Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

William J. Astore: In Wars and Weapons We Trust

We believe in wars. We may no longer believe in formal declarations of war (not since December 1941 has Congress made one in our name), but that sure hasn’t stopped us from waging them.

August 16, 2019 · 1 Comment

William J. Astore: The U.S. Military’s Lost Wars

Overfunded, Overhyped, and Always Over There. One of the finest military memoirs of any generation is Defeat Into Victory, British Field Marshal Sir William Slim’s perceptive account of World War II’s torturous Burma … Continue reading

January 30, 2019 · 1 Comment

W.J. Astore: Happy 4th of July! And a Global War on Something

I live in a fairly posh area of America.  A place where people have vacation “cottages” with pools, a “destination” place for some, especially in July and August.  July 4th … Continue reading

July 4, 2017 · Leave a comment

William J. Astore: The Slow-Motion Collapse of the American Empire

Jump into your time machine and let me transport you back to another age. It’s May 2001 and the Atlantic Monthly has just arrived in the mail.  I’m tantalized by … Continue reading

June 12, 2017 · Leave a comment

W.J. Astore: Lying and Deception in the Iraq War – and Today

This is part 2 of 2 of an essay dealing with lying, politics, and war, inspired by Hannah Arendt’s writings on The Pentagon Papers. For part 1, click here. After … Continue reading

April 12, 2016 · 2 Comments

W.J. Astore: Why Are PTSD Rates So High Among Veterans?

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a major problem among veterans who fought in Iraq and Afghanistan. The VA government web site explains that “OEF/OIF service members are at risk for … Continue reading

April 4, 2016 · Leave a comment

William J. Astore: The U.S. Military Suffers from Affluenza

Showering the Pentagon with Money and Praise The word “affluenza” is much in vogue. Lately, it’s been linked to a Texas teenager, Ethan Couch, who in 2013 killed four people … Continue reading

February 16, 2016 · Leave a comment

W.J. Astore: War, American Style

A common belief shared by U.S. political pundits and a compliant and complicit U.S. media is that America never chooses its wars: it’s dragged into them. Last October, I read … Continue reading

January 22, 2016 · Leave a comment

W.J. Astore: Your Wish Is My Commando

Originally posted on The Contrary Perspective:
W.J. Astore Privatization of war is making it far easier for America’s imperial state to wage endless war throughout the world.  Consider the case…

February 17, 2015 · Leave a comment

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