Re: Occupying Hearts and Minds
- Thanks for forwarding this. The Truthout website version even comes with a photo, so I snipped after paragraph 1 below. It's a pretty good summary article. I thought Camelot was earlier than stated (cut off by Kennedy in '63, NOT instituted in '65), but otherwise it describes the situation adequately. We've had years and years of Human Terrain and related articles in newspapers, NPR, and even journals. We've even enjoyed critiques from people who wonder why Pres. Obama, as son of anthropologist Anne Dunham, continues what appears to us to be "waffling" in matters like HTS and Afghan community coordination. We have here, of course, clear proof that the Lysenko version of heritability can be debunked. Whatever traits Miz Dunham acquired were not transmitted genetically. Gee, did mother and son talk?
Clearly if someone were to line us all up to be informed as to why arcane foreign policy matters were becoming so irreconcileable with our professional ethics, even under Obama, we'd all have to be shot ... as the old cliche would have it. I, for one, can understand that there is great complexity involved in trying to turn a huge "ship of state" after so many years of grotesque policy. The vested interests alone must be terribly daunting. Then there are those battling lawyers & such.
Kind of on topic, the elephant still behaving like the bull in the room filled with china and crystal is that things haven't changed appreciably since the arbitrary index date of Franz Boas' letter "Scientists as Spies" appeared in The Nation in 1919, naming names in a most "uncollegial" manner. Do you supposed spin and horribly mixed metaphors have led us all to such an impasse?
Occupying Hearts and Minds
Posted by: "Lori Barkley" lbarkley@... lbarkley9
Date: Thu May 14, 2009 10:04 am ((PDT))
Occupying Hearts and Minds
Thursday 30 April 2009
by: Dahr Jamail, t r u t h o u t | Perspective
One of the definitions of the word "occupation" is: the action, state,
or period of occupying or being occupied by military force. Throughout
history, areas or countries occupied by military force have always
resisted, and this resistance has caused the occupier to devise more
suitable methods of subduing the population of the area being occupied.
The US military has sent shock troops, which also donned helmets and
flak jackets - anthropologists, sociologists and social psychologists,
with their own troops in both Iraq and Afghanistan. By the end of 2007,
American scholars in these fields were embedding with the military in
Afghanistan and Iraq as part of a Pentagon program called Human Terrain
System (HTS), which evolved shortly thereafter into a $40 million
program that embedded four or five person groups of scholars in the
aforementioned fields in all 26 US combat brigades that were busily
occupying Iraq and Afghanistan. Two years prior to this, the CIA had
quietly started recruiting social scientists by advertising in academic
journals, offering salaries of up to $400,000. The military's goals for
the HTS was to have them gather and disseminate information about Iraqi
and Afghani cultures. These embedded scholars, contracted through
companies like CACI International, work in the project that is described
by CACI as "designed to improve the gathering, understanding,
operational application, and sharing of local population knowledge"
among combat teams.
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