asked, “Is it not morally chilling, even a bit
frightening, that he and the great mass of citizen
compatriots, can focus with such anguish and indignation on their own
6,000 dead, while ignorant of, or not caring about, or approving his
(their) own government’s ongoing killing of scores of times as many
innocents abroad?” He also said, “Because the media make the suffering
and death of 500,000 children invisible, the outrage produced by the
intense coverage of the WCT/Pentagon bombing victims does not surface on
their behalf. . . . The media . . . are not interested in root causes.”
Herman concluded, “This reflects the work of a superb propaganda
system.” (Ibid)



I would add that the sanctions applied against Venezuela are more than likely contributing to hunger and mass emigration. Venezuelans fleeing on foot seem to be more likely to be victims of violent crime.
Worse, yet, I fully expect the sanctions to encourage even more resistance by Maduro and collaborators dragging any regime by many more years and hurting American multinational prospects in Latin America.

R_P

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Posted: Jun 23, 2019 - 11:49am

These respectable American war criminals reveal that many Americans live in an alternative reality, where their government’s war crimes, if ever mentioned by mainstream media, are usually called “mistakes,” and rarely investigated or persistently challenged. In calling America ”the greatest nation on earth” and “the exceptional nation” and saying “Make American Great Again,” Presidents Bush and Obama and Trump are attributing to America a moral superiority, which conveniently serves to cover up the U.S. government’s imperialistic war crimes. A moral superiority which many Christians especially have been conditioned to believe because of their own exceptional Christian self-image. People need to be morally diminished to justify their subjugation.

Respectable American war criminals count on respectable people of faith. These political leaders could not get away with their war crimes and then be honored in high – and holy — places without the accommodation of people of faith. This is not to discount the immeasurable good works people of faith perform. But when it comes to speaking truth to the U.S. government’s criminal global wars against so-called “terrorism,” more often than not people of faith remain respectable chaplains of the status quo, rather than prophets of all the people. It is about power, not morality.

miamizsun

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Location: (3261.3 Miles SE of RP)
Gender: Male


Posted: Jun 19, 2019 - 7:46am

 black321 wrote: 

fyt
black321

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Location: A sunset in the desert
Gender: Male


Posted: Jun 18, 2019 - 7:23am

Hey, war pays for itself:


https://www.thenation.com/article/who-said-war-would-pay-itself-they-did/

westslope

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Location: BC sage brush steppe


Posted: Jun 18, 2019 - 6:40am


VOICE


When Zombie Neoconservatives Attack

Why most Americans are right about foreign policy, and David Brooks is wrong.

BY | JUNE 17, 2019, 4:19 PM
New York Times columnist David Brooks speaking at the Book Expo America in New York.New York Times columnist David Brooks speaking at the Book Expo America in New York. JAMES LEYNSE/CORBIS VIA GETTY IMAGES
This might be disturbing news to some readers, but the New York Times columnist David Brooks is very unhappy with the American people. Why? Because they don’t seem to be blindly following his views on foreign policy anymore. In fact, his latest column says their ideas about U.S. foreign policy “stink.”

To be specific, Brooks is troubled by some recent surveys of public opinion, which show declining public support for endless U.S. intervention overseas. He interprets these polls as evidence that Americans are abandoning traditional liberal internationalism and reverting to isolationism. This trend really bugs him because he believes U.S. leadership after World War II—and especially its promotion of the so-called liberal world order—was a selfless act of statesmanship that produced several generations of peace and prosperity. Now, alas, he thinks America is “withdrawing from the world,” and this trend is allowing “wolves” like Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping to “fill the void” and letting countries like Iran destabilize the Middle East.

Is he right? Are the American people as misguided as he says? Should we be very afraid?

Nope.

For starters, the liberal world order that Brooks now extols was never fully liberal, never truly global in scope, and not all that orderly. True, there hasn’t been a great-power war since 1945, and U.S. engagement in Europe and Northeast Asia helped stabilize these regions during the long Cold War. But Brooks misses a key lesson of that period: U.S. internationalism worked best when it was essentially defensive in nature and when it focused on deterring direct Soviet aggression against vital U.S. interests (see: NATO). American power—including its military power—turned out to be extremely good at this mission, especially when it was combined with sophisticated and far-sighted diplomacy.

By contrast, U.S. efforts to remake local politics in other parts of the world—in other words, to engage in nation building—were often morally dubious and much less successful. The Soviet Union and the United States never fought each other directly, but the Cold War on which Brooks looks back with such fondness also featured bloody and expensive conflicts in Korea and Vietnam, repeated interventions by both superpowers in the developing world that killed or wounded millions of people, and plenty of regional conflicts between other states, some of which were encouraged and subsidized by Moscow or Washington or both. This aspect of U.S. Cold War policy didn’t work so well, and it is the part that most closely resembles the country’s more recent follies. Not surprisingly, it goes unmentioned in Brooks’s nostalgic reverie.

Brooks also overstates the extent of American retreat today. The United States is still in NATO; still has thousands of soldiers, sailors, and aircrews in the greater Middle East; still has powerful forces in Asia and is likely to increase them even more; and is busy conducting counterterrorism missions in more countries than I can keep track of. Indeed, no country on the planet comes close to the level of military activity that U.S. armed forces are engaged in today. And if National Security Advisor John Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo have their way, the United States could find itself in another Middle East war in the not-too-distant future. If its current policy is one of “withdrawal,” I’d hate to see what greater engagement policy looked like.

Lastly, Brooks offers up a typically simplistic reading of U.S. adversaries’ actions and one in which the United States’ only sin is insufficient resolve. I’m not happy with what Russia, China, and Iran have been doing in recent years, but Putin’s cyber-meddling, Xi’s crackdown against the Uighurs or others, and Iran’s Middle East activities are hardly motivated by perceptions of U.S. disengagement. In Russia and Iran’s case, their actions are more readily explained as attempts to secure their own interests against what they see as relentless American pressure against them. That’s not a justification for what they are doing; it is an explanation that avoids simplistic caricatures. But the idea that the United States might appear threatening to others—even unwittingly—is a concept Brooks can’t seem to grasp or acknowledge.

Given Brooks’s worldview, however, he has reason to be worried. Americans are increasingly uncomfortable bearing outsized global burdens, and he thinks it’s mostly because they’ve “lost faith in human nature and human possibility.” He wants them to get that optimistic mojo back so that they will willingly pick up their lances, mount their chargers, and rush back into the world to slay a few more dragons. Don’t worry: It’ll be a cakewalk and maybe even pay for itself!

There is a far more obvious explanation for the trends that worry Brooks, which he alludes to only in passing. Americans are unhappy with the foreign policy that he and others have been peddling for the past quarter century for one simple reason: It has been a near-total failure, time and time again.

During the Cold War, the United States employed an essentially realist strategy—containment. In order to deter Soviet expansion, Washington concentrated first and foremost on maintaining favorable balances of power in Europe, East Asia, and the oil-rich Persian Gulf. U.S. leaders made some significant mistakes along the way (e.g., Vietnam), but on the whole, this strategy worked well, and it ended with the peaceful collapse of the Soviet Union. This policy made sense because preventing the emergence of a rival regional hegemon was in America’s long-term strategic interest.

READ MORE

Former President Barack Obama, former Vice President Al Gore, former President George W. Bush, and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton arrive at the memorial service for Sen. John McCain at the Washington National Cathedral on Sept. 1. (Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images)

The Foreign-Policy Establishment Reeks of Desperation

After years of failure, elites have only name-calling left.

VOICE |
Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower at NATO's Paris headquarters in 1951. (AFP/Getty Images)

Want to Win the Midterms? Spend Less on War

The intensification of the liberal-neoconservative alliance under Trump is not good news for Democrats.

ARGUMENT |
John Bolton appears on a TV monitor as he speaks on "Meet the Press" in Washington on Oct. 15, 2006. (Alex Wong/Getty Images for Meet the Press)

John Bolton Is a National Security Threat

John Bolton wants regime change in North Korea and Iran, and he’ll do whatever it takes to get it.

SHADOW GOVERNMENT | , In the unipolar moment that followed the Cold War, however, U.S. leaders succumbed to hubris and decided to try to remake the world in America’s image. Convinced that it had found the magic formula for success, the United States committed itself to remaking local politics all over the world. American leaders hoped to do this peacefully—by expanding NATO, supporting color revolutions in Eastern Europe, embracing the Arab Spring, etc.—but they were willing to use force if they had to.

Unfortunately, this strategy was doomed to fail. Aggressive efforts at democracy promotion alarmed authoritarian states, and open-ended NATO expansion poisoned relations with Moscow and drove it closer to China. Regime change in various places didn’t lead to stable democracies but to failed states, costly occupations, and new terrorist movements. The rapid expansion of global markets did not deliver benefits broadly and made the world financial system less stable, as we learned to our sorrow in 2008. As the ancient Greeks understood, hubris usually leads to humbling disasters.

Exhibit A, of course, is the invasion of Iraq in 2003—the war that Brooks and his fellow neoconservatives worked overtime to sell to the American people—but the list of failed efforts at global social engineering also includes the forever war in Afghanistan, the toppling of Libyan dictator Muammar al-Qaddafi, President Barack Obama’s premature declaration that Bashar al-Assad must go, and the United States’ active support for anti-Assad forces in Syria. And in direct contrast to America’s supposed liberal ideals, its activities also included the George W. Bush administration’s reliance on torture, warrantless surveillance, extraordinary rendition, and targeted killings—actions that may have something to do with the declining appeal of the American model around the world.

The results of these policies speak for themselves. Relations with Russia and China have deteriorated steadily since the 1990s, and the two superpowers are increasingly aligned with each other. According to Freedom House, democracy has been in retreat for 13 consecutive years. The Middle East is in flames, and U.S. actions over the past 25 years have done far more to destabilize the region than Iran’s have. The United States squandered trillions of dollars in unnecessary and unsuccessful wars, some of them justified by lies. Yet as Brooks’s own career illustrates perfectly, the people who supported these actions paid little or no price for their mistakes. Instead, most of them failed upward to even more influential posts in the media or in government.

The real lesson of the surveys that are bugging Brooks is abundantly clear. Americans aren’t rejecting constructive forms of global engagement; indeed, there’s even some evidence that Americans would be willing to make sacrifices in order to deal with looming problems like climate change. Americans aren’t embracing isolationism either; they are just fed up with a foreign policy that isn’t working. They are tired of paying for wars the country didn’t need to fight, didn’t win, and that left Americans weaker and less safe than they were. They aren’t eager to keep subsidizing wealthy allies who refuse to do enough to defend themselves or to keep giving unconditional support to reckless Middle East partners whose values are at odds with their own.

Surprise, surprise: Americans are also less willing to follow the advice of the people who have championed these failures, never apologized for them, and seem to have learned nothing from their mistakes. I can understand why Brooks finds this situation upsetting, but at this point he shouldn’t be surprised.

In any case, what “stinks” about this situation is not the American people’s sensible response to a quarter century of foreign-policy missteps. The more pungent aroma emanates from those elites who refuse to acknowledge their own errors or take responsibility for them. Now that stinks.

Stephen M. Walt is the Robert and Renée Belfer professor of international relations at Harvard University.

R_P

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Posted: Jun 14, 2019 - 3:27pm

The Maximum Pressure Campaign Presses Toward War
Global Peace Index 2019
R_P

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Posted: Jun 8, 2019 - 12:50pm

Whitewashing War Crimes Has Become the American Way
What sort of society would America be if its soldiers were free to rape, pillage and plunder in current and future wars? A venal empire, that’s what—which this country resembles more and more.
R_P

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Posted: May 27, 2019 - 11:53am

US Army Tweet Inadvertently Triggers Responses Revealing 'Real, Painful, and Horrifying Human Costs of War'
"How has serving impacted you?" the Army asked. The responses poured in.
R_P

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Posted: May 24, 2019 - 1:28pm

Prime Time...
How empty displays of sports patriotism allow Americans to forget the troops
President Dwight D. Eisenhower once reportedly proclaimed, “The true mission of American sports is to prepare young people for war.”

Today, Ike might have amended that claim, slightly more cynically: The true mission of American sports is to remind the nation that it remains ever at war. Since the 9/11 attacks, professional leagues have pursued that mission single-mindedly. Yet while the military has become ubiquitous within stadiums and arenas across the United States, their deployments seem to be given far less national attention — even as civilian leadership cavalierly contemplates committing 120,000 troops to counter Iran. (...)

A decade ago, one survey found that sports fandom powerfully associated with support for the Iraq invasion and the Bush doctrine of preemptive strikes. More recently, as part of a national survey on which I collaborated, we found that sports fans were more likely to support increased defense spending, believe that peace is ensured through military strength, and affirm the necessity of maintaining  robust armed forces. (...)

R_P

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Posted: Feb 15, 2019 - 1:13pm

Israel Says It Wants ‘War with Iran’ and Is Meeting with Arab Countries to ‘Advance’ It

And Rev. Pence did his part.
R_P

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Posted: Feb 13, 2019 - 4:03pm

Hedges: Peter Jackson’s Cartoon War

westslope

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Location: BC sage brush steppe


Posted: Jan 16, 2019 - 1:42pm

Well haresfur.  I do appreciate your 'exceptionalism'.   If you wanted a new Cold War with Russia, you got it.  It is not at all clear to me that NATO membership for the Baltic States, and Poland makes those countries or the rich west safer.   But does the USA want safe or does it want constant conflict?

As for your take on Syria, you want to impose American-style democracy on Syria?    How many children and grandparents are you willing to sacrifice in order to attain this goal?

As for the chemical weapons that were deployed, some claimed that the chemicals were the result of fertilizer depots blowing up.    Maybe not.


So how do you equate chemical weapons with concussive bombs and fire bombs?    In your view is it OK to kill large numbers of civilians as long as you do it in a civilized fashion?  

Overall, I get the impression, you really do not care about the welfare of ordinary Syrian citizens.  For better or worse, that is a widespread impression outside of the USA.





 haresfur wrote:


 westslope wrote:
Two reflections on recent posts to this thread.

1.  The rich west should not be in conflict with Russia.  NATO provoked this by handing out membership to former Soviet Union countries.  In doing so it ignored the success of two armed-neutral and highly successful neighbours to the north.

- On a related note, it would appear the influence of Russian hackers over the 2016 presidential election asymptotically converged on zero.


2.  Trump was correct to order a withdrawal of US troops in Syria.  Policy should not be determined by the US armed forces penchant for never-ending wars, . 

- Da'esh/ISIS was the target/justification, it is largely resolved, 
- fantasies of effecting top down regime change in Syria are just that:  fantasies.  Cruel ones at that, given the cost civilians ultimately pay. 
- order needs to return, for the benefit of civilians
- the Russians can help sort this out.  And pay for it.  
- the Turks are staying involved, for better or for worse
- the USA has no interest in being closely identified with Israeli efforts to weaken and destabilize the Bashar al-Assad regime


Full disclosure:  At no time have I received compensation from Team Trump.   Some weightier policy matters will outlive President Trump's remaining time in office.
 
Handing out membership?  It's not a frikin gentleman's club.

Yeah, I really pine for the days where Russia occupied surrounding countries and those independent nations have no right to negotiate treaties to try to maintain their security when confronted by a hostile neighbour.  And the Whitehouse dofus in chief is basically telling Putin to go ahead and re-create the SU. Just effin great for world peace.

The main issue in Syria was the Syrian peoples' right to chose their government. I do believe that Obama stuffed it up royally, and ISIS took full advantage, but they were opportunists and not the source. The Russians can sort this out by supporting yet another dictator, expanding their influence into the region, destabilizing the area, and supporting wiping out the Kurds and reformists who wanted to move to a freer nation. There will be huge long-term consequences of the poorly not even thought out US withdrawal that totally fucks their allies, and strengthens multiple despots.  btw, it was in no way an Israeli plot. Heck they have been happy to try and destroy their most progressive and diverse neighbour, Lebanon. All countries have an interest in getting rid of someone who used chemical weapons against his own people.




 


R_P

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Posted: Jan 13, 2019 - 10:20am

White House Sought Options to Strike Iran
State and Pentagon officials were rattled by the request

R_P

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Posted: Jan 6, 2019 - 1:42pm

American Exceptionalism Is a Dangerous Myth
Donald Trump has done more to elevate the left’s critique of U.S. foreign policy than any politician in modern memory.

As a presidential candidate, the mogul told Republican primary audiences that George W. Bush had lied the United States into Iraq; that said war had done a “tremendous disservice to humanity”; and that America could have saved countless lives by investing $5 trillion in domestic infrastructure instead. As commander-in-chief, Trump has suggested that there is no moral distinction between the U.S. and other great powers; that American foreign policy in the Middle East is largely dictated by the interests of arms manufacturers; and that the U.S. judges foreign regimes by their utility to American economic interests, not their commitment to human rights.

But if Trump’s descriptions of geopolitics echo Noam Chomsky, his prescriptions owe more to Attila the Hun. (...)

miamizsun

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Location: (3261.3 Miles SE of RP)
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 4, 2019 - 6:39am



 R_P wrote:
How Trump is shrinking America’s imperialism
New Republican thinking was required and it’s here in spades with Mr. Trump’s disengagement and retrenchment initiatives. In effect, he’s downsizing U.S. imperialism, something the political left only could have dreamed about. But it’s hardly a big hit.

The American foreign policy establishment, all the inside-the-box thinkers, are outraged. They’re not used to being confronted like this. Collective security and traditional alliances are de-prioritized. Generals who Mr. Trump initially had on his team have been ushered out. The Iran nuclear deal has been abandoned, as has an arms treaty with Russia. The Afghanistan military commitment has been scaled back. A Syrian troop withdrawal prompted apoplexy.

The outrage is understandable, especially given the thimble-sized knowledge base underpinning Mr. Trump’s impulsive decision-making.

But it would be all the more understandable if the track record of the old guard had much to recommend it: If for example, the pros offered a way to win in Afghanistan and Syria, if they could explain why the Middle East should be an eternal American obsession, if they could offer a better rationale for an enduring military industrial complex that few have thought to question.

As James Fallows, the Atlantic writer who served back in the Jimmy Carter administration has written, there has been a striking lack of accountability for the endless wars and the military failures, for outmoded weapons systems and squandered resources.

 

is trump gets too frisky with this type of action  he will risk being "penta-gonged"

the ghost of chuck barris approved this message
R_P

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Posted: Jan 3, 2019 - 6:43pm

How Trump is shrinking America’s imperialism
New Republican thinking was required and it’s here in spades with Mr. Trump’s disengagement and retrenchment initiatives. In effect, he’s downsizing U.S. imperialism, something the political left only could have dreamed about. But it’s hardly a big hit.

The American foreign policy establishment, all the inside-the-box thinkers, are outraged. They’re not used to being confronted like this. Collective security and traditional alliances are de-prioritized. Generals who Mr. Trump initially had on his team have been ushered out. The Iran nuclear deal has been abandoned, as has an arms treaty with Russia. The Afghanistan military commitment has been scaled back. A Syrian troop withdrawal prompted apoplexy.

The outrage is understandable, especially given the thimble-sized knowledge base underpinning Mr. Trump’s impulsive decision-making.

But it would be all the more understandable if the track record of the old guard had much to recommend it: If for example, the pros offered a way to win in Afghanistan and Syria, if they could explain why the Middle East should be an eternal American obsession, if they could offer a better rationale for an enduring military industrial complex that few have thought to question.

As James Fallows, the Atlantic writer who served back in the Jimmy Carter administration has written, there has been a striking lack of accountability for the endless wars and the military failures, for outmoded weapons systems and squandered resources.

ScottFromWyoming

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Location: Powell
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 3, 2019 - 6:25pm



 R_P wrote:
 

Not sure I've ever heard of him but yeah.
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Posted: Jan 3, 2019 - 3:17pm

Full email from William Arkin, leaving NBC and MSNBC
R_P

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Posted: Jan 1, 2019 - 12:57pm


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