Referenced in the new Noam Chomsky Book

Let us turn to the other (and traditional) concern of the atomic scientists who adjust the Doomsday Clock: nuclear weapons. The current threat of nuclear war amply justifies their January 2015 decision to advance the clock two minutes toward midnight. What has happened since reveals the growing threat even more clearly, a matter that elicits insufficient concern, in my opinion.

The last time the Doomsday Clock reached three minutes before midnight was in 1983, at the time of the Able Archer exercises of the Reagan administration; these exercises simulated attacks on the Soviet Union to test their defense systems. Recently released Russian archives reveal that the Russians were deeply concerned by the operations and were preparing to respond, which would have meant, simply: The End.

We have learned more about these rash and reckless exercises, and about how close the world was to disaster, from U.S. military and intelligence analyst Melvin Goodman, who was CIA division chief and senior analyst at the Office of Soviet Affairs at the time. “In addition to the Able Archer mobilization exercise that alarmed the Kremlin,” Goodman writes, “the Reagan administration authorized unusually aggressive military exercises near the Soviet border that, in some cases, violated Soviet territorial sovereignty. The Pentagon’s risky measures included sending U.S. strategic bombers over the North Pole to test Soviet radar, and naval exercises in wartime approaches to the USSR where U.S. warships had previously not entered. Additional secret operations simulated surprise naval attacks on Soviet targets.”

Recent News and Latest Book

What Russian Folklore Can Tell Us About Russia

Russian history is largely the history of war, as Russia found itself engaged in military confrontation between the 13th and 20th centuries.  For most of its history, Russia anticipated confrontation on its long border with China in the East; with the legacy of the Mongols on its “sensitive southern frontier,” and with the Western invaders—Napoleon and Hitler.  Putin and his ilk come by their paranoia, xenophobia, and siege mentality quite naturally.

U.S. Intelligence Boasting Intensifies Russian-American Proxy War

York Times’s international affairs columnist Thomas Friedman is arguably the most influential editorial writer in the country.  Last week, his editorial aptly warned the Biden administration of the “huge unintended consequences” of its unplanned and impromptu remarks regarding Russian President Vladimir Putin and the savagery of his tactics in Ukraine.  Friedman reprised the World War II slogan, “Loose lips sink ships.”

Containing the National Security State

Containing the National Security State