America's Self-crippled Response to Islamic Totalitarianism
Author: Elan Journo
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
Category: Political Science
"Winning the Unwinnable War shows how our own policy ideas led to 9/11 and then crippled our response in the Middle East, and it makes the case for an unsettling conclusion. By subordinating military victory to perverse, allegedly moral constraints, Washington's policy has undermined our national security. Owing to the significant influence of Just War Theory and neoconservatism, the Bush administration consciously put the imperative of shielding civilians and bringing elections to them above the goal ofeliminating real threats to our security. Consequently, this policy left our enemies stronger, and America weaker than before."--BOOK JACKET.
America's Self-Crippled Response to Islamic Totalitarianism
Author: Elan Journo
Publisher: Lexington Books
Category: Political Science
Eight years after 9/11 and in the shadow of two protracted U.S. military campaigns in the Middle East, the enemy is not only undefeated but emboldened and resurgent. What went wrong_and what should we do going forward? Winning the Unwinnable War shows how our own policy ideas led to 9/11 and then crippled our response in the Middle East, and it makes the case for an unsettling conclusion: By subordinating military victory to perverse, allegedly moral constraints, Washington's policy has undermined our national security. Owing to the significant influence of Just War Theory and neoconservatism, the Bush administration consciously put the imperative of shielding civilians and bringing them elections above the goal of eliminating real threats to our security. Consequently, this policy left our enemies stronger, and America weaker, than before. The dominant alternative to Bush-esque idealism in foreign policy_so-called realism_has made a strong comeback under the tenure of Barack Obama. But this nonjudgmental, supposedly practical approach is precisely what helped unleash the enemy prior to 9/11. The message of the essays in this thematic collection is that only by radically re-thinking our foreign policy in the Middle East can we achieve victory over the enemy that attacked us on 9/11. We need a new moral foundation for our Mideast policy. That new starting point for U.S. policy is the moral ideal championed by the philosopher Ayn Rand: rational self-interest. Implementing this approach entails objectively defining our national interest as protecting the lives and freedoms of Americans_and then taking principled action to safeguard them. The book lays out the necessary steps for achieving victory and for securing America's long-range interests in the volatile Middle East.
America's self-crippled response to Islamic totalitarianism
Author: Elan Journo
By subordinating military victory to perverse, allegedly moral constraints, Washington's post-9/11 policy has undermined our national security. Only by radically re-thinking the ideas behind our foreign policy in the Middle East can we achieve victory over the enemy that attacked us on 9/11.
Why has America stopped winning wars? For nearly a century, up until the end of World War II in 1945, America enjoyed a Golden Age of decisive military triumphs. And then suddenly, we stopped winning wars. The decades since have been a Dark Age of failures and stalemates-in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan-exposing our inability to change course after battlefield setbacks. In this provocative book, award-winning scholar Dominic Tierney reveals how the United States has struggled to adapt to the new era of intractable guerrilla conflicts. As a result, most major American wars have turned into military fiascos. And when battlefield disaster strikes, Washington is unable to disengage from the quagmire, with grave consequences for thousands of U.S. troops and our allies. But there is a better way. Drawing on interviews with dozens of top generals and policymakers, Tierney shows how we can use three key steps-surge, talk, and leave-to stem the tide of losses and withdraw from unsuccessful campaigns without compromising our core values and interests. Weaving together compelling stories of military catastrophe and heroism, this is an unprecedented, timely, and essential guidebook for our new era of unwinnable conflicts. The Right Way to Lose a War illuminates not only how Washington can handle the toughest crisis of all-battlefield failure-but also how America can once again return to the path of victory.
The first major synthesis of the war since 2001, drawing upon a host of newly declassified documents, presidential tapes, and overlooked foreign sources to give the most comprehensive look to date of the war that still haunts America.
What does it mean to win a moral victory? Ideals of just and decisive triumphs often colour the call to war, yet victory is an increasingly dubious proposition in modern conflict, where negotiated settlements and festering violence have replaced formal surrenders. In the Just War and strategic studies traditions, assumptions about victory also underpin decisions to go to war but become more problematic in discussions about its conduct and conclusion. So although winning is typically considered the very object of war, we lack a clear understanding of victory itself. Likewise, we lack reliable resources for discerning a just from an unjust victory, for balancing the duty to fight ethically with the obligation to win, and for assessing the significance of changing ways of war for moral judgment. Though not amenable to easy answers, these important questions are both perennial and especially urgent. This book brings together a group of leading scholars from various disciplines to tackle them. It covers both traditions of victory - charting the historically variable notion of victory and the dialogues and fissures this opens in the just war and strategic canons - along with contemporary challenges of victory- analysing how new security contexts put pressure on these fissures and working toward clearer ideas about victory today. The result is a wide-ranging and timely collection of essays that bridges the gap between ethical, strategic, and historical approaches to war and develops new ways of thinking about it as a practical and moral proposition.
A decade on from the 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, Australians are embroiled in one of the nation's longest military conflict-the war in Afghanistan. An Unwinnable War charts the motives, ambitions and negotiations that carried Australia into Afghanistan: from the then Prime Minister John Howard's presence in Washington DC on September 11, 2001 to the 'transition' plan to hand security to Afghan forces - all played out in the wake of increasing casualties. Based on interviews with key political and military figures in Australia and abroad, An Unwinnable War lays bare the tensions between political and military decision-making, the nature and potency of the US alliance and the influence of individual personalities in charting Australia's course in what was once dubbed the 'good war'.
The military strength of the United States is unmatched in all of world history. Yet fifteen years after September 11, Islamic totalitarianism is undefeated, emboldened, and on the march: from Paris and San Bernardino to Brussels and Orlando. Why? The fundamental problem lies in the irrational philosophic ideas that permeate-and subvert-American foreign policy. The United States is a military superpower, but it lacks the self-confidence and moral certainty needed to defend itself and its ideals. And our political and intellectual leaders evade the nature of Islamic totalitarianism. After 9/11, the Ayn Rand Institute predicted that the prevailing ideas about morality would undercut our foreign policy and cripple us in action. Those predictions have proved correct. Can we end the Islamist menace and secure our right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness on earth? Yes-easily-if we adopt the right philosophic ideas to guide our foreign policy.
A SUNDAY TIMES BOOK OF THE YEAR Afghanistan was an unwinnable war. This definitive account explains why. It could have been a very different story. British forces could have successfully withdrawn from Afghanistan in 2002, having done the job they set out to do: to defeat al-Qaeda. Instead, in the years that followed, Britain paid a devastating price for their presence in Helmand province. So why did Britain enter, and remain, in an ill-fated war? Why did it fail so dramatically, and was this expedition doomed from the beginning? Drawing on unprecedented access to military reports, government documents and senior individuals, Professor Theo Farrell provides an extraordinary work of scholarship. He explains the origins of the war, details the campaigns over the subsequent years, and examines the West’s failure to understand the dynamics of local conflict and learn the lessons of history that ultimately led to devastating costs and repercussions still relevant today. ‘The best book so far on Britain's recent war in Afghanistan’ International Affairs ‘Masterful, irrefutable... Farrell records all these military encounters with the irresistible pace of a novelist’ Sunday Times
In 2009, the Sri Lankan government forces literally eradicated the Tamil Tiger insurgency after 26 years of civil war. This was the first time that a government had defeated an indigenous insurgency by force of arms. It was as if the British army killed thousands of IRA cadres to end the war in Northern Ireland. The story of this war is fascinating in itself, besides the international repercussions for ‘terrorism’ and insurgency worldwide. Many countries involved themselves in the war – to arm the combatants (China, Pakistan, India, and North Korea) or to bring peace (US, France, UK, and Norway). While researching this work Professor Moorcraft was given unprecedented access to Sri Lankan politicians (including the President and his brother, the Defense Permanent Secretary), senior generals, intelligence chiefs, civil servants, UN officials, foreign diplomats and NGOs. He also interviewed the surviving leader of the Tamil Tigers. His conclusions and findings will be controversial. He reveals how the authorities determined to stamp out Tamil Tiger resistance by whatever means frustrated the media and foreign mediators. Their methods, which have led to accusations of war crimes, were brutally effective but are likely to remain highly contentions for years to come.
In this new book, In Pursuit of Wealth: The Moral Case for Finance, Yaron Brook and Don Watkins dispel the prevailing negative myths about finance and clearly lay out the industry's virtues within a moral framework. This ambitious book shows readers how we can reframe societal mores and end the vilification of financiers.
Even after two decades, the memory of the Vietnam War seems to haunt our culture. From Forrest Gump to Miss Saigon, from Tim O'Brien's Pulitzer Prize-winning Going After Cacciato to Robert McNamara's controversial memoir In Retrospect, Americans are drawn again and again to ponder our long, tragic involvement in Southeast Asia. Now eminent historian Robert D. Schulzinger has combed the newly available documentary evidence, both in public and private archives, to produce an ambitious, masterful account of three decades of war in Vietnam--the first major full-length history of the conflict to be based on primary sources. In A Time for War, Schulzinger paints a vast yet intricate canvas of more than three decades of conflict in Vietnam, from the first rumblings of rebellion against the French colonialists to the American intervention and eventual withdrawal. His comprehensive narrative incorporates every aspect of the war--from the military (as seen in his brisk account of the French failure at Dienbienphu) to the economic (such as the wage increase sparked by the draft in the United States) to the political. Drawing on massive research, he offers a vivid and insightful portrait of the changes in Vietnamese politics and society, from the rise of Ho Chi Minh, to the division of the country, to the struggles between South Vietnamese president Diem and heavily armed religious sects, to the infighting and corruption that plagued Saigon. Schulzinger reveals precisely how outside powers--first the French, then the Americans--committed themselves to war in Indochina, even against their own better judgment. Roosevelt, for example, derided the French efforts to reassert their colonial control after World War II, yet Truman, Eisenhower, and their advisers gradually came to believe that Vietnam was central to American interests. The author's account of Johnson is particularly telling and tragic, describing how president would voice clear headed, even prescient warnings about the dangers of intervention--then change his mind, committing America's prestige and military might to supporting a corrupt, unpopular regime. Schulzinger offers sharp criticism of the American military effort, and offers a fascinating look inside the Nixon White House, showing how the Republican president dragged out the war long past the point when he realized that the United States could not win. Finally, Schulzinger paints a brilliant political and social portrait of the times, illuminating the impact of the war on the lives of ordinary Americans and Vietnamese. Schulzinger shows what it was like to participate in the war--as a common soldier, an American nurse, a navy flyer, a conscript in the Army of the Republic of Vietnam, a Vietcong fighter, or an antiwar protester. In a field crowded with fiction, memoirs, and popular tracts, A Time for War will stand as the landmark history of America's longest war. Based on extensive archival research, it will be the first place readers will turn in an effort to understand this tragic, divisive conflict.
Perceptions of Victory and Defeat in International Politics
Author: Dominic D. P Johnson,Dominic Tierney
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Category: Political Science
How do people decide which country came out ahead in a war or a crisis? In Failing to Win, Dominic Johnson and Dominic Tierney dissect the psychological factors that predispose leaders, media, and the public to perceive outcomes as victories or defeats--often creating wide gaps between perceptions and reality.
The Art of War is the oldest and most influential military strategy text in existence, and Sun Tzu's teachings on how to successfully respond to and handle situations of conflict is a must-read for for today's business leaders (and politicians, and many others). Whether you approach this reading for its historical significance or choose to apply this knowledge toward achieving success in your own life, you will be enlightened. This elegantly designed clothbound edition features an elastic closure and a new introduction.
When Waging Wars Is More Important Than Winning Them
Author: David Keen
Publisher: Yale University Press
Category: Politics and war
Keen investigates why conflicts are so prevalent and so intractable, even when one side has much greater military resources. He asks who benefits from wars-- whether economically, politically, or psychologically-- and argues that in order to bring them successfully to an end we need to understand the complex vested interests on all sides.
Now a New York Times bestseller! America is at war. The fight against global jihad has cost 7,000 American lives and almost $2 trillion, and yet, most Americans do not understand what is at stake. The public lacks knowledge and safety because two presidents and their administrations neglected the most basic strategic question: who is the enemy? Presidents Bush and Obama both named the global jihadi movement—a movement with an intent to destroy the West—“violent extremism.” Their tidy term was an attempt to maintain peace with the Muslim community. But when they failed to appropriately name the enemy, they failed to fully understand Islamic extremism. This failure is why the U.S. has been in Afghanistan for sixteen years with no end in sight. But this war is eminently winnable if we remove our ideological blinders, accurately name our enemy, and draw up a strategy to defeat the ideas that inspire terrorism. So says Dr. Sebastian Gorka, one of the most experienced and sought-after authorities on counterterrorism. Dr. Gorka has been one of the intelligence community’s go-to experts on counterterrorism since 9/11. He’s been called to brief Congress and the Marine Corps and was asked to analyze the Patriot’s Day Boston Marathon Bombing for the US government. Dr. Gorka’s report for the trial of Dzhokhar "Jahar" Tsarnaev was widely circulated in counterterrorism circles and the media because it accurately painted a picture, not of a teenager on the cover of Rolling Stone, but of a terrorist. Dr. Gorka is respected by peers because he understands our enemy is not "terror" or "violent extremism." Our enemy is the global jihadi movement, a modern totalitarian ideology rooted in the doctrines and martial history of Islam whose goals are to build an empire, suppress “false Muslims,” and engage in guerilla warfare against infidels. Taking his cue from the formerly top-secret analyses that shaped the U.S. response to the communist threat, Dr. Gorka has produced a compelling profile of the jihadi movement—its mind and motivation—and a plan to defeat it.
“A terrific book, lively and brisk . . . a must read for anyone who tries to understand the Vietnam War.” —Thomas E. Ricks Is it possible that the riddle of America’s military failure in Vietnam has a one-word, one-man answer? Until we understand Gen. William Westmoreland, we will never know what went wrong in the Vietnam War. An Eagle Scout at fifteen, First Captain of his West Point class, Westmoreland fought in two wars and became Superintendent at West Point. Then he was chosen to lead the war effort in Vietnam for four crucial years. He proved a disaster. Unable to think creatively about unconventional warfare, Westmoreland chose an unavailing strategy, stuck to it in the face of all opposition, and stood accused of fudging the results when it mattered most. In this definitive portrait, prize-winning military historian Lewis Sorley makes a plausible case that the war could have been won were it not for General Westmoreland. An authoritative study offering tragic lessons crucial for the future of American leadership, Westmoreland is essential reading. “Eye-opening and sometimes maddening, Sorley’s Westmoreland is not to be missed.” —John Prados, author of Vietnam: The History of an Unwinnable War, 1945–1975
The Untold Story of How a Band of True Believers Seized the Executive Branch, Started the Iraq War, and Still Imperils America's Future
Author: Craig Unger
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
The presidency of George W. Bush has led to the worst foreign policy decision in the history of the United States -- the bloody, unwinnable war in Iraq. How did this happen? Bush's fateful decision was rooted in events that began decades ago, and until now this story has never been fully told. From Craig Unger, the author of the bestseller House of Bush, House of Saud, comes a comprehensive, deeply sourced, and chilling account of the secret relationship between neoconservative policy makers and the Christian Right, and how they assaulted the most vital safeguards of America's constitutional democracy while pushing the country into the catastrophic quagmire in the Middle East that is getting worse day by day. Among the powerful revelations in this book: Why George W. Bush ignored the sage advice of his father, George H.W. Bush, and took America into war. How Bush was convinced he was doing God's will. How Vice President Dick Cheney manipulated George W. Bush, disabled his enemies within the administration, and relentlessly pressed for an attack on Iraq. Which veteran government official, with the assent of the president's father, protested passionately that the Bush administration was making a catastrophic mistake -- and was ignored. How information from forged documents that had already been discredited fourteen times by various intelligence agencies found its way into President Bush's State of the Union address in which he made the case for war with Iraq. How Cheney and the neocons assembled a shadow national security apparatus and created a disinformation pipeline to mislead America and start the war. A seasoned, award-winning investigative reporter connected to many back-channel political and intelligence sources, Craig Unger knows how to get the big story -- and this one is his most explosive yet. Through scores of interviews with figures in the Christian Right, the neoconservative movement, the Bush administration, and sources close to the Bush family, as well as intelligence agents in the CIA, the Pentagon, and Israel, Unger shows how the Bush administration's certainty that it could bend history to its will has carried America into the disastrous war in Iraq, dooming Bush's presidency to failure and costing America thousands of lives and trillions of dollars. Far from ensuring our security, the Iraq War will be seen as a great strategic pivot point in history that could ignite wider war in the Middle East, particularly in Iran. Provocative, timely, and disturbing, The Fall of the House of Bush stands as the most comprehensive and dramatic account of how and why George W. Bush took America to war in Iraq.
Although his career continued for almost three decades after the 1939 publication of The Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck is still most closely associated with his Depression-era works of social struggle. But from Pearl Harbor on, he often wrote passionate accounts of America’s wars based on his own firsthand experience. Vietnam was no exception. Thomas E. Barden’s Steinbeck in Vietnam offers for the first time a complete collection of the dispatches Steinbeck wrote as a war correspondent for Newsday. Rejected by the military because of his reputation as a subversive, and reticent to document the war officially for the Johnson administration, Steinbeck saw in Newsday a unique opportunity to put his skills to use. Between December 1966 and May 1967, the sixty-four-year-old Steinbeck toured the major combat areas of South Vietnam and traveled to the north of Thailand and into Laos, documenting his experiences in a series of columns titled Letters to Alicia, in reference to Newsday publisher Harry F. Guggenheim’s deceased wife. His columns were controversial, coming at a time when opposition to the conflict was growing and even ardent supporters were beginning to question its course. As he dared to go into the field, rode in helicopter gunships, and even fired artillery pieces, many detractors called him a warmonger and worse. Readers today might be surprised that the celebrated author would risk his literary reputation to document such a divisive war, particularly at the end of his career. Drawing on four primary-source archives—the Steinbeck collection at Princeton, the Papers of Harry F. Guggenheim at the Library of Congress, the Pierpont Morgan Library’s Steinbeck holdings, and the archives of Newsday—Barden’s collection brings together the last published writings of this American author of enduring national and international stature. In addition to offering a definitive edition of these essays, Barden includes extensive notes as well as an introduction that provides background on the essays themselves, the military situation, the social context of the 1960s, and Steinbeck’s personal and political attitudes at the time.