Chicago Boyz

What Are Chicago Boyz Readers Reading?

  •   Enter your email to be notified of new posts:
  •   Problem? Question?
  •   Contact Authors:

  • Blog Posts (RSS 2.0)
  • Blog Posts (Atom 0.3)
  • Incoming Links
  • Recent Comments

    • Loading...
  • Authors

  • Notable Discussions

  • Recent Posts

  • Blogroll

  • Categories

  • Archives

  • Clausewitz, On War, Introductory Matter: “Hello World!”

    Posted by Critt Jarvis on January 12th, 2009 (All posts by )

    It is February, 2003. There has been a fire in a Rhode Island nightclub, taking a terrible toll on life. The event moves me to check in with the only person I know in Rhode Island, Tom Barnett.

    I send a brief email, a casual How are you doing? The reply was quick, something like, “Fine, Just wrote piece for Esquire magazine. Tell me what you think.”

    I open the attached Word doc. It begins:

    LET ME TELL YOU why military engagement with Saddam Hussein’s regime in Baghdad is not only necessary and inevitable, but good.
    When the United States finally goes to war again in the Persian Gulf, it will not constitute a settling of old scores, or just an enforced disarmament of illegal weapons, or a distraction in the war on terror. Our next war in the Gulf will mark a historical tipping point—the moment when Washington takes real ownership of strategic security in the age of globalization.
    That is why the public debate about this war has been so important: It forces Americans to come to terms with I believe is the new security paradigm that shapes this age, namely, Disconnectedness defines danger. Saddam Hussein’s outlaw regime is dangerously disconnected from the globalizing world, from its rule sets, its norms, and all the ties that bind countries together in mutually assured dependence.

    A historical tipping point… government takes real ownership of strategic security… why the public debate is so important… the new security paradigm, Disconnectedness defines danger. Did he just say war is not only necessary and inevitable, but good? I read on…

    The reason I support going to war in Iraq is not simply that Saddam is a cutthroat Stalinist willing to kill anyone to stay in power, nor because that regime has clearly supported terrorist networks over the years. The real reason I support a war like this is that the resulting long-term military commitment will finally force America to deal with the entire Gap as a strategic threat environment.

    A long-term military commitment… America, its people, must deal with a strategic threat environment.

    I shoot back a reply, sort of a “I get it, but some will come after you… You need to blog.”

    “Don’t know what that is… but you do… busy now… they want me to expand to a book… I’ll call you when I need a website.”

    It is October 2003. The call comes in, “Critt, I need a website.” The book, in manuscript form, is in review. Its title? The Pentagon’s New Map.

    It is January 2004. Design on the fly. The medium enables the message, so let the message design the medium.

    I’m designing a weblog to further the conversation this book begins. I read the manuscript over the weekend, but I am not yet permitted to post excerpts or quotes. What I will say is this, the author Tom Barnett, has given language that allows me to fully embrace globalization as a vision and strategy toward a furture worth creating. And he does so in a way that makes every current Presidential candidate’s agenda a puny (if not dangerous!) pathway. (Note: do not infer that the content or conext are in alignment with the current administration’s plan. The book is explicit where it lines up with the Bush plan, and where it does not.)

    It is March 2004. The online presence of Thomas P.M. Barnett makes “A Beginning.”

    [Critt and I hope] the book’s release will turn a lot of readers onto the ideas and challenges presented within. So we hope to create a certain amount of space on the site to capture feedback, encourage some discussion, and get the ball rolling in terms of a web-based debate about – what I like to call – a future worth creating.

    The conversation’s on

    It is October 2008. The email comes in, “Large, serious, important books are best read and discussed in groups,” states Lexington Green, and ChicagoBoyz is going to host a blog roundtable to discuss Clausewitz’s On War.” Am I interested to participate? Oh, please, I drank the Kool Aid before it was cool. Throw me in that briar patch.

    It is January 2009. If the technology had been available in 1831, Carl von Clausewitz would have blogged his thoughts. For he knew, thoughts On War would always be Beta.

    Thank you, Carl. Thanks to each who participates. And, “Hello, World.” May the discussion be fruitful.


    One Response to “Clausewitz, On War, Introductory Matter: “Hello World!””

    1. Lexington Green` Says:

      Hello, Critt. Welcome aboard. Good story. Thanks for “web-enabling” Barnett.

      Looking forward to your thoughts on the book.