How Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything
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|Author by||: Rosa Brooks|
|Editor||: Simon and Schuster|
Inside secure command centers, military officials make life and death decisions-- but the Pentagon also offers food courts, banks, drugstores, florists, and chocolate shops. It is rather symbolic of the way that the U.S. military has become our one-stop-shopping solution to global problems. Brooks traces this seismic shift in how America wages war, and provides a rallying cry for action as we undermine the values and rules that keep our world from sliding toward chaos.
|Author by||: Rosa Brooks|
Journalist and law professor Rosa Brooks goes beyond the "blue wall of silence" in this radical inside examination of American policing In her forties, with two children, a spouse, a dog, a mortgage, and a full-time job as a tenured law professor at Georgetown University, Rosa Brooks decided to become a cop. A liberal academic and journalist with an enduring interest in law's troubled relationship with violence, Brooks wanted the kind of insider experience that would help her understand how police officers make sense of their world—and whether that world can be changed. In 2015, against the advice of everyone she knew, she applied to become a sworn, armed reserve police officer with the Washington, DC, Metropolitan Police Department. Then as now, police violence was constantly in the news. The Black Lives Matter movement was gaining momentum, protests wracked America's cities, and each day brought more stories of cruel, corrupt cops, police violence, and the racial disparities that mar our criminal justice system. Lines were being drawn, and people were taking sides. But as Brooks made her way through the police academy and began work as a patrol officer in the poorest, most crime-ridden neighborhoods of the nation's capital, she found a reality far more complex than the headlines suggested. In Tangled Up in Blue, Brooks recounts her experiences inside the usually closed world of policing. From street shootings and domestic violence calls to the behind-the-scenes police work during Donald Trump's 2016 presidential inauguration, Brooks presents a revelatory account of what it's like inside the "blue wall of silence." She issues an urgent call for new laws and institutions, and argues that in a nation increasingly divided by race, class, ethnicity, geography, and ideology, a truly transformative approach to policing requires us to move beyond sound bites, slogans, and stereotypes. An explosive and groundbreaking investigation, Tangled Up in Blue complicates matters rather than simplifies them, and gives pause both to those who think police can do no wrong—and those who think they can do no right.
|Author by||: Buddy Levy|
In 1519, Hernâan Cortâes arrived on the shores of Mexico with a roughshod crew of adventurers and the intent to expand the Spanish empire. Along the way, this brash and roguish conquistador schemed to convert the native inhabitants to Catholicism and carry off a fortune in gold. In Tenochtitlâan, the City of Dreams, Cortâes met his Aztec counterpart, Montezuma: king, divinity, ruler of a complex and sophisticated civilization with fifteen million people, and commander of the most powerful military machine in the Americas. Yet in less than two years, Cortâes defeated the entire Aztec nation in one of the most astonishing military campaigns ever waged. Sometimes outnumbered thousands-to-one, Cortâes repeatedly beat seemingly impossible odds. Journalist Levy meticulously researches the mix of cunning, courage, brutality, superstition, and finally disease that enabled Cortâes and his men to survive.--From publisher description.
|Author by||: Bernard E. Harcourt|
|Editor||: Basic Books|
A distinguished political theorist sounds the alarm about the counterinsurgency strategies used to govern Americans Militarized police officers with tanks and drones. Pervasive government surveillance and profiling. Social media that distract and track us. All of these, contends Bernard E. Harcourt, are facets of a new and radical governing paradigm in the United States--one rooted in the modes of warfare originally developed to suppress anticolonial revolutions and, more recently, to prosecute the war on terror. The Counterrevolution is a penetrating and disturbing account of the rise of counterinsurgency, first as a military strategy but increasingly as a way of ruling ordinary Americans. Harcourt shows how counterinsurgency's principles--bulk intelligence collection, ruthless targeting of minorities, pacifying propaganda--have taken hold domestically despite the absence of any radical uprising. This counterrevolution against phantom enemies, he argues, is the tyranny of our age. Seeing it clearly is the first step to resisting it effectively.
|Author by||: John Ferejohn,Frances McCall Rosenbluth|
|Editor||: W. W. Norton & Company|
Peace, many would agree, is a goal that democratic nations should strive to achieve. But is democracy, in fact, dependent on war to survive? Having spent their celebrated careers exploring this provocative question, John Ferejohn and Frances McCall Rosenbluth trace the surprising ways in which governments have mobilized armies since antiquity, discovering that our modern form of democracy not only evolved in a brutally competitive environment but also quickly disintegrated when the powerful elite no longer needed their citizenry to defend against existential threats. Bringing to vivid life the major battles that shaped our current political landscape, the authors begin with the fierce warrior states of Athens and the Roman Republic. While these experiments in “mixed government” would serve as a basis for the bargain between politics and protection at the heart of modern democracy, Ferejohn and Rosenbluth brilliantly chronicle the generations of bloodshed that it would take for the world’s dominant states to hand over power to the people. In fact, for over a thousand years, even as medieval empires gave way to feudal Europe, the king still ruled. Not even the advancements of gunpowder—which decisively tipped the balance away from the cavalry-dominated militaries and in favor of mass armies—could threaten the reign of monarchs and “landed elites” of yore. The incredibly wealthy, however, were not well equipped to handle the massive labor classes produced by industrialization. As we learn, the Napoleonic Wars stoked genuine, bottom-up nationalism and pulled splintered societies back together as “commoners” stepped up to fight for their freedom. Soon after, Hitler and Stalin perfectly illustrated the military limitations of dictatorships, a style of governance that might be effective for mobilizing an army but not for winning a world war. This was a lesson quickly heeded by the American military, who would begin to reinforce their ranks with minorities in exchange for greater civil liberties at home. Like Francis Fukuyama and Jared Diamond’s most acclaimed works, Forged Through Fire concludes in the modern world, where the “tug of war” between the powerful and the powerless continues to play out in profound ways. Indeed, in the covert battlefields of today, drones have begun to erode the need for manpower, giving politicians even less incentive than before to listen to the demands of their constituency. With American democracy’s flanks now exposed, this urgent examination explores the conditions under which war has promoted one of the most cherished human inventions: a government of the people, by the people, for the people. The result promises to become one of the most important history books to emerge in our time.
|Author by||: Meghan Daum|
|Editor||: Simon and Schuster|
A NEW YORK TIMES 100 NOTABLE BOOKS OF 2019 SELECTION From “one of the most emotionally exacting, mercilessly candid, deeply funny, and intellectually rigorous writers of our time” (Cheryl Strayed, author of Wild) comes a seminal new book that reaches surprising truths about feminism, the Trump era, and the Resistance movement. You won’t be able to stop thinking about it and talking about it. In the fall of 2016, acclaimed author Meghan Daum began working on a book about the excesses of contemporary feminism. With Hillary Clinton soon to be elected, she figured even the most fiercely liberal of her friends and readers could take the criticisms in stride. But after the election, she knew she needed to do more, and her nearly completed manuscript went in the trash. What came out in its place is the most sharply-observed, all-encompassing, and unputdownable book of her career. In this gripping new work, Meghan examines our country’s most intractable problems with clear-eyed honesty instead of exaggerated outrage. With passion, humor, and most importantly nuance, she tries to make sense of the current landscape—from Donald Trump’s presidency to the #MeToo movement and beyond. In the process, she wades into the waters of identity politics and intersectionality, thinks deeply about the gender wage gap, and tests a theory about the divide between Gen Xers and millennials. This signature work may well be the first book to capture the essence of this era in all its nuances and contradictions. No matter where you stand on its issues, this book will strike a chord.
|Author by||: Richard Stengel|
|Editor||: Atlantic Books|
During the final three years of the Obama administration, Richard Stengel, the former editor of Time magazine and an Under Secretary of State, was on the front lines of the new global information war. At the time, he was the single person in government tasked with unpacking, disproving and combating both ISIS's messaging and Russian disinformation. Then, in 2016, as the presidential election unfolded, Stengel watched as Donald Trump used disinformation himself, weaponizing the grievances of Americans who felt overlooked. In fact, Stengel quickly came to see how all three players had used the same playbook: ISIS sought to make Islam great again; Putin tried to make Russia great again; and we all know about Trump. In a narrative that is by turns dramatic and eye-opening, Information Wars walks readers through of this often frustrating battle. Stengel moves through Russia and Ukraine, Saudi Arabia and Iraq, and introduces characters from Putin to Hillary Clinton, John Kerry and Mohamed bin Salman to show how disinformation is impacting our global society. He illustrates how ISIS terrorized the world using social media, and how the Russians launched a tsunami of disinformation around the annexation of Crimea - a scheme that became the model for their interference with the 2016 presidential election. An urgent book for our times, Information Wars stresses that we must find a way to combat this ever growing threat to democracy.
|Author by||: Yaakov Katz,Amir Bohbot|
|Editor||: St. Martin's Press|
"A lively account of Israel's evolving military prowess...if The Weapon Wizards were a novel, it would be one written by Horatio Alger; if it were a biblical allegory, it would be the story of David and Goliath." —The New York Times Book Review From drones to satellites, missile defense systems to cyber warfare, Israel is leading the world when it comes to new technology being deployed on the modern battlefield. The Weapon Wizards shows how this tiny nation of 8 million learned to adapt to the changes in warfare and in the defense industry and become the new prototype of a 21st century superpower, not in size, but rather in innovation and efficiency—and as a result of its long war experience. Sitting on the front lines of how wars are fought in the 21st century, Israel has developed in its arms trade new weapons and retrofitted old ones so they remain effective, relevant, and deadly on a constantly-changing battlefield. While other countries begin to prepare for these challenges, they are looking to Israel—and specifically its weapons—for guidance. Israel is, in effect, a laboratory for the rest of the world. How did Israel do it? And what are the military and geopolitical implications of these developments? These are some of the key questions Yaakov Katz and Amir Bohbot address. Drawing on a vast amount of research, and unparalleled access to the Israeli defense establishment, this book is a report directly from the front lines.
|Author by||: James Burton|
|Editor||: Naval Institute Press|
From the late 1960s through the mid-1980s, a small band of military activists waged war against corruption in the Pentagon, challenging a system they believed squandered the public’s money and trust. The book examines the movement and its proponents and describes how the system responded to the criticisms and efforts to change accepted practices and entrenched ways of thinking. The author, an air force colonel and part of the movement, worked in the pentagon for fourteen years. He presents a view of the Department of Defense that only an insider could offer. He exposes serious flaws in the military policy-making process, particularly in weapons development and procurement. The details he gives on the unrelenting push for high-tech weapons, despite their ineffectiveness and extraordinary cost-overruns, provide a strong case for the charge of ethical bankruptcy. The second half of the book deals with the author’s attempts to get frontline equipment tested under combat conditions. For the first time, readers learn the nasty details of his battle with the army over line-fire testing of the Bradley Fighting Vehicle—a battle that he eventually won, leading to the personnel carrier’s redesign and the saving of many lives. Never reluctant to name names and reveal details, James G. Burton presents a forceful case. And his revelations offer insights not found elsewhere into the motivations and actions of the people who wield power from within. Nor does he stop at the walls of the Pentagon. In his epilogue he tells what happened in the field during the final hours of the Gulf War that allowed Hussein’s elite Republican Guard to escape. Now back in print after having inspired a feature HBO film, this explosive account of insider corruption is sure to serve policy-makers for generations to come.
|Author by||: Ronan Farrow|
|Editor||: W. W. Norton|
A harrowing exploration of the collapse of American diplomacy and the abdication of global leadership, by the winner of the 2018 Pulitzer Prize in Public Service.
|Author by||: John J. Mearsheimer|
|Editor||: Yale University Press|
A major theoretical statement by a distinguished political scholar explains why a policy of liberal hegemony is doomed to fail It is widely believed in the West that the United States should spread liberal democracy across the world, foster an open international economy, and build international institutions. The policy of remaking the world in America's image is supposed to protect human rights, promote peace, and make the world safe for democracy. But this is not what has happened. Instead, the United States has become a highly militarized state fighting wars that undermine peace, harm human rights, and threaten liberal values at home. In this major statement, the renowned international-relations scholar John Mearsheimer argues that liberal hegemony--the foreign policy pursued by the United States since the Cold War ended--is doomed to fail. It makes far more sense, he maintains, for Washington to adopt a more restrained foreign policy based on a sound understanding of how nationalism and realism constrain great powers abroad. The Great Delusion is a lucid and compelling work of the first importance for scholars, policymakers, and everyone interested in the future of American foreign policy.
|Author by||: Fred Kaplan|
|Editor||: Simon & Schuster|
From the author of the classic The Wizards of Armageddon and Pulitzer Prize finalist comes the definitive history of American policy on nuclear war—and Presidents’ actions in nuclear crises—from Truman to Trump. Fred Kaplan, hailed by The New York Times as “a rare combination of defense intellectual and pugnacious reporter,” takes us into the White House Situation Room, the Joint Chiefs of Staff’s “Tank” in the Pentagon, and the vast chambers of Strategic Command to bring us the untold stories—based on exclusive interviews and previously classified documents—of how America’s presidents and generals have thought about, threatened, broached, and just barely avoided nuclear war from the dawn of the atomic age until today. Kaplan’s historical research and deep reporting will stand as the permanent record of politics. Discussing theories that have dominated nightmare scenarios from Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Kaplan presents the unthinkable in terms of mass destruction and demonstrates how the nuclear war reality will not go away, regardless of the dire consequences.
|Author by||: Mike German|
|Editor||: The New Press|
A former FBI undercover agent and whistleblower gives us a riveting and troubling account of the contemporary FBI—essential reading for our times Impressively researched and eloquently argued, former special agent Mike German’s Disrupt, Discredit, and Divide tells the story of the transformation of the FBI after the 9/11 attacks from a law enforcement agency, made famous by prosecuting organized crime and corruption in business and government, into arguably the most secretive domestic intelligence agency America has ever seen. German shows how FBI leaders exploited the fear of terrorism in the aftermath of 9/11 to shed the legal constraints imposed on them in the 1970s in the wake of Hoover-era civil rights abuses. Empowered by the Patriot Act and new investigative guidelines, the bureau resurrected a discredited theory of terrorist “radicalization” and adopted a “disruption strategy” that targeted Muslims, foreigners, and communities of color, and tarred dissidents inside and outside the bureau as security threats, dividing American communities against one another. By prioritizing its national security missions over its law enforcement mission, the FBI undermined public confidence in justice and the rule of law. Its failure to include racist, anti-Semitic, Islamophobic, and xenophobic violence committed by white nationalists within its counterterrorism mandate only increased the perception that the FBI was protecting the powerful at the expense of the powerless. Disrupt, Discredit, and Divide is an engaging and unsettling contemporary history of the FBI and a bold call for reform, told by a longtime counterterrorism undercover agent who has become a widely admired whistleblower and a critic for civil liberties and accountable government.
|Author by||: Peter Feaver|
|Editor||: Harvard University Press|
How do civilians control the military? In the wake of September 11, the renewed presence of national security in everyday life has made this question all the more pressing. In this book, Peter Feaver proposes an ambitious new theory that treats civil-military relations as a principal-agent relationship, with the civilian executive monitoring the actions of military agents, the armed servants of the nation-state. Military obedience is not automatic but depends on strategic calculations of whether civilians will catch and punish misbehavior. This model challenges Samuel Huntington's professionalism-based model of civil-military relations, and provides an innovative way of making sense of the U.S. Cold War and post-Cold War experience--especially the distinctively stormy civil-military relations of the Clinton era. In the decade after the Cold War ended, civilians and the military had a variety of run-ins over whether and how to use military force. These episodes, as interpreted by agency theory, contradict the conventional wisdom that civil-military relations matter only if there is risk of a coup. On the contrary, military professionalism does not by itself ensure unchallenged civilian authority. As Feaver argues, agency theory offers the best foundation for thinking about relations between military and civilian leaders, now and in the future.
|Author by||: James R. Locher|
|Editor||: Texas A&M University Press|
War is waged not only on battlefields. In the mid-1980s a high-stakes political struggle to redesign the relationships among the president, secretary of defense, Joint Chiefs of Staff, chairman of the Joint Chiefs, and warfighting commanders in the field resulted in the Goldwater-Nichols Act of 1986. Author James R. Locher III played a key role in the congressional effort to repair a dysfunctional military whose interservice squabbling had cost American taxpayers billions of dollars and put the lives of thousands of servicemen and women at risk. Victory on this front helped make possible the military successes the United States has enjoyed since the passage of the bill and to prepare it for the challenges it must still face.Victory on the Potomac provides the first detailed history of how Congress unified the Pentagon and does so with the benefit of an insider's view. In a fast-paced account that reads like a novel, Locher follows the bill through congressional committee to final passage, making clear that the process is neither abstract nor automatic. His vivid descriptions bring to life the amazing cast of this real-life drama, from the straight-shooting chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Barry Goldwater, to the peevishly stubborn secretary of defense, Caspear Weinberger.Locher's analysis of political maneuvering and bureaucratic infighting will fascinate anyone who has an interest in how government works, and his understanding of the stakes in military reorganization will make clear why this legislative victory meant so much to American military capability. James R. Locher III, a graduate of West Point and Harvard Business School began his career in Washington as an executive trainee in the Office of the Secretary of Defense. He has worked in the White House, the Pentagon, and the Senate. During the period covered by this book, he was a staff member for the Senate Committee on Armed Services. Since then, he has served as an assistant secretary of defense in the first Bush and the early Clinton administrations. Currently, he works as a consultant and lecturer on defense matters.
|Author by||: Geoffrey Wellum|
|Editor||: Penguin UK|
Two months before the outbreak of the Second World War, eighteen-year-old Geoffrey Wellum becomes a fighter pilot with the RAF . . . Desperate to get in the air, he makes it through basic training to become the youngest Spitfire pilot in the prestigious 92 Squadron. Thrust into combat almost immediately, Wellum finds himself flying several sorties a day, caught up in terrifying dogfights with German Me 109s. Over the coming months he and his fellow pilots play a crucial role in the Battle of Britain. But of the friends that take to the air alongside Wellum many never return.
|Author by||: Dalton Trumbo|
|Editor||: Kensington Publishing Corp.|
The Searing Portrayal Of War That Has Stunned And Galvanized Generations Of Readers An immediate bestseller upon its original publication in 1939, Dalton Trumbo’s stark, profoundly troubling masterpiece about the horrors of World War I brilliantly crystallized the uncompromising brutality of war and became the most influential protest novel of the Vietnam era. Johnny Got His Gun is an undisputed classic of antiwar literature that’s as timely as ever. “A terrifying book, of an extraordinary emotional intensity.”--The Washington Post "Powerful. . . an eye-opener." --Michael Moore "Mr. Trumbo sets this story down almost without pause or punctuation and with a fury amounting to eloquence."--The New York Times "A book that can never be forgotten by anyone who reads it."--Saturday Review
|Author by||: David Kilcullen|
|Editor||: Oxford University Press|
Just a few years ago, people spoke of the US as a hyperpower-a titan stalking the world stage with more relative power than any empire in history. Yet as early as 1993, newly-appointed CIA director James Woolsey pointed out that although Western powers had "slain a large dragon" by defeating the Soviet Union in the Cold War, they now faced a "bewildering variety of poisonous snakes." In The Dragons and the Snakes, the eminent soldier-scholar David Kilcullen asks how, and what, opponents of the West have learned during the last quarter-century of conflict. Applying a combination of evolutionary theory and detailed field observation, he explains what happened to the "snakes"-non-state threats including terrorists and guerrillas-and the "dragons"-state-based competitors such as Russia and China. He explores how enemies learn under conditions of conflict, and examines how Western dominance over a very particular, narrowly-defined form of warfare since the Cold War has created a fitness landscape that forces adversaries to adapt in ways that present serious new challenges to America and its allies. Within the world's contemporary conflict zones, Kilcullen argues, state and non-state threats have increasingly come to resemble each other, with states adopting non-state techniques and non-state actors now able to access levels of precision and lethal weapon systems once only available to governments. A counterintuitive look at this new, vastly more complex environment, The Dragons and the Snakes will not only reshape our understanding of the West's enemies' capabilities, but will also show how we can respond given the increasing limits on US power.
|Author by||: Smedley D. Butler|
|Editor||: Wyatt North Publishing, LLC|
War Is a Racket is a famous anti-war book written by retired Major General Smedley Buter. In the book, Butler discusses how businesses profit from conflict.