Pants On Fire…
Author: David Swanson
For the most part, Americans like to think of themselves as a peace loving people. Unfortunately, despite all the peaceful talk, over 237 years, the United States of America has waged a lot of war. “We’ve had our reasons”, you might say, and maybe some of them were good ones. Maybe there really is such a thing as “a just war”. “Utter nonsense”, says David Swanson, who systematically dismantles every excuse ever offered for war making, in War Is a Lie.
A prolific blogger and essayist over the past several years, Swanson hit full speed in 2005 when he helped publicize the Downing Street Memo, which shed light on the Bush administration’s intentional efforts to mislead the country into the Iraq War. He subsequently founded WarIsACrime.org and published this book, his second, in 2010.
Rather than presenting the many suspect rationales for war in chronological order, one war at a time, Swanson organizes the different varieties of lies into fourteen chapters, presenting examples from numerous countries and time periods. From Greek wars to Gettysburg to the present day – when the world’s lone superpower has military personnel in 150 countries – Swanson covers much of world history in this extensive survey.
If you think that wars are justified when fighting against “evil”, Swanson will try and dissuade you. If you think that wars occasionally need to be launched in self-defense, he will have none of it. If you think that our troops are heroes, the author will politely, but firmly disagree. So many war lies have been promulgated for so many centuries that even 300 pages of tightly constructed, highly readable prose is just a start.