The Generals Have No Clothes: The Untold Story of Our Endless Wars

William M. Arkin, with E.D. Cauchi. Simon & Schuster, $28 (272p) ISBN 978-1-982130-99-2
In this impassioned takedown of the national security establishment, journalist and former U.S. Army intelligence analyst Arkin (Unmanned) excoriates military and civilian leaders for fostering a “perpetual-war machine” in the two decades since 9/11. He notes that the U.S. military has fought the “so-called war on terror” in 55 countries, at a cost of 11,000 American lives and more than $6.5 trillion, and claims that every country where fighting has occurred is worse off than it was 20 years ago. Laying the blame on a sprawling network of “establishment practitioners’’ in the military, intelligence, and law enforcement communities, Arkin delves into the network’s role in President Obama’s failure to wind down conflicts in the Middle East, the overhyping of North Korea’s military threat, and the development of massive intelligence-gathering operations that threaten the privacy of U.S. citizens. His solutions include more civilian control over the military and the creation of a “global security index” to measure whether the world is becoming more or less safe. Though lacking in narrative cohesion, Arkin’s compendium of national security dysfunctions builds a damning case against the status quo. Readers will be convinced that a sea change is necessary. (Apr.)
Reviewed on : 01/29/2021
Release date: 04/01/2021
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 272 pages - 978-1-9821-3100-5
Compact Disc - 978-1-7971-2451-3
Downloadable Audio - 978-1-7971-2449-0
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