Danny Sjursen

Danny Sjursen

Major Danny Sjursen is a U.S. Army strategist and former history instructor at West Point. He served tours with reconnaissance units in Iraq and Afghanistan. He has written a memoir and critical analysis of the Iraq War, Ghostriders of Baghdad: Soldiers, Civilians, and the Myth of the Surge.  He lives with his wife and four sons near Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

Articles by this author

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), a 2020 presidential candidate, speaks during a news conference with fellow Democrats at the U.S. Capitol October 25, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) Views
Friday, May 17, 2019
Where Is the Democratic Alternative to Forever War?
There sure are lots to choose from. By now, more than 20 candidates have announced a run for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination. And with national security adviser John “Regime Change” Bolton, along with the others in the four Bs cabal—Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, Mohammed bin Salman of...
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Those who needed the money the military offered and were lured by modest cash bonuses would serve, while the wealthiest, perhaps unsurprisingly, opted out. (Photo: U.S. military) Views
Thursday, April 04, 2019
Was Ending the Draft a Grave Mistake?
I spent last week at Angelo State University in remote central Texas as a panelist for the annual All-Volunteer Force (AVF) Forum . It was a strange forum in many ways, but nonetheless instructive. I was the youngest (and most progressive) member, as well as the lowest-ranking veteran among a group...
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I’ll be hoping that more serving officers as well as troops gather the courage to speak out and tell the American public the score when it comes to our brutal, hopeless, never-ending wars. (Photo: Reuters/file) Views
Monday, April 01, 2019
What I Won't Miss as I Leave the US Army
“Patriotism, in the trenches, was too remote a sentiment, and at once rejected as fit only for civilians, or prisoners.” — Robert Graves, Goodbye To All That (1929). I’m one of the lucky ones. Leaving the madness of Army life with a modest pension and all of my limbs intact feels like a genuine...
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President Donald Trump arrives to deliver remarks at the Lima Army Tank Plant in Lima, Ohio on March 20. (Photo: Evan Vucci / AP) Views
Friday, March 22, 2019
America Is Exceptional—in All the Wrong Ways
I was born and raised in an America far more Orwellian than many now remember. Matters have gone so far off the rails since 9/11 that few seem to recall the madness of the 1980s. The U.S. had a celebrity actor for president, who railed about America’s ostensibly existential adversary —the Soviet “...
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After Trump’s announcement of troop withdrawals, just about every MSNBC host slammed the president and suddenly sounded more hawkish than the clowns over at Fox News. (Photo: The U.S. Army / Flickr) Views
Friday, January 11, 2019
The 'Liberal' Foreign Policy Establishment's Hypocrisy Knows No Bounds
If anyone else were president, the “liberals” would be celebrating. After all, pulling American soldiers out of a couple of failing, endless wars seems like a “win” for progressives. Heck, if Obama did it there might be a ticker-tape parade down Broadway. And there should be. The intervention in...
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Monday, December 24, 2018
The World According to the 'Adults in the Room'
Leave it to liberals to pin their hopes on the oddest things. In particular, they seemed to find post-Trump solace in the strange combination of the two-year-old Mueller investigation and the good judgment of certain Trump appointees, the proverbial “ adults in the room .” Remember that crew? It...
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Think of these developments as establishing a potential formula for perpetual conflict that just might lead the United States into a truly cataclysmic war it neither needs nor can meaningfully win.(Photo: Debra Sweet/flickr/cc) Views
Tuesday, November 20, 2018
Planet of War
American militarism has gone off the rails -- and this middling career officer should have seen it coming. Earlier in this century, the U.S. military not surprisingly focused on counterinsurgency as it faced various indecisive and seemingly unending wars across the Greater Middle East and parts of...
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 Is anything the U.S. doing, anyone it is empowering or arming, likely to make the Middle East or America any safer? If not, wouldn’t a different, less interventionist approach be the essence of sober strategy?(Photo: Alisdare Hickson/flickr/cc) Views
Monday, October 01, 2018
Backfires and More Blowback: A Generation of American Folly
He was shot in the back , the ultimate act of treachery. On September 3rd, a U.S Army sergeant major was killed by two Afghan police officers -- the very people his unit, the new Security Force Assistance Brigade, was there to train. It was the second fatal “insider attack,” as such incidents are...
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"A remarkable formula for forever war." (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Russell Bassett) Views
Thursday, May 03, 2018
Hail, (Donald) Caesar!: War and the Imperial Presidency
It may be too late. The president of the United States is now a veritable autocrat in the realm of foreign policy. He has been since at least 1945, when the last congressionally declared war finally ended. Wars in Korea, Vietnam, Grenada, Panama, Somalia, Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and Yemen...
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Bolton still insists that the 2003 invasion of Iraq, which shattered that country and the entire region, was justified, a fact that ought in itself to have disqualified him in the eyes of a president who, on the campaign trail, repeatedly called that war “dumb.(Photo: Fibonacci Blue/flickr/cc) Views
Friday, April 06, 2018
The Dolls of Militarism
Sometimes I get sick of saying it, but just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse… Donald Trump’s continual cabinet reshuffling -- otherwise the stuff of reality-TV drama -- has become genuinely frightening. Like so many Russian matryoshki or nesting dolls, the president has been removing one...
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