‘Mr. Y’ and the Decline of the American Empire

Article by Justin Raimondo.
While the rest of the “news” media was busy covering the Great Birth Certificate Drama, Rachel Maddow spared her audience yet another hour of having to watch that walking hairpiece make a fool of himself (and us), and instead focused on the real news: a US-trained Afghan pilot had turned on his trainers and killed 9 Americans – the biggest single casualty report since 2005. Not only did Rachel report this story, she also wondered aloud at its implications – the doubtful feasibility of a policy that assumes the Afghans will “stand up” as we “stand down – and wryly noted how the Obama White House is even utilizing the same phraseology we all remember from the Bush years.

My ears perked up. Is someone who often seems like a dyed-in-the-wool Obama cultist and partisan hack finally rebelling against the Great and Glorious Leader? Well, maybe, maybe not: in any case, she proceeded to give a platform to Prof. Andrew Bacevich, author of The New American Militarism: How Americans Are Seduced by War, and, most recently, Washington Rules: America’s Path to Permanent War. Bacevich is a retired US Army colonel who graduated from West Point, fought in Vietnam, and now teaches at Boston University: he lost a son in Iraq and has become an eloquent conservative critic of our foreign policy of global intervention.

Bacevich spent a good deal of his time talking about an article recently released by the Wilson Center, “A National Strategic Narrative,” [.pdf] signed by “Mr. Y.” He started out by saying that the publication of the article is important less for the actual content of the piece and more because of who wrote it – “Mr. Y” is a pseudonym for U.S. Navy Captain Wayne Porter and U.S. Marine Corps Colonel Mark Mykleby, who both work for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in the Pentagon. As he describes it, “What they are saying is our approach to national security policy has been excessively militarized, we really need to pay more attention to what goes on inside the country.”

Bacevich went on to note that these two officers are not alone. Rather than being resistant to change – that is, to a substantial cut in our misnamed “defense” budget, and the demilitarization of our foreign policy – quite the contrary seems to be the case. He cites the many emails he gets from serving officers basically agreeing with his non-interventionist views, and indeed many in the military hierarchy raised objections to the Iraq war, to such an extent that the neocons were screaming at one point about keeping the soldiers in their barracks and out of “politics.”

It was great to hear Bacevich lay into the Democrats for not having “the necessary moral courage to take the sort of political risks that are involved in saying we are not going to dominate the world, we are going to bankrupt the country and squander our moral standing” – on MSNBC! That almost makes up for Chris Matthews forgetting he’s supposed to be a journalist.

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