Breaking In a President

I recall how a friend of mine who once served as a senior Pentagon intelligence briefer described what he called “breaking in” a new president. Today, incoming presidents receive some intelligence briefings so that they do not land in office on a cold January day totally unprepared for what awaits them. But generally speaking, the …

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The Indo-Pacific Command Is All About “Containing” China Through India

The US military rechristened its Pacific Command to the Indo-Pacific Command as a means of strongly signaling its growing interest in India and its eponymous ocean. The importance of this development shouldn’t be underestimated because it sets the strategic basis for the US’ 21st-century policy of “containing China”. The People’s Republic depends just as much …

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How Likely is it that US troops will be Withdrawn from South Korea?

On May 4, the New York Times, 2018 citing a number of different sources, reported that Donald Trump had ordered the Pentagon to draw up plans for a possible reduction of America’s military presence in South Korea. Of course, it is not a question of Kim yielding, but, according to unnamed, but well-informed persons, the signing …

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Poland’s US Military Base Is More About China Than Russia

Poland is proposing to host a permanent US military base on its territory. Poland wants to replace Germany as the US’ preferred partner in Europe, taking advantage of American distrust with Berlin over Nord Stream II and trade disagreements while capitalizing on the Pentagon’s desire to “contain” Russia, thus satisfying multiple strategic objectives at once. …

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Why Can’t the World’s Best Military Win Its Wars?

"This time, they think they have it right." So declared an Associated Press story reporting an upbeat assessment by this country's top military officer at the end of a five-day visit to Afghanistan earlier this spring. Marine General Joseph Dunford Jr., chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, was heading home from the war zone, …

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The U.S. Military Takes Us Through the Gates of Hell

As I was putting the finishing touches on my new book, the Costs of War Project at Brown University’s Watson Institute published an estimate of the taxpayer dollars that will have gone into America’s war on terror from September 12, 2001, through fiscal year 2018. That figure: a cool $5.6 trillion (including the future costs …

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Washington and NATO Are Escalating to Conflict

The Trump Administration in Washington is ramping up confrontation and preparing for war all over the globe, from the South China Sea to the Baltic via the Persian Gulf. The countries of the US-NATO military alliance have vastly increased their military spending and are boosting deployment of their forces in Europe in accordance with the policy of Enhanced …

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The Ruinously Expensive American Military

America’s Republican politicians complain that “entitlements,” by which they mean pensions and medical care, are leading the country to bankruptcy even as they fatten the spending on the Pentagon, which now takes 12 percent of the overall budget. And it should be noted that while workers contribute to the social programs during all their years …

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