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William Astore
William J. Astore, a retired lieutenant colonel (USAF), taught for six years at the U.S. Air Force Academy and currently teaches at the Pennsylvania College of Technology.  He writes regularly for TomDispatch.com.



No enthusiasm for this war
COMMENTARY | December 20, 2010
If the American public isn't behind the war effort, then it won't succeed, writes William Astore. And if the war in Afghanistan isn't going to succeed, then isn't it time to withdraw?

Is there no end to Operation Enduring War?
COMMENTARY | July 12, 2010
Seven reasons our nation's elites can't seem to stop making war -- and seven ways to turn things around.

Top five questions to ask the Pentagon
ASK THIS | March 19, 2010
How about a 'town hall' meeting on runaway defense budgets? William Astore writes that it's time for the laity to question the high priests of permanent war.

The wrong metrics in Afghanistan
COMMENTARY | June 09, 2009
Using growing body counts as a measure of military success was discredited during the Vietnam War -- and shouldn't be revived in Afghanistan. A former Air Force officer suggests three alternative metrics for assessing the progress – or lack thereof – in Afghanistan.

Would a better prepared U.S. have used torture?
COMMENTARY | May 18, 2009
Did a lack of trained interrogators with appropriate language proficiency lead Bush administration officials to embrace torture as a 'short cut'? A former dean at the Defense Language Institute writes that America was unprepared to wage a patient and savvy war of counterintelligence against Al Qaeda – which may have made less humane and less effective methods seem like an attractive option. Seventh in a series of articles calling attention to the things we still need to know about torture and other abuses committed by the Bush administration after 9/11.

Seven lessons and many questions about Afghanistan
ASK THIS | April 17, 2009
A former Air Force officer revisits Mary McCarthy’s unconventional and insightful analyses of the Vietnam War – and comes up with probing questions based on her 40-year-old lessons that are well worth asking Obama today about his ever-deepening involvement in Afghanistan.

Has the U.S. military become an imperial foreign legion?
COMMENTARY | February 16, 2009
A former Air Force officer marvels at how far the armed forces have strayed from their proper purpose, how dramatically the government has abandoned the notion of shared sacrifice, and how little Americans seem to care about the well-being of the troops.

Cheney says he approved waterboarding. Is that the end of the story?
ASK THIS | December 20, 2008
The vice president gave the go-ahead for tactics commonly regarded as torture. Was that a war crime or not? William J. Astore provides some background on the issue and urges the press to show that it too can do aggressive interrogations. And do them now, without waiting for a new administration or a new Congress.

Networks should replace Pentagon cheerleaders with independent military analysts
COMMENTARY | December 04, 2008
Even without special Pentagon briefings and corrupting financial relationships, former top military brass simply are too conflicted to be relied upon for tough-minded analysis, writes a former Air Force officer.

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