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Posts Tagged ‘Defense Spending’

U.S. Plans for Perpetual War

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on January 27, 2012

 

By Renee Parsons,  Fmr. lobbyist for Friends of the Earth in Washington, D.C. focusing on nuclear energy issues

As an attack on Iran remains temporarily on the backburner and Syria, home to US-identified terrorist group Hamas, moves up the queue as the next target for military intervention, both are part of a larger strategy proposed to newly-elected Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in 1996.

The “Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm” suggested a “new approach to peace’ premised on a ‘clean break’ from the Oslo peace process of the 1990’s. Oslo would have withdrawn Israeli troops from the occupied territories while affirming Palestine’s right of self-determination. Rather than pursuing a ‘comprehensive peace’ with the Arab world, Clean Break advocated an aggressive pre-emptive military strategy to destabilize Iraq and eliminate Saddam Hussein. In addition, Clean Break retained the ‘right of hot pursuit’ anywhere within the occupied territories and encouraged ‘seizing the initiative’ by “engaging” Hezbollah, Syria and Iran to trigger ultimate regime change.

The key authors of that document, American neo-cons Richard Perle, David Wurmser and Douglas Feith (who Gen. Tommy Franks called the ‘f… stupidest guy on the face of the earth” ie Bob Woodward’s Plan of Attack, pg 281), soon found themselves influential national security positions within a receptive Bush Administration from which to proselytize their recommendations.

A decade later, the authors of that study are gone in name but their spirit of unending wars is alive and well within the Obama Administration’s recently announced “Defense Strategic Guidance” as part of “Sustaining US Global Leadership: Priorities for 21st Century Defense,” Where Clean Break offered what was then a radical Middle East military strategy, Obama’s DSG identifies US military priorities for the 21st century to “confront and defeat aggression anywhere in the world” with an emphasis on the Middle East and Asia-Pacific region as the “greatest challenges for the future.” (Panetta, 1-5-2012) Read the rest of this entry »

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Afghanistan: Impact of mission on UK forces’ reputation

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on October 8, 2011

By Caroline Wyatt

British forces became involved in Afghanistan soon after the 9/11 terror attacks in the US in 2001. Few

The Armed Forces' profile and popularity with much of the public have rarely been higher

expected it to last this long.

The Armed Forces’ reputation has paradoxically both suffered and been enhanced by its decade of experience in Afghanistan.

British special forces have more than proved their worth, and British personnel their bravery and willingness to fight, sometimes against overwhelming odds.

But their limits have also been made clear, not least in the size of force the UK has been able to deploy and sustain, or the strains on the RAF’s airbridge – the supply route from the UK to Afghanistan – and its ageing transport fleet, or the lack of enough of the right armoured vehicles or transport helicopters in earlier years.

Tragedies such as the crash of Nimrod XV230, which killed all those on board, focused attention on years of cost-pressures and a culture of “making do”. Questions have also been asked over politicians’ and some of the senior military leadership’s priorities and decisions.

Some commentators have asked whether senior officers and officials should have spoken hard truths unto power at an earlier stage, while others condemn the fitting of a force size to financial limits set down by the Treasury, and a disconnectedness in Whitehall which in turn played out on the ground, despite frequent references to the “comprehensive approach” in Helmand between the military and civilians from the Foreign Office and Department for International Development (DfID).

Rarely has a nation at peace with its neighbours had such battle-hardened young troops, some now returning to Helmand for a third, fourth or fifth tour of duty.

Yet the strains on their families and children back at home have been immense, with some service personnel happy to leave the forces in the current round of redundancies after multiple tours of Iraq and Afghanistan. Read the rest of this entry »

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Global Military Spending Hits High But Growth Slows

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on April 11, 2011


With $1.6 trillion what can’t be done? Unfortunat­ely we are not interested to do something good for people but interested to do bad for people.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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