The Spoils of War: Conversation with Author Andrew Cockburn
Join CODEPINK in conversation with author Andrew Cockburn about his new book: The Spoils of War: Power, Profit, and the American War Machine. During this webinar, attendees will hear from Andrew about his new book and will have the opportunity to ask the renowned author, journalist, and editor questions.
About the Book:
Why does America go to war?
In the last decades, America has gone to war as supposed defenders of democracy. The War on Terror was waged to protect the west from the dangers of Islamists. US Solders are stationed in more than 800 locations across the world to act as the righteous arbiters of the rule of law. In The Spoils of War Andrew Cockburn brilliantly dissects the intentions behind Washington’s martial appetites.
The American war machine can only be understood in terms of the “private passions” and “interests” of those who control it—principally a passionate interest in money. Thus, as he witheringly reports, Washington expanded NATO to satisfy an arms manufacturer’s urgent financial requirements; the US Navy’s Pacific fleet deployments were for years dictated by a corrupt contractor who bribed high-ranking officers with cash and prostitutes; senior marine commanders agreed to a troop surge in Afghanistan in 2017 “because it will do us good at budget time.”
Based on years of wide-ranging research, Cockburn lays bare the ugly reality of the largest military machine in history: squalid, and at the same time terrifyingly dangerous.
About the Author:
Born in London shortly after World `War II, I grew up in rural Ireland, went to school in Scotland (where we trained every week to be junior officers in the next war) and Oxford, and thereafter entered into the family trade of journalism. After spells on Fleet Street – the Evening Standard and Daily Mail – I joined World in Action, a great investigative documentary show on British independent tv ., where I began taking an interest in defense issues – very undercover in the UK. Moved to the US in 1979, and in 1982 published The Threat – Inside the Soviet Military Machine. A national best-seller, the book revealed that the Soviets were not an awesome threat, as we had been told for decades by the western defense lobby. I showed that the troops were ill-trained, and badly equipped, all to the benefit of their military-industrial hierarchy. My argument, denounced at the time in Washington and Moscow, was proven absolutely correct following the collapse of the USSR. Since then, I have written hundreds of articles on defense and other topics, several books — see below – many documentaries, and co-produced the 1997 action movie The Peacemaker starring George Clooney and Nicole Kidman. I have also written books about Saddam Hussein (with my brother Patrick,) Donald Rumsfeld, which among other things revealed, contrary to conventional wisdom, the important fact that he was extremely stupid. Living in Washington, where I am currently the Washington Editor of Harper’s Magazine, means I have a front row seat to watch the headquarters of a declining but still rich, powerful, and cruel empire. It is an endlessly fascinating spectacle, if also horrifying.
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