H Clinton on the National Debt – Today’s Quote

…our rising debt levels…poses a national security threat…. And it also sends a message of weakness internationally.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, September 8, 2010

The Pentagon’s New Map – A Critique

Andrew’s Note:  I have seen our national dialog once again turn to and contemplate military intervention in the Middle East.  This time it’s Syria (I’ll leave Iran for another day as it actually poses a threat to the U.S. through its pursuit of and stated policy of intending to use Weapons of Mass Destruction).  Last year I wrote a critique of one of the foundational articles used to justify our military intervention in Iraq.  I am an Iraq war veteran and am proud of my service and our military forces, but I think that Dr. Thomas Barnett’s article, “The Pentagon’s New Map” attempts to rationalize a particularly dangerous collection of ideas.  I encourage you to decide for yourself if policing the world is the appropriate use of our power.  Dr. Barnett expanded on the ideas presented in this article and published a book of the same title…my critique only addresses the original article from Esquire magazine.  Here is that critique:

Dr. Thomas Barnett states in his 2003 article “The Pentagon’s New Map” that countries and regions of the world that are disconnected from the benefits of globalization represent a significant danger to the United States and other globalized nations.  He proposes that we should globalize those “Non-Integrating Gap or Gap” nations at the point of a gun if necessary when he states that we must “begin the systematic, long-term exportation of security.”  Barnett’s goal of “shrinking the Gap” by further integrating the world’s backwaters and rogue nations into a productive community of nations is laudable and would undoubtedly improve security and prosperity.  However, the scope and mechanisms Barnett proposes to achieve worldwide globalism and a stable security environment is simply not affordable. (more…)

DOD’s Warning About Oil and the ‘Arc of Chaos’

Andrew’s Note:  The following is from the Energy Section (Part II, Trends Influencing World Security) of the Joint Operating Environment (JOE) 2010.  I’ve mentioned the JOE in passing before as it’s a keystone document that the Department of Defense uses to project the world in which it will operate up to 25 years into the future.  It’s a sobering read for the prepper and likely to turn the non-prepper into one… read on about Oil and the Arc of Chaos:

Remember as you read the JOE that this is the official Department of Defense projection of the world we will live in over the next 2+ decades.

OPEC nations will remain a focal point of great-power interest. These nations may have a vested interest in inhibiting production increases, both to conserve finite supplies and to keep prices high.  Should one of the consumer nations choose to intervene forcefully, the “arc of instability” running from North Africa through to Southeast Asia easily could become an “arc of chaos,” involving the military forces of several nations.  (more…)

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