War

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Concept.png War  SourcewatchRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
Lea.2000YardStare-lg.jpg
"The 2000 Yard Stare", a famous depiction of the trauma of war
Interest of• Erling Bjøl
• Coalition Information Center
• Anthony Cordesman
• Martin Edmonds
• Lawrence D. Freedman
• James Gow
• Chris Hedges
• Information Clearing House
• International Institute for Strategic Studies
• Richard Iron
• John Keegan
• Frank Kitson
• Thomas Mahnken
• Richard Perle
• Quincy Institute For Responsible Statecraft
• Peter Warren Singer
War is the organised and large scale use of armed forces, in the modern era, generally directed by national governments. It has gone on since the beginning of recorded history, though the numbers killed have increased with larger populations and the proportion of civilian victims has increased with more efficient weapons.

Official Narrative

Great lengths are gone to to glorify war. Killing, usually proscribed in the strongest terms by most societies, is allowed and even glorified during a war. Patriotism, love of the country of ones birth and a readiness to kill strangers from outside it on demand are equated, particularly for the young male populations. The general narrative is of war as a necessary evil which should be tolerated within certain limits (the "laws of war" such as the Geneva Convention). Specific wars are always buttressed by carefully prepared official narratives particular to local circumstances, personalities and social mores.

Casus Belli

Full article: casus belli

A casus belli, a cause for war, is an essential part of the narrative of the "just war" which suggests that wars are acceptable. Referring to the United States's entry into World War I, US Senator Hiram Johnson is widely reported to have observed that "the first casualty when war comes is truth".

False Flag Attacks

Full article: False Flag Attacks
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False Flag Attacks are attacks intended to be blamed on someone other than the perpetrator. Almost all modern wars begin with one or more such attack which the aggressor blames on the country they wish to attack, to provide a pretext to spur on the attacking forces and promote the support of third parties. These are sometimes treated with scepticism from the outset, other times they remain unrevealed for many years.

The Health Of The State

“In times of peace, without an external enemy, the fear that feeds war tends to find its outlet within the society, in the hatred between classes and races, in the everyday violence of crime, of automobile accidents, and even the self-violence of suicide. War sucks much of this up into one fulcrum and shoots it outward to make an un­known enemy pay for our internal sins.”
Ernest Becker (1975)  [1]

“War is the health of the state” [2] wrote Randolph Bourne in the midst of World War 1. As the nations of Europe went to war in 1914, the governments flourished, patriotism bloomed, class struggle was temporarily stilled, and young men died in their millions on the battlefields - often for a few hundred yards of land gained or lost.

In the United States, not yet in WWI, there was worry about the health of the state. Socialism was growing. The IWW seemed to be everywhere. Class conflict was intense. In the summer of 1916, during a Preparedness Day parade in San Francisco, a bomb exploded, killing nine people; two local radicals, Tom Mooney and Warren Billings, were arrested and would spend twenty years in prison. Shortly after that Senator James Wadsworth of New York suggested compulsory military training for all males to avert the danger that "these people of ours shall be divided into classes." Rather: "We must let our young men know that they owe some responsibility to this country."

"A bayonet is a weapon with a worker at each end." - An anonymous British pacifist slogan during World War II.

Perpetual wars

Full article: Perpetual war
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The "War on Terror" and the "War on Drugs" and are two examples of what Professor Peter Dale Scott refers to as "America's self-generating wars".[3] They are not intended to be won, as they provide a great increase in ease of social control. Many of those involved, from the DEA to the marketers of private prisons, from "terror experts" and their "counter-terror" industry which has sprung up, are so busy profiting from these wars that they don't stop to question them. As Global Research notes, the media “experts” "are nothing less than military salesman hyping their stock portfolios."[4]

Predictions

In 1948, George Orwell's dystopian 1984 included the comment that “The primary aim of modern warfare is to use up the products of the machine without raising the general standard of living.” [5] In 1974, Mae Brussell predicted that "We are going to see a great number of articles in the future from so-called experts and public officials. They will warn about more violence, more kidnappings, and more terrorists. Mass media, the armed forces, and intelligence agencies will saturate our lives with fascist scare tactics and “predictions” that have already been planned to come true."[6]

Weapons of mass destruction

Atomic War

The 1945 dropping of atomic weapons on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki forever changed the narrative of war, in spite of extensive efforts to hide the longer term consequences of the attacks. No atomic weapons have been dropped on civilian populations since, though tens of thousands have been (and still are being) produced, most notably by the USA, which has more nuclear weapons than all other nations combined.

Depleted Uranium

Full article: Depleted Uranium

Used perhaps since the 1970s, Depleted Uranium is classified as a conventional (i.e. non-nuclear) weapon, but causes radiological pollution with long term health effects similar to nuclear weapons.

Biological Warfare

Biological warfare is prohibited, as is research into new viruses and biological agents. However, this ban is largely ineffective, since research into prevention of such developments is permitted - and amounts to more or less the same thing. In any case, biological weapons research labs are generally highly secure facilities not subject to oversight in any case.

Chemical Warfare

Chemical warfare began in WW1 with the use of toxic gases such as chlorine, and the terrifying injuries quickly lead to a ban on its use. Chemical weapons such as white phosphorus are nevertheless sometimes used, even in urban areas, for example by Israeli forces in the Gaza War or by US forces in Fallujah.

External Links


 

Examples

Page nameDurationLocationDescription
1948 Palestine warIsrael
Palestine
1980s Afghan warAfghanistan
1982 Lebanon WarLebanonAn Israeli invasion of Lebanon. They militarily occupied some of the country until 2000.
2001 Invasion of AfghanistanAfghanistanThe ongoing war in Afghanistan, instigated within a month of 9/11, supposedly in retaliation, with the claimed justification - for which no evidence has been presented - that the attacks were planned by Ossama bin Laden, and that he was based in Afghanistan.
2003 Iraq WarIraqA war for oil carried out after "Operation Mass Appeal" an MI6-backed propaganda campaign.
2006 Lebanon WarIsrael
Lebanon
Golan Heights
2011 Attacks on LibyaLibya"Perhaps one of the most egregious examples of US military aggression and lawlessness in recent memory", carried out under a pretext of "humanitarian intervention".
2014 Ukraine coup/Civil warUkraine
Algerian WarAlgeria
American Civil WarUS
Civil war
Falklands WarFalkland Islands
Atlantic Ocean
A politically very convenient military conflict championed by Margaret Thatcher.
Gaza War (2008–09)GazaThree weeks of assault launched against Gaza by Israel, including the use of white phosphorus, leaving over 1000 people dead and over 5000 injured.
Gulf WarKuwaitA war used by the US to effectively cow the Saudis into submission and bolster US military domination of the Gulf region.
Iran-Iraq warIran
Iraq
Irish War of Independence
Korean WarSea of Japan
Korea Strait
South Korea
The war on the Korean peninsular between the China/Soviet-backed forces of the North and the US-backed South between 1951-53
Kosovo War
Nuclear war
Perpetual war
Proxy war
Rhodesian Bush WarZimbabwe
Southern Africa
Russian Civil WarRussia
Six Day WarIsrael
Egypt
Spanish civil warSpain
Suez CrisisGaza
Egypt
Sinai Peninsula
Suez Canal zone
Vietnam WarVietnam
Cambodia
Laos
Thailand
The Vietnam War was a proxy war lead by US that occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from December 1956 to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975. Millions of people were killed, mostly Vietnamese. JFK was assassinated soon after declaring his intent to withdraw US troops. The war helped the CIA to refine its methods of illegal drug trafficking, torture and the like.
WW1WorldThe "Great War" and the "War to End War". Perhaps 10 million killed.
WW2WorldThe second world war.
WW3
War in YemenYemen
War of 1812
War of aggression
Winter WarFinland
Yom Kippur WarGolan Heights
Suez Canal
Surrounding regions
A Bilderberg approved war in the Middle East to provide probable cause to increased the oil price, allowing US oil companies to cash in big time.

 

Related Quotations

PageQuoteAuthorDate
Journalist“And I think, in the end, that is the best definition of journalism I have heard; to challenge authority - all authority - especially so when governments and politicians take us to war, when they have decided that they will kill and others will die.”Robert Fisk
Salmon Levinson“The real disease of the world is the legality and availability of war. We should have, not as now, laws of war, but laws against war; just as there are no laws of murder or of poisoning, but laws against them.”Salmon LevinsonAugust 1917
Love“I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality… I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word.”MLK
Bernard Montgomery“The next war on land will be very different from the last one, in that we shall have to fight it in a different way. In reaching a decision on that matter, we must first be clear about certain rules of war. Rule 1, on page I of the book of war, is: "Do not march on Moscow". Various people have tried it, Napoleon and Hitler, and it is no good. That is the first rule. I do not know whether your Lordships will know Rule 2 of war. It is: "Do not go fighting with your land armies in China". It is a vast country, with no clearly defined objectives, and an army fighting there would be engulfed by what is known as the Ming Bing, the people's insurgents.”Bernard Montgomery30 May 1962
Nice truck eventDemocracy must not be weak, nor simply commemorate. Democracy must say "We will win the war."”Nicolas SarkozyJuly 2016
Obedience“Historically, the most terrible things - war, genocide, and slavery - have resulted not from disobedience, but from obedience.”Howard Zinn
George Orwell“[A] world in which it is wrong to murder an individual civilian and right to drop a thousand tons of high explosive on a residential area does sometimes make me wonder whether this earth of ours is not a loony bin made use of by some other planet.”George Orwell31 December 1943
James R. Schlesinger“Someone once said that war is hell, and peace is heaven. But we know that the opposite is true: War is heaven, and peace is hell.”James R. Schlesinger
Kurt Vonnegut“Here’s what I think the truth is: We are all addicts of fossil fuels in a state of denial. And like so many addicts about to face cold turkey, our leaders are now committing violent crimes to get what little is left of what we’re hooked on.”Kurt Vonnegut
Howard Zinn“They'll say we're disturbing the peace, but there is no peace. What really bothers them is we're disturbing the war.”Howard Zinn

 

Related Documents

TitleTypePublication dateAuthor(s)Description
Document:911 JFK and Waressay18 August 2007Peter Dale Scott
Document:Casualties of Wararticle1 November 2010Ian Townsend-Gault
Document:Global Warfare. Preparing for World War IIIarticle1 August 2010Michel ChossudovskyUS Global military deployments, bases and command structure analysed as integral to an agenda aiming at total world hegemony
Document:Global economic model of wararticle4 September 2013Denis Rancourt
Document:H.RES.758legal document18 November 2014US CongressThis bill puts America on a footing for war against Russia. It has received close to zero coverage in the US and other establishment media.
Document:I will wear a poppy for the last timearticle8 November 2013Harry SmithA WW2 veteran airs his disillusionment with the way in which the establishment's cynical use of remembrance day to promote the official narrative of all the US/UK/NATO military escapades as being purely altruistically motivated.
Document:Is media just another word for control?audio transcript2 January 2014John PilgerThis is a transcript of John Pilger's contribution to a special edition of BBC Radio 4's 'Today' programme, on 2 January 2014, guest-edited by the artist and musician Polly Harvey.
Document:The Reasons for the Decline of MODreform proposal6 April 2018Integrity InitiativeThe Civil and Military Services have seen their intellectual capacity dramatically reduced as they have reduced in numbers, and for the past decade have made virtually no contribution to the redesign of the Whitehall structures of power. This now needs to change.
Document:The War Prayershort storyNovember 1916Mark TwainMark Twain's scathing indictment of war, and particularly of blind patriotic and religious fervor as motivations for war. The piece was left unpublished at his death, largely due to pressure from his family, who feared that it would be considered sacrilegious. Twain’s publisher and other friends also discouraged him from publishing it.
Document:Think Piece: Current Russian Strategic Thinkingstrategic analysis19 January 2018Chris DonnellyChris Donnelly gives his view on Current Russian Strategic Thinking
Document:War Martial Law and the Economic Crisisbook extract1 November 2010Peter Dale Scott
File:Reality Denial.pdfbook2012Edward S. Herman
David Peterson
A critique of Steven Pinker's apologetics for Western Imperial violence in his much acclaimed 2011 book The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined
File:Report from Iron Mountain.pdfbook1967Leonard LewinA precient analysis of why war is considered necessary by the power-brokers of the western world
File:The Military and Halakhah.pdfpaper2006Dov Zakheim
File:Warisaracket.pdfbook1935Smedley ButlerThe classic insider's denunciation of war. Easily readable in one sitting, it is sadly just as relevant to the situation facing humanity in the early 21st century as it was when first published a few years before the carnage of World War II.
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