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Frank Buckles, Last American WWI Vet, Dies at 110


The last American veteran of a conflict which ended nearly a century ago has died.

VFW Endorses Non-Vet Over Allen West, Retired LTC


The Veterans of Foreign Wars has endorsed Ron Klein, who never served a day in uniform, over retired LTC Allen West, a decorated veteran of several foreign wars. Is this an outrage?

The Politics of Kagan and the Military

Elena Kagan

The main attack that appears to exist against Elena Kagan at the moment has to do with her actions as Dean of the Harvard Law School and policies concerning military recruiters. The basic position is well represented by Newt Gingrich’s statement today Fox News Sunday (as transcribed by HuffPo): “I think the president should withdraw […]

Bad Year For Powerful Congressmen?

Bob Bennett Utah Republican Convention

Has clout become the kiss of death? Politico‘s Jonathan Allen and Manu Raju think so. The back-to-back primary defeats of two powerful appropriators have sent an unmistakable message to lawmakers: The trappings of power can be a trap. On Wednesday night, West Virginia Democrats eighty-sixed Rep. Alan Mollohan, making him the first House appropriator to […]

Veterans on the Supreme Court


RedState‘s Erick Erickson notes that, not only would Elena Kagan replace the Supreme Court’s last Protestant but also “the last of the military veterans on the United States Supreme Court.” Indeed, according to his Wikipedia entry, John Paul Stevens “began work on his master’s degree in English at the university in 1941, but soon decided […]

Sarah Palin’s Black Wristband Faux Pas a Faux Controversy

Sarah Palin Track Palin Wristband

Eric Robinson, a Yale IR grad student and veteran of both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, doesn’t give a hoot about what Sarah Palin had written on her hand at her Tea Party Convention speech. He is, however, concerned about what was on her wrist. I hadn’t noticed it until I watched MSNBC’s “Hardball” on […]

Gays in the Military: Other Countries Do It


Both Steve Chapman and Ilya Somin argue that, since other countries let gays serve in the military without harming unit cohesion, America can, too. Chapman: It’s not completely implausible that in a military environment, open homosexuality might wreak havoc on order and morale. But the striking thing about these claims is that they exist in […]

Conservative Health Policy


Dan Miller laments that “the right has basically abdicated its role in the conversation” on health care reform. Health care has been THE liberal project for literally decades; entire careers (not to mention presidencies) have been built around it.  There’s a vast policy apparatus on the progressive side of the aisle built around health care, […]

Memorial Day v. Veterans Day

Veterans Day - Memorial Day

I’ve seen a few gripes on Twitter and elsewhere about President Obama and others seeming not to understand the difference between Memorial Day, which is set aside to honor those who died in combat, and Veterans Day, which honors those who served in the military. This has long been a pet peeve of mine but […]

Obama ‘Fires’ Gay Arabic Linguist


UCSB political scientist Aaron Belkins‘ HuffPo piece “Obama To Fire His First Gay Arabic Linguist” has drawn quite a bit of blogospheric attention. Dan Choi, a West Point graduate and officer in the Army National Guard who is fluent in Arabic and who returned recently from Iraq, received notice today that the military is about […]

Chuck Hagel New Atlantic Council Chairman

Chuck Hagel Atlantic Council Chairman Photo

As of this morning, Senator Chuck Hagel is the chairman of Atlantic Council of the United States. Hagel, who served two terms representing Nebraska from 1997 to 2009, received the Atlantic Council’s Distinguished International Leadership Award in 2004. His breadth of experience, knowledge of foreign policy, and commitment to transatlantic relations provide the basis for […]

Army Recruiting Stand-down Follows Suicides


The Army is shutting down its entire recruiting operation in the wake of four suicides, Army Times reports. Army Secretary Pete Geren has ordered a stand-down of the Army’s entire recruiting force and a review of almost every aspect of the job is underway in the wake of a wide-ranging investigation of four suicides in […]

No Purple Heart for PTSD


The Defense Department has ruled that service members who wish to be awarded the Purple Heart will continue to have to get themselves shot, just like in the old days. The Pentagon has decided that it will not award the Purple Heart, the hallowed medal given to those wounded or killed by enemy action, to […]

Coming Military Coup?


Thomas Schweich fears a military coup in the United States.  Or something like that. In a breathless WaPo op-ed, “The Pentagon is muscling in everywhere. It’s time to stop the mission creep” (with the clever subhead, “The Pentagon is muscling in everywhere. It’s time to stop the mission creep”) he fears that the proliferation of […]

Military Service Demographics


Danielle Allen takes to the editorial pages of WaPo to decry the regional disparity of military service in a piece titled “Red-State Army?” Whereas in 1969 13 percent of Americans were veterans, in 2007 only 8 percent of us were. Even more important than these general demographic shifts is the change wrought by the end […]

Shinseki to Head Veterans Affairs

Eric Shinskei Veterans Affairs Secretary

In a surprise move, General Eric Shinseki has been tapped as Barack Obama’s Secretary of Veterans Affairs. Shinseki, a four-star general and 38-year veteran who retired shortly after the fall of Baghdad in 2003, will appear with Obama in Chicago at a news conference today commemorating the 67th anniversary of the Japanese attacks on Pearl […]