PROGRESSIVE INDEPENDENT JOURNALISM: “U.S. Hypocrisy Creates Perpetual Enemies and Forever War” / MAJ Danny Sjursen ☮

In foreign policy, Americans like to keep it simple. Good countries versus bad countries. Democracies versus dictatorships. Of course, as Ronald Reagan reminded Americans, we are a “shining city upon a hill,” one of the goodies. What no one seems to ask is whether idealistic Americans have a clear view of the world as it is, or how their worldview affects the United States’ global image. Surely, as the U.S. enters its 17th year of perpetual war, these might be questions worth pursuing. Problem is, the truth can be disturbing.

So humor me for a moment and join me on a tour of American hypocrisy and naiveté, from Africa to the South Pacific.

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PROGRESSIVE INDEPENDENT JOURNALISM: “And Terrorism for All” / MAJ Danny Sjursen ☮

 

Sure, bloodbaths in Orlando, Las Vegas, Sandy Hook and Parkland grab media attention for days and weeks at a time. Only that’s not what most people fear or the focus of the national security state. The real enemy, we’re told, the one generating all the hysteria, is “terrorism.” So let’s dig into a quick comparison of the two threats.

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PROGRESSIVE INDEPENDENT JOURNALISM: “An Officer’s Path to Dissent” / MAJ Danny Sjursen ☮

For a while there, I was a real star. High up in my class at West Point, tough combat deployments in two wars, a slew of glowing evaluations, even a teaching assignment back at the military academy. I inhabited a universe most only dream of: praised, patted and highly respected by everyone in my life system and viewed as a brave American soldier. It’s a safe, sensible spot. For most, that’s enough. Too bad it was all bunk. Absurdity incarnate.

The truth is, I fought for next to nothing, for a country that, in recent conflicts, has made the world a deadlier, more chaotic place. Even back in 2011—or even 2006, for that matter—I was just smart and just sensitive enough to know that, to feel it viscerally.

Still, the decision to publicly dissent is a tough one. It’s by no means easy. Easy would be to go on playing hero and accepting adulation while staying between the lines. Play it safe, stick to your own, make everyone proud. That’s easy, intellectually immature—the new American way.

When you take the journey of dissent, you lose friends, alienate family, confuse confidants and become a lonely voice in your professional world.

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