Treaties, Constitutions, and Laws Against War

By David Swanson, World BEYOND War, January 10, 2022

You’d hardly guess it from all the silent acceptance of war as a legal enterprise and all the chatter about ways to supposedly keep war legal through the reform of particular atrocities, but there are international treaties that make wars and even the threat of war illegal, national constitutions that make wars and various activities that facilitate wars illegal, and laws that make killing illegal with no exceptions for the use of missiles read more

Top 10 Things People Pretend They Don’t Know

There are plenty of good occasions to pretend not to know something: an embarrassing secret of a friend, a plan for a surprise party, the punchline of a child’s joke.

There are plenty of good excuses to actually not know something: it would take decades of study, it’s of no interest or value, it would cost so much money to research it that you could have saved millions of lives instead.

There are, I think, fewer good justifications for pretending to yourself (not just to others) not read more

There Will Be Many Acts of Kindness on the Way Down

I live in a wealthy country, the U.S., and in a corner of it, a part of Virginia, not yet hit hard by fires or floods or tornados. In fact, until Sunday night, January 2nd, we’d had rather pleasant, almost summerlike weather most of the time since summer. Then, Monday morning, we got several inches of wet, heavy snow.

It’s now Thursday, and trees and branches have been coming down all over the place. We shook branches repeatedly as the snow was first arriving, to get some of it off. read more

Magistrate Takes U.S. Navy to Task for Its Jets, Lies, and Secrecy

By David Swanson, World BEYOND War, January 5, 2022

World BEYOND War has long supported efforts to stop noisy, polluting Navy jet flights over state parks in Washington State.

Now a report by Chief United States Magistrate Justice J. Richard Creatura has got the Seattle Times editorial board proposing some sort of “compromise.”

Some choice excerpts:

Here, despite a gargantuan administrative record, covering nearly 200,000 pages of studies, reports, comments, and the like, the Navy selected methods read more

The Pentagon and CIA Have Shaped Thousands of Hollywood Movies into Super Effective Propaganda

By David Swanson, World BEYOND War, January 5, 2022

Propaganda is most impactful when people don’t think it’s propaganda, and most decisive when it’s censorship you never knew happened. When we imagine that the U.S. military only occasionally and slightly influences U.S. movies, we are extremely badly deceived. The actual impact is on thousands of movies made, and thousands of others never made. And television shows of every variety. The military guests and celebrations of the read more

Primer on Foreign Policy for Candidates Published

By RootsAction Education Fund, January 5, 2022

RootsAction Education Fund has published a Primer on Foreign Policy for U.S. Congressional Candidates.

Congressional candidates often have little or nothing to say about foreign policy, and a lot of them have a surprising reason when asked: they say that they don’t know anything about it.

Some of them seem to be telling the truth, and others who don’t explain themselves may also lack knowledge of foreign policy.

Even some candidates who do read more

Surveillance Concerns: The Good, the Bad, and the Xenophobic

By David Swanson, World BEYOND War, December 28, 2021

Thom Hartmann has written an enormous number of great books, and the latest is no exception. It’s called The Hidden History of Big Brother in America: How the Death of Privacy and the Rise of Surveillance Threaten Us and Our Democracy. Thom is not the least bit xenophobic, paranoid, or war-inclined. He dishes out criticism — most of it clearly well-merited — to numerous governments including the one in Washington, D.C. Yet I think read more