No critic of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan could have brighter conservative credentials. He (Andrew J. Bacevich) is a blunt-talking Midwesterner, a West Point graduate who served for 23 years in the United States Army, a Vietnam veteran who retired as a colonel, and a sometime contributor to National Review.. . .
Bacevich has two main targets in his sights. The first are the commissars of the national security establishment, who perpetuate these “Washington rules” of global dominance. By Washington, he means not just the federal government, but also a host of satraps who gain power, cash or prestige from this perpetual state of emergency: defense contractors, corporations, big banks, interest groups, think tanks, universities, television networks and The New York Times.. . .
Bacevich’s second target is the sleepwalking American public. He says that they notice foreign policy only in the depths of a disaster that, like Vietnam or Iraq, is too colossal to ignore. As he puts it, “The citizens of the United States have essentially forfeited any capacity to ask first-order questions about the fundamentals of national security policy.”. . .
From Gary J. Bass’s review of America’s Path to Permanent War by Andrew J. Bacevich in the New York Times September 3, 2010.
Worth linking to at Advice You Didn't Seek.
Andrew J. Bacevich, Sr. (born 1947 in Normal, Illinois) is a professor of international relations at Boston University and a retired career officer in the United States Army. He is a former director of Boston University's Center for International Relations (from 1998 to 2005), and author of several books, including American Empire: The Realities and Consequences of US Diplomacy (2002), The New American Militarism: How Americans are Seduced by War (2005) and The Limits of Power: The End of American Exceptionalism (2008). He has been "a persistent, vocal critic of the US occupation of Iraq, calling the conflict a catastrophic failure." In March 2007, he described George W. Bush's endorsement of such "preventive wars" as "immoral, illicit, and imprudent. His son, also an Army officer, died fighting in the Iraq War in May 2007. In summer, 2010, he accused President Barack Obama of "want[ing] us to forget about the lessons of Iraq."