Tomgram: Rebecca Gordon, America’s Wars, A Generational Struggle (in the Classroom)

This article originally appeared at TomDispatch.com. To receive TomDispatch in your inbox three times a week, click here.

It’s been a long time since I stood in a classroom and taught anyone anything, but each June for years I’ve appeared before classes of college seniors to give a graduation address ushering them into our grim world. True, those speeches didn’t take place before flesh-and-blood audiences but on what I’ve come to call read more

Yes, the United States Used Biowarfare on North Korea

It’s sort of silly that it matters. The United States bombed North Korea flat with ordinary, non-bioweapons bombs. It ran out of standing structures to bomb. People lived in caves, if they lived. Millions died, most of them from regular old non-scandalous but mass-murderous bombs (including, of course, Napalm which melts people but doesn’t give them exotic diseases). North Koreans to this day live in such terror of a repetition of history that their behavior is sometimes inexplicable and bewildering read more

Does Peace Need a Business Plan?

If you had just asked me if peace needed a “business plan,” I’d have replied, “Sure! Just like it needs a toupeed golfing fascist reality-TV creep in the White House! That’ll just about fix everything! War is over! Thanks!”

But after reading Scilla Elworthy’s book The Business Plan for Peace, I say, “Yeah, OK, that sounds pretty good, actually. Here, let me tweak it some!” In fact, I’ve added this book, despite some quibbles, to my bookshelf of war abolition advocacy. read more

The Trump Administration’s War on Workers

When Donald Trump was running for the presidency, he promised that, if he was elected, “American worker[s] will finally have a president who will protect them and fight for them.”  Today, though, safely ensconced in the White House, President Trump is waging a fierce campaign against American workers.

His appointments to federal positions created to defend workers’ rights provide an indication of his priorities.  For Secretary of Labor, Trump read more

A Reply to the Taliban

Dear Taliban,

Thank you for your letter to the American people.

As one person in the United States I cannot offer you a representative reply on behalf of all of us. Nor can I use polls to tell you what my fellow Americans think, because, as far as I know, polling companies haven’t asked the U.S. public about the war on your country in years. Possible explanations for this include:

  1. We have several other wars going on, and the blowback includes a lot of self-inflicted mass-shootings.
  2. Too many wars at a time doesn’t make the most desired packaging for advertisements.
  3. Our previous president announced that your war was over.
  4. Many here actually think it is over, which makes them useless for polling on the topic of ending it.

I do want to let you know that some of us saw your letter, that some news outlets reported on it, that people have read more

New TCBH! poem: Ostrich’s lament

The sand underground is very dark

But I’ve learned to open my inner eye.

I’ve become quite the dreamer!

Been dreaming up a new world.

It used to be dark down here

All by myself, hiding

From everything that is going on, everything

Swirling around the United States of the Ostrich Farm.

Sure I miss running with my fellow birds.

But I don’t miss it much!

Nobody takes us seriously.

We’re sort of the muppets of nature.

Big eyes, long eyelashes, long scaly legs.

Fluffy butt feathers.

Nobody read more

Shooters not only nuts: US Mass Killers Crucially Abetted by Nuts Who Won’t Ban Assault Weapons and High-Capacity Clips

By Dave Lindorff

Something is clearly sick in America.

The latest shooting in Broward County Florida was no surprise. Like almost all the school shootings that are now weekly events in the United States, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School where it took place was in not some violence-plagued, over-crowded, mostly non-white urban school, but rather was located in the town of Parkland, an upscale suburban community. The school had an “A” rating from the state, as a top-performing high read more

Tomgram: Stephanie Savell, The Hidden Costs of America’s Wars

This article originally appeared at TomDispatch.com. To receive TomDispatch in your inbox three times a week, click here.

When it comes to America’s wars, more than 16 years later our generals are victorious. Not, of course, in the distant lands where those conflicts grind on unendingly, but in the one place that matters: Washington, D.C. Could there be a more striking sign of that than the elevation of three of those generals to key positions in the Trump administration? If any of them are going read more