Foreign Policy just released another episode of its Editor’s Roundtable podcast, called “What does the expanding definition of war mean for the US military?” The panelists discuss Rosa Brooks’ new book, How Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything, as well as the general idea of the expansion of war into economic intervention and other arenas. The podcast’s a little dry, but has many interesting moments! FP CEO and editor David Rothkopf says,
But the military has a privileged position in the public policy debate. And one of the consequences of the privileged position that the military has, and really has had since the Reagan era, is that the military is about the only part of the government that really gets a lot of money. Congresspeople tend not to give the military real hard pushback on their finances. So unlike the state department or USAID or the other parts of the government you might want to have playing some of these roles, DOD actually has the money. They’re in because of this privileged position, and that’s part of the reason they end up getting these assignments passed on it them.
Author Rosa Brooks adds,
The military has more money. It doesn’t do all this stuff because it’s necessarily any better at it than the State Department of USAID might be. Often, arguably it’s worse because it’s not what people in the military have been recruited or trained to do. But the military has the money, the military has the resources, the military has the authority. It’s the only public institution left standing.
As the military delves into various forms of nation-building, it is still doing its part to perpetuate traditional war. During the anniversaries of the US dropping nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, people were again circulating articles on nuclear proliferation, including one on why the US is slated to spend $1 trillion on “modernizing” nuclear weapons in the next 30 years. It really appears that people in power have learned nothing from the hundreds of thousands of senseless deaths.
We reported last year on the Peace & Planet mobilization against nuclear weapons. More recently, the Ground Zero Center for Nonviolent Action in Bremerton, WA has begun a No to New Trident campaign to do their part to oppose nuclear proliferation. How are people taking action against nuclear weapons near you?
And: How can war tax resisters contribute to this effort?
Related blog posts:
- Learn more about resistance to US militarism in Japan in our recent War Tax Talk podcast, War Tax Resisters Abroad.
- For a world free of nuclear weapons: Hiroshima and Nagasaki remembered
- Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Fukushima, and war taxes
- Making war tax redirection a more constructive program