Military parades are an indispensable political platform for communicating power and ambition and are now amplified by the tools of mass media, which can orchestrate and glamourize rhythmic ranks of well-booted warriors and rolling chariots of gleaming steel.
Pakistan needs to understand that it has to set its priorities right and shake off its paranoia about India. Our neighbor is no longer interested in annexing Pakistan. It has moved on to bigger things whereas we have just remained stuck. It is time to move on.
It's pretty basic. Belief in the supremacy of civilian control over the armed forces is the cornerstone of American democracy. The institutional failure evident in Ferguson, MO is a sign of civilian dereliction.
Just cutting the defense budget and rebalancing to the Reserves will go only so far to make us stronger, more secure, and most of all freer. Institutionalizing national service and sacrifice will help restore enduring national strengths.
My concern about films like Zero Dark Thirty and The Hurt Locker is that they might set back civilian-military relations by giving people a false understanding of the struggles of U.S. troops and the mechanics of U.S. national security.
If we Americans and our civilian-elected leaders don't come to terms with our over-dependence on the military, we will cede increasing authority to an institution that doesn't want it and should not have it.
The Quadrennial Diplomacy and Defense Review is focusing on military problems in places such as Afghanistan and Iraq, rather than addressing the civilian mission of supporting good governance and poverty reduction.
If we want to see this president succeed, a vocabulary shift is vital. The more we use leftover framing and messaging rhetoric from the Iraq War, the easier we make it for the right wing to do the same.
The amount of international pressure must increase now that Zelaya is back. And it must include absolute clarity that an election held under the coup government's auspices will be considered illegitimate.