Hugh Gusterson

Hugh Gusterson

Articles by Hugh Gusterson

5 August 2008

Project Minerva revisited

Hugh Gusterson

In my last column, as well as in a column for Foreign Policy, I expressed reservations about Project Minerva--a $50 million Pentagon initiative to mobilize anthropologists and other social scientists to do research in aid of the "war on terror." I argued that such research should be sponsored by a civilian agency such as the National Science Foundation (NSF) rather than by the Pentagon

20 June 2008

The U.S. military's quest to weaponize culture

Hugh Gusterson

The Pentagon seems to have decided that anthropology is to the war on terror what physics was to the Cold War. As an anthropologist, this makes me very nervous.

Where former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld believed that the United States would vanquish its enemies through technological superiority, his replacement Robert Gates has said that cultural expertise in counterinsurgency operations will be crucial in the future wars he anticipates.

13 May 2008

The new nuclear abolitionists

Hugh Gusterson

Twenty-five years ago, the Nuclear Freeze campaign mobilized hundreds of thousands of Americans to demand an end to the testing, production, and deployment of new nuclear weapons. At that time, advocating the complete abolition of nuclear weapons was a fringe position confined to a few utopians on the left. Even most antinuclear activists struggled getting past the "you can't put the genie back in the bottle" common sense of pundits and arms control experts.

15 April 2008

An interview with Hugh Gusterson

Hugh Gusterson
27 March 2008

The "public" discussion about the Energy Department's Complex Transformation

Hugh Gusterson

On Tuesday, the Energy Department held public hearings in Washington on its plans to "transform" the U.S. nuclear weapons complex. Last time I went to Energy headquarters I was turned away because I wasn't a U.S. citizen. (See "Misadventures at the U.S. Energy Department.") This time they let me in without inquiring about my citizenship; they even let me roam the halls unescorted to look for a bathroom. Go figure.

20 February 2008

U.S. nuclear double standards

Hugh Gusterson

As seen from Pakistan, U.S. nuclear weapons policies present troubling trends; an exclusive interview with the irreverent Brig. Gen. Atta M. Iqhman.

4 February 2008

A Pakistani view of U.S. nuclear weapons

Hugh Gusterson

Before the United States criticizes Pakistan and other countries about the security of their nuclear arsenals, Washington should make sure its safeguards system is foolproof.

25 December 2007

Misadventures at the U.S. Energy Department

Hugh Gusterson

Getting into a public talk at the Energy Department has become a surreal exercise, which is worrisome considering all the notoriously mismanaged agency is charged to do.

27 November 2007

Deconstructing HBO's Pu-239

Hugh Gusterson

Like its recent documentary White Light/Black Rain, HBO's latest original movie, Pu-239, provides a thought-provoking examination of the nuclear age.

27 October 2007

The effect of U.S. nuclear testing on the Marshallese

Hugh Gusterson

Five decades after its final nuclear test in the Marshall Islands, Washington still refuses to appropriately compensate those harmed by the tests.