Bob Woodward’s inside-the-White-House books always provide scoops and provoke controversy and his new one, Obama’s Wars, is no different, but with one vital twist: It is less a look back than a look around. Readers don’t merely re-live or debate, say, a president’s decision to start a war – nothing much can change that – but how he is now conducting, even escalating, a conflict at a key moment. The book concludes with an Oval Office interview with President Obama less than three months ago.
|By: Greg Mitchell Thursday October 7, 2010 12:00 pm|
|By: emptywheel Tuesday September 7, 2010 4:10 pm|
At some point, the US needs to take a step back and consider the way all types of extra-legal multinational organizations–terrorist organizations, criminal syndicates/drug cartels, even some multinational companies–serve to destabilize nation-states and communities and thereby to exacerbate our vulnerability to all of them.
But right now, DOD seems to be doubling down on the more western-friendly version of extra-legal entity as a key to trying to defeat another extra-legal entity.
|By: Josh Mull Monday August 16, 2010 6:30 pm|
If President Obama is too weak to preserve our civilian-military order, then Congress is obligated to enforce its Constitutional authority over the power of war.
|By: Jim White Sunday August 1, 2010 12:30 pm|
After the deadliest month ever for US troops in Afghanistan, panic over this failed war continues to spread to new areas. Panic had appeared to reach a peak when Stanley McChrystal was replaced as head of ISAF and head of US Forces in Afghanistan. However, the situation continues to spiral out of control under the new leadership of David Petraeus. Dominating today’s headlines are peaceful anti-American protests in Kabul following the riot precipitated by four civilian deaths in a traffic accident involving US contractors on Friday, the departure of the Netherlands from the shrinking NATO coalition and fears on the part of Senator Lindsey Graham that an “unholy alliance” between liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans could undermine the remaining small amount of support that remains for the war.
|By: Spencer Ackerman Thursday July 1, 2010 7:15 pm|
I might not agree with the way Uncle Jimbo puts everything in this video about the counterterrorism utility behind a counterinsurgent focus on reducing civilian casualties, but he dispenses quite effectively with the canard that counterterrorism can be successfully divorced from a strategy that invests the local populace in Blue Team/White Hat advances.
Perhaps there’s a better way of doing that than a resource-intensive counterinsurgency strategy, but I’ve yet to hear one that persuades me.
|By: Robert Naiman Wednesday June 30, 2010 5:00 pm|
Speaker Nancy Pelosi has told the Huffington Post she expects a “serious drawdown” of U.S. troops from Afghanistan in the summer of 2011. The House Rules Committee has now approved an amendment for consideration on the war supplemental that will allow Speaker Pelosi to “put her money where her mouth is.”
|By: Jim White Tuesday June 29, 2010 3:23 pm|
With the replacement of General Stanley McChrystal as head of US forces in Afghanistan by his commanding officer, General David Petraeus, the fallout from McChrystal’s multiple failures continues.
|By: Allison Hantschel Saturday June 26, 2010 4:00 pm|
Does one start with the fact that a general in charge of a war complaining about said war and the people conducting it and by the way, jokes about the cheese-eating surrender monkeys notwithstanding, DYING ALONG WITH U.S. SOLDIERS, is newsworthy no matter what “culture of exposure” you are living in? That this wasn’t some trivial thing about how, say, somebody said he’d quit smoking but was being lifed about it daily by the White House press corps? Or got a blow job from an intern?
|By: Josh Mull Thursday June 24, 2010 5:45 pm|
In the wake of General McChrystal’s firing, supporters of his counterinsurgency strategy have shifted to the blame game. Their target? US Ambassador to Afghanistan Karl Eikenberry. But is Eikenberry really at fault, or has he been right all along?
|By: emptywheel Thursday June 24, 2010 6:01 am|
This is just Kremlinology, of course. But it says something that the White House chose to deploy Rahm to give an on-the-record account of Obama’s decisiveness here. And that that official record left out Hillary, either because she wasn’t involved or her involvement didn’t serve the overall narrative.