In 2010, Karen DeYoung and Greg Jaffe of the Washington Post co-authored a report on the expansion of “secret war”. I highly suggest reading this supplement to chapter two of The Changing Face of Empire as it highlights one of the most cringeworthy facets of the US military regime: “taking the battle to the enemy”. The US is in fact an imperial power, capable of waging war and inflicting violence into countries with which there is little to diplomatic relationship. Also telling of how desensitized to mass murder abroad we have become, look no further than websites such as this one I discovered while listening to an NPR podcast that buys and sells government contracts to small business. These small businesses who accept are then responsible for purchasing large quantities of items, including, inter alia, blankets and bandaids to ammunition. In practice, the government is rarely ever low on supplies that are used to mass produce genocide in poor and developing countries, who dare use violence to express their disdain for the hegemonic West. In Changing Face it is briefly mentioned the how the defense budget has more than quadrupled in the wake of 9/11. While many read such action in response to an act of mass violence within our comfort zone, I read a quadrupling of funds as capitalist and preventative of ever seeing an end to the omnipresent war.
In the social imaginary, post 9/11, the hero typified an army soldier ready to be deployed to war. As insurgency into the Great Middle East continued forward without result and no end, the hero became a sniper, a special operation trained killing machine that would quell the danger by first assigning the danger onto one person, vilifying this one person, while justifying this xenophobia with doctrine such as the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Terrorist. The ambiguous wording used here has been the justification for the American Empire. While ending terror abroad is the mission of the US government, it is not a secret, when thought about empire from a critical, practical standpoint, that the US is profiting from the exploitation of natural resources. In summation, the empire of the US is expanding and it is time we spent more time putting forth a narrative in opposition to the global hegemon instead of benefitting form the death of the innocent.