Notes From the Margins…
Posts for Militarism Category

It’s Raining Threats, Hallelujah

  • March 11, 2015
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One of the great things about living in a democratic society is that we don’t have propaganda.   That is something that authoritarian regimes like Russia and Iran do.   They have stations like RT and Press tv which do nothing but promote the agenda of their respective regimes.

Here in the free world we have news, and real journalists, who speak truth to power, who interrogate their governments and never cease to call their more dubious assertions into question.   Like Fox News, which as improbable as it may seem, has just been voted the...

Timothy Garton Ash’s Awfully Big War

  • February 02, 2015
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There are some liberals who give liberalism a bad name and Timothy Garton Ash is one of them.

They build up their careers as thoughtful and nuanced independent commentators, arguing that ‘facts are subversive’, yet when it comes to war and the use of military power they know what side they’re on, and they know that...

Hollywood Sniper

Hollywood Sniper

  • January 28, 2015
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I haven’t seen Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper, and I probably won’t, because a film that celebrates a man who boasted about his killing ability and regarded Iraqis as ‘savages’ is not something I am prepared to go to the cinema to watch.

I’ve seen the UK trailer several times, and it hasn’t done anything to change...

Us and Them: Reflections on the Paris Terror-Siege

  • January 10, 2015
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Like a B movie thriller that you’ve seen too many times before, the Paris terror-spectacle has reached its predictable conclusion.     All the familiar elements of jihadist noir were present: atrocity and murder followed by manhunts, hold ups, and quasi-military sweeps; neighborhood lockdowns, hostages, sieges, gun fights and explosions, culminating in a glorious act...

Addicted to War

  • January 06, 2015
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War is a serious business, or it would be if we took it seriously.

If war was treated with the seriousness it deserves then wars would not be begun lightly on false pretenses.   They would have clear and realistic strategic objectives and timescales.   They would be based on a very clear understanding of the...

2014: Gaza’s Year of Mayhem

2014: Gaza’s Year of Mayhem

  • January 01, 2015
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There are some years when Gramsci’s adage about pessimism of the mind and optimism of the will seems more appropriate than others, and 2014 was a year filled with some pretty awful events, whether it was kidnapped schoolgirls in Nigeria or a summer in which more migrants drowned in the Mediterranean than ever.

In Ukraine 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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