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Entries in Pentagon (5)


Iran Propaganda 101: US Flaunts "Biggest Bunker Buster Bomb"

Look out, Iran --- it's a Massive Ordnance Penetrator

One of the features of the ongoing power play between Washington and Tehran is the propaganda from both sides --- trying to show prestige as well as initimidating the "enemy" --- about their massive weapons.

Tehran almost incessantly declares its latest missile or naval advance while shouting that it is turning US capabilities --- such as drones --- back on Washington. The Americans parade a supposed "new" technology to warn Iran against any mischief in the region.

Last month the US centrepiece was an experimental laser to be placed aboard the USS Ponce in the Persian Gulf, deterring any attack by small Iranian boats.

See EA Video Analysis: Iran and the American Lasers of Doom

This morning the press release --- eagerly put out by The Wall Street Journal --- is of a "penetrator" to destroy Iran's nuclear facilities.

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Iraq Feature: The US Pentagon is Linked to Torture Centres (The Guardian/BBC Arabic)

The 5-minute trailer for the full Guardian/BBC documentary

The Pentagon sent a US veteran of the "dirty wars" in Central America to oversee sectarian police commando units in Iraq that set up secret detention and torture centres to get information from insurgents. These units conducted some of the worst acts of torture during the US occupation and accelerated the country's descent into full-scale civil war.

Watch the full Guardian/BBC Arabic documentary

Colonel James Steele was a 58-year-old retired special forces veteran when he was nominated by Donald Rumsfeld to help organise the paramilitaries in an attempt to quell a Sunni insurgency, an investigation by the Guardian and BBC Arabic shows.

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US War on Terror Feature: Preparing for Military Operations in Africa (Barnes/Perez)

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton presses Algeria to join intervention in Mali, 29 October 2012

Military counterterrorism officials are seeking more capability to pursue extremist groups in Africa and elsewhere that they believe threaten the U.S., and the Obama administration is considering asking Congress to approve expanded authority to do it.

The move, according to administration and congressional officials, would be aimed at allowing U.S. military operations in Mali, Nigeria, Libya and possibly other countries where militants have loose or nonexistent ties to al Qaeda's Pakistan headquarters. Depending on the request, congressional authorization could cover the use of armed drones and special operations teams across a region larger than Iraq and Afghanistan combined, the officials said.

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Afghanistan Feature: How Will US "Withdraw" When It Has 550 Bases? (Turse)

Camp BagramAfghanistan may turn out to be one of the great misbegotten “stimulus packages” of the modern era, a construction boom in the middle of nowhere with materials largely shipped in at enormous expense to no lasting purpose whatsoever. With the U.S. military officially drawing down its troops there, the Pentagon is now evidently reversing the process and embarking on a major deconstruction program. It’s tearing up tarmacs, shutting down outposts, and packing up some of its smaller facilities. Next year, the number of International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) coalition bases in the southwest of the country alone is scheduled to plummet from 214 to 70, according to the New York Times.

But anyone who wanted to know just what the Pentagon built in Afghanistan and what it is now tearing down won’t have an easy time of it.

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US Feature: 5 Top Facts About Defense Spending --- and What It Costs America (Holland)

Head Start provides education, health, nutrition, and parenting services to low-income children and their families. It's an incredibly successful, effective and popular program, but there are only 900,000 places in the program for more than 2.5 million eligible kids. According to the National Priorities Project, what we've spent on the Afghanistan war so far could fund Head Start for all eligible children for the next 15.6 years.

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