David, Goliath, Charlie Wilson’s War, and American Culture

The film “Charlie Wilson’s War” is about an American Congressman who in the 1980s organized the clandestine funding to fight the Russian Occupation of Afghanistan. Wilson arranged for over $1 billion to be sent to Afghan groups fighting the Russians on the idea that anyone who would fight the United States’ Cold War enemy was … Continue reading David, Goliath, Charlie Wilson’s War, and American Culture

Message to HTS Anthropologists: You Need an Experimental Control

Colonel Martin Schweitzer testified before two House Armed Services Committee Subcommittees on April 23 about the Human Terrain Team operating in Afghanistan. After reading it, I was not sure whether to jump up and down and yell yippee! because the military is discussing the role of culture in rural Afghanistan, or simply groan because so … Continue reading Message to HTS Anthropologists: You Need an Experimental Control

Human Terrain System: Too Little, Too Late, and So What?

Ok, Mark Dawson finally wrote often enough about the Human Terrain System for me to investigate what this military program actually is. I have some sympathy for the idea of using anthropology in the military because I have seen too many anthropologically incorrect lieutenants proclaiming to the press something along the lines of “You gotta … Continue reading Human Terrain System: Too Little, Too Late, and So What?