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Today: Sat, October 25 2014  -  Last modified: April, 26 2007
 International Relations
01 October 2014
 
 
The Rush to Violence
by Craig Murray
 sub-topic» War

There can be no greater nonsense than the idea that the Caliphate poses a direct threat to the UK. This is even more crazy than the claim that Saddam Hussein posed a threat to the UK. But by seeking to join in the bombing campaign, and initiating a new round of fake “anti-terror” arrests in London, the British government is doing everything it possibly can do to try to provoke terrorist violence on British streets. The interests of the security state are therefore secured. I am longing for somebody to explain to me the precise mechanism by which our bombing Islamic countries helps prevent terrorist incidents in the UK. The way it can provoke such incidents seems to me too obvious to need stating. Indeed it says a great deal for the wisdom and tolerance of Britain’s Muslim communities that it has not provoked more. They could teach government a great deal about the good sense of not resorting to violence to gratify passions and earn short term acclaim.

 more» 
26 September 2014
 
 
The Antimilitarist Libertarian Heritage
by Sheldon Richman
 sub-topic» War

With the United States on the verge of another war in the Middle East — or is it merely the continuation of a decades-long war? — we libertarians need to reacquaint ourselves with our intellectual heritage of peace, antimilitarism, and anti-imperialism. This rich heritage is too often overlooked and frequently not appreciated at all. That is tragic. Libertarianism, to say the least, is deeply skeptical of state power. Of course, then, it follows that libertarianism must be skeptical of the state’s power to make war — to kill and destroy in other lands. Along with its domestic police authority, this is the state’s most dangerous power. (In 1901 a libertarian, Frederic Passy, a friend of libertarian economist Gustave de Molinari, shared in the first Nobel Peace Prize.)

 more» 
19 August 2014
 
 
If McCain and Graham Are So Concerned About ISIS, Why Did They Support Arming Them?
by Kevin Boyd
 sub-topic» War

As early as February 2012, both Senators called upon the Obama administration to arm the Syrian rebels. Now it was probably not the intention of both Senators to arm radical Islamic butchers who have slaughtered thousands across two countries, however ISIS has likely been the unintentional recipient of American weapons intended for the more “moderate” Free Syrian Army. The weapon shipments began last year, but the CIA has been working previously to help America’s Middle Eastern allies such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar ship weapons to Syria rebels. All of the U.S. military aid is supposed to go to “select moderate” rebel factions, however we shouldn’t put a whole lot of trust in the U.S. government’s ability to vet the Syrian rebels because when McCain went to Syria in May 2013, McCain accidentally met with known Syrian rebel kidnappers.

 more» 
02 July 2014
 
 
Will History Repeat Itself in Iraq?
by Bob Bauman JD and Ted Baumann
 sub-topic» War

One hundred years later, another region that has been forcibly held together for centuries by various empires is on the verge of disintegration. Iraq and Syria, which were once Ottoman provinces, are in chaos as competing regional identities rooted in the distant past seek to carve them up and “cleanse” them ethnically. In a supreme irony, both nations had been unwillingly forced into existence by the collapse of the Ottoman Empire at the end of World War I, started on that hot June day on the Appel Quai in Sarajevo. History’s circle is complete.

 more» 
06 December 2013
 
 
Tyrannosaurus Pentagonus: The Road to Extinction
by Justin Raimondo
 sub-topic» War

Aside from the moral dimension, the problem with militarism is the same as the problem with socialism: central planners are clueless because they are blind to price signals. Since there is only one "market" for their "product," and since they have in effect an unlimited amount of tax dollars to spend, there is no incentive for the Pentagon to put its financial affairs in order: they have a blank check that the bank (you and I) is obligated to cash. Yes, Pentagon officials who have neglected to straighten out their account ledgers are in violation of the law – but are we really going to arrest them for failing to comply?

 more» 
14 September 2013
 
 
Syria: Don't go there
by Roger Helmer MEP
 sub-topic» War

Today, we have not only Russia and China opposed to military action in Syria, but the United Nations Secretary General, the Pope, and (for what it’s worth) the EU. We also have the majority of public opinion opposed, not only in the UK, but even in the two countries whose governments are gung-ho for war: the USA and France.

 more» 
09 September 2013
 
 
Empress Pelosi's New Clothes
by Justin Raimondo
 sub-topic» War

This Bourbon conceit animates the leadership of both parties, and the entire Washington establishment, whether they come down on the "left" or the "right" side of the aisle: the idea that America’s political class is uniquely entitled and indeed destined by fate to determine the course of world events is the central canon of the political class. They blithely refer to the "world order" imposed by Washington the way parents assume the inherent rightness of a desire to control the behavior of their errant progeny.

 more» 
07 September 2013
 
 
The Twisted Premises Implicit in the Drive for War
by Anthony Gregory
 sub-topic» War

The hidden premise, of course, is that the U.S. government necessarily must intervene, bomb, wage war, and inflict mass bloodshed as a remedy to foreign horrors. It is taken for granted that nonintervention is no option, which assumes that U.S. intervention tends to cause more good than bad, or is worth the effort even if it sometimes fails. This premise is steeped in a cold utilitarianism and stands in tension with the actual results of U.S. policy over the last few decades. The utter calamity that has unfolded in Iraq should guide even those who philosophically embrace intervention toward a realistic advocacy of U.S. restraint. Even if humanitarian war were not a total oxymoron, the United States in particular deserves a prolonged time-out. It has in the last fifty years left behind millions of corpses piled under a thousand broken promises, and so a 50-year moratorium on further American wars would seem like a reasonable goal, rather than starting yet another war even as the chaotic and inhumane consequences of interventions in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya continue to unfold.

 more» 
03 September 2013
 
 
Why is the U.S. Destabilizing One Country After Another?
by Michael S. Rozeff
 sub-topic» War

Sixth, the military-industrial complex and its lobbies on the Hill thrive on the profits, the work of war, the advancements, and the demand for their services that instability brings. The DHS thrives on an atmopshere of war and fear. Members of Congress thrive on making speeches about promoting rights and democracy, even though they are promoting war, instability, refugees and death. The State Department appears to have abandoned diplomacy and become subservient to the neocon influences.

 more» 
12 May 2013
 
 
The Essence of Society is Peacemaking
by Llewellyn H. Rockwell Jr.
 sub-topic» War

Our warmakers believe they are exempt from normal moral rules. Because they are at war, they get to suspend all decency, all the norms that govern the conduct and interaction of human beings in all other circumstances. The anodyne term “collateral damage,” along with perfunctory and meaningless words of regret, are employed when innocent civilians, including children, are maimed and butchered. A private individual behaving this way would be called a sociopath. Give him a fancy title and a nice suit, and he becomes a statesman.

Let us pursue the subversive mission of applying the same moral rules against theft, kidnapping, and murder to our rulers that we apply to everyone else.

 more» 
21 April 2013
 
 
Blowback at Boston?
by Jacob C. Hornberger
 sub-topic» War

People over there are saying to the Pentagon and the CIA:

Go home. Leave us alone. Close your military bases. Cease your sanctions, embargoes, coups, invasions, occupations, regime-change operations, threats, kidnapping, incarceration, prison camps, torture, and support of our dictators. Just go home and deal with your own problems.

On the other hand, the U.S. national-security state says:

Not on your life. We are the U.S. national-security state. We are a force for good in the world. We are here to help you. We have the right to do so. We have the right to bring you democracy and freedom and order and stability. We have the right to support your dictators, oust your rulers and install new ones, sanction and embargo you, kidnap, incarcerate, and torture you, and assassinate you. We are here to stay. You are free to protest to your heart’s content. But the minute you try to force us to return home, we will bomb, shoot, arrest, incarcerate, torture, execute, or assassinate you and anyone standing near you.

 more» 
23 January 2013
 
 
Statue for Brian Haw
by Amanda Ward
 sub-topic» War

With our rights to protest being eroded a bronze statue in Parliament Square would be a symbol the government couldn’t ignore. A hero for peace instead of war.

 more» 
15 January 2013
 
 
Executioner-in-Chief
by Elizabeth Sanders
 sub-topic» War

Such a policy transformation will require a massive popular campaign—a movement here and abroad to restore the international law that American activists (and a few past presidents) worked so hard to construct. There are no more serious assaults on the laws of war and human rights than those led by the president of the most powerful country on earth. If the United States can hunt down suspected militants and assassinate them from remote-controlled drones, other countries will perceive that they have the right to do so as well.?Immanuel Kant’s categorical imperative, a more sophisticated and secular rendering of the Golden Rule, should be posted in the oval office: “Act in such a way that the principle according to which the action is performed can be accepted as a universal law.”

 more» 
14 January 2013
 
 
War Addiction Default
by Dave Lindorff
 sub-topic» War

I thought for a moment, trying to come up with a simple way to explain the peculiar politics of a fake democracy where two equally pro-capitalist, pro-imperialist parties vie with genuine bitterness for patronage spoils and legal bribes, all the while ignoring the real wishes and needs of the public, and then it hit me: it is really all about US militarism and the unwillingness of the either of the two political parties to admit honestly to the American people how much they are being gouged to allow the US government and its corporate owners to continue in their attempt to control the world.

 more» 
30 September 2012
 
 
Why Support the Troops?
by Jacob G. Hornberger
 sub-topic» War

Yet, the reality is that the troops are doing things to people overseas that are making people angry at the United States. Examples include the invasions and occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan and ever-increasing drone assassinations. As everyone knows, such actions have succeeded in killing and maiming hundreds of thousands of people, including women and children. On top of that has been the torture, the kidnappings, Gitmo, the support of brutal dictatorships and the Israeli government, the U.S. troops on Islamic holy lands, the illegal no-fly zone over Iraq, the sanctions that killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqi children, and the current sanctions on Iran. It's the troops who enforce many of those programs.

 more» 
28 September 2012
 
 
American Militarism
by Dave Lindorff
 sub-topic» War

Most of the rest of the world isn’t fooled by American government accounting tricks. Being at the barrel end of the gun, people of other countries know how US military spending is a primary cause of war and terror in the world. But we Americans ourselves need to wake up to the massive damage that our military-obsessed political system is doing to our country, lest it ultimately destroys us. There is a clear reason that social programs in the US are threatened, that the economy is in a prolonged depression, that our education system is collapsing, and that our standing in the world has plummeted. It is our militarism, and the incredible amount of the national wealth that is being spent on it.

 more» 
08 June 2012
 
 
Were Nazi Soldiers Heroes?
by Jacob G. Hornberger
 sub-topic» War

What’s not clear from the Times’ position, however, is whether the principles it enunciates apply only American soldiers or to soldiers in every country. Applying the standard set forth by the Times, would it be appropriate for Germans to use the word “heroes” to describe Germany’s fallen in the many wars in which Germany has been involved, including World War II? Could it be said that describing Nazi soldiers killed in World War II as “heroes” would not serve to justify World War II but instead serve simply as a mark of gratitude and respect for the sacrifice made by the German soldier who was killed and the family members left behind? Could it be said that this would just be a way to recognize that regardless of how the Nazi soldier died, he did so in service to his country? Could it be said that describing the Nazi soldier as a hero would not be a glorification of war but rather a solemn acknowledgement of sacrifice?

In other words, would the Times apply its principles regarding war, soldiers, heroism, and patriotism only to the United States or universally?

 more» 
17 March 2012
 
 
War: The Health of the State, not so Healthy for Human Beings
by Thomas L. Knapp
 sub-topic» War

The atrocities, shocking as they are, pale next to the “big picture.” Hundreds of thousands, possibly millions, have died at American hands since 2001. The soldier lying dead beneath a cairn topped with rifle and helmet is no more dead, and no more or less personally outraged by it, than the baby murdered in his crib or the dead Taliban fighter urinated upon by troops not quite as at the end of their tethers as the killer staff sergeant.

 more» 
13 March 2012
 
 
A Tale of Two Tales
What Real World?
by Fred Reed
 sub-topic» War

When you recruit citizens of a country to kill their own people in the name of a widely hated puppet government, their enthusiasm is likely to be exiguous. But since the American Narrative insists that the US seeks only to end the dominion of Evil, opposition to America becomes inexplicable.

In war after war, those attacked fail to act as the US expects. The Iraqis should have welcomed the American soldiers who were bringing them democracy and defeating an evil dictator. This fits the Narrative. That people don't like being invaded, having their cities devastated, their fathers, husbands, sons, and brothers in the army killed—this does not fit the Narative of unalloyed American virtue. It merely determines events.

 more» 
04 January 2012
 
 
War as a Lifestyle
by Butler Shaffer
 sub-topic» War

The factor I find most disturbing in the statists obscene efforts to sustain their formal instruments of repression and destruction, is their unapologetic use of the war system. In my childhood, the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor served as a unifying purpose for a war of less than four years duration. Subsequent twentieth-century wars came to be seen as corporate-state undertakings having nothing to do with the "defense" of America. Current wars are conducted for purposes that have no more meaning than that the power structure wants to engage in them. That so many of the GOP sock-puppets are willing to echo John McCain’s earlier words to bomb Iran – and throw in Syria – shows us how utterly evil and psychotic the American state has become. That the institutional order has resorted to – and will continue to escalate – campaigns to destroy the opportunities for Ron Paul’s message to be heard, is illustrative of how depraved so much of this nation has become.

 more» 
15 December 2011
 
 
Iraq: No Lessons Learned
by James Zogby
 sub-topic» War

In a word, the road to Baghdad was paved with “lies”. I don’t just mean the fictions of “weapons of mass destruction” or of “Saddam’s connection with Al-Qaeda” that were used by the Bush administration to justify their case for war. In both instances, the White House and its minions throughout the government worked overtime, relying on embellishment, distortion and outright fabrication to make their arguments for war. What they did in manufacturing and marketing these lies was wrong, both morally and legally.

 more» 
14 December 2011
 
 
Neocons Don't Believe Their Own Anti-Iran Propaganda
by Sheldon Richman
 sub-topic» War

Let that sink in: the biggest — biggest — problem with Iran’s acquiring a nuclear weapon is that it might not use it. Got that? And why would that be bad? Because “naysayers” (that is, people against war) would be able to point to Iran’s responsible conduct as proof that Iran is not irresponsible. Imagine that!

 more» 
14 November 2011
 
 
Looking at the 'Big Picture'
by Justin Raimondo
 sub-topic» War

The idea that nations have some sort of collective "national interest," or even a "manifest destiny," is not realistic in any coherent sense. There is no "national interest," because only individuals have real interests: the "national interest" is a floating abstraction, a ghost. American foreign policy is made by people: specific individuals who act in what they regard as their own interests. These individuals – our rulers – may differ greatly in terms of ideology, and personality, and yet they all have one motive in common, and that is the continuation and extension of their own power.

 more»