William J. Astore: Constant violence, repetitive bombing, and other forms of persistent meddling are accumulating in their effects, damaging the entire ecology of the Greater Middle East.
William J. Astore: Our government, our leaders, have essentially declared a forever war. Our military leaders have bought into it as well. The master narrative is one of ceaseless war against a shifting array of enemies.
William J. Astore: The wild overreactions of the Bush/Cheney administration, essentially continued by Obama and the present national security state, have played into the hands of those seeking a crusade/jihad in the Greater Middle East.
William J. Astore: What you got was two self-absorbed candidates, one wonkish, the other one clearly a wanker, both of them posing as warriors as long as someone else’s kids are doing the fighting.
William J. Astore: The United States continues to be driven by one that’s dominated by power, violence, and war. Is it any wonder, then, that the two major party candidates for the presidency, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, fit so easily and readily into this narrative?
Williams J. Astore: As cynical and opportunistic as Trump may be, his message of self-reliance, his blunt talk, his braggadocio, and his calls for action (no matter how stupid) do resonate with working-class voters.
William J. Astore: Perhaps there should be a “new rule” on the American military scene: When the B-52s are called out (Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan), it means America has well and truly lost.
William J. Astore: For clarity, it often helps to follow the money. Who profits from war? Addressing that question will explain many of the reasons why America’s wars have no promise of ending.
W.J. Astore: If asked why they took more the fifty grand from the prince of Bahrain, among other donors with deep pockets, I suppose Hillary and Bill might just say, “Because that’s what they offered.”
W.J. Astore: Hillary now claims she’s against fracking (when she led the State Department, she was strongly for it). But how does that flip-flop square with her decision to appoint yet another earth wrecker to a key position in her government-to-be?
William Astore: You’ve been drafted into the American national security state. That much is evident from Edward Snowden’s revelations.
William Astore: If patriotism is famously the last refuge of the scoundrel, it’s also the first recourse of those seeking to mobilize customers for the latest bloodletting exercise in combat as commerce.
William Astore: In a war in which commanding generals rewarded American troops for generating high enemy body count and punished those “slackers” who didn’t kill enough of the enemy, small wonder that Vietnam became an American killing field and a breeding ground for atrocity.