Whistling Past the Graveyard (of Empires)

Cemetery Tombstone Tomb Graveyard Stone Grave

by Tom Engelhardt If you’re in the mood, would you consider taking a walk with me and, while we’re at it, thinking a little about America’s wars? Nothing particularly ambitious, mind you, just — if you’re up for it —… Continue Reading  

Down the Iraqi Rabbit Hole (Again)


by Andrew Bacevich There is a peculiar form of insanity in which a veneer of rationality distracts attention from the madness lurking just beneath the surface. When Alice dove down her rabbit hole to enter a place where smirking cats… Continue Reading  

The National Effort at Self-Exoneration on Torture

President George W Bush visits CIA Headquarters, March 20, 2001.

by Paul R. Pillar The nation’s current attempt at catharsis through a gargantuan report prepared by the Democratic staff of a Senate committee exhibits some familiar patterns. Most of them involve treating a government agency as if it were Dorian Gray’s… Continue Reading  

The US Fight Against Islamic State: Avoiding “Mission Creep”


by Wayne White Hyping the Islamic State (ISIS or IS) threat risks generating flawed policies. The White House probably is a source of frustration, as its critics claim, but others seem too eager to commit US combat troops. Meanwhile, the… Continue Reading  

Replacing Hagel: Obama’s Last Chance?


by Robert E. Hunter Chuck Hagel’s sudden departure as President Barak Obama’s third secretary of defense leaves the chief executive searching for a fourth at a time when presidents have usually settled upon a smoothly running and effective team to… Continue Reading