September 2

Ep. 0145: Fool’s Errand: Scott Horton on America’s War in Afghanistan

In this episode, I’m happy to welcome Scott Horton back to the Dangerous History Podcast. Scott is managing director of the Libertarian Institute, host of Antiwar Radio and the Scott Horton Show, and opinion editor at Antiwar.com. He has conducted more than 4,500 interviews since 2003.

(BTW, My apologies for the audio quality of my conversation with Scott; we were having some noise issues, and I thought I got everything squared away, but apparently not; and on top of it I seem to have messed up a setting or two in the process of battling Skype noise. Mea culpa. But I still think it’s a great discussion worth listening to!)

Join CJ & Scott as they discuss:

  • Scott’s massive labors & achievement in writing the book
  • What’s wrong with the Establishment/Team America narrative of America’s involvement in Afghanistan
  • How & why the war has dragged on as long as it has
  • The economics of the Afghan War, including the ability of many interests to profit from it
  • The question of heroin

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Category: American History, Interviews, Military History, Modern World History, Podcasts | Comments Off on Ep. 0145: Fool’s Errand: Scott Horton on America’s War in Afghanistan
November 30

Ep. 0127: Breaker Morant: A Dangerous History Movie Review

Breaker Morant is an Australian movie released in 1980 that tells the true story of three Australian soldiers of the Bushveldt Carbineers on trial for war crimes near the end of the 1899-1902 Anglo-Boer War in South Africa.

Join CJ as he discusses:

  • A brief background on the Boer War
  • A brief synopsis of Breaker Morant
  • His thoughts on the movie & the significance of its themes

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July 30

Ep. 0112: Scott Horton on America’s post-Cold War Empire

Today CJ is joined by Scott Horton for a conversation about the recent history of American foreign policy since the end of the Cold War.

Join CJ & Scott as they discuss:

  • The book Scott is currently working on, to be coauthored with Tom Woods, about the so-called ‘War on Terror’
  • How much the Soviet threat during the Cold War — while certainly real — was often exaggerated by US elites for their own purposes
  • How, for all its faults, the Cold War strategy of containment at least made some coherent sense, in contrast to the US government’s approach to the Greater Middle East in recent decades, and how often the USG’s lack of a coherent Mid-East strategy has led the USG to support violent anti-American factions
  • Why the end of the Cold War did not result in the US reverting to being a ‘normal country in a normal time’
  • Some thoughts on the Neocons, and how different they are (or aren’t) from the ‘Liberal Interventionists’
  • Some thoughts on whether there’s any possibility of the American Empire at home & abroad being dismantled in an orderly fashion, or if it will only come to an end under conditions of collapse & bankruptcy

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June 7

Ep. 0105: Peeking Behind the Iron Curtain with Kristaps Andrejsons

Kristaps Andrejsons is a Latvian podcaster who hosts the Eastern Border podcast, a show about the history of the Soviet Union with an emphasis on what life was like for regular people who lived in it.

Join CJ & Kristaps as they discuss a wide range of topics, including:

  • Kristaps’ background and why he started his show
  • An description of what life was like for an average, non-elite Soviet citizen, and some discussion of wide variances in experience between different groups depending on status and regional differences
  • The ways in which the Soviet system sought to keep people in a state of dependence, and parallels to this in other realms of history
  • Civic religion in the USSR and USA
  • Soviet humor
  • How totalitarian states seek to eliminate or takeover all intermediate social institutions and eliminate any real private life
  • Food (or lack thereof) in the Soviet Union
  • The impact of Communism on creativity
  • What life is like as a Latvian podcaster today
  • Why some Latvians fought on the side of the Nazis in WWII
  • Some of the human tragedies of Soviet history, such as the Chernobyl meltdown and Afghan war
  • Stalin’s Five Year Plans & starving of the Ukraine to fund them
  • Free speech vs. censorship, and making a conscious effort to read controversial material & read things outside your own comfort zone

And more!

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Come see CJ speak at Porcfest in New Hampshire at 12 noon on Saturday 6/25; topic will be “Applying Guerrilla Methods Beyond War”

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April 30

Ep. 0102: The Irish Easter Rising

This week marks the 100th anniversary of the 1916 Irish rebellion known to history as The Easter Rising.

Join CJ as he discusses:

  • A brief overview of the 800 years of oppression faced by Ireland prior to the Rising
  • The Rising, its suppression, aftermath & legacies

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February 14

Ep. 0094: British Bric-a-brac (CJ’s grad school research project from 2005)

Several listeners have asked about work and research I did while in graduate school, so I decided to share with you one of the few things I wrote in grad school that A) I still have and B) I’m proud of & think is at least somewhat interesting.

Between the World Wars, the British government held ‘Empire Exhibitions’ in Wembley & Glasgow to celebrate the British Empire.  I investigated these exhibitions from the standpoint of propaganda, in an effort to figure out what messages the British elite were trying to inculcate into the exhibitions’ attendees. Among the sources I used was an unconventional sort — souvenirs.

Join CJ as he discusses:

  • His 2005 research paper, “British Bric-a-brac: Souvenirs and the Message of the 1924-25 Wembley and 1938 Glasgow British Empire Exhibitions”

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December 24

Ep. 0089: The Christmas Truce

One-hundred-and-one Christmases ago, in the cold, damp, muddy ditches of the Western Front, the rank-and-file of the Allied and German armies spontaneously set aside their hatreds to take a break from mass-murdering each other, much to the dismay of their so-called ‘leaders.’

Join CJ as he discusses:

  • The context of the Christmas Truce
  • How it happened
  • The aftermath, legacy, and lessons to be learned from it

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August 28

Ep. 0074: The Western Way of War vs the Eastern Way of War

To begin laying some of the groundwork for the upcoming miniseries on the history of modern guerrilla and unconventional war, here’s a discussion of two different paradigms of what war is supposed to be and how it is supposed to be fought.  One is the Western (or European) Way, which originated in Greece and from there filtered through the Romans to become the dominant paradigm among Westerners to this day. The other is the Eastern (or Asian) Way, which originated in China and from there filtered to other parts of the Asian world and beyond, and which forms the intellectual basis of much of modern guerrilla tactics and strategy.

Join Prof CJ as he discusses:

  • The origins of the Western Way and how it has evolved over the centuries
  • The origins of the Eastern Way and how it has evolved over the centuries
  • Why this matters to understanding the modern world in general, and the history of modern unconventional warfare in particular

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August 11

Ep. 0072: The Atomic Bombing of Hiroshima & Nagasaki

This month is the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima & Nagasaki, and the subsequent surrender of Japan to the United States, ending World War II.  The standard mainstream American narrative about this portrays it as a no-brainer, a morally unquestionable & absolutely necessary decision that saved untold numbers of lives.  This narrative is not supported by many serious academic historians who are experts on this topic these days, and it is highly questioned in countries other than the United States, to put it mildly.  What’s the truth about these bombings?

Join Prof CJ as he discusses:

  • A brief word on mass-bombing of civilians in WWII, and how prior to its entry into the war, the US government condemned any mass bombing of civilians, but began engaging in it on a larger scale than anyone else once in the war
  • The successful “Trinity” test of an A-bomb, and the effect that had on the US government’s decision-making
  • What was going on in the Japanese government & in the US government at the time
  • The Potsdam Conference & Declaration of July, 1945
  • The bombing of Hiroshima & its effects
  • The entry of the Soviet Union into the war against Japan & its effects
  • The bombing of Nagasaki & its effects [*Note:  Had an error I made here pointed out by a listener named Matt via Facebook: I said in the episode that Enola Gay also dropped the second bomb; it did not.  The E-G was involved in the 2nd mission as a weather recon plane, but another B-29 named “Bockscar” actually dropped the 2nd bomb.  I messed that detail up in my notes & as a result messed it up in the episode.]
  • Japan’s surrender
  • Some closing thoughts & observations on the bombings, their morality (or lack thereof), and debates that have continued ever since

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April 4

Ep. 0056: Fun with Fascism!

This is not a historical narrative of any particular fascist regime or regimes.  Instead, it’s an exploration of what fascism — arguably the most slippery of modern “isms” to define — really is.

Join Prof CJ as he discusses:

  •  Some quotes from the father of Fascism, Benito Mussolini, to get things started
  • Why fascism is tougher to nail down than other isms
  • What fascism is and isn’t, including some criticism of the standard “Left-to-Right” political spectrum
  • A look at some of the defining elements of fascism, using John T. Flynn’s As We Go Marching (1944) as a starting point
  • An excerpt from the Nazi Party’s platform dealing with their economic planks, and possible American parallels
  • A few words on fascism post-World War II

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