FDL Book Salon Welcomes Michael Hastings, The Operators: The Wild and Terrifying Inside Story of America’s War in Afghanistan

By: Sunday February 12, 2012 1:59 pm

General Stanley McChrystal told journalist Michael Hastings that he wanted to be on the cover of Rolling Stone and so he was. The resulting story—describing an alcohol fueled dinner in Paris and the General’s staff mocking the Obama Administration—ended McChrystal’s tour as the commander of US forces in Afghanistan and his military career.


FDL Movie Night: Armadillo

By: Monday April 11, 2011 5:00 pm

Tonight’s guest Janus Metz, who with his cinematographer Lars Skree, spent six months embedded with a Danish infantry company at Armadillo, a forward operating base in Afghanistan’s Helmand province –part of the NATO-led ISAF (International Security Assistance Force).

The result is Armadillo, winner of the Cannes International Critics Week, an unselfconscious look at war and those who have to wage it; because as the men are told at the film’s beginning, their government has determined a national policy and it is the duty of soldiers to implement it.

Size Doesn’t Matter: Missing the Point of ISAF’s Failure in Marja

By: Tuesday March 9, 2010 6:02 am

Big cities like Kabul and Herat don’t speak for the entirety of all Afghans, so focusing all of our attention on the major urban centers doesn’t do anything to extend the legitimacy and credibility of the government, much less provide security from the Taliban. Therefore we concentrate on rural areas like Marjah — but this effort still won’t matter as long as we continue using military force and prop up a corrupt, illegitimate government. Until we have a strategy that doesn’t involve violently imposing our pet gangsters’ will on the Afghan people, we’ll have a hard time even distinguishing ourselves from the Taliban, much less convincing the citizens to take our side against them.

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