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Links 1 through 10 of 28 by Latoya Peterson tagged military

"In a recent Italian documentary Standing Army, the late author and Nation contributor Chalmers Johnson says, 'The unit of empire in the classic European empires was the colony. The unit for the American empire is not the colony, it’s the military base.… Things that can’t go on forever, don’t. That’s where we are today.'

"The bases—isolated from the host communities and, as Gusterson writes, 'generating resentment against [their] prostitution, environmental damage, petty crime, and everyday ethnocentrism'—face growing opposition from local citizens."

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"Smith says he believes painting African Americans as Confederate sympathizers plays down the real causes of the Civil War. 'What gets professional historians concerned is when certain people start calling these people soldiers. It all goes back to how you define soldier. And for me, the story of so-called black Confederates is not as important as the story of why it keeps coming back.'

He added, 'I think it keeps coming up because there are certain people who resist the idea that slavery and white supremacy were the cause of the Civil War.'"

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"Specialist Adam Jarrell, the only African American in a unit of 216 soldiers of the New Mexico Army National Guard, told Reuters on Tuesday that his complaints to superiors were not only ignored, but resulted in increased harassment.

"'It's dangerous when the only people you can count on are the people hanging nooses outside your room, telling you they hate you because you're black,' said Jarrell, 23, a Sheriff's deputy in Hobbs, New Mexico, who has been with the National Guard since 2006. He arrived home in New Mexico a year ago."

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"'It is clear that Cesar Chavez is a fitting namesake for this fourteenth and final ship,' said the letter, which was provided to The Associated Press by Boxer's office. 'Any comments to the contrary reflect a total disregard for Cesar Chavez, who deserves our respect and gratitude for the lifetime he spent promoting the fair treatment of workers and equal rights and justice for all Americans.'"

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"While the hearing was scheduled before the mission, a committee aide today said the linking of the name Geronimo with the world’s most wanted man is 'inappropriate' and can have a 'devastating' impact on kids.

“'The hearing was scheduled well before the Osama bin Laden operation became news, but the concerns over the linking of the name of Geronimo, one of the greatest Native American heroes, with the most hated enemies of the United States is an example of the kinds of issues we intended to address at Thursday's hearing,' Loretta Tuell, the committee's chief counsel, said in a statement."

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"This is a sad commentary on the attitude of leaders of the U.S. military forces that continue to personify the original peoples of North America as enemies and savages. The use of the name Geronimo as a code name for Osama Bin Laden is reprehensible. Think of the outcry if they had used any other ethnic group’s hero. Geronimo bravely and heroically defended his homeland and his people, eventually surrendering and living out the rest of his days peacefully, if in captivity, passing away at Fort Sill, Oklahoma in 1909. To compare him to Osama Bin Laden is illogical and insulting. The name Geronimo is arguably the most recognized Native American name in the world, and this comparison only serves to perpetuate negative stereotypes about our peoples. The U.S. military leadership should have known better."

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"After an emotional buildup for many towards the 2:30 pm EST hour yesterday, when the U.S. Senate voted, 56-43, against a motion to proceed on the National Defense Authorization Act. This shut down the possibility of the DREAM Act and Don’t Ask Don’t Tell being presented as amendments to the Defense bill. All Republican senators voted against cloture and two Democrats, Blanche Lincoln and Mark Pryor, both of Arkansas.

"Up to the moment of the vote, I watched U.S. Senators, all white old men, talk about gays in the military. Republican Senators like John McCain danced around their homophobia by saying they didn’t want to add DADT because the military hadn’t had a chance to do polling about the impact on combat readiness if there were out lgbt folks in the armed forces. Other Republicans looked at the DREAM Act in one of two ways : a ploy by Senate Majority Harry Reid to get the Latino vote and/or a version of 'amnesty' for some undocumented."

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"I lived in constant fear serving under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” I was always looking over my shoulder, censoring what I said and keeping as much physical distance as possible between my military life and my personal life.

Even with this vigilance, I was found out by some male “friends” at my first duty assignment. I was just 19 years old. The deal was simple: Perform sexual favors and my secret was safe.

I had a choice: report these men for “sexual harassment/cohesion” and end my military career or submit to their demands."

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"Under the new regulations, military personnel “must not actively advocate supremacist doctrine, ideology or causes” or “otherwise advance efforts to deprive individuals of their civil rights.” The new rules specify that “active participation” includes activities such as recruiting, fundraising, demonstrating or rallying, training, organizing and distributing supremacist material, including online posts."

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"We really ask a lot of our young service people out on the checkpoints because there's danger, they're asked to make very rapid decisions in often very unclear situations. However, to my knowledge, in the nine-plus months I've been here, not a single case where we have engaged in an escalation of force incident and hurt someone has it turned out that the vehicle had a suicide bomb or weapons in it and, in many cases, had families in it."

He continued: "That doesn't mean I'm criticizing the people who are executing. I'm just giving you perspective. We've shot an amazing number of people and killed a number and, to my knowledge, none has proven to have been a real threat to the force."

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