keywords: Pentagon

  • INTERNATIONAL

    Slaying Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 28 October 2019
    13 Comments

    Here, al-Baghdadi seemed to reprise a previous villainous role: that played by Osama bin Laden, the recognisable face of Al-Qaeda. It was similar in another respect: slaying the symbolic head might provide some form of catharsis, but it would hardly redress the logistic realities on the ground.

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  • MEDIA

    The thief, the party and WikiLeaks

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 02 August 2019
    4 Comments

    The running themes of the Department of Justice charges against Assange are that he is a hacker, an agent of espionage and a danger to necessary secrecy. In so slanting their case, the DOJ hopes to avoid the application of the First Amendment covering press freedoms. The reasoning of District Judge Koeltl suggests this might well fail.

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  • MEDIA

    The creators of fake news are winning

    • David James
    • 30 July 2019
    12 Comments

    They vastly outnumber journalists, their industry is far bigger than the shrinking media organisations, and the concentration of media ownership means that they can do deals with proprietors. Understanding that the trail with fake news leads to the spin doctors can be a useful way to detect what is, and is not, propaganda.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Boris, Brexit and taking it up to political bull

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 03 June 2019
    2 Comments

    An enduring memory of the 2016 Brexit campaign was the claim by pro-leavers that the EU was extracting some £350 million a week. The claim, ignoring EU subsidies, returns and contributions to Britain, was so outrageously proud and inaccurate, it stuck. Which leads us to a novel citizen's experiment on the issue of lying in politics.

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  • ECONOMICS

    The big, bad business of America's war industry

    • David James
    • 20 April 2018
    6 Comments

    As the West flirts with starting World War III in Syria, it is worth examining some of the financial and business dynamics behind the US 'military industrial complex'. War may not be good business, but it is big business. And in contrast to Russia and China, the industry in the US is heavily privatised, including the use of mercenaries.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Belle of the ball: A Syrian morality tale

    • Justin Glyn
    • 23 January 2018
    1 Comment

    Assuming the world is a stage upon which we are the pre-eminent player is problematic when applied to real life, particularly if we happen to have some advantage which allows us to get away with the illusion for a time. The perils of such hubris can be seen particularly acutely in the current Syrian situation.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Trump and Nixon vs the media

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 17 January 2018
    1 Comment

    As America endures one of the most authoritarian and chaotic presidencies in its history, Richard Nixon has, for obvious reasons, been a recurring touchstone for many commentators. Given the clear comparisons, it's no surprise Steven Spielberg pulled out all the stops to bring The Post to the public ASAP.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    What we think we know about the Syrian war

    • Justin Glyn
    • 19 September 2017
    8 Comments

    You could be forgiven for never having heard of Deir ez-Zor. There is virtually no mention of it in the Western press, except by British journalist Robert Fisk. Yet this ancient Syrian city of just over 200,000 people on the banks of the Euphrates is the site of what looks to be the final defeat of the dream of ISIS of creating an ethnically cleansed, sectarian caliphate in Syria and Iraq.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    A terrifying new arms race

    • Todor Shindarov
    • 07 August 2017
    4 Comments

    Today’s highly technological era amazes us with possibilities for human growth and innovation, but in our amazement we often forget to tackle various pitfalls. Arguably, the biggest risk is the emerging military technology, about which there are many unanswered questions. We are faced with many uncertainties: security risks due to loss of competitiveness, potential control over advanced weapons by terrorists and, most importantly, reduced comprehension by the wider society—let alone any participation in the decision making process, as the frenzied pace of technological development increases.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Don't turn away from dire child abuse stats

    • Barry Gittins
    • 25 May 2017
    7 Comments

    Australian kids are being bashed, raped, starved, scorned and otherwise treated with no dignity or kindness. The study states it is not simply a case of one-off abuse, noting that 'research has demonstrated that maltreatment sub-types seldom occur in isolation (e.g. sexual abuse is often accompanied by psychological maltreatment or physical abuse)'. That is difficult reading. It makes me sick to write it. But the paper should, in a just society, serve as a catalyst for a national conversation.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Manning mercy belies double standard on whistleblowers

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 19 January 2017
    5 Comments

    Manning became the victim of an institutional drive to target whistleblowers, with the centrepiece of the prosecution focusing on computer crimes and the Espionage Act. Despite the eventual commutation of her 35 year sentence, the severity of that sentence demonstrated the gulf between the cosy, public relations air of an administration keen to project certain achievements and its stomping on those keen to disclose inappropriate and illegal conduct in the security and intelligence services.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Untangling the murky Turkey plane incident

    • Justin Glyn
    • 26 November 2015
    6 Comments

    The downing of a Russian Sukhoi-24 bomber by Turkey reminds us of the risks which attend military intervention. There are, however, a number of additional complicating factors which promise to make the Syrian war even more dangerous and bloody for all sides. The situation could escalate dangerously. If this kind of event is not to become much more common, potentially leading to a much wider war, genuine peace talks with a lot more honesty on each side need to be a priority.

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