War-mongering as a Psychopathic Behavior “Combines Traits of Narcissistic, Paranoid and Anti-Social Personality”

As I began teaching military history to cadets at the Air Force Academy in 1990, I quickly became familiar with a flourishing “Cult of Clausewitz”… and with the American military’s fascination with German methods and the German military mystique. In the 1980s and 1990s, American military…swallowed the Clausewitzian/German notion of war as a dialectical or creative art, one in which well-trained and highly-motivated leaders can impose their will on events. In this notional construct, war became not destructive, but constructive. It became not the last resort of kings, but the preferred recourse of “creative” warlords… A new vision of the battlefield emerged in which the U.S. military aimed…for “total situational awareness” and “full spectrum dominance”, goals that promised commanders the almost god-like ability to master the “storm of steel”, to calm the waves, to command the air. In the process, any sense of war as thoroughly unpredictable and enormously wasteful was lost… Busts of Clausewitz reside in places of honor today at both the Army War College at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania, and the National War College in Washington, D.C. No wonder that George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, and Donald Rumsfeld were so eager to go to war in Iraq in 2003. They saw themselves as the new masters of Blitzkrieg, the new warlords, the inheritors of the best methods of German military efficiency… We began to see war not as a human-made disaster but as a creative science and art (though warfare may seem extreme, it’s really a perfectly sensible form of violent political discourse between nation-states). We began to seek “force multipliers” and total victory achieved through an almost Prussian mania for military excellence… The result? A so called “new American way of war that was simply a desiccated version of the old German one, which had produced nothing but catastrophic defeat for Germany in both 1918 and 1945… What amazes me, however, is how this astonishingly selective and adolescent view of war – with its fetish for lightning results…came to dominate mainstream American military thinking.
William J. Astore, a retired lieutenant colonel

Even peace movements are afraid to mention the word “peace” in their political statements. They look for synonyms… Better to save the last leopards in the Judean desert or the eagles on the Golan Heights than to search for the doves of peace.
Uri Avnery

Destructively aggressive patients manifest combined traits of narcissistic (the poisonous, insidious pestilence of pathological narcissism), paranoid and anti-social personality.
Stephen A. Diamond

Is looking for war as a solution to human problems a mental illness? Is the proud readiness for war result of psychological traumas in childhood and adolescence that create in those who have undergone and grownup on abuse “a chronic depressive condition, concealed and warded off by a defensive reaction formation [consisting] of seeking stimulation beyond the norm, …the addictive excitement and adrenaline rush of lawbreaking, risk-taking, intoxication, enragement and violence” (Stephen A. Diamond, “Violence as Secular Evil: Forensic Evaluation and Treatment of Violent Offenders from the Viewpoint of Existential Depth Psychology”, Journal of Applied Psychoanalytic Studies, Vol.5, No1, Jan. 2003).

It is very worrisome to read in lieutenant colonel Astore‘s article that the German military strategist idolized and used by the Nazis with pride and cheer is taken up as a chief military guru by the American military. But, of course, we shouldn’t be too surprised if we don’t have our eyes closed to the fact that the leading Bushmerican neo-conservatives (BNCs) during 2000-2008 period dismantled a number of democratic laws, invented two wars, stirred paranoid hysteria and indiscriminate hate amongst the humanistically-scientifically uneducated layers of the population, solemnly legalized torture, bailed out with taxpayers’ money the incompetent financial adventurists, created incredible financial waist through an irresponsible military spending, and made obscene profit on war in Iraq which they unprofessionally executed with the result of heightened casualties among our soldiers and Iraqi civilians.

The fact that after all the destructive things they have done the leading BNCs still enjoy a substantial support among the electorate tells us about the degradation of the American population’s intellectual level. This regression in intelligence of American masses today makes them comparable with the psychological condition of the Germans under the Nazis. Too many Americans today don’t understand how much Bushfeld’s emotional reactions are similar with the feelings of average German Nazis. More, they share these reactions by blind identification with the leading BNCs. I am horrified that our military cadets salute to the bust of Clausewitz (whose spirit had presided over two World Wars of the 20th century which Germany lost in spite of all his strategic help) and that today there is such a drastic deficit in people like lieutenant colonel W.J. Astore who could explain the truth.