Was William Calley a Scapegoat?

Calley

Ever since the My Lai massacre in Vietnam, many have held that higher-ups were more responsible than William Calley, who was convicted of murder and now has issued his first public apology. Gary Kulik, himself a Vietnam veteran, declines to shift the blame.

Obama Needs to Expand on His Good Instincts in Foreign Policy

Barack Obama in Military gear

Because he wanted to get out of Iraq and because Republicans always score points by calling the Democrats soft on national security, Obama evidently felt he had to be in favor of some war and thus reluctantly succumbed to pressure to augment U.S. forces in Afghanistan. If he had been smart, on his second day in office, he would have instead announced the rapid withdrawal of U.S. forces.

Afghanistan: Presidential Double Standards and Military Power

afghan-dilemma

The time will come sooner or later when President Obama will have to stand up to the military and face the inevitably shrill attacks from the armchair commanders and “conservative” bloviators who populate the mainstream media.

Non-Violent Responses Must Be Considered to Prevent Aggression

Violence

Ominously, the Pentagon has spent over a trillion dollars in recent years on the refinement of deadlier killing instruments and the militarization of space from which it can control the planet with even greater authority than from its 1,000 foreign bases.

Counterinsurgency in Afghanistan

United-Nations

Our very presence as occupiers undermines the possibility that any government we support could ever achieve legitimacy and stability, because they will always be seen as puppets of the United States.

Bold Feingold Could Lead the Way Out of Afghanistan

tom hayden

The challenge for Feingold and other Democrats today is to dump the Afghanistan war without dumping President Barack Obama and the party’s congressional majorities.

Pentagon Taking Over U.S. Foreign Policy

military-band

Some idea of Pentagon dominance over diplomatic approaches may be gleaned from the Pentagon’s $664 billion annual budget compared with State’s $52 billion. “Washington employs more military band members than it does foreign service officers.”

Rethink Afghanistan

More-troops

Some say we cannot afford to leave Afghanistan. In fact, my opponent argues we must eradicate corruption there because – ‘… the United States has invested too many troops and too much treasure to fail.’ I say – We cannot afford to stay in Afghanistan because we will bankrupt our country.”

Democrats and War

War

There is an admirable strain of pacifism among many Democrats, especially among Democratic activists. Every rational, compassionate individual dislikes war and seeks to avoid it whenever and wherever possible. Yet there are circumstances in which war can be justified from a moral standpoint as well as that of national interest.

The Weakness of National Military Strength

Grenade

The most obvious weakness of national military preparedness is that it often fails to protect nations from the war and destruction it is supposed to prevent.

What Can Individuals Do to Oppose Warfare State?

Afghan-jackpot

Since voting doesn’t bring the desired change in national policies, people wonder what they can do individually. The answer is quite a lot.

Update: OpedNews Journalist and Six Protesters Charged With Criminal Conspiracy After Arrest At “Army Experience Center”

Photo by Cheryl Biren (in photo Chris Hedges, Celeste Zappala)

After her release, Biren reflected, “How can press be prevented from recording news in the making? It’s shameful. It’s anti-democracy.”

The Only Way Out of Afghanistan Is to Leave. Here’s a Realistic Way to Do It

We won’t solve Afghanistan’s social or political problems by continuing to wage a cruel and apparently endless war. Our soldiers will never be able to change Afghanistan’s social behavior or end tribal customs that go back thousands of years. They are too busy defending their own bases from angry Afghans and it’s time to leave them alone.

OpedNews Journalist and Six Protesters Arrested At “Army Experience Center” in Philadelphia (Updated: 9/13/09)

Photo by Philadelphia Indymedia

Six members of various anti-war groups, including World Can’t Wait and Military Families Speak Out, and an OpedNews journalist, were arrested today at approximately 3:00pm (ET) at a protest organized to shut down The Army Experience Center, located in Franklin Mills Mall in Philadelphia.

To Escalate the Escalation?

Obama-middle-east

The debate rages among experts on whether to escalate the escalation of Barack Obama’s “war of necessity” in Afghanistan—seemingly oblivious to American public opinion at home that has turned against waging the conflict at all.

The Phoenix Program Was a Disaster in Vietnam and Would Be in Afghanistan — And the New York Times Should Know that

Torture

K. Barton Osborne, a military intelligence specialist told Congress that he witnessed acts of torture including the prodding of a person’s brain with a six inch dowel through his ear, and that in his year and a half with Phoenix, “not a single suspect survived interrogation.”

When Will Obama See Afghanistan’s Daughters as His Own?

girlreading

Congratulations to the White House and Congress: America is now at war in three Middle Eastern nations, on behalf of governments in all three that are weak, unpopular, and corrupt.

Where There’s a Will, There’s a Way, Out

george-will

Will argues that we should take the Iraqi government at its word and wind down our involvement there, as specified in the 2008 security agreement: “The United States should treat this as a Dirty Harry moment: Make our day.”

The Army Experience Center and the Development of a Warrior Caste

young-gunman

There was no overall strategy in the shift, according to two recruiting insiders, except that a strident, jingoistic tone was adopted in communications from the command to recruiters.

Fallacies in U.S. Oil Policy

oil-prices

Instead of coddling oil-producing tyrants like Moammar Gadhafi and the Saud family, the United States and other industrial countries should let the market work. We should not pay a premium for oil by sacrificing our principles or pursuing unnecessary, costly and counterproductive military activities.

Bush Tortured

george bush

It seems almost trivial to accuse someone who launched an illegal war that has killed over a million people of torture. But if we are going to prosecute the lowest ranked torturers, it makes sense to look up the chain of command.

Rise of Mercenary Armies Menace World, Help White House Thwart Peace Movement

War

It was also definitely not uncommon to see American troops high-fiving Iraqi teenagers, holding the arm of an elderly woman to help her cross a street, or helping someone out of a difficult situation…This was not the case with mercenaries. They knew they were viewed as evil thugs, and they wanted to keep it that way.

Lesson of Vietnam Lost in Afghanistan

stanley kutler

As with the Viet Cong and the North Vietnamese army, chances of our destroying the Taliban are slight. Eventually, the Afghans—Taliban or otherwise—will inherit their land and have to assume responsibility for governing.

“We’re Going to Kill Your Children”: The CIA Inspector General’s Report

blind-justice

But this report shows that when Cheney and other Bush administration officials talked about “working the dark side” — Wow! — they really meant it. Someone has got to go to jail for this.

Truckfuls of Bodies

crime-medals

The ultimate step in avoiding periodic wars, which are inevitable in a system of international lawlessness, is to make statesmen responsible to law.

Iraq: Good Fences Make Good Neighbors

iraq-war-games

Trying to recreate Iraq’s multicultural ethno-sectarian mosaic after intense civil strife is an appealing idea, but the history of ethno-sectarian conflict shows it to be dangerous.

Winners and Losers in the American Warfare State

iraq-drain

After the long-suffering civilian population of Iraq, whose “crime” was having oil — a country that has been rendered virtually unlivable—the big losers are the American taxpayers who are bleeding income, jobs, and quality of life, not just sacrificing family members, on behalf of a runaway war machine.

When the Dead Have No Say

soldiers

Apparently, escalating the warfare is much more attractive to Washington’s policymakers than actually challenging the main supporters of the Taliban in Afghanistan — the Pakistani government.

Eyewitness from Honduras

Central America

The U.S. is involved in what is happening in Honduras up to its eyeballs. The leaders of the coup government, the military and those financing the coup are all the principal allies of the U.S.

Treat North Korea as a Child Psychologist Would

ClintonKim

Any child psychologist will tell you that rewarding a child’s tantrum will only cause more tantrums. For some time under previous administrations, including that of George W. Bush and Clinton himself, the U.S. has been reinforcing bad behavior on the part of Kim