Since the launch of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars—now the longest wars in American history—the US military has struggled to recruit troops. It has responded, as Matt Kennard’s explosive investigative report makes clear, by opening its doors to neo-Nazis, white supremacists, gang members, criminals of all stripes, the overweight, and the mentally ill. Based on several years of reporting, Irregular Army includes extensive interviews with extremist veterans and leaders of far-right hate groups—who spoke openly of their eagerness to have their followers acquire military training for a coming domestic race war. As a report commissioned by the Department of Defense itself put it, “Effectively, the military has a ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy pertaining to extremism.”
Irregular Army connects some of the War on Terror’s worst crimes to this opening-up of the US military. With millions of veterans now back in the US and domestic extremism on the rise, Kennard’s book is a stark warning about potential dangers facing Americans—from their own soldiers.
Hardback, 288 pages
$26.95 / £14.99 / $26.50CAN
"My impression in general is that the business press is more open, more free, often more critical, less constrained by external power and external influences."
"Latin Ameirca has begun to address its horrendous internal problems. This is an area of the world that ought to be pretty rich and successful. [...] Compare it with East Asia which is far poorer in resources, many faced with hostile powers and internal conflicts, which South America isn't - but it's grown extensively and developed."
"The first was in Venezuela in 2002 when the US quite openly backed a coup attempt which was successful for a few days but was then overturned. [...] The second was in Haiti in 2004 when the traditional torturers of Haiti, France and the US, combined to give not-so-tacit support to a military uprising, and intervened to kidnap the elected president and send him off to central Africa [...] The third case was Honduras, where the elected president, Zelaya, was expelled by the military."
Over the weekend, Matt Kennard, author of the forthcoming Irregular Army, appeared alongside Ret. Col Jack Jacobs on MSNBC to discuss recruiting standards—or the startling lack thereof—in the United States military. "The fact is that the US military does have regulations to govern the recruitment of neo-Nazis and white supremacists," Kennard explains, "and they were completely torn up during the War on Terror because the army was failing to recruit sufficient troops."
Visit MSNBC to watch the episode in full.