Articles on Military

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CrossFitters can be found flipping tires or hitting them with a sledgehammer, climbing ropes, and tossing medicine balls. Shutterstock

CrossFit: elite fitness or pointless pain?

It’s a known fact that exercise is addictive. But CrossFitters – those who take part in CrossFit’s brutal workouts and stringent diet – are infamous for their fanatical devotion to their fitness philosophy…
A field of poppies, symbolising the soldiers’ sacrifice, has been sown in Northwood, London, for the centenary of the First World War, but the civilian losses are no less worthy of remembrance. AAP/Newzulu/Stephen Chung

On Hiroshima Day, remember the civilian victims of ‘total war’

Hiroshima Day is the closest we come to a day that focuses on the plight of civilians in war. The two atomic bombs dropped on Japan immediately killed over 120,000 civilians, but over the years the day…
Papua New Guinea soldiers mark Remembrance Day at the Port Moresby war memorial depicting ‘fuzzy wuzzy angel’ Raphael Oimbari leading a wounded Australian soldier to medical aid. AAP/Lloyd Jones

Lest we forget the PNG soldiers who served in Australia’s military

As Papua New Guinea marks its Remembrance Day, July 23, in Australia the service of thousands of Papua New Guineans in the Australian military will go unnoticed. At Remembrance Park in Port Moresby, services…
There is more freedom and more reasons to smile in Burma than in the past – but will this girl and others in her generation share the spoils of the nation’s resources boom? Dietmar Temps

Burma emerges from a shadowy past, but real progress lies ahead

Our Tropical Future: A new report on the State of the Tropics has revealed rapid changes in human and environmental health in the Earth’s tropical regions. This is the final in a four-part series about…
David Cameron visits Commonwealth soldiers’ graves in Tourgeville Military Cemetery, France. Stefan Rousseau/PA

Britain’s imperial armies come to the rescue of its modern forces

Speaking as part of a commemorative celebration of the importance of the Commonwealth in WW1, David Cameron had this to say about the participation of colonial troops from all over the empire: They fought…
A MQ-9 Reaper Drone has an operational cost one-fifth of the F35 Joint Strike Fighter. So should drones replace soldiers in military warfare? US Air Force

Drones are cheap, soldiers are not: a cost-benefit analysis of war

Cost is largely absent in the key debates around the use of unmanned drones in war, even though drones are a cost-effective way of achieving national security objectives. Many of the common objections…
US army ‘deserter’ Bowe Bergdahl had deep and abiding questions about the justice of the cause he signed up for. EPA/IntelCenter

Deserters aren’t born, but made: Bowe Bergdahl and moral injury

The public debate around the recent prisoner swap that saw US Army sergeant Bowe Bergdahl returned from five years’ imprisonment in Afghanistan in exchange for five senior Taliban leaders has had two main…
Women march on Abuja demanding the rescue of 200 schoolgirls. Deji Yake/EPA

Teaching under siege in Nigeria gripped by fear of Boko Haram

The world is waking up to Boko Haram. More than 200 schoolgirls kidnapped from the classes last month remain missing. A car bomb in Abuja on May 1 killed at least 19 people. I live in fear of Boko Haram…
Born in India, unlike his weapon. EPA

Why is India still the world’s largest arms importer?

India has been the world’s largest arms importer every year since 2010, as its defence industry struggles to keep up with its international ambitions. The volume of major weapons imports more than doubled…
A 12% increase in China’s military spending may sound muscular: but as a proportion to GDP it has remained constant since 2000. AAP/EPA/ADRIAN BRADSHAW

China’s military spending: is there a new arms race?

As the world’s second largest military power, China’s announcement of a 12% increase in its military budget has elicited grumbles from Taipei, Tokyo and Washington. But what does this increase signal regarding…
Hiding the government’s border control policy behind the word ‘operational’ makes the military their political pawns. AAP/Scott Fisher

Operation Sovereign Borders: dignified silence or diminishing democracy?

Recent reports that the Australian Navy has turned back two asylum seeker boats to Indonesian waters remain shrouded under a veil of secrecy. Australia remains subject to downgraded levels of co-operation…
Of all the inquiries and interventions it has taken a woman to bring deep and incisive change to the Australian Defence Force. AAP/Alan Porritt

Tinkering with tribalism: women and cultural change in the ADF

The Australian Defence Force (ADF) has Elizabeth Broderick and her team to thank for recent progress in the war against sexism and perversion at the Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA). But it is military…
Chief of Army Lieutenant General David Morrison has once again vowed to tackle a seemingly systemic culture of indiscretion within the ADF. AAP/Lukas Coch

Defence force sex scandals: can the culture be changed?

The Australian Defence Force (ADF) is again confronted by allegations of sexual humiliation and denigration of serving female members. The latest scandal involves claims that emails containing explicit…
A teddy bear bought by murdered soldier Lee Rigby for his son, Jack, sits alongside a family photograph. PA/Dave Thompson

Making soldiers safe at home is essential for mental health

The brutal killing of Drummer Lee Rigby on the streets of Woolwich has raised serious questions about the safety of our soldiers at home, and how such violence could affect their recovery from the psychological…
The US remains the most militarily powerful nation on Earth - but will budget cuts bring it back to the fold? EPA/Zurab Kurtsikidze

Budget cuts: will American military power suffer?

The maelstrom surrounding budget cuts that has engulfed the United States over the last twelve months seems no nearer to reaching a satisfactory conclusion. The U.S. Congressional House and Senate currently…
Bob Carr, Hillary Clinton, Stephen Smith and Leon Panetta (Left to Right) at AUSMIN 2012, Perth. AAP/Theron Kirkman

US joint facilities are a threat to the national interest

Foreign minister Bob Carr told the Australian yesterday that his top two priorities are to ensure the US is engaged in our region, and to handle Australia’s relationship with Asia better. But the “joint…

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