Tag Archives: vietnam

The modern war canon – The Browser – Salon.com

13 Mar

After the  war in Vietnam we said, never again. Now we’re in Afghanistan, making the same fundamental mistake.

One of the reasons I have chosen Halberstam is because I think it applies today to what the Western powers are trying to do in Afghanistan. There are so many parallel structures – the massive application of firepower and not much understanding of the people. To the Afghans, we tend to be just another foreign invader, however well-intentioned. Which is why, like Vietnam, I think it’s an unwinnable war.

We need to get out of Afghanistan, now, and STOP trying to remake the world by war, one or two nations at a time.

via The modern war canon – The Browser – Salon.com.

The Rise of the Warrior Corporation: Win or Lose on the Battlefield, Big Business Always Comes Out on Top | World | AlterNet

24 Feb

Although early drone technology was already being used over North Vietnam, it’s in another sense entirely that drones have been heading into America’s future since 1973. There was an eerie logic to it: first came professional war, then privatized war, then mercenary and outsourced war — all of which made war ever more remote from most Americans. Finally, both literally and figuratively, came remote war itself.

It couldn’t be more appropriate that the Air Force prefers you not call their latest wonder weapons “unmanned aerial vehicles,” or UAVs, anymore. They would like you to use the label “remotely piloted aircraft” (RPA) instead. And ever more remotely piloted that vehicle is to be, until — claim believers and enthusiasts — it will pilot itself, land itself, maneuver itself, and while in the air even chose its own targets.

In this sense, think of us as moving from the citizen’s army to a roboticized, and finally robot, military — to a military that is a foreign legion in the most basic sense. In other words, we are moving toward an ever greater outsourcing of war to things that cannot protest, cannot vote with their feet (or wings), and for whom there is no “home front” or even a home at all. In a sense, we are, as we have been since 1973, heading for a form of war without anyone, citizen or otherwise, in the picture — except those on the ground, enemy and civilian alike, who will die as usual.

via The Rise of the Warrior Corporation: Win or Lose on the Battlefield, Big Business Always Comes Out on Top | World | AlterNet.