America’s Wars – How Serial War Became the American Way of Life By David Bromwich

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Dandelion Salad

By David Bromwich
July 21, 2009

On July 16, in a speech to the Economic Club of Chicago, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said that the “central question” for the defense of the United States was how the military should be “organized, equipped — and funded — in the years ahead, to win the wars we are in while being prepared for threats on or beyond the horizon.” The phrase beyond the horizon ought to sound ominous. Was Gates telling his audience of civic-minded business leaders to spend more money on defense in order to counter threats whose very existence no one could answer for? Given the public acceptance of American militarism, he could speak in the knowledge that the awkward challenge would never be posed.

We have begun to talk casually about our wars; and this should be surprising for several reasons. To begin with, in the history of the United States war has never been considered the normal state of things. For two centuries, Americans were taught to think war itself an aberration, and “wars” in the plural could only have seemed doubly aberrant. Younger generations of Americans, however, are now being taught to expect no end of war — and no end of wars.


via Tomgram: David Bromwich, America’s Serial Warriors


War Without Purpose by Chris Hedges

War Is Sin by Chris Hedges

The Disease of Permanent War by Chris Hedges

The Multiple Faces of War By Siv O’Neall

Becoming What We Seek to Destroy by Chris Hedges

10 thoughts on “America’s Wars – How Serial War Became the American Way of Life By David Bromwich

  1. Pingback: Disturbing the Universe: Holocaust Denial, Revisionism, Religion, Censorship and War By Gary Corseri « Dandelion Salad

  2. War and wars equal money. Since 1886 corporations have the rights of infividuals contrary tp the ideas of the country’s founders. Corporations are not individuals, they are entities whose sole interest is producting profit. Corporation have been allowed to take over the country. Consequently, the country faces perpetual war because war is so profitable.

    • The classic military industrial complex explanation, and true, to a point. Workers are pawns in corporate industrial capitalism, but are modern American soldiers?

      CEO’s seek shareholder profit, employees seek ‘secure jobs’ but they don’t fight wars, soldiers do. There is a link that needs to be defined between the commander and the pawn/peon of a volunteer army, and don’t blame poverty (not all poor people are enlisted cult-killers of the US Armed forces, and yer not fightin’ for my freedom soldier!).

      This is not a matter of working for the boss or carrying out corporate orders, this is a matter of american exceptionalism and a continued systemic infatuation with violence. The US soldier, the sort that still enlists despite all, regardless of economic status, is a sociopath. War selects for sociopaths, and vice versa.

      In this case the ‘worker’ is not trying to make an honest living, the worker/soldier agrees to carry out illegal atrocities. This is an individual, murderous choice.

      Those who enlist in light of the lies, and carry out the genocidal orders like Kissinger’s ‘anything that flies against anything that moves’ despite the direct violation of law, morals and religion, are simply sick in the brain, and it’s time we notified the potential enlistees that they need to re-route their aggressions. Those who find them heroic, or even ‘supportable’ are similarly deranged.

      Wars are committed not by generals but by soldiers; Not by CEO’s but by their employees. But this is not about simply selling arms. It’s the ultimate choice of the soldier to make the illegal, immoral and insane choice to carry out the order to kill, in foreign lands of no threat to the USA, as most all US wars are and have been.

      We make a grave, fatal error by blaming the government for wars while failing to hold the cult-killer enlisted pawn accountable for clearly definable warcrimes.

      As long as we blame the CEO for the personal choices of the peon in carrying out atrocities, we will never address the true reasons for modern american wars, the fact that war selects for soldiers who simply love to kill.

      • All very good points, Natureboy. I do think many young people join due to economic reasons without thinking it through what it means to be an enlisted soldier/marine. Many are actually encouraged to do so by their parents! Some decide to quit after they’ve joined (that takes courage), and those that do resist need to be supported. All that choose to kill have sold their souls and have to ask for forgiveness from God, imo.

        All the workers who manufacture anything to do with the military also have sold their souls for a buck. That includes all the engineers, scientists, tech people, salesmen/women, etc. We, the people must stop the military industrial complex. Refuse to work for companies, corporations or businesses that have military contracts.


      But there’s more to it than the MIC, the economy, valor, nationalism, ‘liberty’ or glory.

      Could it be that war/serial murder is the epi-genetic alternate state of society, and subliminal suggestion to the weak mind converts a citizen into a robo-cop serial killer?

      Thousands survived the worst wounds ever thanks to advanced battlefield medicine. How did we nevertheless forget that war is hell…

      If we can generally be trained to go ‘both ways’, perhaps it’s time to train the dogs of war and teach peace. It works (both ways). There should be a moral imperative to reject participation in all of these wars. Apparently we need mass therapy to untrain our brain-twisted youth, as in N. Uganda etc.

      There is little to show in any media exposing, debating and resisting the horror of these wars, DS is one of the few stimulators of this bizarre debate.

      But why? Why did Vietnam elicit an anti-war movement and Iraq did not? Was it just volume of casualties? Lack of a draft?? Because ‘Saddam knocked down the towers’ and Ho Chi Minh didn’t?

      • You bring up very good points, Natureboy.

        Our society is much different than in the 60’s. There has been a huge breakdown, read Hedges’ latest piece and his new book. The lack of a draft, imo, has a lot to do with the apathy towards the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Also, the blood and gore is not being shown on the nightly news every day like during the Vietnam war (the main reason I started blogging). Those who own the media profit from war, they certainly aren’t going to take a stand against it.

  3. Excellent historical analysis.
    ‘Just’ wars are in the end just wars.
    The ‘morals of a republic’ failed to resist the spoils of empire. Orwellian War was ‘never meant to end’, an indictment of militaristic warmongers the people perpetually put in power, as of the people themselves who suck down their propaganda and fail to dissent.

  4. There’s an old wise saying that goes: “You live by the sword, you die by the sword”.

    We, due to a cultural handicap of ours, seem to take the concept of living by the sword casually and lightly, and we don’t realize the psychological ramifications and consequences of such attitude, which are, disturbingly, manifested in so many facets, aspects and segments of our society. Is it our infamous cowboy mentality that still lingers in our childish psyche? At least partially, I’d say.

    Yes, we grew up watching many John Wayne and Clint Eastwood movies, and other American heroes where killing was always easy, done fast and almost painless, and we never ever see the ugly side of it. We cheered for the supposedly good guys and left theatres with sanitized happy feelings. We never considered if those people, who were just wasted away senselessly and uselessly, had any children waiting for them to come back home to, so they can hug daddy at the door, and kiss him good night. That would’ve marred the picture, broken our hearts and just may have changed our attitude about violence and senseless killing, and that just wouldn’t set well with those, like our dear Republican warmongers, who love their guns and love using them for fun, and to implement their twisted agendas

    Making wars and solving our problems with weapons has become, unfortunately, in our culture, the norm, not the exception, and in that lies the greatest danger of not only us becoming an obsessively militarized society, like Israel, that enjoys killing of supposed bad guys, but of our children of today, who will lead this nation into the future – and from the looks of things, I dread thinking about where this nation will be going next and in the future, with such dreadful mentality. America needs to grow up, wise up and to start thinking about the horrible consequences of this sick mentality and ideology.

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