I bought this book along with:
2005 Tell Me No Lies: Investigative Journalism That Changed the World
2007 Freedom Next Time: Resisting the Empire
Published in 2002, it gripped me from beginning to end. Although I studied Multinational Corporations (MNC) in the 1970’s and more recently, and am a fan of such books as Global Reach: The Power of the Multinational Corporations; The Manufacture Of Evil: Ethics, Evolution, and the Industrial System, and The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism, what was new for me in this book and in other readings I have undertaken this past decade is the collusion between governments and corporations, both profiteering at the expense of the individual taxpayer.
The author is compelling in labeling politicians as criminal tyrants, and here in the USA I am happy to see the beginning of the end of the two-party tyranny in such books as Grand Illusion: The Myth of Voter Choice in a Two-Party Tyranny.
This book particularly, but the trilogy as a whole, have influenced me and changed the direction of a speech I will be giving in Denmark in October, exploring the definition of terrorism and concluding that the real terrorists are the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, and Israel.
“The real terror is poverty,” and I absolutely agree with this, as does the UN High-Level Panel on Threats, see their report (also free online), A More Secure World: Our Shared Responsibility–Report of the Secretary-General’s High-level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change.
The author goes further, in more depth with more detail than I have ever seen before, in placing globalization as global genocide squarely on the shoulders of corporations that spread poverty and disease, and the governments that enable them. This is apart from the global arms business, including weapons of mass destruction and the proliferation of nuclear bases across the US, UK, and now Europe.
The author’s coverage of US complicity in the murder and genocide of hundreds of thousands, and the displacement and further impoverishment of millions of others, by their dictators who kill and imprison wantonly, is moving. See also Breaking the Real Axis of Evil: How to Oust the World’s Last Dictators by 2025. I can only conclude that the US federal government at the political level is immoral, while the bureaucracy is amoral, and therefore neither of these serves the public interest.
The author adds considerably to my understanding of the methodical manner in which Indonesia was undermined and then plundered, and adds somewhat to my understanding of how we all continue to pay the price for US regime changes interventions, cf. The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic (The American Empire Project).
While I am aware of the 250,000 disabled veterans, the tens of thousands of amputees, and the over 5,000 suicides stemming from the Iraq Wars, the author reminds me of the depleted uranium casualties, and takes my understanding to a new level that shares his view that depleted uranium is a war crime and form of terrorism, and that failing to treat all those who continue to suffer from uranium poisoning is torture writ large.
I learn for the first time that the USA has allowed Turkey to fly into the “no fly” zone to bomb Kurds.
I am reminded of cluster bombs as a form of persistent terror with persistence that is shocking.
The author is fierce on the sanctions against Iraq as a crime against humanity, along with the collateral damage to civilians and the deliberate damage to infrastructure.
He provides a transcript of his conversation with James Rubin, then spokesperson for the U.S. Department of State, that confirms the culture of lying in the U.S. Government at the political level, and shames me as a citizen.
I learn for the first time that the US killed the plan, agreed to by Bin Laden, for a trial in Pakistan.
I learn a new term, “censorship by omission” that I will add to my information asymmetries and data pathologies slide.
The author catalogs intellectual dishonesty and notes how the truth is considered tainted when used against government and corporate initiatives.
He states in terms certain that mass murder, terror, and barbarism are standard US/UK practice, only the technologies advance.
I learn that Zbigniew Brzezinski fanned the flames of Muslim fanaticism (the same man who gave Pakistan leave to create its own nuclear bomb), and with all my other reading, concludes that Brzezinski is at least as great a war criminal subject to international trial as Henry Kissinger, on the latter see The Trial of Henry Kissinger.
The book concludes with a damning account of Australia’s genocide and continuing abuse of the Aboriginal people, with human rights galore that the mainstream media in Australia ignores.
Final bits that grabbed me:
One quarter of all Americans killed in Iraq have been killed by friendly fire or friendly accidents.
Scholars are damned for taking the humanity out of the study of nations, and for their silence as consent and their teaching of the new imperialism as crisis management rather than the cause of the crisis.
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