September 3rd, 2013
Western civilization has always glorified the hero, the sacrifice of life for the city, the state, the nation; it has rarely asked the question of whether the established city, state, nation were worth the sacrifice.
April 11th, 2011

An Interesting Quote by David Petraeus From 1987:

“And while observing the Soviet difficulties in Afghanistan with a certain sense of vindication, the US military are at the same time reminded of the difficulties of defeating a determined guerrilla opponent who enjoys sanctuaries and is fighting in rugged terrain. After all, if a country with relatively few public opinion concerns or moral compunctions about its tactics cannot beat a bunch of ill-equipped Afghan tribesmen, what does that say about the ability of the United States — with its domestic constraints, statutory limitations, moral inhibition, and zealous investigative reporters — to carry out a successful action against a guerrilla force?

— From now-General P.’s Princeton Ph.D. dissertation.

March 3rd, 2011

"Kurds are distrustful by nature."

"Many Arabs perceive the world in extremes, perhaps due to the harsh, desert environment that Arabs have lived in for thousands of years."

"Arabs appear paranoid by Western standards. Many perceive problems as part of a plot to foil their attempts to make life more pleasant."

Is this a back-of-a-napkin revelation from some 19th-century anthropologist raised in the British imperial womb? A deleted passage from Lawrence of Arabia’s memoirs? Nope, it’s the modern training manual offered to US servicemembers and military contractors on their way to duty in Iraq. I know this, because I scrounged one in 2008

…Full story at Mother Jones.

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Adam Weinstein.
Gawker senior writer.
Formerly of Mother Jones, Fusion, and the WSJ.