Andrew J. Bacevich:
"The Tyranny of Defense"
Crooked contractors, radical overspending, and other stories of the military-industrial complex from the Atlantic archives.
Atomic War or Peace (November 1947)
By Albert Einstein
"I am not saying that the United States should not manufacture and stockpile the bomb," the great physicist wrote just two years after Hiroshima. "But deterrence should be the only purpose of the stockpile of bombs."
An Open Letter to President Kennedy (January 1961)
By William R. Matthews
In a plea to America's newly elected leader, the author insisted that abating the expensive arms race would free up funds to make the whole world more productive.
The Steep Bill for Vietnam (September 1972)
By David Halberstam
Lyndon Johnson's administration intentionally lowballed the cost of the war, hoping to keep the details as secret as possible. In response, the American economy went haywire.
The Spend-Up (July 1986)
By James Fallows
When the Reagan Administration came to Washington, it promised to repair a "decade of neglect" in military spending. Instead, Fallows argued, our military arsenal became more expensive but not larger.
The Rush to Deploy SDI (April 1988)
By Charles E. Bennett
The author argued that Reagan's Strategic Defense Initiative was a misguided effort--defying scientific opinion, bypassing internal Pentagon review procedures, stalling Congress, and pressuring the military.