Forgotten Are the Peacemakers

Being Catholic, I’m a big fan of the Sermon on the Mount and Christ’s teaching that “blessed are the peacemakers.”  Yet in American history it seems that “forgotten are the peacemakers” would be a more accurate lesson.  We’re much more likely to remember “great” generals, even vainglorious ones like George S. Patton or Douglas MacArthur,…

The Dreadfulness of War

In our media and our culture today, there’s an unfortunate tendency to see military service as uniquely efficacious and ennobling, and to see war as necessary and even to view it as antiseptic (notably our so-called “surgical” drone strikes). But real war is dirty.  It’s as likely to infect us, to spread sepsis through our bodies…

Bread and Circuses in Rome and America

W.J. Astore Just posted a new article to Huffington Post.  Here’s the link and the article (pasted below): The expression “bread and circuses” captures a certain cynical political view that the masses can be kept happy with fast food (think Cartman’s “Cheesy Poofs” on South Park) and faster entertainment (NASCAR races, NFL games, and the like).…

The Temptations of Drone Warfare

A recent article at NBC News is unusual in that it highlights the awfulness of war even when the killing is “surgical” and done by drones.  Brandon Bryant, a former drone operator for the Air Force, suffers from PTSD and feels that killing by drone caused him to lose respect for life, that he became…

War is a Racket

The business of wars and weapons sales is booming, with the United States leading the pack as the world’s foremost “merchant of death,” as Michael Klare notes in this article on the global arms trade for TomDispatch.com. But why should we be surprised?  War has always been a racket.  And if you don’t believe me…