Notes From the Margins…
Posts for Militarism Category

Thucydides in Hormuz

  • January 16, 2012
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There have been few periods in history like ours, in which one state or group of states have been able to make war on whoever they want, secure in the knowledge that their own countries are effectively immune to retaliation,  and regardless of whether the objects of military force have made any directly aggressive move against them.

In our era of permanent war a group of states variously known as ‘the West’ or the ‘international community’ moves restlessly from one battleground to the next, and no sooner is one of them over than another...

Our Man in Riyadh

  • January 13, 2012
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Today, David Cameron makes his first state visit to that beacon of democracy and human rights Saudi Arabia.     According to the BBC’s ineffable ‘security correspondent’ Frank Gardner

 …the trip is important for both Mr Cameron and his Saudi hosts.   He says Saudi Arabia has been rattled by both the overthrow of its...

The Pentagon gets real

  • January 07, 2012
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Has the global financial crisis finally begun to impact America’s ability to sustain its global military presence and the megalomaniac dreams of ‘Full Spectrum Dominance’ that have intoxicated US military strategists and national security managers for more than a decade?

At first sight, Barack Obama announcement of the Pentagon’s new ‘realistic’ proposals for a ’21st century...

Libya – another intervention unravels?

  • January 05, 2012
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There’s an interesting analysis by Tony Karon on Time‘s Global Spin blog of the emerging chaos in post-Gaddafi Libya.   Karon writes of Tuesday’s gunbattle in Tripoli between rival militia factions, of armed gunmen terrorising towns and neighbourhoods, of tribal and factional competition that may yet lead to civil war in a country where...

The Happy Warrior

  • January 04, 2012
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Politicians love a man in uniform, as the Gang of Four once sang, no matter how sordid, dishonest, reckless and incoherent the wars they fight in.   Last December David Cameron launched the Sun’s Military Awards ceremony with a reception at Downing Street in which he praised the ‘Herculean bravery’ of the nominees. ...

Nick Cohen: anti-fascist fighter

  • January 02, 2012
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I’m impressed.  Hardly has the nation had time to wake up from the New Year revelries and there is the redoubtable Nick Cohen, scourge of dictators everywhere, announcing his decision to  leave his friends and family and exchange his pen for a rifle in order go off to Syria to fight for the...

About Me

I’m a writer, campaigner and journalist.  My latest book is The Savage Frontier: The Pyrenees in History and the Imagination (New Press/Hurst, 2018).  The Infernal Machine is where I write on politics, history, cinema and other things that interest me.

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