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NNOMYnews 1052: November 17 2020: Recruiting Soldiers and Society for Permanent Wars
By both design and circumstances, the United States of America is captive to its assigned role as world enforcer of free market capitalism. With military commands now assigned to each sub-continent of the planet, our military industrial intelligence complex has monetized its permanent war economy with arms sales coerced upon its client states under the false rubric of keeping the world free for unrestricted commerce.
How that all will work out for the people and the planet is never clear in the endless rhetorical back and forth of its collapsing democracy and corporate controlled political culture. It is immersed in a morass of militarism normalized since its enculturated victory in WWII and has allowed its own self inflicted fable to permeate every aspect of its commercialized commons.
From a consolidated and complicit media to sports events and every expression of entertainment celebrating our military, the U.S. citizenry is bombarded with this spectacle of uniformed violence now consuming 7 1/2 hours weekly of over 40% of its male youth in ritualized virtual killing understood as harmless play in first-person shooter video games.
We have now made virtual killing a legitimized sport and have employed "experts" to convince any concerned sectors of our society that it is actually a healthy retreat from the pressures of our lives.
As the U.S. population reels under a poorly managed pandemic and businesses and jobs are lost and eliminated in a faltering main street economy, the military see's their recruitment opportunities increase as more young lives get directed into a bloated military serving as an international occupation force ensuring resource access to our industries.
All what is said here is unrecognizable to nearly all of the U.S. citizenry.
#counter-recruitment | #nnomypeace | #peacefulcareers | www.nnomy.org
THE PERMANENT DISCOURSE FOR ENDLESS WARS
Fabiola Cardozo / NNOMY / español - The rhetoric about the need for military draft in American society is lost sight of in history. The patriotic struggle to defend the nation from possible threats and the urgency to demobilize alleged terrorism attempts or take democracy to other latitudes, has served to implement policies that perpetuate the war and that make invisible or undermine the possibility of more democratic and pacifist mechanisms in international relations.
The United States of Militarism
W.J. Astore / Bracing Views - A century ago, the USA was a dynamic, forward-looking, freedom-espousing country that was focused on science and technology and its practical applications, as represented by Thomas Edison and Henry Ford. We were about to reelect a president, Woodrow Wilson, precisely because he had kept the country out of World War I. With the exception of the Navy, the U.S. military was small, and few Americans (Teddy Roosevelt comes to mind) boasted about the “manly” virtues of military service and war.
Here we are, a century later, in a country that has taken up militarism, a country which is increasingly reactionary, authoritarian, and backward-leaning, a country that leads the world not in innovation for ordinary people as in the days of Edison and Ford, but in weapons exports to the world’s trouble spots.
The Soldiers Using Mindfulness to Manage Stress and Become Better Killers
Mattha Busby / Vice - The UK's Ministry of Defence is rolling out training including breathing techniques and mindfulness tools.
“The Buddha taught a holistic approach with three prongs; wisdom, ethics, and meditation,” he says.
“We have left out interdependence and compassion and just focused on calm, stress reduction. You could make a more precise sniper better at his function, but without any consideration for the damage he is causing himself or others. In other words, you could just have better trained killers.”
Secret tactics of successful Army recruiters
Kyle Jahner / ArmyTimes - Done correctly, several recruiters said, recruiting is not a sales job. You're more of a life coach and can't just tell a recruit everything he or she wants to hear. Myron called managing expectations an "everyday thing."
"As a brand-new recruiter, I thought it was sales. But the more I got into it and understood recruiting, (the more) it was counselor," said Myron.
Asking kids what they want most in life tells Myron how to make his pitch, and that pitch is designed to get a kid where he wants to go; the Army is just the "how."
"I tell kids 'Listen, is this what you want to do for the rest of your life?' Looking around, I say 'that's you in five, 10 years; is that what you want?'" Myron said. "Find out what makes these kids tick and you tailor what you say to that."
Antiwar - Counter-Recruitment in the Time of Covid
Kate Connell and Fred Nadis, Truth in Recruitment - In 2016-17, the U.S. Army visited Santa Maria High School and nearby Pioneer Valley High School in California over 80 times. The Marines visited Ernest Righetti High School in Santa Maria over 60 times that year. One Santa Maria alumnus commented, “It’s as if they, the recruiters, are on staff.” A parent of a high school student at Pioneer Valley commented, "I consider recruiters on campus talking to 14 year olds as "grooming" young people to be more open to recruitment in their senior year. I want my daughter to have more access to college recruiters and for our schools to promote peace and nonviolent solutions to conflict."
The Army on its slight increase in recruiting women and minorities: Please clap
Haley Britzky / Task & Purpose - The Army is still “not where we need to be,” Vereen said, who attributed the modest increase to having more women work in Army recruiting. "I can’t overstate the effectiveness” of female recruiters, he said.
“It’s worth its weight in gold,” Vereen said. “I tell all my male recruiting non-commissioned officers that you can’t walk in a female’s shoes and explain the experiences of what will occur as a female in our Army … we have really pushed to get more females in recruiting, and that to me has probably been the number one factor that has helped us in trying to grow the population of females in the Army.”
Murder in virtual reality should be illegal
Angela Buckingham / Aeon - In an immersive virtual environment, what will it be like to kill? Surely a terrifying, electrifying, even thrilling experience. But by embodying killers, we risk making violence more tantalising, training ourselves in cruelty and normalising aggression. The possibility of building fantasy worlds excites me as a filmmaker – but, as a human being, I think we must be wary. We must study the psychological impacts, consider the moral and legal implications, even establish a code of conduct. Virtual reality promises to expand the range of forms we can inhabit and what we can do with those bodies. But what we physically feel shapes our minds. Until we understand the consequences of how violence in virtual reality might change us, virtual murder should be illegal.
Podcast: Chris Lombardi’s new book “I Ain’t Marching Anymore…”
Courage to Resist / October 23, 2020 - Chris Lombardi has been writing about war and peace for more than 20 years. Her work has appeared in the Nation, the Philadelphia Inquirer, ABA Journal, and at whyy.org. She joins us to discuss her upcoming (Nov. 10, 2020) book, “I Ain’t Marching Anymore: Dissenters, Deserters, and Objectors to America’s Wars,”