Articles PAGE ONE

new article An Open Letter to GIs in Iraq
      by STAN GOFF (US Army retired Special Forces Master Sergeant)

Dear American serviceperson in Iraq,

I am a retired veteran of the army, and my own son is among you, a paratrooper like I was. The changes that are happening to every one of you–some more extreme than others–are changes I know very well. So I’m going to say some things to you straight up in the language to which you are accustomed.

In 1970, I was assigned to the 173rd Airborne Brigade, then based in northern Binh Dinh Province in what was then the Republic of Vietnam. When I went there, I had my head full of shit: shit from the news media, shit from movies, shit about what it supposedly mean to be a man, and shit from a lot of my know-nothing neighbors who would tell you plenty about Vietnam even though they’d never been there, or to war at all.

The essence of all this shit was that we had to “stay the course in Vietnam,” and that we were on some mission to save good Vietnamese from bad Vietnamese, and to keep the bad Vietnamese from hitting beachheads outside of Oakland. We stayed the course until 58,000 Americans were dead and lots more maimed for life, and 3,000,000 Southeast Asians were dead. Ex-military people and even many on active duty played a big part in finally bringing that crime to a halt.

[....] Read the entire letter to G.I.'s here

new article Legend of the spat-upon Vietnam veteran
      Desperate to cobble a pro-war cautionary tale out of a blood-soaked tragedy, writes David Sirota, we keep re-imagining the Vietnam War not as a policy failure but as the product of an America that dishonored returning troops.
Sunday, June 3, 2012 | By David Sirota - Syndicated columnist

Out of all the status-quo-sustaining fables we create out of military history, none are as enduring as Vietnam War myths. Desperate to cobble a pro-war cautionary tale out of a blood-soaked tragedy, we keep re-imagining the loss in Southeast Asia not as a policy failure but as the product of an America that dishonored returning troops.

Incessantly echoed by Hollywood and Washington since the concurrent successes of the Rambo and Reagan franchises, this legend was the central theme of President Obama's Memorial Day speech kicking off the government's commemoration of the Vietnam conflict.  [....]

Read his complete essay here

new article Should we be worried?: Changes made in DOD Instruction “Handling Dissident and Protest Activities Among Members of the Armed Forces”
Military Law Task Force of the National Lawyers Guild | Posted by James M. Branum on 02/25/2012

On February 22, 2012, the Department of Defense made major changes to DOD Instruction 1325.06 (PDF download).

These changes appear to be part of a major military policy change that is designed to stifle and suppress a growing GI movement against the wars in the Middle East.

Some of the more troubling changes include:

Enclosure 3, section 2. OFF-POST GATHERING PLACES. Commanders have the authority to place establishments off-limits in accordance with established procedures when, for example, the activities taking place there at these establishments include, but are not limited to, counseling, encouraging, or inciting Service members to refuse to perform duty or to desert; pose a significant adverse effect on Service members’ health, morale, or welfare; or otherwise present a clear danger to the loyalty, discipline, or morale of a member or military unit.

The changes in this section certainly appear to be directed at the GI coffeehouses at Fort Hood, Joint Base Lewis-McChord and in Kaiserslautern, Germany. Free speech and GI Rights advocates need to be ready to respond to possible moves by commanders to place the coffeehouses off-limits under this newly revised regulation.


new article Fallujah remembered by a US marine who helped destroy it in 2004
      US Marine Ross Caputi reflects on Fallujah in Iraq, where he was deployed in the 2004 attack that killed thousands, displaced hundreds of thousands more and poisoned the city with chemical weapons.
23 December 2012 | Ross Caputi

In overview, he writes: “History has defined the US veteran as a hero, and in doing so it has automatically defined anyone who fights against him as the bad guy. It has reversed the roles of aggressor and defender, moralized the immoral, and shaped our societies' present understanding of war.”

“History has preserved these lies, normalized them, and socialised them into our culture: so much so that legitimate resistance against US aggression is incomprehensible to most, and to even raise this question is seen as un-American.”

“The US veterans who fought there still do not understand who they fought against, or what they were fighting for.” [....]

Read his complete essay here

new article US Begins Pullout From Pakistan’s Shamsi Airbase
      Planes Arrive at Secretive Drone Base to Pack Up After Eviction   |   12/04/11

The secretive Shamsi Airbase in Pakistan’s Balochistan Province saw some new arrivals today, a pair of aircraft from the US arrived to begin the process of withdrawing military personnel, CIA agents and drones from the base.

Pakistan ordered the US out of the base last month after the deadly US attack on a pair of Pakistani bases in the Mohmand Agency. The attacks killed 24 Pakistani soldiers. [....]

Read the entire report here

new article CBS Undercounts Iraqi Deaths
      Rewriting Iraq War history   |   12/2/11

A December 1 CBS Evening News report about the Iraq War managed to mislead viewers about the start of the war and severely diminish the loss of civilian lives.

Reporting on the handover of the U.S. military headquarters to Iraqi forces, anchor Scott Pelley announced: [.....]

Read the entire report here

new article “Pentagon brags about drop in troop deaths after deadliest month in Afghanistan”
  Bloodshed far from over in Iraq and Afghanistan
   posted: September 15, 2011

The following was written anonymously by an active-duty Air Force Master Sergeant who is a member of March Forward!

Since the end of August, the media has been abuzz with cynically trumpeted fanfares of U.S. military success in Iraq. It was the first month since the start of the war in 2003 that zero U.S. troops were killed.

Meanwhile in Afghanistan, however, it was the single-most deadly month on record for U.S. troops since the start of the now 10-year-old occupation. And, for innocent civilians in Iraq, August saw the worst death toll in months. [.....]

Read the entire here

new article “Even Before I Had Left The Navy I Realized That I Was Not Protecting Freedom Or Defending The Constitution Of The United States”
  By Fabian Bouthillette, USNR, Veteran, Iraq Theatre

One of the perks of graduating from the United States Naval Academy is the opportunity to choose your first assignment as an officer in the Navy. Of course, one's rank within the graduating class determines the order of choosing, but my rank was high enough that I could have virtually chosen any class of ship to serve on at any of the Navy's domestic or international bases.

Always in pursuit of the unknown and the maximum amount of adventure, I chose to serve aboard a guided missile destroyer stationed in Yokosuka, Japan. This is the same base that was once used by the Imperial Japanese Navy, and where the radio order sent to the Japanese fleet to bomb Pearl Harbor originated from. [.....]

Read the entire commentary on Traveling Soldier

Richard Holbrooke Dies at 69: Remembering Veteran Diplomat’s Overlooked Record in East Timor, Iraq and the Balkans

Democracy Now! The War and Peace Report
Broadcast on Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Since his death this week at the age of 69, veteran U.S. diplomat Richard Holbrooke has been remembered for a storied career that includes brokering the 1995 Dayton peace accords that ended the war in Bosnia. But little attention has been paid to his role in implementing and backing U.S. policies that killed thousands of civilians. Independent journalists Jeremy Scahill and John Pilger join us to discuss Holbrooke’s record in carrying out U.S. policy in Vietnam, East Timor, the Balkans, Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. Scahill says Holbrooke "represented the utter militarization of what is called 'U.S. diplomacy.'" [includes rush transcript] [......]

new article The Conservative Case for WikiLeaks
  published on The American Conservative Magazine | December 9th, 2010

Lovers necessarily keep or share secrets. Being in a healthy relationship means achieving a certain level of intimacy, where shared knowledge of each others’ weaknesses and insecurities is protected by a bond of mutual trust. Sometimes lovers might do devilish things that outsiders wouldn’t understand, or shouldn’t be privy to, and this is fine. But by and large, what they do is simply no one else’s business. [.....]

Read the entire commentary on The American Conservative Magazine

new article U.S. Facing Global Diplomatic Crisis Following Massive WikiLeaks Release of Secret Diplomatic Cables
broadcast on Democracy Now! November 29, 2010

new article Civilian soldiers' suicide rate alarming
National Guard soldiers who are not on active duty
killed themselves this year at nearly twice the rate of 2009
By Gregg Zoroya, USA TODAY, November 25, 2010 | USA Today

National Guard soldiers who are not on active duty killed themselves this year at nearly twice the rate of 2009, marring a year when suicides among Army soldiers on active duty appear to be leveling off, new Army statistics show

Eighty-six non-active-duty Guard soldiers have killed themselves in the first 10 months of 2010, compared with 48 such suicides in all of 2009.

Continue reading here

new article NONE OF US WERE LIKE THIS BEFORE: American Soldiers and Torture
The legacy of torture in the “War on Terror,” told through the story of one tank battalion.

In None of Us Were Like This Before: American Soldiers and Torture, Reporter Joshua Phillips investigates how and why U.S. forces came to use torture. Phillips reveals that the damaging legacy of torture is borne not only by the detainees, but also by American soldiers and the country to which they’ve returned.

MP3 audio here. (33:58)

new article The Officers' War Against the Enlisted
Joshua Kors on the torture of Sgt. Luther

Scott Horton Interviews Joshua Kors, writer for The Nation magazine, discusses the recent Congressional hearings on bogus “personality disorder” military discharges of injured soldiers, Sergeant Chuck Luther’s Congressional testimony about his confinement and torture for refusing to accept his personality disorder diagnosis, the billions of dollars in health care improperly denied to veterans and how the Pentagon was caught lying about an outreach program that was supposed to help veterans without medical care.

MP3 audio here. (18:20)

Joshua Kors covers veterans’ issues for The Nation. He is the winner of the National Magazine Award, George Polk Award, and Military Reporters and Editors Award. He was also a finalist for Harvard’s Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting and the American Bar Association’s Silver Gavel Award. His work is featured in the American Society of Magazine Editors’ anthology “The Best American Magazine Writing 2008.” He also has a website.

new article The War Makes You Poor
Charles Goyette and Tom Woods Explain

Thomas E. Woods and Charles Goyette, authors of Meltdown and The Dollar Meltdown (respectively), discuss Washington Post writer David Broder’s assertion that a war with Iran would save Obama’s legacy and the economy, why it’s still important to fight against the myth that WWII caused the end of the Great Depression, how surging commodity prices and a falling dollar signal serious consumer price inflation by next year, the post-9/11 economic sugar high engineered by Alan “Maestro” Greenspan’s interest rate cuts, the insignificant spending cuts in the GOP’s “Pledge to America” and why Ron Paul’s 2012 presidential campaign will be a barn-burner.

MP3 audio here. (40:27)

new article 400,000: Leaked Classified Military Documents Largest Ever

new article How the US Tried to Keep the Iraq Killings Quiet

new article After Service, Veteran Deaths Surge
Suicides, vehicle accidents and drug overdoses take lives
By AARON GLANTZ on October 16, 2010 | The Bay Citizen

Perhaps the most important story I have ever written...Please take a moment to read this story, which proves three times as many California veterans are dying at home than California service members dying in Iraq and Afghanistan combined... An examination of coroners' reports prove more than 1,000 veterans under 35 died in California between 2005 and 2008..." [.....]

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new article Surprise -- The Very Dark Side of U.S. History
Posted on October 8, 2010 | by By Peter Dale Scott and Robert Parry, Consortium News

There is a dark -- seldom acknowledged -- thread that runs through U.S. military doctrine, dating back to the early days of the Republic.

This military tradition has explicitly defended the selective use of terror, whether in suppressing Native American resistance on the frontiers in the 19th Century or in protecting U.S. interests abroad in the 20th Century or fighting the "war on terror" over the last decade.

The American people are largely oblivious to this hidden tradition because most of the literature advocating state-sponsored terror is carefully confined to national security circles and rarely spills out into the public debate, which is instead dominated by feel-good messages about well-intentioned U.S. interventions abroad. [.....]

Continue reading here


new article Army's largest base reeling from four apparent suicides in one weekend

new article Torture IS an “American” Value: Reality Versus the Rhetoric
May 1, 2007 | by S. Brian Willson, former Air Force Captain

I became aware of torture as a U.S. policy in 1969 when I was serving as a USAF combat security officer working near Can Tho City in Viet Nam’s Mekong Delta. I was "informed" about the CIA’s Phong Dinh Province Interrogation Center (PIC) in Can Tho City and a POW camp near the Can Tho Army airfield where supposedly "significant members" of the VCI (Viet Cong Infrastructure) were taken for torture as part of the Phoenix "Pacification" Program. A huge nearby French-built prison was also apparently utilized for torture of "suspects" from the Delta region. [.....]

Continue reading the rest of S. Brian WIllson's essay here

new article Hypocrisy: While We Condemn Quran Burnings, Drone Strikes Continue Unchecked
Monday Sept. 13th, 2010 | Alternet

Barack Obama, the US president, has warned that threats to burn the Quran are a sure and effective way to swell the ranks of al-Qaeda. This may be true, but largely because such symbolic acts of 'Islamophobia' are widely viewed as verifying the perception that the US wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, along with its backing of Israel, are motivated by its hostility towards Muslims.

The previously unheard of pastor of a small Florida church may have scrapped his plan to publicly burn hundreds of Qurans on the ninth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, but the threat alone has done untold damage to the already troubled relationship between the Muslim world and the West. [.....]

Continue reading the rest of this article here

new article Is the U.S. Exporting Terrorism?
Friday August 27th, 2010 | The New American

The CIA is worried that the United States will become known as an exporter of terrorism, according to a recent revelation by the Internet whistleblower site

The leaked three-page CIA report explained that a number of American citizens have gone abroad in recent years to conduct terrorism, helping al-Qaeda, radical Israeli terrorist groups, and Irish terrorists. The report notes that while the intelligence agencies have focused upon attempts by [.....]

Continue reading the rest of this article here

new article 5 Million Iraqis Killed, Maimed, Tortured, Displaced -- Think That Bothers War Boosters Like Christopher Hitchens?
The immensity of Iraqi civilian suffering is incomprehensible. How can war's cheerleaders claim to fight on behalf of the people whose lives they helped destroy?
July 01, 2010 | By Fred Branfman | Alternet

Fred Branfman, author of the article “5 Million Iraqis Killed, Maimed, Tortured, Displaced — Think That Bothers War Boosters Like Christopher Hitchens?” discusses the demonstrably false assertion that Iraqis are “better off” now than under Saddam Hussein, why liberal warhawks like Hitchens bear a moral burden for Iraqi civilian deaths, the ongoing class war in America (that the billionaires are winning) and why holding elections does not qualify Iraq as a democracy.

MP3 here. (28:58)

Fred Branfman is a writer and longtime activist who directed the Indochina Resource Center during the war in Indochina. Visit his Web site.

Read Fred Branfman's article here

By John Grant | June 28, 2010 | Published on This Can't Be Happening

We need less secrecy and more accountability in our military ranks, and we need to encourage more of our young soldiers to share this view. Right now, all thinking, caring Americans need to contact their congress members and fight for soldiers like Bradley Manning, an American hero hidden away in a Kuwait jail. The military hopes you forget about him.

The US Army is holding Specialist Bradley Manning incommunicado in Kuwait on charges of leaking to WikiLeaks video of Apache helicopter pilots gunning down two Reuters cameramen and a number of Iraqis in a Baghdad neighborhood. The video is devastating in what it reveals about cold-blooded hi-technology warfare in a place like Baghdad. See it at:

Manning’s action follows precisely the arc Joseph Campbell describes in his famous book Hero With a Thousand Faces of the young warrior who leaves home to descend into Hell, where he learns something and then returns to impart that knowledge to his people. [.....]

Continue reading the rest of this opinion here

new article Media Missing the McChrystal Point
       FAIR Media Adviory | June 25, 2010

The media firestorm over the Rolling Stone profile (6/22/10) of General Stanley McChrystal mostly missed the real point of the article, which was a damning portrait of the U.S. war in Afghanistan.Much of the media coverage stressed the criticism and insults hurled by McChrystal and his staff at various administration figures. Some of these remarks were more substantive than others. A joke about Joe Biden ("Bite Me") has been overblown; McChrystal and his staff seemed to be suggesting a list of possible gaffes the general might make following a speech.The real significance of the piece is in the criticism--voiced by soldiers in Afghanistan and military experts--of the war itself. "Even those who support McChrystal and his strategy of counterinsurgency know that whatever the general manages to accomplish in Afghanistan, it's going to look more like Vietnam than Desert Storm," wrote Rolling Stone's Michael Hastings. [.....]

Continue reading here

And here: Using the McChrystal Moment to Raise a Forbidden Question:
                 Did 9/11 Justify the War in Afghanistan?

new article They hate us for our freedoms? Cause and Effect in the War on Terror
By Glenn Greenwald | June 22, 2010 |

American discussions about what causes Terrorists to do what they do are typically conducted by ignoring the Terrorist's explanation for why he does what he does. Yesterday, Faisal Shahzad pleaded guilty in a New York federal court to attempting to detonate a car bomb in Times Square, and this Pakistani-American Muslim explained why he transformed from a financial analyst living a law-abiding, middle-class American life into a Terrorist: [.....]

Continue reading the rest of this article here

n Democracy Now! Exclusive:
With Rumored Manhunt for Wikileaks Founder and Arrest of Alleged Leaker of Video Showing Iraq Killings, Obama Admin Escalates Crackdown on Whistleblowers of Classified Information

Democracy Now! The War and Peace Report
Broadcast on Thursday, June 17th, 2010

Pentagon investigators are reportedly still searching for Wikileaks co-founder Julian Assange, who helped release a classified US military video showing a US helicopter gunship indiscriminately firing on Iraqi civilians. The US military recently arrested Army Specialist Bradley Manning, who may have passed on the video to Wikileaks. Manning’s arrest and the hunt for Assange have put the spotlight on the Obama administration’s campaign against whistleblowers and leakers of classified information. We speak to Daniel Ellsberg, who’s leaking of the Pentagon Papers has made him perhaps the nation’s most famous whistleblower; Birgitta Jónsdóttir, a member of the Icelandic Parliament who has collaborated with Wikileaks and drafted a new Icelandic law protecting investigative journalists; and Glenn Greenwald, political and legal blogger for [includes rush transcript] [......]

n The History of BP/British Petroleum and Its Role in the 1953 Iran Coup
Democracy Now! The War and Peace Report
Broadcast on Thursday, June 14th, 2010

Stephen Kinzer, author of All the Shah’s Men: An American Coup and the Roots of Middle East Terror, looks at the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company’s role in the 1953 CIA coup against Iran’s popular progressive prime minister, Mohammad Mosaddegh. [......]


 Part 2 here:  [includes rush transcript]

n Memorial Daze: Quandary of Empire
By Philip A Ferruggio | May 29, 2010 Consortium

Editor’s Note: At a time of two unfinished wars halfway around the world, Memorial Day’s focus on the sacrifices of men and women who have gone to war for the United States is stirring up a different mix of emotions than usual.More and more Americans are torn between their desire to show respect for the sacrifices that these soldiers made and the broader concern that the United States is behaving like a global empire, a quandary that Philip A Farruggio addresses in this guest essay:Hitler’s German army invaded and occupied Poland. Many soldiers were killed. The Japanese invaded and occupied Nanking and Shanghai. They had many soldiers killed. The same for the British when they occupied India and Palestine. [.....]

Read the entire article here

Flotilla Passengers Huwaida Arraf of Free Gaza Movement and Retired
Army Col. Ann Wright Respond to Israeli Claims on Deadly Assault

Democracy Now! The War and Peace Report
Broadcast on Tuesday, June 03, 2010

Huwaida Arraf, chairperson of the Free Gaza Movement, and retired US Col. Ann Wright were on the flotilla when it was attacked. They join us to describe the assault and their subsequent detention in Israeli prison. We also speak to Sawsan Zaher, a staff attorney at Adalah, the Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, who interviewed many of the activists in detention.The bodies of nine activists killed by Israeli troops on the Gaza aid flotilla arrived in Turkey Thursday morning. The Anatolia news agency reports that eight of the dead were Turks and one was a US citizen of Turkish origin. Turkish forensic experts have confirmed that all nine were shot with guns. [includes rush transcript] [......]

n Friendly Fire: Did an American Mine Sink South Korean Ship?
News Analysis, Yoichi Shimatsu, May 27, 2010 | New America Media

BEIJING - South Korean Prime Minister Lee Myung-bak has claimed "overwhelming evidence" that a North Korean torpedo sank the corvette Cheonan on March 26, killing 46 sailors. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton claimed that there’s "overwhelming evidence" in favor of the theory that North Korea sank the South Korean Navy warship Cheonan. But the articles of proof presented so far by military investigators to an official inquiry board have been scanty and inconsistent.There’s yet another possibility, that a U.S. rising mine sank the Cheonan in a friendly-fire accident. [ .....]

Continue this article here

n The Panama Deception
      1993 Academy Award, Best Documentary Feature
      We Report. You Decide.

A riveting Academy Award-winning critique of the government's history of militarization, made all the more timely by the current “war on terrorism.”

The Panama Deception documents the untold story of the December 1989 U.S. invasion of Panama; the events which led to it; the excessive force used; the enormity of the death and destruction; and the devastating aftermath. The Panama Deception uncovers the real reasons for this internationally condemned attack, presenting a view of the invasion which widely differs from that portrayed by the U.S. media and exposes how the U.S. government and the mainstream media suppressed information about this foreign policy disaster.

The Panama Deception includes never before seen footage of the invasion and its aftermath, as well as interviews with both invasion proponents like Gen. Maxwell Thurman, Panamanian President Endara and Pentagon spokesperson Pete Williams, and opponents like U.S. Representative Charles Rangel (D-NY.), Panamanian human rights workers Olga Mejia and Isabel Corro and former Panamanian diplomat Humberto Brown.

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