Monday, May 17

Biden’s likely election to lead the Pentagon is not a victory for feminism | Arwa Mahdawi | Opinion

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The awakening of war

Time to step into the military-industrial complex, ladies! The US Department of Defense is one of three Cabinet agencies – the others are treasury and veterans affairs – that have never been led by a woman; Now, however, it seems that one of the last glass ceilings is about to break. Joe Biden is expected to name Michèle Flournoy as the first female US Secretary of Defense.

There has been a lot of excitement about this historic appointment: “Biden is likely to break barriers, elect a woman to lead the Pentagon,” a Associated Press headline proclaimed. The article notes that Flournoy’s appointment “would be consistent with Biden’s promise to have a diverse cabinet.”

Sorry if I’m not particularly excited about all this diversity. Flournoy, who was a senior defense adviser in the Bill Clinton and Barack Obama administrations, could become the first woman in charge of the Pentagon, but it seems unlikely that she will do anything to improve America’s foreign policy. Flournoy was widely regarded as one of Obama’s most famous. hawk advisors and helped plan the climbing of the disastrous war in Afghanistan. She has called for increased defense spending, arguing in a 2017 Washington Post op-ed that Trump was “right in raising the need for more defense dollars.” She has She complained that Obama did not use military force enough, particularly in Syria. He supported the wars in Iraq and Libya. He has lucrative ties to defense contractors and is a member of the Booz Allen Hamilton board of directors.

Look, I get it, anyone who gets a chance to become secretary of defense is going to be troublesome in some way. It is not the kind of job you usually get if you are against the war or if you are against US imperialism. But that doesn’t mean we should act as if Flournoy’s likely appointment as head of the Pentagon is some kind of victory for feminism. There is nothing remotely feminist about women in rich countries dropping bombs on women in poor countries.

There is also nothing feminist about the way some people are already cynically arming Flournoy’s gender to detract from significant criticism of her policies. According to Mieke Eoyang, senior vice president for national security at a think tank called Third Way, for example, criticizing Flournoy is sexist. “White progressives training their fire on women and women of color who are under consideration to lead the [national security] departments makes me deeply uneasy about their partnership with those communities, ”Eoyang said. tweeted last week. “Especially when the [national security] the community is dominated by white men. “

I have it? If you want to be an ally of women, you have to support them no matter how many bombs they want to drop. This is what a true “alliance” looks like! Three cheers for intersectional imperialism!

I am concerned that we will see a lot of this kind of mindless identity politics in the next four years. I worry that Biden will be applauded for naming women and non-white people in powerful positions, and this “diversity” will help spark harmful policies.

I worry that anything unethical the Biden administration does will be ignored because it is not as bad as the trauma of the Trump years. I worry that we will go back to normal and forget that it is the usual situation that got Trump elected in the first place.

Prenatal Testing and the Future of Down syndrome

Advances in prenatal testing mean that parents can now easily detect conditions like Down syndrome very early in a pregnancy and then you decide to have an abortion. “Few people speak publicly about wanting to ‘eliminate’ Down syndrome,” writes Sarah Zhang in this thought-provoking Atlantic article, “however, individual choices add up to something much like that.” They also reinforce a narrow vision of the normal. “Genetic testing, as a medical service, is used to enforce the limits of ‘normal’ by ruling out the abnormal,” Zhang writes. “[B]But seeing all the anomalies that are compatible with life could broaden our understanding of normal. “

We can exclude that the “I like“Came from the Holy See

Pope Francis’ official Instagram account “liked” a photo of a scantily clad Brazilian model, which caused quite a stir. The Vatican has claimed it had nothing to do with it and is demanding an explanation from Instagram. It must have been an act of God.

Kim Ng becomes the first female general manager in Major League Baseball

Ng, 51, was hired by the Miami Marlins last week and she is the first female general manager in any of the four major sports leagues in the United States.

Harry Styles wore a dress, shooting rightextremes everywhere

To be fair, I was a bit annoyed that Styles posed in a prom dress on the cover of Vogue. He looks much better with him than I do.

Meet Gladys West: Helped Invent GPS But Prefers Paper Maps

Read this profile of the incredible 89-year-old.

New Zealand the police introduce the hijab for female officers

Agent Zeena Ali will become the first officer in wear the official hijab.

The week in Ponziarcado

What do you do when the FBI hunts you for running a $ 35 million Ponzi scheme? Escaping underwater using a submersible scooter, obviously. That is what Matthew Piercey did it anyway. According to official documents, Piercey “spent time out of sight underwater where law enforcement could only see bubbles,” but eventually had to come out drenched to face justice and, most likely, a horrible cold.

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