Global Policy Forum

Archived Articles


General Analysis on US Military Expansion and Intervention

Archived Articles


Militarism and US Trade Policy (December 15, 2006)

This article from Foreign Policy In Focus argues that security and military considerations increasingly dictate US economic policies. The Bush administration in 2002 released its “National Security Strategy for the United States” which declares free trade a national security interest. The author concludes that activists promoting economic and environmental justice must develop a “common agenda” in order to challenge the new world order dominated by US policies that link economics with military interventions.

Pinochet’s Death Spares Bush Family (December 12, 2006)

This Consortium News piece analyzes previous US administrations’ attempts to “cover up” the crimes of Chile’s former ruler Augusto Pinochet, who died in December 2006 without ever standing trial. In particular, the author focuses on one-time CIA director and former US President George H.W. Bush’s constant support for Pinochet, despite the brutal tactics the former dictator used to silence his critics. The article highlights the problem of high-ranking officials protecting their “reputations” at the expense of truth and justice.

The New Washington Consensus: Blame the Victims in Iraq (December 8, 2006)

This Other News article argues that a new “Washington Consensus” has emerged among US lawmakers following the overwhelming rejection of the US-led war in Iraq by voters during the November 2006 US elections. The new consensus blames Iraqis and not US forces for the massive death and destruction in Iraq and will ultimately help lawmakers justify keeping US troops in the country. The author concludes that, although the Democratic party will control the US Congress starting in January 2007, little chance exists that the US troops will be withdrawn from Iraq in the near future as its “imperial agenda” in the Middle East is not yet completed.

Military Spending in the New Democratic Congress (December 4, 2006)

This report published by the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation details the likely increases in military spending under the Democratic-controlled US Congress in 2007. The author states that there has been bi-partisan support for increases in the Pentagon’s budget since the September 11, 2001 attacks. And during the 2006 US midterm election, Democrats signaled that they would continue to back such increases and intend to raise the Pentagon’s 2007 budget by US$75 billion. The report concludes that spending billions of dollars on unnecessary military outlays only increases the US budget deficit and takes the focus away from the “true security threats” the US faces.

The New Middle East (November/December 2006)

This article in Foreign Affairs argues that the era of US dominance in the Middle East has ended and to “master” the new era “Washington will have to rely more on diplomacy than on military might.” Following the demise of the Soviet Union in 1991 the US enjoyed unprecedented access to countries in the Middle East. But after its invasion of Iraq in 2003 Washington’s influence began to diminish as many people in the region rejected US hegemony. The author concludes that the new era, marked by the growing influence of external actors such as China and regional actors such as Iran, will further limit US power in the region.

The End of the Colombian Blood Letting Could Begin in Washington (November 20, 2006)

In November 2006 the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia-Peoples Army (FARC-EP) issued a letter to “leftist” US academics and actors asking them to persuade the US government to support a prisoner exchange program between the guerillas and the Colombian government. In response to the letter, the author of this Information Clearing House article discusses how Washington, after the September 11, 2001 attacks, pressured Colombian President Alvaro Uribe to suspend negotiations and brand FARC-EP a terrorist organization. The author concludes that measures such as prisoner exchange are essential to begin the peace process in Colombia; however such actions remain impossible as long as the US continues to support counterinsurgency efforts conducted by the Colombian government.

Dismay Grows Over US Torture School (November 15, 2006)

The US Army’s School of the Americas (SOA), renamed the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation in 2001, trains Latin American soldiers. The SOA has come under constant domestic and foreign criticism for promoting tactics such as coercive interrogation and torture techniques. This article in The Nation argues that many of the leftist governments in Latin America have stopped sending soldiers to the SOA because of their opposition to US interventions, leading to a decline in the SOA influence. Furthermore, massive demonstrations in November 2006 against SOA in both the US and Latin America could potentially push the Democratic US Congress to cut funding to the school, ultimately resulting in a decline of US military influence throughout the region.

Bush's Failed Liberation Theology (November 14, 2006)

Military interventions do not “achieve empowering ends” for people living under oppressive regimes, argues this TomPaine article. Following the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, the United States claimed to have “liberated” the people and increased women’s rights, which were largely repressed under the previous authoritarian regimes. However, women have not seen these newfound “freedoms” materialize and remain deprived of economic opportunities and education. The author concludes that a US military intervention in Iran would reverse the gains women have made in recent years, such as winning seats in Parliament, and instead provide Tehran with a reason to suppress reform as a way to unite the country against the “enemy.”

US Is Top Purveyor on Weapons Sales List (November 13, 2006)

This Boston Globe article discusses an October 2006 Congressional Research Service report, which ranked the US as the top supplier of arms to the developing world. The report states that the US has supplied high-tech arms to 18 of the 25 countries in the world with ongoing conflicts and to a large number of nations known to violate human rights. The article concludes that US arms sales to conflict-ridden areas only perpetuate violence and hinder US security interests in the long term. However, the US government appears willing to forgo these risks for the economic benefits accompanying these transactions.

Bush Replaces Rumsfeld with... Another Rumsfeld (November 8, 2006)

Following the announcement that US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld would resign, President George W. Bush nominated the former director of the Central Intelligence Agency Robert Gates to the position. US politicians as well as high-ranking officials in the US armed forces have strongly criticized Rumsfeld for his policies in Iraq. However, this AlterNet article argues that Gates shares many of Rumsfeld’s characteristics and the same “hawkish” ideology. Therefore, concludes the author, if the US Senate confirms Gates’ appointment, US military activities overseas will remain more or less unchanged.

Kyrgyzstan Caught in US-Russia Squeeze (November 7, 2006)

This Asia Times article argues that US interference in Kyrgyzstan’s affairs will encounter stiff opposition internally and externally from Russia. The current Kyrgyz regime, in place since the US-backed Tulip revolution in early 2005, has courted both Russia and China while shunning the US. This hostility has resulted in the US providing greater assistance to opposition groups in Kyrgyzstan which, have staged repeated demonstrations attempting to bring the regime down. This article concludes that US-supported attempts at regime change will ultimately fail because they lack the support of the Kyrgyz people and the other major power in the region, Russia, does not want to lose its ally so it will continue to provide support to Kyrgyzstan.

Targeting Nicaraguans’ Stomachs: The US’s 11th-Hour Elections Meddling (October 31, 2006)

Ahead of the November presidential elections in Nicaragua, current and former US government officials attempt to ensure that Nicaraguans do not make the “wrong choice” at the polls. Conservative US politicians strongly oppose the leftist Sandinista party and its leader and former Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega and have threatened to cut off financial support to the country if the people elect him president. The author concludes that outside “intervention” in domestic politics is profoundly undemocratic and the US should let the Nicaraguans decide their own fate. (CommonDreams)

Dissent Grows Over US Silent Treatment for 'Axis of Evil' (October 27, 2006)

Foreign diplomats and US politicians strongly criticize the Bush administration’s “no talk” strategy when dealing with the countries it deems part of the “axis of evil,” including, Iran, North Korea, and Syria. Thus far US refusal to engage with these countries has proven unsuccessful, as demonstrated by North Korea’s October 2006 nuclear test. This New York Times article concludes that foreign disapproval will continue until the US develops a more interactive policy for dealing with such countries.

Is Iraq Another Vietnam? It Is Already Lost (October 22, 2006)

This CommonDreams article argues that the US-led war in Iraq shares many similarities with US involvement in Vietnam during the 1960s and 1970s. The author draws parallels between the failure of US officials to recognize that the populations of these countries would resist foreign occupation, as well as the inability of the administrations in power to admit defeat. However, the article concludes that the situation in Iraq will prove worse for the US than Vietnam, because immoral US actions end up “increasing enemies and driving away allies,” which ultimately decrease the influence and prestige of the superpower.

Space: America's New War Zone (October 19, 2006)

The Bush administration has issued a directive that “defends US interests” in outer space. This policy gives the government the right to deny its “adversaries” access to space if such access threatens US national security interests or in some way hinders US operations in space. In October 2005, the US blocked a UN attempt to ban the “weaponization” of space, demonstrating that the US may attempt to deploy weapons in space according to this Independent article.

Nuclear Umbrella? The Peril of Missile Defense (October 12, 2006)

The nuclear situation in North Korea and Iran will likely lead to renewed calls by the Bush administration to continue development of the US missile defense shield, argues this Information Clearing House article. The expansion of the shield, designed to intercept missiles, not only violates the Anti-Ballistic Missile treaty, but also diminishes the credibility of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation treaty. The article concludes that Washington should spend its time and resources on creating a more effective and comprehensive international treaty than on developing a shield, which ultimately will do little to protect individuals.

US Neo-Cons Call For Japanese Nukes, Regime Change (October 11, 2006)

North Korea’s announcement that it tested a nuclear device has led prominent US neo-conservatives to call on the Bush administration to end US engagement with rogue regimes and “get tough,” in effect, implement regime change. In addition, they call for Japan to build up a nuclear arsenal and for the overall cessation of humanitarian aid to the North Koreans. This Inter Press Service article argues that the “realists” in the State Department, who generally prefer diplomacy over intervention, will not silence the neo-conservative lobby which has a strong influence on the policies of the Bush administration, particularly through Vice President Dick Cheney and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld.

The March to War (October 1, 2006)

This Global Research report details the deployment of US naval ships to the Persian Gulf, arguing that Washington is preparing for attacks on Iran. Additionally, the author points out that the naval buildup in the Eastern Mediterranean under the auspices of NATO and the US support of Israel against Lebanon signal US attempts to expand the war in Iraq to encompass a large swath of the Middle East. The article concludes that the US aims to take down “hostile” regimes with these strategies and install pro-Western governments to ensure an uninterrupted flow of Middle Eastern oil.

US: World Empire of Chaos (October 2006)

This article from Le Monde diplomatique discusses why the Bush administration’s policy in the Middle East was doomed from its inception. The author argues that in the increasingly globalized world the nature of warfare has changed to include transnational actors. The Bush administration failing to realize the differences between national resistance fighters, such as those in Iraq, Palestine and Lebanon, and the global terrorist network, al-Qaeda, has attempted to combat them using the same methods. As a result of this ignorance the article concludes that the US has no viable option for creating peace in the Middle East and US policies have only increased the strength and number of US “enemies.”

Bush at the UN: Annotated (September 20, 2006)

This Foreign Policy in Focus article dissects US President George Bush’s speech to the 61st session of the UN General Assembly. The article argues that nearly all of Bush’s comments about democratic transitions throughout the Middle East contradict US actions in the region, which, include supporting dictatorial governments in Saudi Arabia and Pakistan and preventing early UN involvement in the 2006 Israeli-Lebanese conflict.

US Accused of Covert Operations in Somalia (September 10, 2006)

This article in the Observer details how US-based private military companies (PMCs) planned covert military operations inside Somalia in support of President Abdullahi Yusuf's transitional federal government and against the Supreme Islamic Courts Council which currently controls the capital Mogadishu. The article states that correspondence between the PMCs suggests the involvement of the US Central Intelligence Agency. Such foreign involvement in Somalia would violate the UN arms embargo, the author affirms.

Watching Lebanon (August 14, 2006)

Israeli military strategists met with US military officials including US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Vice President Dick Cheney in early summer 2006 “to get a green light in the bombing operation” in Lebanon. Such meetings, which took place in Washington, suggest that the US had a vested interest in the premeditated July 2006 attack. A US government consultant said that Lebanon “would be a demo for Iran.” This New Yorker article cites the delayed US call for cease-fire as further evidence of Washington’s stake in the conflict.

Seoul Seeks Wartime Control Over its Army from US (August 10, 2006)

South Korean President Roh Moo Hyun has called for a shift in the control of his country’s troops from a US general to a South Korean one. Since the Korean War, during war-time, the South Korean military would become an appendage of the US military. Though critics within the country worry that this move will destroy the alliance between Washington and Seoul, Hyun sees the move as necessary for the sovereignty and security of the state. (International Herald Tribune)

The Project for a New American Empire (August 9, 2006)

This Sojourners article discusses the “Project for the New American Century” under US President George W. Bush. The conservative think-tank, which aims to promote American global leadership, called for “an aggressive foreign policy with a then-unprecedented military buildup” to retain US hegemony. Before 2000, Democratic politicians largely rejected the project “as the work of hardliners.” However, the author argues that its steadfast implementation since President Bush’s election, most notably the implementation of a pre-emptive attack on Iraq, begs the question of whether US citizens were manipulated into following a foreign policy they did not vote for. (Sojourners)

Anti-US Feeling Leaves Arab Reformers Isolated (August 9, 2006)

Arab reform activists see US policies in the Middle East as more of an obstruction than an aid to their attempt at reforming governments and human rights in the area. Progressives recognize that “American policy either strangles nascent reform movements or props up repressive governments that remain Washington’s best allies in the region.” US efforts at “liberating” the region have only led to violence. Constant media coverage portrays the US as antagonists causing Middle Easterners to back any anti-US movement, repressive or otherwise. (New York Times)

The US Proxies Who Haunt Washington (July 29, 2006)

The US military and CIA provide direct military aid to many US-friendly movements in foreign conflicts. This United States started this trend after failed intervention missions like proxy wars during the Cold War and the Vietnam War. This Asia Times article discusses such historical cases and the US military’s intervention in Somalia.

The Axis of Intervention (July 27, 2006)

This Foreign Policy in Focus article cites a growing trend towards unilateral military action as opposed to multilateral diplomacy in solving conflicts. The US and Israel have justified “preventative war” under the “War on Terrorism.” Meanwhile, Japan threatens to preemptively attack North Korea, jeopardizing its “peace constitution.” This dangerous policy threatens to undermine the institutions of international law and global agreements such as the Geneva Conventions.

Experts See Proxy War Under Way in Somalia (July 26, 2006)

Ethiopia, Eritrea and Yemen have sent supplies and troops to war-torn Somalia as an outlet for the countries’ own regional tensions. Washington has cautioned other governments from intervening in the conflict and creating a proxy war. Even so, the US has sponsored the transitional government and backed non-religious militias in Somalia, creating its own proxy war. (Associated Press)

America's 100 Years of Overthrow (July 25, 2006)

This Texas Observer article details the US overthrow of fourteen foreign governments in the past 100 years. The US endorsed proxy wars in ten of these campaigns. Four of the coups, namely in Iran, Guatemala, South Vietnam and Chile, Washington carefully planned, financed and executed unilaterally.

The Force Is Not with Them (July 17, 2006)

This TomDispatch article discusses the expansion of “Pax Americana,” or “The American Empire,” as a fundamental tenet of the Bush administration. Adherents of “Pax Americana” believe that force solves global issues, placing emphasis on a technologically advanced military. The unconditional reliance on military coercion has led to an interminable war involving multiple governments and proxy wars. The author warns that diplomatic options may quickly slip away.

Dropping Musharraf? (July 14, 2006)

US officials and media often refer to China as a growing military competitor. This Foreign Policy in Focus article likens international diplomacy to a chess game, where the US builds ties with other Asian countries to counter the Chinese influence. The author shows how India, Japan, and South Korea have gained US favor and describes Pakistan as “a pawn that has outlived its usefulness.” This article suggests that President Pervez Musharraf may have reason to fear a US-backed regime change in Pakistan.

The US Military Descends on Paraguay (July 12, 2006)

Hundreds of US troops entered Paraguay in 2005 for counterterrorism exercises. Since then, the US military has repressed Paraguayan social movements in the name of “security.” Many fear that the influx of US forces signals a plan to topple neighboring Bolivia’s leftist government and seize the country’s abundant natural resources. (The Nation)

Italy Arrests Two in Kidnapping of Imam in 2003 (July 6, 2006)

Italy has issued warrants for the arrest of three US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) operatives allegedly involved in Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr’s 2003 kidnapping. Italian prosecutors accuse the CIA and two Italian Intelligence agents of transporting the Muslim cleric from Milan to Egypt where he claims he was tortured. The case adds to mounting international criticism of the US’s “extraordinary rendition” practices. (New York Times)

How the United States Continues to Manipulate Nicaragua’s Economic and Political Future (June 22, 2006)

US interference in Nicaraguan affairs has ranged from meddlesome and internally destabilizing proxy wars, to US-funded media outlets and US-sponsored political candidates. Mainstream US media has replaced communism with Latin American “radical populism” as an impending threat and source of fear, unjustly lending support for such interference. This Council on Hemispheric Affairs article follows US political and economic manipulation as it impedes Nicaragua’s self-determination.

US Opens New War Front in North Africa (June 14, 2006)

The United States plans to spend US$500 million in the next 5 years on overt “counter terrorism” measures in Northern Africa. The US-backed Trans-Sahara Counter Terrorism Initiative (TSCTI) marks the country’s unwelcome foray into 9 Saharan Nations. The TSCTI’s main target is the nearly inoperative Salafist Group for Call and Combat. This Asia Times article describes the stagnant group’s decline and the likelihood that US actions will generate terrorism in the region.

A Warning to Africa: The New US Imperial Grand Strategy (June 6, 2006)

The US quest for influence in Asia rages forward with wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and perhaps Iran. With that region dominated, the next move may become a “Scramble for Africa.” Africa’s resource-rich region will see an increase in US military presence, warns the Center for Civil Society.

Ukraine Crowd Tells US Troops to Leave Country (June 3, 2006)

Ukrainian citizens protested the presence of foreign military troops in the country, by blockading transportation of US Marines. Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko invited the Marines for joint military exercises in pursuit of Ukrainian membership in NATO. But the Ukrainian parliament has not approved the military exercises, making the presence of foreign troops illegal. (Los Angeles Times)

Global Responses to Global Threats: Sustainable Security for the 21st Century (June 2006)

This Oxford Research Group report argues that the main causes of conflict stem from global climate change, competition over resources, “marginalization of the majority world,” and global militarism. These issues, combined with a military approach to terrorism, and the spread of fear-inducing propaganda, detract from realistic peace-building solutions. The authors report that unless world leaders tackle these four causes and refrain from promoting global militarism and waging wars on terrorism, the global system will become irrevocably unstable.

US Perceptions of a Chinese Threat (May 31, 2006)

The US Department of Defense 2006 annual report lists China as a likely military threat to the US Navy in the South Pacific region. This Stratfor article points out that while a Chinese attack is unlikely, a mere perceived threat can alter world events. A perceived provocation might lead to US weapons proliferation and US military actions against China.

US Secretly Backing Warlords in Somalia (May 17, 2006)

The US government secretly funds “counterterrorist” Somali warlords who are fighting Islamic groups over the control of the Somali capital. Most of Somalia is in anarchy since 1991 and there is no effective policing system. Some Somalis are calling for the US support in stabilizing the country, but as previous US involvement with warlords show, this strategy is bound to fail and backfire on the United States. (Washington Post)

A Just War? Hardly (May 9, 2006)

Noam Chomsky believes that proponents of “just war theory,”  such as Michael Walzer, are ignoring historical facts. Wars have rarely been “just.” Normally countries waged wars because of their national interests. The US, which proclaimed the interventions in Kosovo and Afghanistan as “just wars” uses this concept as a pretext for “preventive war.” (Khaleej Times)

The Latin American Roots of US Imperialism (May 8, 2006)

New York University Professor Greg Gandin argues that past US interventions in Latin America shaped the Bush administration’s model of intervention in the Middle East. US interventions in Chile, Nicaragua, El Salvador and Guatemala in the 1970s and 80s taught US officials how to manipulate US media and push through destructive neoliberal policies on countries, Gandin says. (Mother Jones)

Peddling Democracy the US Way (May 4, 2006)

Author Chalmers Johnson analyzes US efforts to impose its political and economic system on other countries. While the US has justified many military interventions in the name of promoting democracy, Johnson argues that none of the over 200 interventions since World War II produced a democratic government. Focusing on East Asia, Johnson further argues that the region reached economic prosperity by completely ignoring US preaching of free trade and liberalization, while pursuing protectionism and government regulation of the economy. (TomDispatch)

Exporting the American Model: Markets and Democracy (May 2, 2006)

Chalmers Johnson argues in this TomDispatch article that nearly every single time the US tried to impose “democracy” on other countries it failed. The US openly supported military dictators in South Korea and a one-party rule in Japan. The recent imposition of “democracy” on Iraq seems bound to fail. Johnson shows that democracy is not exclusively about elections. It is about the importance of public opinion, separation of power and the existence of a mechanism to oust unsatisfactory leaders.

Not Terrorism – China Drives up US Military Spending (April 7, 2006)

This Foreign Policy In Focus article argues that the massive defense budget increase proposed by the Bush administration for 2007 is not directed at fighting terrorism, as officially claimed. In reality, China is the reason for such expensive new weapons systems as new nuclear attack submarines and new generations of fighter jets. The Pentagon believes that China has the “greatest potential to compete militarily with the United States” in the future.

Pentagon Stays the Course with Laser Weapon (March 22, 2006)

The US continues to finance its Airborne Laser Program. The Pentagon plans to use a Boeing 747 equipped with a high-energy beam weapon as one component of the projected National Missile Defense (NMD) system. However, such a system is very complicated to construct. If ever put in place, the US will use the NMD more against future rivals, such as China, than against terrorists or rogue states. (

The Rise of US Nuclear Primacy (March/April 2006)

For four decades, “mutual assured destruction” (MAD) defined the relations among the major nuclear powers. But with the US arsenal growing rapidly while Russia's arsenal decays and the Chinese one stays small, the era of MAD is ending. This raises the danger that the US could strike anywhere without fearing a retaliatory attack. (Foreign Affairs)

US Plans to Modernize Nuclear Arsenal (March 4, 2006)

This Washington Post article argues that the Bush administration develops plans to modernize nuclear bombs and warheads and the necessary production facilities. The US seeks to “produce warheads on a time scale in which geopolitical threats could emerge.”

US Will Be Launching Predator Strikes in the Horn (March 3, 2006)

This allAfrica article claims that East Africa could be the target of US strikes against “suspected al Qaeda elements” in the coming years. Special forces play a major part in that endeavor, but the US will increasingly use unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to carry out “unilateral quick strikes.”

It's Time for an American Foreign Legion (March 1, 2006)

The US armed forces are stretched thin because of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Washington currently does not plan to introduce a draft, as that would cause massive opposition from the US population. Defending US imperial ambitions, a retired military officer claims in this International Herald Tribune article “all superpowers from ancient times turned to mercenaries to defend their interests.”

Will Fight for Oil (February 24, 2006)

This New York Times op-ed argues that keeping oil flowing out of the Persian Gulf has constituted a cornerstone of US foreign policy for more than half a century. The US regards any attempt to gain control of this region as an assault on its vital interests, which Washington will repel by any means necessary, including military force. The securing of oil constituted one of the reasons to invade Iraq.

Why Is the US Again Hard On Sudan? (February 23, 2006)

Following a discussion with UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, President George Bush agreed to support and lobby for an increase of peacekeeping forces in Darfur. Analysts see two main reasons behind Washington’s sudden shift in attitude towards Darfur: Sudan’s oil and geopolitical position. Indeed, Darfur’s location represents an entrance into the Arab world for the US to “prevent Arab countries from turning into a terrorist haven or a hotbed of terrorist activities.” (People’s Daily)

'New Populists' vs. the West (February 10, 2006)

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad plan to join their “political forces” to counterbalance the “robust” power of the US. Both leaders criticize Washington for accepting Pakistan’s nuclear status while opposing Iran’s nuclear enrichment program. Accusing the Bush administration of “hypocrisy,” they argue that the world superpower’s actions contradict its claims of spreading “democracy.” (Christian Science Monitor)

US General Maps Out Strategic Refit for Iraq, Middle East and Asia (February 7, 2006)

US Brigadier General Mark Kimmitt stated that Washington plans to “reposture” its troops over a large area covering the Middle East, parts of Africa and Asia. Kimmitt asserts that the US will retain “enough forces” to protect its “national interests.” He also warns that Washington’s “preoccupations” in Iraq and Afghanistan do not prevent it from conducting other operations in the region, such as a military strike against Iran. (Guardian)

Ability to Wage 'Long War' Is Key to Pentagon Plan (February 4, 2006)

The Pentagon’s Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) emphasizes an expansion of US military capabilities and strategies over a 20-year period. The review calls for an increase in the Special Operations Forces, as well as civil affairs and psychological operations units capable of performing worldwide. This “ambitious” new defense strategy also envisions large-scale and long-term clandestine operations in “politically sensitive” and “denied areas.” (Washington Post)

The Only Hope for the World (February 1, 2006)

This CommonDreams article argues that Washington’s foreign policy and its tout for “freedom and democracy for all” have turned the country into the “biggest bully” in the world. A “biased” worldview has led the US to demonize the enemy and overthrow democratically elected leaders while siding with dictators. The article criticizes this “arrogant” foreign policy, warning that pride comes before a fall.

War and Empire Are and Always Have Been the American Way of Life (February 2006)

This essay written for a Historians Against the War conference outlines US imperial ambitions starting with the arrival of the colonialists on the North American continent in the 1600s. The author then presents numerous examples of US interventions throughout the world demonstrating that the country has been a colonial power ever since its inception in 1776. The piece concludes with an analysis of US actions in the 21st century using the US-led invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq as a basis for discussion.


US Command Declares Global Strike Capability (December 5, 2005)

US Strategic Command (STRATCOM) tested US warfare capabilities against an imaginary country thought to represent North Korea. STRATCOM's annual Global Lightning Exercise included the so-called CONPLAN 8022 mission of a "pre-emptive nuclear strike against weapons of mass destruction facilities anywhere in the world." US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and President George Bush certified CONPLAN 8022's "readiness" for global strike. (Global Security Newswire)

Complicity Shown in East Timor Takeover (December 1, 2005)

Documents released by the US National Security Archive show how the US, Britain and Australia secretly supported the Indonesian invasion and occupation of East Timor through policies of silence and diplomatic assistance to Jakarta. Washington wanted to avoid any conflict with Jakarta because the US had "considerable interests in Indonesia and none in Timor." US officials acted to avoid a controversy that would prompt a congressional ban on arms sales to Indonesia. (International Herald Tribune)

Paper Says Bush Talked of Bombing Arab TV Network (November 23, 2005)

Leaked British intelligence documents reveal that US President George Bush and UK Prime Minister Tony Blair discussed the possibility of bombing the headquarters of Arab satellite news network Al-Jazeera. Though US officials have called the assertion "outlandish," the arrest of two British officials for making a "damaging disclosure" gives credence to the possibility that the discussion took place. If so, previous US attacks on Al-Jazeera offices in Afghanistan and Iraq, which were explained as mistakes, would come into question. (Washington Post)

Dark Armies, Secret Bases, and Rummy, Oh My! (November 21, 2005)

Brazilian and Argentinean officials argue that the US military's base in Paraguay, close to the Bolivian border, contributes to political unrest in Bolivia. Bolivia has been suffering from political instability for years due to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) - enforced privatization of its natural resources. Furthermore, the National Intelligence Council of the US State Department announced that Bolivia is on a list of 25 countries where Washington "will consider intervening in case of instability." Argentinean Nobel Peace Prize laureate Adolfo Perez expressed his concerns over the base in Paraguay, remarking "once the United States arrives, it takes a long time to leave." (Foreign Policy In Focus)

US Military Bases in the Black Sea Region (November 19, 2005)

The US is planning to establish military bases in both Romania and Bulgaria. This Power and Interest News Reportargues that these bases help Washington consolidate its power in the Black Sea region, an area close to the Middle East and rich in oil and gas. However, the European Union (EU) is concerned that any increase in US influence in eastern Europe might undermine the autonomy of the EU.

Bush's Vision Fails to Win Over Middle East (November 15, 2005)

A US-backed Middle East democracy summit in Bahrain ended without any agreement among the participant countries. This Guardianarticle considers the result a total "disappointment" for US President George Bush, who stated that Washington has "a forward strategy of freedom" for the region. Participant countries also expressed increased concerns about an "imposed" US agenda in Iraq and deteriorated relations between Washington and Damascus.

Is Nigeria the Next Persian Gulf? (November 10, 2005)

The US is intensifying its military presence in the Niger Delta in an attempt to grab hold of new oil fields that are not in the "troublesome" Persian Gulf region. According to a Nigerian NGO leader, "there is clearly an increase in US weapons in the hands of the Nigerian army and navy." Many in the Niger Delta worry that increased US military presence will heighten tensions and lead to more violent conflict. (AlterNet)

US Military Eyes Paraguay (November 10, 2005)

Bolivian officials and the general public worry that the US will use its military presence in Paraguay to influence Bolivia's December 2005 national elections and gain access to the country's rich gas reserves. Washington claims that it has no intention of building a permanent base in Paraguay. Some Bolivian officials, however, argue that these claims remind them of Washington's initial denials about establishing a base in Ecuador which gave way to an increased US military activity in the country. (In These Times)

Empire Made Easy (November 4, 2005)

According to former US Defense Department strategist Thomas P.M. Barnett the US can alleviate the world's problems through "conquest, occupation and occasional diplomacy." In the process, Barnett adds, Washington will use the power of globalization to bring democracy, which will eventually eradicate terrorism. This article asks if Barnett's "war-to-end-all-wars" strategy reflects the "intrinsically beneficent" power of the US empire. (In These Times)

Rice Attempts to Secure US Influence in Central Asia (October 17, 2005)

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice visited Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan in an attempt to secure Washington's access to Central Asia. The visit aimed at preventing another "loss of influence" in the region, following the US eviction from its Karshi-Khanabad air base in Uzbekistan. With this goal in mind, the article argues, Rice took a mild position toward democracy in the region to "calm the nerves of...authoritarian leaders." (Power and Interest News Report)

Bush to Blair: First Iraq, Then Saudi (October 16, 2005)

A confidential Downing Street memo shows that in January 2003, shortly before commencing the war in Iraq, US President George Bush told UK Prime Minister Tony Blair that he "wanted to go beyond Iraq." President Bush indicated that he intended to target other countries like Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Iran, and North Korea over weapons of mass destruction (WMD). With these countries on Bush's "target list," the Independentasks if Washington invaded Iraq as the first step in "a broader project."

US Pulls the Strings in Haiti (September 29, 2005)

The US is manipulating Haiti, reports this truthoutarticle. After the US, France and Canada ousted the democratically-elected President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, the Haitian police jailed thousands of Aristide-supporters, and killed thousands of people. Furthermore, many reports have surfaced accusing the UN peacekeeping force of complicity in human rights abuses. In a visit to Haiti, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice publicly maintained support for the new regime. She made clear that the US did not want President Aristide to return to Haiti despite the revelation by officials at Canada's Foreign Affairs Department that Aristide's party remains the most popular in Haiti.

Does Increasing Democracy Undercut Terrorists? (September 22, 2005)

"While the development of democracy can be aided from outside, it cannot easily be imposed by force," Joseph Nye argues. The Iraq experience, and the growing insurgency after the invasion showed that "war was the wrong means to promote democracy" in the Middle East. Nye compares the process of "democratization" in Iraq to that in Germany and Japan after the US occupation noting that this time, Washington does not include the "soft power of the Marshall Plan" in its policies. (Christian Science Monitor)

Pentagon Construction Boom Beefs Up Mideast Air Bases (September 18, 2005)

While the Pentagon is closing bases in the US and relocating troops in Asia, it is setting up new bases or expanding existing ones throughout the Middle East and Southwest Asia. According to this New York Timesarticle, "the military has more than $1.2 billion…to upgrade 16 air bases" in the region. Although the Pentagon argues that it is not "constructing [them] to have a permanent, enduring presence," this expansion allows the US military "to use a wide range of airfields" for "national security crisis" throughout the region.

The Pentagon's Bid to Militarize Space (August 17, 2005)

This Power and Interest News Reportarticle considers the political, economic, and strategic problems of the Pentagon's space militarization initiatives. These initiatives involve sending into space both offensive and defensive weapons that are capable of precisely striking targets in every part of the world. The article warns that this "ambitious" space militarization project "may generate more troubles than advantages for Washington and make it regret having opened the space front to begin with."

Central America's Crime Wave Spurs Plan for a Regional Force (August 16, 2005)

Central American governments led by Guatemalan President Oscar Berger have discussed the idea of a "rapid-reaction force" to fight against growing transnational drug and gang problems. But the force would depend upon US support, training, and intelligence—which could threaten regional sovereignty and pave the way for a US-empowered "out-of-control SWAT team." (Los Angeles Times)

Presence of US Troops Upsets Paraguay's Partners (August 8, 2005)

The decision by the Paraguayan Congress that allows US troops to enter the country became a major concern among South America's Mercosur trade bloc members Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay. US troops are free to circulate, transport weapons and medical supplies in Paraguayan territory and are immune from prosecution. This Inter Press Servicearticle argues that the presence of 500 US troops and the expansion of the Mariscal Estigarribia military base in the country could indicate plans to establish a permanent base in Paraguay. Therefore, the existence of US troops in the country "makes the situation even more explosive" in a region already destabilized by crises like that of Bolivia.

US Department of Defense: Unmanned Aircraft Systems Roadmap 2005-2030 (August 2005)

The US government plans to massively extend its use of unmanned aircraft systems in the coming decades. By 2030, officials expect these unmanned systems to perform all functions of the air force. This will markedly lower the threshold to waging war, as the US can expect fewer casualties. (US Department of Defense)

Al Qaeda, US Oil Companies, and Central Asia (July 30, 2005)

In an excerpt of his book entitled "The Road to 9/11," author Peter Dale Scott examines how the US has consistently used the resources of drug-trafficking Islamic jihadists to further its own ends, particularly with respect to oil. Scott focuses on the "three way symbiosis of Al Qaeda, oil companies, and the Pentagon," arguing that, thanks to Al Qaeda, US bases have sprung up close to oilfields and pipelines in Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Georgia, and Kosovo. (Center for Research on Globalization)

US Evicted from Air Base in Uzbekistan (July 30, 2005)

Uzbekistan has evicted the US from Karshi-Khanabad air base, putting the US in an uncomfortable position regarding its combat operations and humanitarian deliveries to Afghanistan. The relationship between Uzbekistan and the US has become increasingly tense after the US withdrew almost $11million in aid last year. The Washington Postargues that this eviction notice will lead to further aid cuts and test "whether the anti-terrorism efforts or promotion of democracy takes priority" in the Bush administration agenda.

US Bases Are Focus on Rumsfeld's Trip to Central Asia (July 26, 2005)

The US is urging its allies in Central Asia not to cave into pressure from China and Russia over the presence of US military bases in the region. Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan both host key US military bases, and China and Russia want them to set a timetable for withdrawal. The Pentagon has urged both host nations to "make up their own minds." One US general accuses the regional giants of bullying their smaller neighbors for their own political ends, but the US seems equally determined to hang on to its current arrangements. (Washington Post)

The Neoconservative Convergence (July 21, 2005)

Well-known conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer discusses the evolution of US foreign policy in the post-Cold War era. Claiming that each of the major schools of US political ideology has taken a turn at running things, he praises the "maturing" policies of today's neoconservative Bush administration, contrasting them favorably with "realism" under President George H. Bush, and "liberal internationalism" under President Bill Clinton. He presents the neoconservative philosophy as one who's "time has come," and worryingly suggests that after Afghanistan and Iraq, the US must target Lebanon and Syria. (Opinion Journal)

Too Close for Comfort (July 17, 2005)

The recent signing of a new Indo-US strategic partnership has caused major controversy in India, with critics arguing that the framework for defense relations will erode Indian sovereignty and reduce the growing Asian power to the status of dependent client. The author argues that the agreement offers little benefit to India, but will "embed" the US in Asia, creating an important counterweight to Chinese influence and a reservoir of Indian canon fodder for US military adventures. (Khaleej Times)

The Re-Occupation of Haiti (July 10, 2005)

Due to Haiti's high poverty rate, sustained violence and political crisis, outside entities—namely the US, France and the UN—have been quick to intervene and impose order. Yet many Haitian citizens blame the UN Stabilization Mission (MINUSTAH) for "neglecting its peacekeeping mission and behaving more like an occupation force." Armed with the excuse of ensuring security before elections, the US and France may soon return to the troubled country. But this World War 4 Reportwarns that the lack of change in Haiti will make Haitians only more "skeptical" and "cynical" of outside intervention.

Central Asia: Is It Time To Withdraw US Troops? (July 7, 2005)

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization, an alliance of China, Russia and four Central Asian states, recently called on the US to set a timetable for the removal of its forces from bases in Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan. The White House dismissed the demands, despite claiming that the bases are not strategically crucial. It argued that they provide important support for missions in Afghanistan, and that only individual states have the right to manage their bilateral military deals with the US.(Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty)

Arab Spring: Late and Cold (July 2005)

This Le Monde diplomatiquearticle argues that military intervention by outside forces does not help bring democracy to the Middle East. Iraq, with its deteriorating political situation, is the most vivid example of how military occupation is counter-productive in promoting democracy. Sweeping democratization in the Middle East will remain a dream, unless "civil rights and popular wishes are upheld in a way clear of any domineering relationship."

Constructive Instability (July 2005)

Robert Satloff, director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, coined the term "constructive instability" in 2005. In his view, stability impedes US interests in the Middle East and by creating instability via local rivalries the US can break up the region. According to President George Bush and Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice, this is the official strategy for US foreign policy in the Middle East "whatever the risks." (Le Monde diplomatique)

Who Are Americans to Think That Freedom Is Theirs to Spread? (June 26, 2005)

Michael Ignatieff discusses the origin and development of the "Jefferson dream" of universal freedom and democracy inspired by the US, in a paen to the "last imperial ideology left standing in the world." The author implies that the Iraq invasion was a legitimate manifestation of this dream, and even that US President George W.Bush is a champion of a romantic and attractive national mission, a "noble dream" founded on self-belief. (New York Times)

Uzbek Ministries in Crackdown Received US Aid (June 18, 2005)

The US trained and equipped Uzbek law enforcement and security ministries implicated in the Andijon massacres, according to the New York Times. Official records show that as part of a counter-terrorism project, the US has given years of massive security aid and intensive training to officers and soldiers, "improving the martial abilities of units that commit crimes against Uzbek citizens." After the killings of hundreds of protestors in the "corrupt and autocratic" state, this aid is likely to associate the US "with repression in the eyes of Uzbek people and the Islamic world."

Southcom Generals Fret Over New Domino Effect (June 18, 2005)

As Latin America drifts increasingly leftward, Southcom, the US military command responsible for the region, has released a strategic plan demanding "U.S. military involvement in the internal affairs of what it calls its partner nations" says Inter Press Service. Southcom's declassified "Theatre Command Strategy" frames its highly intrusive operating principles as part of the "war on terror." With greater scrutiny, the plan more closely resembles a panic-inspired attempt to reassert US hegemony in its backyard.

US Blocks Independent Inquiry into Uzbek Massacre (June 15, 2005)

The US has "helped block a new demand for an international probe" into the slaughter of at least 173 protestors in Uzbekistan last month. The Pentagon is currently negotiating with the Uzbek government over long-term access to its air base in the country, raising questions about US motives in blocking investigations into the Andijan "massacre." According to recent reports, "the risk of provoking Uzbekistan to cut off U.S. access to the base was behind the U.S. resistance to pressure the Karimov government." Some commentators have likened the administrations' actions to the cold war policy of propping up abusive regimes because they opposed the US' enemies. (Christian Science Monitor)

Two-Thirds On Defense (June 10, 2005)

US military spending is dramatically higher than most US citizens believe, according to government statisticians. The Bureau of Economic Analysis says that rather than 19 cents per tax dollar going on defense as is commonly believed, the real figure is 68 cents per dollar. Moreover, TomPaineargues that the true figure is even higher - in 2004 the military "ran on $217.08 per citizen per month, while the remainder of the federal government ran on $103.83 per month."

Military Spending Tops $1T Mark (June 8, 2005)

The "war on terror" has helped push annual global military spending above $1 trillion says the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. Appropriations of "extraordinary proportions" in the US, combined with India and China raising their defense budgets, have pushed the world's military spending back to the levels of the Cold War. (Associated Press)

Bases, Bases Everywhere. Pentagon Planning in Iraq, 2003-2005 (June 1, 2005)

Revelations exposing the staggering number of US bases in Iraq are just scraping the surface. The Pentagon is aggressively pushing a wildly ambitious expansion of its existing global "baseworld." This TomDispatch.comarticle describes the US government's obsession with its "particular version of military empire," and laments the media's lack of interest.

How We Would Fight China (June 2005)

According to The Atlantic Monthlycorrespondent Robert Kaplan, US military contest with China in the Pacific will define the twenty-first century. Kaplan claims that whenever great powers have emerged or re-emerged on the scene, they have tended to be particularly assertive. China is developing a blue-water navy, which is poised to push out into the Pacific, where it will quickly encounter the US unwilling to budge from the coastal shelf of the Asian mainland.

Intelligence Brief: Sudan (May 26, 2005)

After calling the situation in Darfur a "genocide," a legal trigger for military intervention, the US has agreed to a more multilateral approach. The article cites "Khartoum's cooperation with Washington's ‘war on terrorism'" as the main reason for the Bush administration's shift of attitude. According to the Power and Interest News Report, this development opens the door to other states and international organizations to assist in the Sudan crisis. Will these multilateral organizations pursue a bold new approach, and will any new tactics prove successful?

Four Bloody Lies of War, from Havana 1898 to Baghdad 2003 (May 8, 2005)

The Bush administration's lies to justify its war on Iraq "fit a pattern of deceit that has dragged America into at least three other unjust and catastrophic wars," says this article. US reasons for attacking Cuba in 1898, and intervening in World War I and Vietnam, were all based on "conscious, manipulative lies." (Columbus Free Press)

Ring Them Bells (May 2005)

This article draws attention to Washington's oil interests in Sudan and the motives of proponents of a US intervention. President George Bush's close ties with Sudan's intelligence chief Salah Abdallah Gosh expose US hypocrisy over what the Bush administration has labeled genocide in Darfur. Although Gosh's own government has accused him of directing attacks against civilians, Bush has forged close ties with him in the "fight against terrorism." Gosh, described as "Osama's designated minder in the 1990's" could become a useful US ally, enabling Washington to chase oil profits in the name of humanitarian intervention. (Moscow Times)

Intervention Spin Cycle (April 26, 2005)

The 1965 US intervention in the Dominican Republic paved the way for future interventions in Panama, Grenada, Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam—many of which the US government based on flimsy excuses and "imperial arrogance," says this Baltimore Sunarticle. Sadly, the scenario of a "disingenuous administration and a deferential press corps" remains the case today, and the public continues to buy into the glorified US military and its role in the world.

Imperial Reach (April 25, 2005)

The US may begin the "most comprehensive restructuring of US military forces overseas since the end of the Korean War," due to the shift from defense to offense, the unreliability of old European allies, and US geopolitical interests—especially the "oil factor" and the rise of China. Though the Bush administration justifies the initiatives as part of the "war on terrorism," this author warns that such justification will likely cause increased criticism and hatred of the US around the world. (The Nation)

Andrew Bacevich on the Neocon Revolution and Militarism (April 22, 2005)

In a second excerpt from "The New American Militarism, How Americans Are Seduced by War," Andrew Bacevich describes how the new breed of idealistic neo-conservatives have helped create an intellectual climate ripe for militarism. Their vision of a world dominated and pacified by "benign" US military might is encouraging the "pugnacious" use of force to cement US control.(

Andrew Bacevich on the New American Militarism (April 20, 2005)

In his book on militarism, Andrew Bacevich warns that as US political leaders' love affair with military might intensifies, US citizens have become "normalized" to the rising number of foreign interventions. Under "warrior president" George W. Bush, war has gained an "aesthetic respectability" and is experienced as "a grand pageant, performance art or perhaps temporary diversion from the ennui and boring routine of everyday life." As the status of soldiers and their institutions continues to rise, war is today "the seemingly permanent condition of the United States." (

A Most Dangerous Message (April 13, 2005)

Signatories of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty include the US and Britain, yet these two countries have kept up an arrangement that allows for information sharing in the "pursuit of more sophisticated nuclear weaponry." As North Korea, Iran and other "axis of evil" countries toy with nuclear technology, this Guardianarticle warns that the hypocrisy of Bush and Blair sends the message that possessing weapons can deter outside attacks.

Pentagon's Long List of Bases to Close (April 12, 2005)

Following similar cuts in 1988, 1991, 1993 and 1995, the Pentagon has indicated that it will close several overseas bases in an effort to build a military more adept at fighting the "war on terrorism." The Christian Science Monitorsays the base closings will foreshadow a move to "smaller and more agile" military units that cooperate within the different branches of the army.

Drugs, Bases and Jails (April 4, 2005)

Afghanistan, a "model democracy" for the Bush administration, essentially faces an "electoral-narco-gulag-permanent-base dependency." The US controls the country via the weak Karzai government, runs jails devoid of international law, and continues to build a permanent military presence—conveniently, at the "meeting point" of rising world powers. As the media naively forecasts improvements, this TomDispatcharticle relates the reality of the Afghan situation, in which the areas outside of Kabul lack security, education, economy and, above all, democracy.

If You Build It, They Will Kill (April 2, 2005)

In 2005, one US ammunitions plant "will produce enough ammunition, at one bullet each, to execute every man, woman and child in the world's most populous nation [China]." This is just one indication that the US "national pastime" has become war, warns the author as he outlines the future of US military weaponry. Detailing several Pentagon-endorsed gruesome weapons designed to cause maximum pain and damage, the author emphasizes that these "killing machines" could viably appear in the hands of the US army in the near future. (TomDispatch)

US Helped to Prepare the Way for Kyrgyzstan's Uprising (March 30, 2005)

The US government and government-backed institutions funneled millions of dollars into Kyrgyzstan to produce "pro-democracy" broadcasting, educate and organize activists, create "civil society centers," and ultimately fuel a wave of change in the country's government, says the New York Times. Former President Askar Akayev blames the US for his overthrow, but Western officials praise US involvement. This article suggests Akayev characterized recent events as an "American conspiracy" to local media, but fails to question possible US motives or any downsides to this kind of action.

Pentagon Increases Its Spying Markedly (March 24, 2005)

Adding to an apparent "turf war" between the CIA and the Defense Department, the Pentagon has expanded its intelligence operations abroad. Some efforts include clandestine activities without pre-approval from Congress and operations in countries such as Iran, North Korea and China without their governments' knowledge. (Los Angeles Times)

Policy OKs First Strike to Protect US (March 19, 2005)

In its quadrennial defense strategy review, the Pentagon has included preemptive strikes as part of US defense policy for the first time. The report masks unilateral actions as "self-defense" mechanisms and moves further from international institutions, such as NATO and the International Court of Justice, and towards informal "coalitions of the willing." (Los Angeles Times)

Playing the Democracy Card (March 17, 2005)

Author Dilip Hiro draws upon examples of US involvement in the Middle East from the 1930s to the present, demonstrating that the US promotes democracy only for economic, military or strategic interests—such as oil or presence of US military bases. The obvious double standard, "blatant myopia" in Hiro's terms, parallels past US foreign policy in Central and South America as well. (TomDispatch)

Democracy – By George? (March 16, 2005)

US President George Bush claims that his foreign policies have spurred the waves of democratic change in the Middle East, and even some critics think he may be right. But writer and professor Juan Cole refutes the declaration, pointing to several inconsistencies to show Washington's concern for strategic importance over democratization. By denying civil liberties and ignoring human rights violations of US allies, Cole warns that "Bush risks having his democratization rhetoric viewed as a mere stalking horse for neo-imperial domination." (Salon)

US Warns China Over Latest Challenge Towards Taiwan (March 15, 2005)

Escalating tensions between China and Taiwan over a Chinese law authorizing force against secession attempts could lead to "a showdown between the US and Beijing." The White House has historically provided military aid and vowed to protect Taiwan, but the US government ironically criticizes any Chinese unilateral policy and instead calls for more diplomacy. A potential "showdown" of military strength would have devastating effects on the already unstable region as neighboring countries such as Japan and Australia would have to choose between US military power and China's economic benefits, argues the Independent.

US, Cuba and Democracy (March 13, 2005)

The US measures democracy by "elections and civil liberties," a narrow definition that emerged from the Cold War's "democracy" v. "totalitarianism" phase in which all US allies disregarding human rights records were labeled as democracies, says author William Blum. Using this false cover, Blum concludes, US foreign policy actually aims to protect US transnational corporations, increase business for US defense contractors, quell anti-capitalism, fight communism, and expand the empire. (Global Politician)

It Is Not Democracy That's on the March in the Middle East (March 10, 2005)

The so-called democratic elections in Iraq and Palestine and upcoming elections in Lebanon are like the US-planned Vietnam elections in the 60s and 70s: simply "another mechanism for maintaining pro-western regimes rather than spreading democracy." Forced US presence in Saudi Arabia, Iraq, UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, and Qatar, and perhaps in Syria and Iran, signals a "relentless expansion of US control in the Middle East" since 9/11 and is a far cry from freedom and a "happy future." (Guardian)

Freedom, Yes, But Only if US Strategic Goals Are Satisfied (March 5, 2005)

In his second inaugural address, US President George Bush vowed to spread the "untamed fire of freedom [to]… the darkest corners of our world." While the White House has framed threats towards Iran and Syria in this context, officials have delicately ignored Egypt and Saudi Arabia's undemocratic methods and human rights violations, whether because these countries are US allies or because they are "pit stops" for torturing the CIA detainees. The disparity highlights the contradictory nature of Bush policy and its "thinly veiled" strategic goals in the Middle East. (Daily Star – Lebanon)

Afghanistan: How Would Permanent US Bases Impact Regional Interests? (February 23, 2005)

The future partnership between Afghanistan and the US could include permanent military bases, says US Senator John McCain. US military presence already exists through regional bases and Provincial Reconstruction Teams that controversially deliver reconstruction aid alongside military operations. Though Afghan President Hamid Karzai welcomes US assistance, critics warn that Washington could have underlying intentions—such as strategically placing forces within striking distance of Iran. (Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty)

Encouraging Nuclear Proliferation (February 10, 2005)

In response to a New York Times report that the US has begun to redesign its atomic weapons, this editorial warns that Washington's increase in "nuclear creativity" will simply invite other states to do the same. As the US threatens to take action against Iran and North Korea for their nuclear programs, the author points out that the cold war style build-up will damage rather than enhance global security. (New York Times)

US, Indonesia Mull Closer Ties (February 9, 2005)

After the Indonesian army committed human rights abuses in East Timor in 1991, the US halted a training program for Indonesian soldiers and imposed military sanctions. Recently, several US officials have advocated ending the sanctions and reviving the training. These officials say the army's human rights record has "improved" and that the fight against terrorism will benefit from US ties with Muslim-dominated Indonesia. (Christian Science Monitor)

More Cannon Fodder, Please (February 1, 2005)

US President George Bush has often taken policy directives from the neo-conservative Project for the New American Century (PNAC), which has long advocated a "Pax Americana" that relies on the US military to enforce international peace and security. In support of regime changes in Iraq, Syria, Iran and Palestine, PNAC's latest suggestion is a large increase in US ground forces. However controversial the recommendation is, this Inter Press Servicearticle points out that the military spending budget has no room for such growth.

The Doctrine That Never Died (January 30, 2005)

In 1823, US President James Monroe proclaimed the right of the US to intervene in any nation in the hemisphere that had committed "chronic wrongdoing." The Monroe Doctrine, now 182 years old, has not vanished into history but rather gained strength under current US President George Bush. This time, says author Tom Wolfe, "the Hemi in Hemisphere" is gone, leaving "nothing but a single sphere…which is to say, the entire world." (New York Times)

The Return of the Draft (January 27, 2005)

While the Bush administration claims citizens will not face a mandatory draft, Rolling Stonecontends that government officials soon may have nowhere else to turn if Washington continues its "war on terror" crusade. With troop levels down, the military has lowered standards and spent almost $300 million—nearly as much as tsunami aid—on recruitment incentives. Officials have also allegedly considered a "selective" draft that targets all society members for skills work rather than simply armed forces.

The New Bush Doctrine (January 25, 2005)

Philanthropist and currency speculator George Soros criticizes President George Bush's inaugural address as "Orwellian doublespeak," noting that US military action and Bush's denials have led the rest of the world to believe the freedom fight stands for "America will prevail." But Soros agrees with the ideals of spreading freedom and argues only that the US, as a "dominant power in the world," has the responsibility to intervene yet must gain more international cooperation. (TomPaine)

Bush Pledges to Spread Freedom (January 21, 2005)

In his second term inaugural address, US President George Bush laid out lofty rhetorical goals for spreading democracy and "ending tyranny." Without specific country or policy references, he portrayed the US as sparking an "untamed fire of freedom [which] will reach the darkest corners of our world" yet said the US would not impose their government on the unwilling or use unwarranted military force. Bush did, however, call upon younger citizens to join the military and serve the "larger" cause. (Washington Post)

Colombia & Iraq: Halliburton Makes the Connection (January 17, 2005)

As Colombia's "fragile democracy" fights a guerilla insurgency, the US government has trained the country's army officials in protecting oil infrastructure and sent more than $3.3 billion in military assistance since 2000. According to Bogota's El Tiempo, Halliburton has now recruited retired Colombian officials to secure oil fields and pipelines in Iraq. Washington's use of Colombian soldiers "through decades of a mutating war" on communism, drugs and now terrorism, could cause the country to fall back to an authoritarian regime. (World War 4 Report)

The Salvador Option (January 10, 2005)

One Pentagon proposal to remedy the messy situation in Iraq could be "the Salvador option," in reference to US government-supported "death squads" that assassinated El Salvador rebels in the 1980s. If implemented, the proposal could allow assassinating or kidnapping insurgents and interrogating them at secret facilities. Though the Pentagon denies use of the Salvador option, at least one military official says such operations could work because they would help instill fear in the insurgency. (Newsweek)

War Prospects for 2005 (January 4, 2005)

This Reason Onlinearticle addresses the political affiliations of Weekly Standard magazine, which has issued calls for military force in Syria, North Korea and Iran and implied that "what America needs is more war." But budget concerns and the thinly-spread 272,000 US soldiers in 120 countries provide "little wiggle room" for additional wars. Barring some great catastrophe, says the author, the neocon's "martial lust will go as unsatisfied as did their pre-9/11 cruisin' for a bruisin' with China."

Riding the Wave (January 4, 2005)

Saying it was demonstrating US commitment to victims of the Asian tsunami, the Bush administration increased its pledge to $350 million and sent a "veritable armada" to the Indian Ocean. But, says the Village Voice, this armada—one of the largest in the area since Vietnam—is simply a cover-up for military expansion and another way to undermine the UN.


Highly Recommended Article Continuity and Change in Two Turn-of-the-Century Wars (March 27, 2004)

The Spanish-American War of 1898 and the invasion of Iraq in 2003 are often cited as turning points in US foreign policy. Political scientist Stephen R. Shalom revisits both moments in history and finds that unprovoked military intervention, unilateralism and conquest were not innovations at all, but were in fact consistent with ongoing US policies.

National Sovereignty? (December 23, 2004)

At a continental security conference, US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld suggested rejoining armed forces and police—a separation the US once advocated to prevent Latin American militaries from committing abuses under the pretenses of defending "national security." Critics say Rumsfeld's initiatives to prioritize fighting terrorism ignore human rights and indicate Washington's desire for more control in the region. Several countries' delegates instead emphasized eradicating poverty, corruption and drug trafficking as root causes of terrorism in order to strengthen security. (Inter Press Service)

Dollars for Democracy?: US Aid to Ukraine Challenged (December 21, 2004)

Has the US confused "promoting democracy" with "imposing democracy"? Russian leaders, many Ukrainians and some members of the US Congress are questioning whether the US has spent the past two years and a total of $58 million trying to oust the Ukrainian government through aiding the political opposition. (New York Times)

The US Is Suffering a Chronic Deficit of Legitimacy (December 13, 2004)

The New Statesmandebates the US policy of "aggressive" promotion of democracy as a universal doctrine. Democracy, it argues, cannot simply be "delivered," and forcing this ideology onto the rest of the world "smack[s] of imperial hubris." Instead of forcefully imposing democratic values, the article argues, the US should put efforts into gaining genuine belief and trust in countries it wishes to assist.

Ukraine in Turmoil as Agreement Crumbles (December 7, 2004)

East and west grapple over influence in Ukraine's presidential re-elections, as Russia backs presidential incumbent and the US supports the opposition. Both Washington and Moscow accuse one another of meddling with the country's elections. (Reuters)

US Campaign Behind the Turmoil in Kiev (November 26, 2004)

The Guardianclaims that the US government has "funded and organized" the "chestnut revolution" in the Ukraine. The "engineered democracy," or "democracy template," aims to mobilize youth in order to uproot the country's present "unsavory" administration. The article claims that this allegedly US-run campaign takes place through "western branding and mass marketing" and boasts a budget of $14 million.

US Military on the Scent of Oil (November 19, 2004)

According to the Pentagon report "Global Posture Review," the US military will continue to strongly prioritize energy access as well as reinforce its presence in bases worldwide. The report, which emphasizes "vital national security interests," clearly boosts US troop numbers in oil-producing countries. (Foreign Policy in Focus)

Afghanistan's Drug Problem (November 18, 2004)

A United Nations survey raises concerns about the record levels of opium poppies growing in Afghanistan. The plant, which Radio Free Europe considers the country's "main engine of economic growth," may jeopardize Afghanistan's security if the international community categorizes it as a "narco state." The US and NATO have already began to combat drug trafficking in the country. (Christian Science Monitor)

Rumsfeld Urges a Latin Push Against Terror (November 17, 2004)

Washington continues to advocate increased military and government cooperation with Latin America, claiming "terrorist organizations" move weapons, people and money through the region. (New York Times)

Pentagon Envisioning a Costly Internet for War (November 13, 2004)

The US is developing an ultra-sophisticated "war net" called Global Information Grid (GIG), a military world wide web which would provide commanders and troops instant information and "deploy a war-fighting force anywhere, anytime." The multibillion dollar project aims to fuse US "weapons, secret intelligence and soldiers in a global network." (New York Times)

More Troops for Iraq (November 8, 2004)

In a startling New York Timesop-ed piece calls for a large-scale deployment of troops to Iraq. Although more and more countries are withdrawing from the region, the article suggests rather than Washington "scaling back its objectives," Bush's "mandate" should "stay its course" and continue with its interventionist policy.

The Coup Connection (November 2004)

The International Republican Institute (IRI), a US government-financed organization which calls itself "nonpartisan," aims at "democratization" overseas. This article explains how the IRI organizes political training sessions for opposition movements in countries where the governments' policies do not coincide with Washington's interests, such as in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Venezuela and Cambodia. (Mother Jones)

Special Forces Enter CIA Territory with a New Weapon (October 31, 2004)

Under a new policy meant to reinforce the US "war on terrorism," the Pentagon grants US Special Operations $25 million a year to use for equipment and weapons as well as for "foreign forces, irregular forces, groups or individuals" assisting the US in its counterterrorism missions. (Los Angeles Times)

Safeguarding Colombia's Oil (October 22, 2004)

Colombia, a top oil supplier to the US, has mobilized its entire army to secure the country's oil resources from rebel groups. The worsening conflict has scared off private investors, leading to a significant drop in oil investment in the country. In its newest efforts to resuscitate its economy, the Colombian government invites US military assistance in securing the region for oil companies. (New York Times)

US Sets Its Sights on Chavez, Castro (October 17, 2004)

Secretary of State Colin Powell has expressed US concerns about Cuba "training terrorists" and Venezuela hosting a "large Cuban presence." This article considers the US call for "regime change" in the countries eerily reminiscent of US pressure on Iraq before its invasion. (Jamaica Observer)

Does the US Need the Draft? (October 18, 2004)

A severe shortage of troops in Iraq may make the US military draft necessary. While the Bush administration denies the possibility, US military commanders believe the need for increased troops in Iraq and "the next" war may require a draft. (Time)

US Military: Help Wanted (October 13, 2004)

Washington continues to refute allegations of plans to institute a military draft even as Iraq and Afghanistan stretch US military forces thin. The army plans to spend its $180 million budget on measures to recruit potential soldiers, the majority of whom oppose a draft, to join its "war on terrorism." (Mother Jones)

Transforming the American Military into a Global Oil-Protection Service (October 7, 2004)

Growing numbers of US companies edge themselves into volatile areas under the protection of the US military. This article gives three explanations for rapidly increasing military presence in oil rich regions: growing dependence on oil, shift of oil production to impoverished countries and the growing militarization of US foreign energy policy. (

Guarding the Empire (October 4, 2004)

The US military has troops and bases in 136 countries worldwide and outspends so-called "rogue states" twenty-two to one. This LewRockwell.comarticle attempts to see through US rationale for its overextended "military-industrial complex" and proposes a return to a "Jeffersonian foreign policy of peace, commerce, friendship, and no entangling alliances."

US Militarizing Latin America (October 6, 2004)

According to a report by the Latin America Working Group Education Fund, the Center for International Policy and the Washington Office on Latin America, the US aid for the training and financing in Latin America nearly exceeds all of its economic assistance in the region. The report states that the US Southern Command is increasing pressure on governments in Latin America to cooperate with the US in targeting "terrorism." (OneWorld)

Active Duty Military Personnel Strengths by Regional Area and by Country (updated September 30, 2004)

This table shows the number of US military personnel on active duty in the US and throughout the world. (United States Department of Defense)

Panel Calls US Troop Size Insufficient for Demands (September 23, 2004)

According to a Pentagon-appointed panel, US military forces are lacking in numbers, jeopardizing "current and anticipated stability operations," states the New York Times.

Azerbaijan's Precarious Balancing Act (September 22, 2004)

Azerbaijan maintains sensitive diplomatic relations with Iran, Russia, France, Germany and the US. These countries have overlapping interests in Azerbaijan, which hosts both substantial oil resources and appealing locations for military bases. The US in particular looks to strengthen its ties to Azerbaijan due to the combination of these very factors. (Power and Interest Report)

Titide's Downfall (September 2004)

This article from Le Monde diplomatiquetraces the rise and fall of Haiti's only democratically elected president, Jean-Bertrand Aristide. The author looks at the role of Haiti's internal politics as well as the strong hand of Washington in Aristide's removal from office. Haiti has since been plunged into chaos and violence, and many worry that "the Franco-American intervention in Haiti [is] a dangerous precedent" for US involvement in regimes that "have the nerve to upset the established disorder in the US's backyard."

US and Russia Still Dominate Arms Market, But World Total Falls (August 30, 2004)

According to the report "Conventional Arms Transfers to Developing Nations," the total value of global arms sales has dropped for the third consecutive year. US and Russia continue to top the list; the US maintaining its place as number one arms dealer while Russia's sales have dropped sharply. (New York Times)

15 Years After Cold War, A Troop Shift (August 17, 2004)

US President George W. Bush announced plans to redeploy 70,000 troops from Europe and Asia to bases in the US. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said that this restructuring is aimed at "making the US military a leaner, potentially faster-moving machine." The author suggests that "the strain of the US deployments in Iraq - plus the pressures of presidential politics" might be among the reasons for this shift in military strategy. (Christian Science Monitor)

1,000 Billion Dollars for Weapons (August 17, 2004)

According to a report prepared by a group of international military experts appointed by the UN, global military spending has increased significantly since the "Cold War" ended, particularly after the 9/11 attacks. The "top spenders" include the US, Japan, the UK, France and China. The report cites US spending alone as accounting for over half of world weapons expenditure altogether. (Inter Press Service)

The Island Idyll and the US Occupation (August 12, 2004)

Thousands of protesters, many more than sixty years old, are resisting the construction of the 39th US military base in Okinawa, Japan. Activists claim that the new base will threaten the survival of the region's unique marine wildlife, disrupting traditional livelihoods and devastating the local environment. (Independent)

New US Strategy: 'Lily Pad' Bases (August 10, 2004)

The US military is pulling thousands of troops from the large, sprawling bases built during the Cold War and placing them in smaller, less permanent bases throughout the world. These newer bases are strategically placed to act as launch pads for the "fast, flexible, and efficient projection of force," and are located in countries such as Bosnia and the former Soviet republic of Kyrgyzstan. (Christian Science Monitor)

Secret Proposals: Fighting Terror by Attacking ... South America? (August 9, 2004)

Less than a week after 9/11, a senior Pentagon official suggested that the US attack South America or Southeast Asia in order to "surprise" the terrorists. The official, apparently Undersecretary of Defense Douglas Feith, "lamented the lack of good targets in Afghanistan." The same day, Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz advocated an attack on Iraq, a "non-al Qaeda target" according to Feith. (Newsweek)

Denmark to Sign US Airbase Deal (August 6, 2004)

Denmark gives thumbs up to the US missile defense program by agreeing to costly improvements of the missile base in Greenland, a Danish autonomous region. Greenland strongly opposes the US base, saying that it does not wish to "launch a new arms race." (BBC)

US Military Bases in Latin America and the Caribbean (August 2004)

The US pursues its interests in the Western Hemisphere using a complex, interlocking web of military bases throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. US policy objectives in the region include access to markets, control over narcotics flows, and the acquisition of natural resources, especially oil. This article provides an overview and critique of current policies, and recommendations for reform. (Foreign Policy in Focus)

The Last War First: The War on Terror and the War on Russia (July 22, 2004)

Since 9/11, the US has stationed troops in nine out of fourteen former Soviet republics, drawing "a big chalk circle" around Russia. Sobakamagazine presents a "brief primer on the covert creation of this launching pad for World War III," detailing US relations with each host state, several of which are repressive dictatorships.

China, US Each Hold Major War Exercises (July 20, 2004)

China is carrying out a mock invasion of Taiwan while the US deploys seven aircraft-carrier strike groups, 50 warships, 600 aircraft and 150,000 troops in "one of the biggest military exercises ever staged." Officials of both countries claim that the timing is coincidental, but analysts believe the events reflect growing tensions over the issue of Taiwan. China recently pledged to recover the breakaway island state and US ally by 2020. (Los Angeles Times)

US Yanks Aid to Uzbekistan, a War on Terror Ally (July 15, 2004)

Under pressure to acknowledge Uzbekistan's poor human rights record, the United States will not renew an $18 million aid package to that country. However, the US will likely approve future aid to Uzbekistan on a project-by-project basis rather than cut it off completely. The US continues to base troops in Uzbekistan, a strategic location for the "war on terror." (Christian Science Monitor)

Sailing Toward a Storm in China (July 15, 2004)

The US Navy announced that it will deploy seven of its twelve carrier strike groups off the coast of China in a massive and unprecedented show of force. Only three or four strike groups were deployed during each of the Iraq wars, and seven in the same location at the same time "is unheard of." Chalmers Johnson argues that this provocative action could spark a war with China, with disastrous results. (Los Angeles Times)

Army Expects Further Involuntary Troop Call-Up (June 30, 2004)

US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld approved the involuntary mobilization of thousands of former soldiers belonging to the Individual Ready Reserve, a "rarely used" source of military personnel. Many of these reservists have not served or undergone any training for several years. Critics said the call-up is a type of draft and represents a major failure in planning for the Iraq and Afghanistan campaigns. (Reuters)

US Military on the Move (June 17, 2004)

The Pentagon confirmed plans to redeploy tens of thousands of troops from Germany and South Korea to smaller, more widely dispersed bases. Observers say that the location of these facilities, which form an arc ranging from Southeast Asia to West Africa, reveals a global strategy for the control of vital energy resources. (Inter Press Service)

Global Military Spending Hits $956B in 2003 (June 9, 2004)

According to a Stockholm think tank, the United States accounted for nearly half of the world's military spending in 2003. Tied for the position of second-highest defense spenders were Japan and Britain, who contributed a mere five per cent each to the global total. The study also revealed that the increase in spending worldwide "coincided with a decrease in the number of conflicts." (Associated Press)

Patrolling Malacca Straits a Sticky Issue (June 9, 2004)

Backtracking on earlier Pentagon statements, US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld withdrew the suggestion that US forces could help to patrol the "vital" naval route, used for the transport of half the world's oil. The US faced pressure from Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia, who reject an increased US military presence in Asia and fear that "US counterterrorism forces in the region would fuel Islamic fanaticism." (Christian Science Monitor)

Renegotiate with US on Okinawa Base Issue (June 5, 2004)

US military bases control large amounts of the land, airspace, and waters in the Japanese prefecture of Okinawa. In this article, the former governor of Okinawa argues that the US presence results in the denial of sovereignty for the local population, and calls for relocating the bases to areas outside of Japan. (Herald Tribune/Asahi)

Missile Defense: Defending America or Building Empire? (May 28, 2003)

Charles V. Peña of the Cato Institute argues that the US missile "defense" program is in fact an exercise in empire building. The writer claims that the system, rather than protecting US citizens from long range missiles, will instead be used to support US military forces abroad. (Cato Institute)

Lifting the Cap: Bush Administration Seeks to Expand US Military Personnel in Colombia (May 12, 2004)

Records show that US military aid often ends up feeding a vicious cycle of human rights abuses. Despite the mess of US' war and occupation of Iraq, the Bush administration is still keen on expanding its force involvement in Colombia. (Americas Program)

International Arms Sales Total $30 Billion a Year (April 21, 2004)

The US has been the top supplier of major weapons since the end of Cold War. In 2002, US deliveries constituted over forty percent of the world total. Ironically, the biggest buyers come from the Middle East. (Progressive Policy Institute)

The Cost of Empire (April 20, 2004)

US expansion of the "global war on terrorism" is very expensive. According to the US Congressional Budget Office, the US annual military bill could grow from $369 billion in 2004 to $600 billion in 2013. (Coalition for a Realistic Foreign Policy)

Marine Rediscover a 1940s Manual (April 8, 2004)

The Pentagon has recently reprinted "Marine Corps Small Wars Manual" - a 64-year-old guide to battling insurgents. The Wall Street Journalreports that lessons learnt in earlier US interventions in the Philippines, Cuba, Honduras and China are considered useful for US troops today.

Malaysia Rebuffs US Sea Force Plan (April 6, 2004)

Malaysia and Indonesia maintain that the security of the Malacca Straits is their joint responsibility. The governments argue that US should not launch any operation within their sovereign territory without their consent. (The Age)

NATO Expansion: More Muscle for US to Flex (April 2, 2004)

This article argues that NATO's inclusion of Bulgaria, Romania, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovenia and Slovakia is a result of "Russia's endemic decline" and will further increase Washington's influence over the organization. (Stratfor Weekly)

US Strategic Priorities Shifting in Central Asia (March 25, 2004)

Russia and China are feeling more threatened than ever by the presence of US military bases in Central Asia, especially with the possibility that the US will make such bases permanent. (EurasiaNet)

Reining in Our Weaponry: Is US Air Force Lost in Space? (March 15, 2004)

The author suggests signs exist that Congress is taking the first step "toward forcing the ‘space hawks' in the Bush administration to explain their misguided goal of space dominion." The Bush administration actively promotes the weaponization of space, which it sees as the next "high frontier" to be dominated by the US military. (San Francisco Chronicle)

True Reactionaries (March 12, 2004)

Former US President Woodrow Wilson once said "I will teach the Latin Americans to elect good men." This article argues that President Bush seems to have reintroduced the type of "righteous" attitude, typical of US and European imperialism of a century ago. (Inter Press Service)

Learning to Love the Tiny Bomb? (March / April 2004)

Arms control advocates warn the Bush administration's 2002 Nuclear Posture Review – which explicitly endorses "bunker-busting" "mini-nukes" – represents a "major shift in the military and ethical rationale for nuclear weapons, no longer defining them as devices of deterrence, but as weapons of war." Ethical questions aside, however, politicians and scientists still can't explain why "mini-nukes" are preferable to conventional weapons for military purposes. (Foreign Policy)

The Wild Weapons of DARPA (March 4, 2004)

This article examines the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's (DARPA) veritable menagerie of "biologically inspired" weapons and military platforms including ‘Big Dog', ‘Wolfpack', ‘Piranha', ‘Hummingbird Warrior', and ‘Organic Air Vehicles in the Trees.' "Bonehead ideas"? Maybe. Expensive? Assuredly. Lethal? Absolutely. (TomDispatch)

The Next Worst Thing: Is the Federal Government's Expansion of Biodefense Research Paving the Way for the Bioweapons of the Future? (March 2, 2004)

This article warns that US secret bioweapons research programs could lead to a "darker bioweapons future." Many speculate that such research could create a "Pandora's Box" that, once opened, would have dire consequences for the human race. (MotherJones)

The Rise of the Shadow Warriors (March / April 2004)

The author warns the "success" of US Special Forces in Iraq could presage further extensive use of covert operations against other regimes in the "War on Terror." The vagueness of US law governing covert action means the US could conduct such operations without Congressional oversight or public debate on the merits of such intervention. (Foreign Affairs)

The Militarization of US Foreign Policy (February 2004)

The author argues the US Defense Department has eclipsed the US State Department as major driver of US foreign policy, leading to the abandonment of bipartisan arms control and disarmament polices carefully crafted over the past four decades. (Foreign Policy in Focus)

Hidden Defense Costs Add Up to Double Trouble (February 23, 2004)

An economic historian argues that as a "rule of thumb," simply doubling the Pentagon's federal budget allocation will come close to capturing the true (and disguised) costs of US defense spending. (Christian Science Monitor)

The Costs of Empire Part 2: Counting the Dollars and Cents (February 13, 2004)

Having examined US plans for radical reconfiguration of its overseas military installations in Part 1, the author now focuses on the true monetary and human costs of US military deployment and wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. (Asia Times)

The Costs of Empire Part 1: Starting With a Solid Base (February 12, 2004)

The author re-examines Paul Kennedy's theory of "imperial overstretch" in light of the Bush administration's plans to radically reconfigure the posture and capabilities of overseas US military installations. (Asia Times)

America's 'Asymmetric' Warfare (February 9, 2004)

This BBCreport notes terrorist tactics and guerrilla warfare pose ‘asymmetric' threats to the US. As a consequence the US has to maintain a wide range of forces and capabilities with sufficient flexibility to meet a variety of military challenges.

America: The Accidental Empire? (February 2, 2004)

This BBCreport suggests military opportunism rather than administrative design characterized early US imperialism. US victory in the Spanish-American War, however, led to a "changing of the imperial guard," and gave the US confidence to assume a global role.

Bush Moves Toward 'Star Wars' Missile Defense (February 2, 2004)

This article examines US plans to deploy missile interceptors, designed to target limited ballistic missile attacks, in orbit around the planet. These proposed interceptors could be used to destroy enemy satellites as well as warheads. Critics fear the plans could lead to a renewed arms race in space. (Reuters)

US: A Bigger Stick – And No Longer Speaking Softly (January 15, 2004)

The US dominates the skies, enjoys unrivalled military dominance and is seeking to further widen its military lead through new technology. Whether "benevolent global hegemony" or "new empire," the US now controls the air to a fair greater extent than Roman legions controlled the ground or the British fleet ruled the seas. (Christian Science Monitor)

America's Empire of Bases (January 2004)

Chalmers Johnson suggests that US military bases - over 700 in 130 countries - have replaced colonies as indicators of modern imperial expansion. Are military metaphors such as "footprints" and "lily pads?" really euphemisms for US imperialism? (


Highly Recommended ArticleAmerican Empire: The History and Future of an Idea (June 12, 2003)

Stephen Howe argues that in spite of an increasing number of US direct military interventions the US empire differs from formal colonialism. The US essentially exercises its control through informal economic, diplomatic and cultural means. (openDemocracy)

US to Expand its Military Empire (December 10, 2003)

The US already maintains a military presence in 140 countries but plans to build more military bases in Eastern Europe and parts of the former Soviet Union because of "increased threats" in the world after September 11. (Al Jazeera)

The US Military: Bringing Hope "to Every Corner of the World" (November 19, 2003)

Washington justifies its military expansion throughout the world as spreading democracy and development. It uses the same words to justify its occupation of Iraq. Where there is no "war on terrorism," the US relies on the "war on drugs" as an excuse to build more military bases. (Focus on the Global South)

Case for War Confected, Say Top US Officials (November 9, 2003)

A group of US intelligence professionals, diplomats and former Pentagon officials say that Iraq was not an imminent threat nor linked to terrorism. Vice President Dick Cheney pressured the CIA to come up with evidence to fit pre-fabricated conclusions. (Independent)

US Eyes Second-Tier Threats in Terror War (October 14, 2003)

Washington expands the "axis of evil" and now turns its attention to Syria, Libya, and Cuba. "The US plans to keep up the pressure on countries it places on the wrong side in the war on terror." reports the Christian Science Monitor.

The Secrets Clark Kept (September 29, 2003)

This 2003 analysis discusses General Wesley Clark's stint as a CNN commentator and the Pentagon's hidden military plans made as part of the "war on terror." General Clark viewed US President George Bush's plan to attack Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Iran, Somalia, and Sudan as "a flawed strategy," but did not voice these concerns publicly. Not voicing these concerns allowed the US government to "take the country recklessly into war."(Village Voice)

China's Support for North Korea Lies in its Fear of the United States (September 3, 2003)

According to the Power and Interest News Report, China's policy toward North Korea partly depends on its wish to stop the increasing US influence in East Asia.

Militarizing the Americas (September 3, 2003)

The Bush administration increasingly interprets Latin American security issues in terms of terrorism. Thus, instead of focusing on the larger social causes of drug production, guerilla and paramilitary activities and illegal immigration, the US allocates military support to the region. (Interhemispheric Resource Center)

The Grand Strategy of the American Empire (Fall 2003)

Professor Alex Callinicos examines the forces behind US military interventions in Afghanistan and Iraq. He argues that President Bush has exploited September 11 to shift the global balance of power in his favor. His foreign policies are based on the fear of long-term economic and geopolitical threats facing US capitalism. (Socialist Review)

Repeating Mistakes of the Cold War (August 12, 2003)

The author argues that current US policymakers make the same mistakes as their predecessors during the Cold War. This analysis outlines the numerous US military interventions of the Cold War era, drawing comparisons with the US invasion Iraq and the prospect of further US interventions. (Alternet)

Preventive War 'the Supreme Crime' (August 11, 2003)

Noam Chomsky states that Washington's new national security strategy authorizes the US to carry out "preventive war," denoting the willingness to use military force to eliminate an invented or imagined threat. Chomsky argues that preventive war describes the supreme crime condemned at Nuremberg. (ZNet)

Foreign 'Crises' Show Limits of US Power (July 30, 2003)

The US has generally relied on its own resources for dealing with international challenges. Facing the increasing number of recent international crises, the US has turned to other countries for help. The US must come to terms with the limits of global hegemony or suffer the consequences. (Christian Science Monitor)

America Is a Religion (July 28, 2003)

George Monbiot says that US leaders see themselves as priests of a divine mission to rid the world of its demons, despots, and communism. For the Bush administration, the US soldiers in Iraq are not mere terrestrial combatants, but missionaries in a sacred cause. (Guardian)

Neocons Dream of Lebanon (July 23, 2003)

prominent circle of neo-conservative intellectuals in the American Enterprise Institute helped incubate the ideas behind the Bush administration's war in Iraq. Now they turn their attention to advancing pro-Western, Christian and free-market forces in countries such as Lebanon. (ZNet)

The Empire Unmasked (July 18, 2003)

The Socialist Workersays that the scandal over George W. Bush's claims about Iraqi nuclear weapons lays bare Washington's bigger lie- that its war was not about oil and empire.

Bomb Before You Buy (July 15, 2003)

Naomi Klein argues that the Bush administration's economic plan for Iraq constitutes one element of a grander strategy to expand the power and wealth of US-based multinational corporations across the globe. (ZNet)

A Realist Security Strategy for the United States (July 9, 2003)

Two analysts of the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think-tank, argue that the US should pursue a realist-based foreign policies. The article compares the US with the post-Waterloo British Empire of 1815. (openDemocracy)

Pre-emptive Wars and the End Times (July 4, 2003)

The "Bush Doctrine" of pre-emptive strike causes grave concerns. It may incite Russia and China to perceive the US as a threat, causing them to take pre-emptive measures of their own. This raises serious concerns about stability and peace between major powers. (Universal Press Syndicate)

Hostages of the Empire (July 1, 2003)

British soldiers risking their lives in Iraq are not only "victims of an overbearing and inept occupation policy," they may also end up entangled in the US' next campaign in Iran. "Thus is the traditional logic of 19th-century empire being replayed in the 21st: protecting one conquest requires an indefinite extension of conflict." (Guardian)

After the Winning of the War (June 2003)

Historian Eric Hobsbawm argues that overwhelming US military and technological dominance combined with a domestic inclination toward economic protectionism make for an unprecedented kind of militaristic global empire. Hobsbawn warns that expanding US militarism could destabilize the world. (Le Monde Diplomatique)

Re-Colonizing Iraq (May-June, 2003)

Tariq Ali discusses the US road to war with Iraq and the worldwide reactions to its new imperial policies. He argues that with the election of Secretary-General Kofi Annan, the UN has played into Washington's hands. The UN either complies with the desires of the US or rubber-stamps them after the event. (New Left Review)

Pentagon Moving Swiftly to Become 'GloboCop' (June 10, 2003)

US military planners discuss deploying forces and equipment around the world in ways that would permit Washington to play "GloboCop." (Inter Press Service)

Further Fanning of the Flames (June 8, 2003)

Washington's military interventions run the risk of creating more radical groups with the sole purpose of hurting the US government and its people. (Yellow Times)

The US and Latin America after 9-11 and Iraq (June 2003)

Since 9/11 US policy towards Latin America has narrowly focused on fighting the "axis of evil" of the region: Colombian "narcoterrorists," Cuba's Fidel Castro, and Venezuela's Hugo Chavez. (Foreign Policy in Focus)

Does the USA Intend to Dominate the Whole World by Force? (June 2, 2003)

Noam Chomsky discusses the consequences that the Bush administration's National Security Strategy may have on international peace and stability. He also talks about the administration's proposed justifications for the Iraq war and its falsehoods, pointing out Washington's political and economic ulterior motives for its pre-emptive strike. (ZNet)

Missile Defense: Defending America or Building Empire? (May 28, 2003)

This article argues the "real rationale" behind US missile defense plans is to protect US forces engaged in military intervention abroad to "enforce a Pax Americana – a strategy of empire by another name." It warns missile defenses will only increase resentment and animosity towards "what is perceived by the rest of the world as an imperialist America." (Cato Institute)

SE Asia Tries 'Shock and Awe' (May 20, 2003)

The US military victory over Iraq has triggered the collapse of peace initiatives in Indonesia and the Philippines. "In the context of the war against terrorism, there are few, if any, diplomatic costs to seeking a military solution," says an expert on regional insurgencies at Singapore's Institute for Defense and Strategic Studies. (Christian Science Monitor)

Play It Again, Uncle Sam (May 20, 2003)

Before the US-led invasion of Iraq, a group of CIA veterans warned that the war "would further widen the divide between the Western and Islamic worlds and increase the incidence of terrorism." This Yellow Timesarticle argues that the terror attacks in Saudi Arabia and Morocco could prove them right.

The Oily Americans (May 19, 2003)

This Timearticle "illustrates the dark side of American oil policy" through the history of US covert action and foreign aid in Iran, and the fight against communism in the Middle East. Access to Iranian oil "came with a stiff price," as the US-supported Shah created "the first American-hating Islamic Republic," and Ayatollah Khomeini ended US-Iranian oil relations after his rise to power in 1979. These authors believe the US government's handling of oil issues has caused the US public to rely on "foreign intervention rather than domestic conservation."

Paths of Glory (May 16, 2003)

This New York Timesarticle says the Iraq war did nothing to make the US safer, in fact it did the terrorists a favor. The International Institute for Strategic Studies has declared that al-Qaeda is as dangerous as it was before September 11.

Has the War Made America Safer? (April 23, 2003)

While the Bush administration calls the Iraq war a "remarkable success," this article argues that only time can tell whether the war will reduce the number of terrorist plots against the US or inspire new recruits to terrorist movements. (International Herald Tribune)

The Perils of Empire (April 20, 2003)

The British 20th century imperialism and the US neo-conservatives' expansionist policy of today are strikingly similar. The British too, wanted to diminish French, Russian and German influence in the region. They sought secure access to Middle East oil, and to establish military bases. (Washington Post)

A Mighty Global Power and Its Heir Apparent (April 18, 2003)

In his new book, British historian Niall Ferguson draws analogies between the British Empire and the US' role in the world today. Ferguson suggests that a new era of globalization is occurring, with Americans having "taken our old role without yet facing the fact that an empire comes with it." (New York Times)

Mulling Action, India Equates Iraq, Pakistan (April 11, 2003)

By asserting the same right of preemptive war that the US used to justify its invasion in Iraq, India has warned it could take military action against Pakistan. (Washington Post)

Which Country Is Next on the List? (April 10, 2003)

This International Herald Tribunearticle criticizes the neoconservative agenda of remaking the political culture of the Muslim Middle East. "Traditional morality says that war is justified in legitimate defense. Totalitarian morality justifies war to make people or societies better."

Outrage Spreads in Arab World (March 30, 2003)

The US air assault that allegedly killed 58 people at a vegetable market in Baghdad has caused anger in the Middle East. People said that the war would harm the future of democracy in the area and greatly increase the risk of suicide attacks in the US. (Washington Post)

The Shape of the Post-War World (March 26, 2003)

Contrary to Washington's claim, there are no credible connections between Baghdad and al-Qaeda. The war on Iraq will not reduce the risk of terrorism in the US, rather it will "increase both amateur and organized terrorism." (San Francisco Chronicle)

Now, I Am the Terrorist (March 21, 2003)

On September 11, the US was the victim of terrorism. Now, writes William Rivers Pitt of Truthout, the US government pursues its own program of terror, as hundreds of massive missiles rain down on Baghdad, killing indiscriminately many civilians.

Americans as Sitting Ducks (March 20-26, 2003)

Diaa Rashwan, an expert on Islamist movements, argues that one of the effects of the imminent US military occupation of Iraq is the "logical and almost expected" entrance of Al-Qaeda militants into the Iraq crisis. The occupation of Iraq could thus become as bloody as the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in the 1980s. (Al-Ahram Weekly)

Top White House Anti-Terror Boss Resigns (March 19, 2003)

Rand Beers, the top National Security Council official in the US "war on terrorism," resigned this week. Intelligence sources say his resignation reflects concerns that the US war against Iraq will hurt counter-terrorism efforts. (UPI)

Ridge Warns Iraq War Could Raise Terror Threat (March 4, 2003)

Tom Ridge, the Homeland Security Secretary, and the FBI agree that a war on Iraq could bring new terrorist attacks within the US. "I mean, it's fairly predictable, and we see some of that now," Ridge told reporters. (New York Times)

Terrorism and the War with Iraq (March 3, 2003)

A war on Iraq will greatly raise the risk of terrorist attacks in the US. When Saddam Hussein sees a war as unavoidable he may resort to terrorism either by employing Iraq's own operatives or by working with al-Qaeda. In the past, Baghdad has not hesitated to forge new ties even with ideological enemies in times of crisis. (Saban Center for Middle East Policy)

Al Qaeda Taps Arab War Fears (February 25, 2003)

According to counter-terrorism experts and a senior US intelligence official, a US-led war on Iraq will increase the number of al-Qaeda soldiers and generate more support for Osama bin Laden. (Christian Science Monitor)

A US License to Kill (February 21, 2003)

International law scholars and international press criticize Washington's authorization of the CIA to kill alleged terrorists. "Terrorism cannot be eliminated through terrorist methods." (Village Voice)

Terror and Torture in the Philippines (February 21, 2003)

US troops in the Philippines will launch a new major counter-terror operation to fight the Muslim rebels. Anticipating an increase of human rights violations as a result of the operation, Washington has offered Manila $30 million in additional military aid in exchange for an agreement that would exempt US soldiers from the International Criminal Court. (Foreign Policy In Focus)

Bin Laden's Voice Aside, War on Iraq Is Not War on Al Qaeda (February 13, 2003)

Bin Laden's call on Muslims to rise up against the US in case of a war on Iraq does not demonstrate a link between the Iraqi regime and al-Qaeda. What his speech does show though, is that a US war on Iraq will bring bin Laden much closer to his goal. (Christian Science Monitor)

Portrait of a Terror Suspect: Is He the Qaeda Link to Iraq? (February 10, 2003)

In his presentation to the UN Security Council, US Secretary of State Colin Powell singled out Abu Mussab Zarqawi as the most important link between Iraq and al-Qaeda. There is however no agreement among intelligence officials in the US and Europe about whether Zarqawi implicates collusion between Iraq and al-Qaeda. (International Herald Tribune)

Leaked British Intelligence Report Contradicts US and Britain (February 5, 2003)

As the US and UK governments make their case for a war by claiming that the Iraq regime has links to al-Qaeda, a British intelligence report maintains that mistrust and incompatible ideologies makes a relationship between the two very unlikely. (BBC)

The Philippines: Southeast Asian Keystone (February 3, 2003)

Following the war in Afghanistan, the Philippines became the second front in the US war against terrorism. In 2002, the US deployed over 1000 troops to train the Filipino army against the Islamist guerilla Abu Sayyaf. (Power and Interest News Report)

False Trails that Lead to the Al-Qaeda 'Links' (February 2, 2003)

Washington's attempt to link Iraq with al-Qaeda, so as to connect its war on terrorism with its goal of regime change in Baghdad, lacks convincing proof. Even the CIA has claimed that "the evidence is simply not there." (Observer)

Africa Activists Denounce Bush's "Malign Neglect" (January 29, 2003)

The US is increasing its military presence in African oil-producing nations, but ignoring African people who need economic support, health and education. 20 million Africans have already died of HIV, a scourge "far more deadly than terrorist or the alleged existence of Iraqi weapons," says Foreign Policy In Focus

The CIA's Secret Army (January 26, 2003)

After various CIA scandal operations in the 1970s and 1980s, the agency dropped its paramilitary operations. Since the beginning of the war on terrorism, however, the Bush administration has pumped hundreds of millions of dollars into the CIA budget to bring the Special Operations Group (SOG) back into business. (Time)

The Rosy Dawn of US Imperialism (January 16, 2003)

Historians cite 1898 and the acquisition of an overseas empire as the beginning of US imperialism. This article claims that removal the queen of Hawaii in 1893 by the US Committee of Public Safety was imperialistic. (Counterpunch)

Yemen: Coping With Terrorism and Violence in a Fragile State (January 8, 2003)

A report by the International Crisis Groupconcludes that a narrow militaristic approach to fighting terrorism in Yemen, which ignores the root causes of the country's many problems, may jeopardize the stability of the state and boost the popularity of extremist groups and organizations.


Many Held at Guantanamo Not Likely Terrorists (December 22, 2002)

The US is detaining dozens of prisoners who have no link to Al-Quaeda or the Taliban at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The detainees have no legal mechanism for appeal or legal representation. The Times suggests "If they weren't terrorists before, they certainly could be now." (Truthout)

Pentagon Says US Forces Can Target Enemy Combatants at Any Time in "War against Terrorism" (December 16, 2002)

A Department of Defense official argues that US forces have the right to kill members of al-Qaeda or any other global terrorist organization at any time unless they are in custody. Crimes of Warwarns that this legal interpretation risks making international consensus on the rules of war impossible.

Bush Has Widened Authority of CIA to Kill Terrorists (December 15, 2002)

The Bush administration has authorized the CIA to hunt down and kill terrorists without having to seek approval for each new operation. (New York Times)

The Yemen Strike: The War on Terrorism Goes Global (November 14, 2002)

The US missile attack in Yemen represents a new stage in the war against terrorism, in which the US authorizes itself to eradicate suspected terrorists, not just in Afghanistan, but globally. (Crimes of War)

Terrorism's Threat to Globalization (November 12, 2002)

The September 11 attacks and their aftermath have served to justify US expansion of its economic and military presence in regions previously beyond Washington's sphere of influence, such as Caucasus and Central Asia. (Yellow Times)

Government Must Not Sanction Extra-Judicial Executions (November 8, 2002)

In a press release on the US missile attack that killed 6 suspected al-Qaeda men in Yemen, Amnesty Internationalexpresses its concern that the killings could constitute "extra-judicial executions in violation of international human rights law."

Missile Strike Carried Out with Yemeni Cooperation (November 6, 2002)

The missile strike in Yemen met national and international critique. Swedish foreign minister Anna Lindh said that, "If the USA is behind this with Yemen's consent, it is nevertheless a summary execution that violates human rights." (Washington Post)

US Enters a Legal Gray Zone (November 5, 2002)

The Los Angeles Timessays the US may have violated international law by launching a missile attack against six al-Qaeda members in Yemen. An international law expert warns that the attack sets a dangerous precedent, putting "governments at the same level as terrorists."

Remaking Policy in Asia? (November 2002)

September 11 enabled the US to expand its military presence throughout the Asia/Pacific region. These new ties have undermined democracy in the region by strengthening unaccountable and repressive militaries in countries such as Indonesia and the Philippines. (Interhemispheric Resource Center)

Against Terrorism or Expansion of the American Empire? (October 22, 2002)

According to this Yellow Timesarticle, the US government does not care about ridding the world of terrorism. In fact, Washington supports paramilitaries in Colombia and harbors Cuban terrorists in Miami.

The American Empire (October 16-18, 2002)

This article argues that the US is an empire, but one of reluctance and denial. It provides a concise account of the history leading to the rise of US hegemony in the world. In addition, the article provides comparisons between the US role in the world and past empires such as the Chinese, Roman and British variants. (Asia Times)

Real Goal in Iraq (October 1, 2002)

The US intends to "mark the official emergence of the United States as a full-fledged global empire" by attacking Iraq. By establishing permanent military bases, the US will try to dominate the Middle East as well as every other region of the world. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

US Moves Commandos to East Africa to Pursue Qaeda in Yemen (September 18, 2002)

The US places increased focus on Yemen in its hunt for terrorists. US Special Operation forces, trained in "stealth attacks to kill or capture suspected terrorists," move to military bases in the region to wait for "actionable intelligence." (New York Times)

Westward the Course of Empire (September 2002)

Le Monde Diplomatiqueargues that a new imperial ideology takes shape under President Bush. The new US empire strives for global expansion and "greater security and prosperity through the force of arms", while submitting developing countries to a new period of colonization.

US Military Troops and Bases Around the World (September 2002)

In this map, War Times shows the position of every major US military base in the world. The map reveals the enormous number and range of their bases.

The National Security Strategy of the United States of America (September 2002)

Not content with traditional deterrence and containment policies, US national policy now stipulates the US will act unilaterally and without hesitation to preemptively engage and attack deemed terrorist organizations and their supporters. The National Security Strategy, published in the run-up to the Iraq war, represents a radical revision of US foreign and military policy. (National Security Council)

US Considers Assassination Squads (August 13, 2002)

Disregarding a presidential executive order, "the US government is considering plans to send elite military units on missions to assassinate al-Qaida leaders in countries around the world, without necessarily informing the governments involved." (Guardian)

Al-Qaeda in Southeast Asia: The Case of the "Ngruki Network" in Indonesia (August 8, 2002)

The International Crisis Groupargues that "the challenge for the Indonesian government and the international community, is to be alert to the possibility of individuals making common cause with international criminals, without taking steps that will undermine Indonesia's fragile democratic institutions."

‘US Anti Terrorist Aid Should Help Moderates Not Military' (August 6, 2002)

Prominent Muslim scholars are urging the United States to shift its counter-terrorism aid from Indonesia's notorious military to moderate Muslim groups promoting human rights and democracy. (Jakarta Post)

Southeast Asian Nations and U.S. Sign Anti-Terror Treaty (August 1, 2002)

The United States and ASEAN signed a treaty that "would bring increased US technical and logistical aid to ‘prevent, disrupt and combat' international terrorism" in Southeast Asia. Some fear the US will use this as a strategic ploy to set up military bases in the region. (Associated Press)

US Troops Prepare to Leave Philippines (July 31, 2002)

As US troops leave the Philippines, only temporarily, feelings are mixed amongst the country's citizens. Supporter of the US presence feel safer, while critics believe that a continued US presence is too reminiscent of the country's colonial past. (BBC)

US, Russia Group Fights Terror (July 27, 2002)

The US-Russia group was set up to deal with terrorism and other problems spreading from Afghanistan to Central Asian countries. In recent meetings, the two parties are discussing a broad range of anti-terror efforts extending "as far afield as Southeast Asia and East Africa." (Associated Press)

Central Asia: The Next Front in the Terror War? (July 10, 2002)

The Christian Science Monitorreports that "Islamic militants […] are beginning to regroup" in Central Asia. Referring to the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, "experts and some Central Asian officials are warning that the question is no longer if the IMU will strike, but when."

Bases of Debate: America in Central Asia (July 1, 2002)

This article considers Central Asia's geographically strategic position in the US's "war on terror." The authors offer arguments for and against a continued US presence in Central Asia. (National Interest)

US Strategic Options for Iraq: Easier Said than Done (Spring 2002)

The Washington Quarterlyanalyzes US policy options toward Iraq offering a patient approach, a moderate approach and a "bold" strategy, each including the costs, benefits and risks associated with each option. The author privileges the patient approach as offering more gain than pain.

War On Terror May Extend to Cuba (May 7, 2002)

The US threatens to place Cuba on Washington's long list of new military targets. The Bush administration accuses Fidel Castro's regime of developing "biological weapons and sharing its expertise with Washington's enemies." (Guardian)

Invasion of Iraq: It's Sooner Than You Think (May 7, 2002)

The mainstream media regularly reports that plans concerning the invasion of Iraq are contingency plans that "have not been operationalized," and that "the target date has been postponed until next year." However, "the invasion of Iraq may be sooner than we are being led to believe by the Pentagon propaganda machine," argues Common Dreams.

US Aims New Attack at Libya, Syria, Cuba (May 6, 2002)

The US accuses Libya, Syria, and Cuba of "pursuing weapons of mass destruction and warned it would take action to ensure they do not supply terrorists with such arms." (Reuters)

US Wants to Oust Saddam Even if He Makes Concessions (May 6, 2002)

The Bush administration will remove Iraqi President Hussein "regardless of what [UN] inspectors do." According to US Secretary of State, Colin Powell, "the US reserves its option to do whatever it believes might be appropriate to see if there can be a regime change." (Guardian)

A US Cabal Pulling America to War (May 3, 2002)

In the fall of 2002, the US will probably carry out a military strike against Iraq. Not because of terrorism or weapons of destruction. "No, it will happen because more than a decade ago a small cabal of political heavyweights in the administration of George Bush I, who now also run the foreign and defense policy of George Bush II, sat down and drew up a blueprint to rule the world." (Foreign Policy in Focus)

US Envisions Blueprint on Iraq Including Big Invasion Next Year (April 28, 2002)

The New York Timesreveals that the Bush Administration is "concentrating its attention on a major air campaign and ground invasion, with initial estimates contemplating the use of 70,000 to 250,000 troops."

US Units Attacking Al Qaeda In Pakistan (April 25, 2002)

Opening a new front in a "shadowy war," covert US military units attack suspected al Qaeda hide-outs in Pakistan and conduct reconnaissance operations in the region. (Washington Post)

Philippines Approves More US Troops (April 19, 2002)

The US sends several hundreds more American troops to the Philippines in the expanding "war against terror." Another 2,700 American troops are also due to arrive in the country to take part in the second phase of the 2002 "Balikatan joint exercise" in the northern island of Luzon. (BBC News)

A War Against the Peacemaker (April 16, 2002)

The US government will launch an international "coup" to depose Jose Bustani, a respected diplomat who could take away Washington's pretext for war with Iraq. Bustani heads the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) which enforces the Chemical Weapons Convention. (Guardian)

Looking For Excuses For New War On Iraq (April 12, 2002)

Although Iraq has already indicated some willingness to cooperate with UN weapons inspectors, a US intelligence official said the White House "will not take yes for an answer." (Socialist Worker)

Blair Sees No Need For New UN Mandate to Attack Iraq (April 10, 2002)

British Prime Minister Tony Blair refuses to seek permission from the Security Council to attack Iraq in the expanding "war against terrorism." (Guardian)

Don't Always Trust What They Tell You In The War On Terror (March 30, 2002)

"Truth is already a casualty in the war against terror, but as the campaign against Iraq heats up, distinguishing facts from propaganda may become even harder." (Independent)

War on Iraq Based on Shaky Legal Ground (March 29, 2002)

Any military strikes against Iraq would violate international law. Only the Security Council holds the right to authorize the use of force. (Reuters)

US Paves Way For War On Iraq (March 27, 2002)

The US Air Force relocates its headquarters from Saudi Arabia to Qatar to "bypass Saudi objections to military action against Iraq," and prepare the next phase in the "war against terrorism." (Guardian)

Bush Won't Relent on Iraq (March 25, 2002)

A future military strike against Iraq may not result from US national security concerns. US President George Bush may have personal reasons to target Iraq. (Boston Globe)

War Clouds Over Somalia (March 22, 2002)

A Middle East Research and Information Project (MERIP)report on Somalia as the next military target in the US "war against terrorism." Although there remains no clear link between al-Qaeda and Somalia, the US may be laying plans for a major operation against the country.

Georgia: US Opens New Front in War on Terror (March 20, 2002)

US President George Bush expands the "war on terrorism" to Georgia in what Washington insists is a terrorism spillover from the Afghan war. (Guardian)

US Builds its Case Against Saddam (March 20, 2002)

CIA director George Tenet accuses Iraq of having links with al-Qaeda, but refuses to provide any details or evidence. This demonstrates that only the possibility of such links is sufficient to justify a US military strike against Iraq. (BBC News)

Unlike 1990, Arab Support for Attacking Iraq Is Tepid (March 14, 2002)

According to this article, the US will have a hard time convincing the majority of Arab countries to support a military attack against Iraq. The US finds itself in a different position than in 1990. (Christian Science Monitor)

Jordan, Turkey Warn US Against Strikes on Iraq (March 11, 2002)

Reflecting a growing belief among regional leaders that the risks of an attack on President Saddam Hussein of Iraq far outweigh any threat he may pose, Turkey and Jordan expressed unease about a potential US attack on Baghdad. (Washington Post)

Britain and US Prepare Public for Iraq Strikes (March 6, 2002)

Though applying pressure on Saddam Hussein to allow UN weapons inspectors into Iraq, Britain and the US seem intent on preparing public opinion for military action against the country. (Guardian)

MPs Warn Blair Over Iraq (March 5, 2002)

Labour members of the UK House of Commons urged Prime Minister Tony Blair not to support military action against Iraq as a second phase in the US-lead war on terror, and to consider a more peaceful way of resuming weapons inspections. (Guardian)

US Broadens Terror Fight, Readying Troops for Yemen (March 4, 2002)

The military campaign appears to be expanding. US President George Bush has approved plans to send troops to Yemen to help train the Yemeni military in their fight with Al Qaeda members allegedly hiding there.
(New York Times)

Iraq In The Crossfires (February 28, 2002)

The "bomb Iraq" fanatics in Washington are calling for the invasion of Iraq and the overthrow of Saddam Hussein by whatever means available to the US military. "Drawing an absurd analogy to the war in Afghanistan, some of Bush's confidents are urging that the ‘Afghan model' be applied to Iraq." (ZNet)

A New Terror-War Front: the Caucasus (February 26, 2002)

The next military target in the "war against terrorism" may be the Pankisi Gorge on the Georgia-Chechnya border. US military officials in Georgia claim that Arab terrorists "connected with bin Laden" are hiding among Chechen refugees in the Gorge. (Christian Science Monitor)

US Says it Will Act to Overthrow Saddam (February 7, 2002)

Charles Duelfer, a former deputy chairman of the UN weapons inspectors, sums up US policy on Iraq: "they've taken the decision that the Iraq problem has to be solved, not managed, and there's certainly an inclination to do this militarily." (Independent)

New US Military Bases: Side Effects or Causes of War? (February 2, 2002)

This CounterPuncharticle argues that setting up military bases "may in the long run be more critical to US war planners than the wars themselves." While many believe that bases are "side effects" of war, the author claims that the US uses war as an opportunity to set up bases. He argues that the bases the US established after interventions including the Gulf War, Somalia, the Balkans War, and Afghanistan maintain the US's status as a dominant military power.

US Takes Terror War to Philippines (January 31, 2002)

The US expands its "war on international terrorism" with joint military exercises in the Philippines. The Pentagon claims, without much evidence, that the Abu Sayyaf insurgent group has ties to Osama bin Laden. (BBC News)

Iraq: The Phantom Threat (January 23, 2002)

Scott Ritter, former chief of the Concealment Investigations Unit for the UN Special Commission on Iraq, criticizes US intentions to target Iraq. US attempts to find a link between Iraq and those responsible for the Sept. 11 attacks are based on fallacious information. (Christian Science Monitor)

The Long and Hidden History of the US in Somalia (January 21, 2002)

Somalia is being mentioned as the next possible target in the US war against international terrorism. ZNetconsiders earlier US interventions in the impoverished country and what might result if the US does go to war.

Should the War on Terrorism Target Iraq? (January 2002)

A policy brief by the Brookings Instituteargues against using military force to overthrow Saddam Hussein. The Bush administration ought to take advantage of the recent success in Afghanistan to pressure allies and regional players to "isolate Saddam's regime and to reinforce deterrence in an unambiguous way."

War on Terror Loses Its Way (January 17, 2002)

As US President George Bush's anti-terrorism campaign expands, the war's new potential targets are obscuring the original quest for justice. (Guardian)

US Takes Antiterrorism War to the Philippines (January 15, 2002)

The Pentagon's decision to extend the war on terrorism to the Philippines may undermine legitimate struggles for effective political self-determination on the part of other Muslim Filipino political groups. (Foreign Policy in Focus)

UN Official Says Somalia Vulnerable (January 10, 2002)

Randolph Kent, the UN humanitarian coordinator for Somalia, warned that US military action in the country could reverse hard-won gains made in recent years. The fragile Transitional National Government represents the first prospect of stability in the country in a decade, which has been riven by warlords and factions since the ousting of Siad Barre in 1991. (Reuters)

US-led "Anti-Terror War" Should Not Be Taken to East Africa, Sudan Urges (January 9, 2002)

Foreign ministers of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development demand the International Community not to extend the US led-war against terrorism to East Africa. Development problems cannot be solved without peace and stability. (Agence France Presse)

Somalia Is No Hideout for Bin Laden (January 9, 2002)

Nurridin Farah, a Somali author, asserts that the neither Somalia nor the US would benefit from a military campaign in the war-torn country. What Somalia needs is broad-based international support for the government's attempt to regain sovereignty over the country, not an anti-terror war. (New York Times)

Somalis Wary of Growing US Scrutiny (January 8, 2002)

The US looks at several areas in Somalia as possible terrorist training camps with links to Al Qaeda. Inhabitants pray, unaware of their supposed terrorist connections. (Christian Science Monitor)

After Afghanistan, US likely to focus on Indonesia, Philippines: Wolfowitz (January 8, 2002)

The war against terrorism continues as US Deputy Secretary of Defense gives a list of countries likely to be the next targets. (Agence France Presse)

Warships Heading Towards Somalia (January 4, 2002)

The net is tightening around Somalia, as German navy ships are heading towards Yemen, Sudan and Somalia to participate in the fight against terrorism. (Afrol News)

Top Secret Memo (January 2, 2002)

This fictitious memo between two transitional Somali officials comments on the causes and potential consequences of the expansion of the US-led war to Somalia. Ironically, as the author states, "the only way for one of the poorest, most fragile countries in the world to get international help is for it to be linked to terrorism and then bombed."


The War in Afghanistan (December 30, 2001)

In a thorough piece excerpted from a Lakdawala lecture in New Delhi, Noam Chomsky makes a compelling argument that the war in Afghanistan is not a "just" one. His comments center on the many injustices committed in the name of the "war against terrorism." (Znet)

Military Action Against Terror Begins (December 27, 2001)

US military officials are making it clear publicly that Afghanistan isn't the only country where American forces are fighting -- or planning to fight -- terrorist networks. Somalia, Yemen, Sudan and the Chechnya region of Russia are other areas allegedly known as hide-outs for terrorist Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida network. (Associated Press)

Old Strategy on Iraq Sparks New Debate (December 27, 2001)

The Downing Plan, a three-year-old US plot to topple Saddam Hussein, is revived as supporters claim several elements of the plan have proven successful in Afghanistan. The plan calls for a combination of US backed insurgents massive enemy defections, elite special operations units and US air power. There is no evidence, however, that Iraq was involved in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. (Washington Post)

War is Good Business (December 25, 2001)

The Pentagon is drawing up plans to attack Somalia, Sudan and Iraq without establishing the basis of its suspicion to any independent authority. A reason for widening the war against terrorism could be "war is good business.'' (The Statesman)

House Passes Resolution on Iraq's Weapons Program (December 20, 2001)

The House of Representatives passed a resolution that warns of the dangers posed by Iraq's refusal to allow UN inspectors back into the country. Is this a move to justify Iraq as the next target on the US hit-list? (US Department of State)

Somalia High on US List of Terror Targets (December 20, 2001)

Following a meeting with the US Defense Secretary, a senior German official revealed that US action against Somalia was not a question of "if" but "how and when". He added: "Anyone who rules out Somalia would be a fool." (Guardian)

The Iraq Hawks (December 20, 2001)

Senior US officials have little faith in the viability of a new weapons inspection regime in Iraq. The Pentagon is therefore revising long existing plans to support the Iraqi National Congress, an opposition group devoted to the overthrow of Saddam Hussein. (New Yorker)

UN Chief Warns Against Iraq Attack (December 10, 2001)

Secretary General Kofi Annan warns the US not to take military action against Iraq as part of the war against terrorism. The Bush administration expresses concern that Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein seeks new weapons of mass destruction. (BBC News)

Lots of Wars on Terror (December 10, 2001)

The Bush doctrine is now a template for conflicts worldwide: to every action a disproportionate response. (Guardian)

Bin Laden's Next Hiding Place (November 15, 2001)

Who would dare harbor Osama Bin Laden if he decides to leave Afghanistan? Countries like Somalia and Sudan fear being targets for US action in the anti-terrorism drive. (Guardian)

America's 'With or Against Us' War Irks Many U.N. Nations (November 14, 2001)

The US line of conduct imposed on the world after September 11 displeases many countries. The tensions increase as President Bush informs the UN General Assembly of his plans to extend the war on terrorism beyond Afghanistan. (Christian Science Monitor)

"How the War Against Terrorism Could Escalate" (September 2001)

Michael T. Klare predicts the evolution of the US military campaign against terrorism, saying that he expects it to widen to many countries. This may create widespread instability and produce dangerous outcomes that cannot be known. (Foreign Policy In Focus)

Joint Vision 2020: United States Joint Chiefs of Staff (May 2000)

In 2000 the Pentagon officially announced its ambition to achieve "full spectrum dominance" across air, land, sea, space and information environments. Realization of this policy would enable US forces to "defeat any adversary and control any situation across the full range of military operations." (Part 1 | Part 2)

US Imperialism: A Century of Slaughter (Spring, 1999)

This article examines several US interventions over the past century, which it suggests is evidence of US imperialism. It includes testimony from leading US military figures, including General Smedley Butler, in support of its claims. (International Socialist Review)

Vision for 2020: United States Space Command (February 1997)

This report from United States Space Command defines US policy on weapons in space. Both China and Russia supported a UN ban on space weaponry to prevent a costly arms race. Yet, the US voted against such a draft resolution and withdrew from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty. The report reveals a unilateral strategy within US policy "dominating the space dimension of military operations to protect US interests and investment" and denying access to adversaries.

The Rise of the United States to World Power: 1867 to 1917

An excellent short history of US imperial ambitions and strategies in the Caribbean and the Pacific from 1867 to 1917. Includes maps.

Instances of Use of United States Forces Abroad, 1798 – 1993 (October 7, 1993)

This report by the Congressional Research Servicedetails over 234 instances of US military actions abroad from 1798 to 1993. While comprehensive, it leaves out key reasons for US interventions and cites only official rationales.


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