Tag Archives: American interventionism

Why America Can’t End Its ‘Forever Wars’, by William M. Arkin

It’s hard to believe this excellent article was in Newsweek, it’s so non-mainstream media. From William M. Arkin at newsweek.com:

FE_Forever War_Banner
The American way of war actually makes it harder to end our “endless wars.”
Stocktrek Images/Getty
A peace agreement with the Taliban and a May 1 deadline for American withdrawal of troops. A new pledge by President Biden to end the war. A Congressional step toward revoking the 20-year-old consent to use military force in Iraq. Talk, even, of rescinding the post-9/11 authorization to pursue Al-Qaeda. You might think America’s forever wars are finally coming to an end. They’re not—because everything we’ve learned from the past two decades at war has made it more difficult to actually end the wars.
Though the new administration seems intent on ending America’s oldest war and there is growing fatigue over endless wars in the Middle East, and though the Pentagon is scrambling to refocus resources and attention away from counterterrorism to big war pursuits against the likes of Russia and China, war isn’t going to actually end. That’s because there is something about the way the United States fights—about how it has learned to fight in Afghanistan and on other 21st-century battlefields—that facilitates endless war.
This transformation of the American military happened gradually as the armed forces shifted the preponderance of tasks away from boots on the ground, away even from dependence on regular soldiers. The new American way of war moved even the means of bombing and killing—mostly through aircraft and drones, but also virtually in cyberspace—out of the actual war zones.

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Senior U.S. Official Acknowledges Washington Has Spent $143 Billion to Destroy Its Own Government in Afghanistan, by Martin Sieff

No problem, $143 billion grows on trees, and anyway, who said that Afghans deserve honest government, even if it is just a puppet of the US government? From Martin Sieff at strategic-culture.org:

The U.S.-created and supported government of Afghanistan is on the brink of collapse. It has lost all credibility with its people because of its incompetence and unbelievable corruption. If U.S. military aid and the enormous inputs of international aid were to be withdrawn, the Taliban would be at the gates of Kabul and poised to take over the entire country in a matter of days.

Since President George W. Bush idiotically proclaimed the goal of creating a modern, progressive, pro-Western, stable, democratic state in Central Asia from scratch 20 years ago, the United States has poured $143 billion into Afghanistan reconstruction. And it has all been wasted.

Today, the biggest factor destroying the credibility of the Afghanistan government among its own people is not the attacks and military opposition of the insurgent Taliban: It is the U.S.-dominated and directed international aid which has totally undermined and discredited the very government it is supposed to support.

These elementary truths have been repeatedly pointed out by outspoken critics of the disastrous U.S. military misadventure in Afghanistan over the past two decades. I and many other contributors to this platform have repeatedly made them. But on March 10, they were all stated – clearly and unequivocally – by the most senior U.S. government official charged with monitoring the war effort in that unhappy Central Asian nation, Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) John Sopko himself.

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9 Signs That Chess Pieces Are Being Moved Into Place For A Major War In The Middle East, by Michael Snyder

Would anybody be surprised that the same crew who brought us Libya and Syria forever wars would start a new one in the Middle East? From Michael Snyder at themostimportantnews.com:

The American people are really going to regret putting the warmongers back in control.  Joe Biden has been in the White House for less than two months, and the warmongers that Biden has surrounded himself with have been feverishly setting the stage for the next war in the Middle East.  I do not believe that it will start within the next week, but I do believe that it is inevitable.  While President Trump was in the White House for four years, the U.S. didn’t start any new conflicts, but now the Biden administration is quite determined to start projecting “American influence” all over the globe once again.  Most Americans don’t understand the bigger picture, but the truth is that this is going to have very serious implications over the next few years.

In this article, I would like to examine some of the chess moves that have been made since Joe Biden entered the White House.  As you will see, a very troubling picture emerges once you start putting all of the pieces together.

#1 Literally one day after Biden was inaugurated, a massive U.S. military convoy rolled into Syria

A large US military convoy entered northeastern Syria on Thursday, Syrian state news agency SANA reports, citing sources on the ground.

According to the report, the convoy included some 40 trucks and armored vehicles and was backed from the air by helicopters.

President Trump had tried very hard to disengage from the war in Syria, but Biden has made it crystal clear that the U.S. will be heavily involved in that conflict moving forward.

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Humanitarian Imperialism, by Alan Macleod

Neoliberals love all the same things neocons do, the propaganda is just a little different. From Alan Macleod at fair.org:

How corporate media sell regime change, Intervention and war to progressive audiences

Aversion to military intervention has been the default position of the left for at least half a century—certainly since the huge protests against the Vietnam War. Washington planners lamented the development of the so-called “Vietnam Syndrome”—a widespread progressive hostility towards US interventions (invasions, bombings, coups or economic warfare) around the world. A 2018 survey found the public still infected, with over two-thirds in support of limiting military action overseas, including 78% of Democratic voters.

President Joe Biden’s record of support for foreign intervention spurns that progressive tradition. As chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Biden played a key role in selling the Iraq invasion to both Democratic colleagues and a skeptical public. He was also vice president in an administration that was bombing seven countries simultaneously by its end in 2016, and was a strong voice within the administration in favor of intervention (Foreign Policy, 2/25/11).

Worse, many of Biden’s cabinet picks have alarmed antiwar and human rights activists. His director of national intelligence, Avril Haines, was instrumental in covering up the US torture program, while his choice for head of USAID, Samantha Power, supported both the Iraq and Libya wars, arguing that the US must intervene on humanitarian grounds.

Earlier this week and barely a month into his presidency, Biden launched an airstrike on Syria, killing a reported 22 people, in supposed response to a rocket attack on a US base near Erbil, Iraq, that killed one US contractor. CNN international security editor Nick Paton Walsh (2/26/21) applauded the move, claiming Biden had successfully “sent a message” to Iran while being as “minimally lethal” as possible. For CNN, Biden had “used a scalpel instead of a sledgehammer.” Bloomberg columnist Bobby Ghosh (2/26/21) was similarly delighted, lauding the president’s unwillingness to tolerate Iranian “aggression,” claiming that this was sure to snap Iran out of its “sense of impunity.”

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Afghanistan’s Victory Over the United States, by Jim Bovard

Afghanistan’s elections are just as crooked as the US’s. The US has succeeded in making Afghanistan not safe for democracy but for the Taliban. From Jim Bovard at libertarianinstitute.org:

Acrimony and recriminations continue to swirl around the 2020 presidential election. Three out of four Republicans believe that there was “widespread fraud” in the election, while Democrats have sought to turn criticisms of the election into a “Big Lie” heresy against democracy. Senior congressional Democrats are pressuring the nation’s largest cable providers to cease carrying conservative networks such as Fox News that raised too many questions about Biden’s victory.

What could possibly go wrong with sweeping the 2020 election controversies under the rug? Clues can be found in a recent report, “Elections: Lessons from the U.S. Experience in Afghanistan,” produced by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR). That report contains more wisdom than will be found in President Trump’s idiotic tweet in December: “A young military man working in Afghanistan told me that elections in Afghanistan are far more secure and much better run than the USA’s 2020 Election.”

Actually, “Afghan democracy” is one of the most brazen shams of U.S. foreign policy in this century. Since the U.S. invasion in 2001, the federal government has spent more than $600 million to support elections and democratic procedures in Afghanistan (part of the $143 billion the U.S. spent there for relief and reconstruction there). Hamid Karzai, the smooth operator who the Bush administration installed to rule Afghanistan after 9/11, won a rigged 2004 presidential election. President George W. Bush boasted during his reelection campaign, “Afghanistan has now got a constitution which talks about freedom of religion and talks about women’s rights…. Democracy is flourishing.” A few years later, Karzai won support from fundamentalist voters by approving a law entitling a husband to starve his wife to death if she refused his sexual demands.

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Is Biden Reenlisting in the Forever Wars? by Patrick J. Buchanan

Forever wars are forever appropriations to big, politically powerful defense and intelligence contractors, which is why these wars never end. From Patrick J. Buchanan at buchanan.org:

Thursday, in its first military action, the Biden Pentagon sent two U.S. F-15Es to strike targets of Kataib Hezbollah, an Iranian-backed Iraqi militia just inside the eastern border of Syria.

The U.S. strikes were in retaliation for a missile attack on a U.S. base in Irbil, capital of Iraqi Kurdistan, which killed a contractor and wounded a U.S. soldier.

“We’re confident that the target was being used by the same Shia militia that conducted the strikes,” said Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin.

But Democratic Sens. Tim Kaine and Chris Murphy want to know where President Joe Biden got his authority to launch attacks in Syria, where there was no clear or present danger to any U.S. troops.

Days before the U.S. strike, Kataib Hezbollah issued a statement denying any complicity in the Irbil attack: “We absolutely did not target Erbil or the Green Zone and have no knowledge of the group that did.”

Iran has also denied any involvement in the missile attack on the Americans. On a visit to Baghdad, Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif called for an investigation as to who is initiating the attacks inside Iraq.

“We emphasize the need for the Iraqi government to find the perpetrators of these incidents,” said Zarif.

Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Russian forces in Syria got only four or five minutes’ notice that U.S. planes were on their way to a strike.

Bottom line: Those conducting these attacks on U.S. bases and troops in Iraq, provoking American counterstrikes, seek to ignite a conflict between the U.S. and Iran, and its proxies in Iraq and Syria.

And they are succeeding.

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Biden’s Journey: Change Is Imperceptible, by Philip Giraldi

Meet the new warmongers, same as the old warmongers. From Philip Giraldi at unz.com:

Biden has been a major disappointment for those who hoped that he’d change course regarding America’s pathological involvement in overseas conflicts.

The new White House Team has been in place for more than a month and it is perhaps time to consider where it is going with America’s fractured foreign policy. To be sure, when a new administration brings in a bunch of “old hands” who made their bones by attacking Syria and Libya while also assassinating American citizens by drone one might hope that those mistakes might have served as valuable “lessons learned.” Or maybe not, since no one in the Democratic Party ever mentions the Libya fiasco and President Joe Biden has already made it clear that Syria will continue to be targeted with sanctions as well as with American soldiers based on its soil. And no one will be leaving Afghanistan any time soon. The Biden team will only let up when Afghanistan is “secure” and there is regime change in Damascus.

A big part of the problem is that the personnel moves mean that the poison from the Barack Obama years has now been reintroduced into the tottering edifice that Donald Trump left behind. Obama’s United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice once made the case for attacking the Libyans by explaining how Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi provided his soldiers with Viagra so they could more readily engage in mass rapes of presumably innocent civilians. Unfortunately, Sue is back with the new administration as the Director of the Domestic Policy Council where she will no doubt again wreak havoc in her own inimitable fashion. She is joined at the top level of the administration by Tony Blinken as Secretary of State, Avril Haines as Director of National Intelligence, Jake Sullivan as National Security Advisor, Samantha Power as head of USAID and retired General Lloyd J. Austin as Secretary of Defense. All of the appointees are regarded as “hawks” and have personal history working with Biden when he was in Congress and as Vice President, while most of them also served in the Obama administration.

America Offers Warning to the World: War Is Health of the State and Death of Liberty, by Doug Bandow

The proponents of America’s perma-war cannot point to any successes the last 50 years, and these failures have come at tremendous cost. From Doug Bandow at antiwar.com:

The United States is the world’s most militarized and belligerent nation. Stating this reality shocks and outrages Washington policymakers. Yet the facts are incontestable, like the sun’s rise.

Last week the Biden administration ordered airstrikes in Syria against Iranian-backed forces. The attack was retaliation for a rocket assault on a U.S. base in Iraq. That event responded to previous US attacks in Iraq, including one which killed several local officials, along with Iranian leader Qasem Soleimani. Alas, the latest bombing won’t stop threats against Americans but will further entangle Washington in Mideast conflict.

The US military should not be engaged in combat involving any of these nations. Yet last week’s action was not unique. A new study from Brown University’s Watson Institute found that between 2018 and 2020 the US backed surrogate forces in combat in four countries, unleashed air and/or drone strikes in seven, engaged in combat operations in eight, undertook military exercises in 41, and participated in military training in 79. All of these were labeled “counter-terrorism” operations.

Washington’s endless “global war on terrorism” has been a notable failure, with ever-increasing terrorist threats attracting ever-expanding military action. US officials obviously have been much better at creating than eradicating terrorism. Which should surprise no one: al-Qaeda arose in response to Washington’s aggressive, militaristic policies, including America’s support for oppressive Arab regimes and Israel’s occupation over millions of Palestinians, military presence in Saudi Arabia, and attacks on Muslim-majority states. Although Americans typically view themselves as innocent Vestal Virgins circling the globe seeking to uplift the world, those suffering under US bombs often violently disagree.

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Biden: No New Cold Wars or Democracy Crusades, by Pat Buchanan

Biden says he just wants the US to get along with the world, which won’t play well with the neocons and neoliberals in his administration. Meanwhile, the American people are concerned with a plethora of problems here at home. From Patrick Buchanan at buchanan.org:

“What is America’s mission?” is a question that has been debated since George Washington’s Farewell Address in 1797.

At last week’s Munich Security Conference, President Joe Biden laid out his vision as to what is America’s mission. And the contrast with the mission enunciated by George W. Bush in his second inaugural could not have been more defining or dramatic.

Here is Bush, Jan. 20, 2005:

“From the day of our Founding, we have proclaimed that every man and woman on this earth has rights, and dignity, and matchless value, because they bear the image of the Maker of Heaven and earth…

“Advancing these ideals is the mission that created our Nation… Now it is… the calling of our time.”

“So it is the policy of the United States to seek and support the growth of democratic movements and institutions in every nation and culture, with the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world.”

America’s mission is “ending tyranny in our world,” said Bush.

Biden’s declared mission is far less ambitious.

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Explaining Syria, by Philip Giraldi

Any similarity between the US and Israel government’s version of Syria and the truth is coincidental. From Philip Giraldi at unz.com:

The first week in February was memorable for the failed impeachment of President Donald Trump, the “re-elect me” State of the Union address and the marketing of a new line of underwear by Kim Kardashian. Given all of the excitement, it was easy to miss a special State Department press briefing by Ambassador James Jeffreyheld on February 5th regarding the current situation in Syria.

Jeffrey is the United States Special Representative for Syria Engagement and the Special Envoy for the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIL. Jeffrey has had a distinguished career in government service, attaining senior level State Department positions under both Democratic and Republican presidents. He has served as U.S. Ambassador to both Turkey and Iraq. He is, generally speaking, a hardliner politically, closely aligned with Israel and regarding Iran as a hostile destabilizing force in the Middle East region. He was between 2013 and 2018 Philip Solondz distinguished fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP), a think tank that is a spin-off of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC). He is currently a WINEP “Outside Author” and go-to “expert.”

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