I’ve added a parenthetical “at least” because our military engagements and commitments are so vast and amorphously defined that any list will almost certainly fall short of comprehensiveness. If we include covert operations, for example, we’re almost certainly engaged in acts of war in several additional countries beyond those seven. And then there’s the tendency among the members of our political class, including many journalists who cover it, to avoid using the term “war” for military actions that fall short of the deployment of ground troops — even when they include such acts of war as the firing of missiles at sovereign nations and the imposition or enforcement of naval blockades against them.
So it’s hard to know precisely how many wars the nation is currently waging. But let’s say it’s seven. How widely known is this? How many Americans are aware that 71 civilians were killed in Yemen over the weekend by a U.S-backed bombing campaign by Saudi Arabia? Or that our support for Saudi interference in the Yemeni civil war was begun, with barely any public explanation or justification, by the Obama administration? Or that Congress, empowered by the Constitution to declare and fund wars, has proven itself eager to shirk its responsibilities, allowing the White House and the Pentagon to prosecute endless, invisible wars across the globe with barely any democratic oversight?