James Carroll

James Carroll

James Carroll, a TomDispatch regular and former Boston Globe columnist, is the author of 20 books, including the new novel The Cloister (Doubleday). Among other works are: House of War: The Pentagon and the Disastrous Rise of American Power and Christ Actually: The Son of God for the Secular Age. His memoir, An American Requiem, won the National Book Award. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He lives in Boston with his wife, the writer Alexandra Marshall.


Articles by this author

Monday, October 28, 2019

What the Dismantling of the Berlin Wall Means 30 Years Later

Some anniversaries are less about the past than the future. So it should be with November 9, 1989. In case you've long forgotten, that was the day when East and West Germans began nonviolently dismantling the Berlin Wall, an entirely unpredicted, almost unimaginable ending to the long-entrenched Cold War. Think of...
Tuesday, May 28, 2019

My Pentagon Regret

Earlier this month, the USS Abraham Lincoln carrier strike group -- the massive aircraft carrier itself with its dozens of warplanes and thousands of sailors and marines, a guided missile cruiser, and four destroyers -- suddenly began to make its way from the Mediterranean Sea into the Persian Gulf, heading for...
Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Doomsday Redux: Just How Many Minutes to Midnight?

Last month, the National Nuclear Security Administration (formerly the Atomic Energy Commission) announced that the first of a new generation of strategic nuclear weapons had rolled off the assembly line at its Pantex nuclear weapons plant in the panhandle of Texas. That warhead, the W76-2, is designed to be...
Monday, November 5, 2018

Entering the Second Nuclear Age?

It was only an announcement, but think of it as the beginning of a journey into hell. Last week, President Donald Trump made public his decision to abrogate the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), a 1987 agreement with the Soviet Union. National Security Advisor John Bolton, a Cold Warrior in a...
Thursday, March 8, 2018

When 'God Wills It!': An American Reckoning

America may be sinking ever deeper into the moral morass of the Trump era, but if you think the malevolence of this period began with him, think again. The moment I still dwell on, the moment I believe ignited the vast public disorder that is now our all-American world, has been almost completely forgotten...
Monday, January 19, 2015

Obama Has Become a Figure of American Disappointment

When President Barack Obama delivers the State of the Union address Tuesday night, the nation will implicitly consider the state of the president himself. Six years ago, he was defined by the word “hope.” He had arrived on the scene as a political innocent, and many who voted for him inevitably projected onto the...
Thursday, December 11, 2014

Obama's Abolition of Nuclear Abolition

Mark these days. A long-dreaded transformation from hope to doom is taking place as the United States of America ushers the world onto the no-turning-back road of nuclear perdition. Once, we could believe there was another way to go. Indeed, we were invited to take that path by the man who is, even today,...
Monday, September 29, 2014

Ebola? ISIS? Climate Change? More War Won’t Help World's Moral Gridlock

Commuters heading into Manhattan last week confronted electronic signs that flashed a warning; “UN GEN ASSEMBLY: GRIDLOCK ALERT.” But a midtown traffic jam was the least of it. At the United Nations itself, multiple crises collided, each claiming a moral right of way over the others. Climate change. Ukraine....
Wednesday, August 29, 2012

A Bankrupt War Policy Takes Its Toll

President Obama last week addressed the growing problem of "green on blue" attacks in Afghanistan, in which members of Afghan security forces turn their guns on their Western partners. "We are concerned about this, from top to bottom," the president said. In the two weeks before he spoke, there were seven such attacks, killing nine Americans, and about 40 coalition troops have been killed by Afghan allies this year.
Monday, July 25, 2011

As Stores Die, So Does Book Culture

THE LIQUIDATION of Borders Books, announced last week, is like the death of an unlikely friend - unlikely because Borders was itself implicated in the slow-motion degradation of the culture of the book.