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1 Burnside International Studies- Noam Chomsky

Deterring Democracy


Deterring Democracy Cover

ISBN13: 9780374523497
ISBN10: 0374523495
Condition: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

From World War II until the 1980s, the United States reigned supreme as both the economic and the military leader of the world. The major shifts in global politics that came about with the dismantling of the Eastern bloc have left the United States unchallenged as the preeminent military power, but American economic might has declined drastically in the face of competition, first from Germany and Japan ad more recently from newly prosperous countries elsewhere. In Deterring Democracy, the impassioned dissident intellectual Noam Chomsky points to the potentially catastrophic consequences of this new imbalance. Chomsky reveals a world in which the United States exploits its advantage ruthlessly to enforce its national interests--and in the process destroys weaker nations. The new world order (in which the New World give the orders) has arrived.


In this highly praised and widely debated book, America's leading dissident intellectual offers a revelatory portrait of the American empire and the danger it poses for democracy, both at home and abroad. Chomsky details the major shift in global politics and economic potency and reveals the potentially catastrophic consequences of this new imbalance.


'One of the West's most influential intellectuals in the cause of peace. Independent


Includes bibliographical references and index.

About the Author

Noam Chomsky, the Ferrai P. Ward Professor of Modern Languages and Linguistics at the Masschusetts Institute of Technology, is the author of many books on both langauge and politics, including most recently Rethinking Camelot: John F. Kennedy, the Vietnam War, and U.S. Political Culture; Language and Thought; and World Orders, Old and New.

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GDuperreault, July 6, 2012 (view all comments by GDuperreault)
The end of the Cold War was greeted by the free world with a self congratulatory praise that echoed off the moon and back. And for the average person, the prospect for disarmament and some kind of 'real' peace had become a tangible reality. But the end of The Cold War gave to the American military industrial complex an opportunity and a problem. The opportunity was that without the USSR as a viable deterrent to American foreign aggression, America now had the opportunity to invade other countries at will.

And the problem? The American public, having been fed a steady and successful propaganda about the role of the USSR evil and American benevolence during the Cold War, saw its end as an opportunity to give peace a chance. Thus, in a curious irony, the end of the Cold War threatened to expose to America that they had been misled about that war by their media that had acted in collusion with big business's management of 'their' government. In effect, Americans had been given an opportunity to discover that they had been manipulated by a pervasive and expansive propaganda into giving to their corporate masters their manufactured consent to propagate American hegemony disguised as defending freedom.

It would have most likely been bad for business if the truth of American hegemony actually made it into prime time news. What could the manufacturers do to avoid such a catastrophe and how were America's hegemons going to be able to take advantage of their new freedom and expand in scale and scope their overt and covert invasions; and continue their practices of disrupting fledgling democracies without a solid enemy to justify the military spending in a time of peace? The answer: follow the same media farce as was practiced during the Cold War by the simple manufacture of 'properly' acceptable enemies with the proper implementation of the media supported propaganda. Thus was born, for example, the war on drugs, the farce of Grenada, Nicaragua, and Panama as serious threats to American sovereignty and safety.

The media hypocrisy and outright lying around these wars, and the comparison Chomsky makes to Britain forcing China to buy opium, is chilling. He provides numbers to back up his argument, and citations from business leaders and NSC documents that, if they had been spoken by German SS officers in WWII, would have earned them post war convictions for crimes against humanity.

Speaking of war crimes, it would appear that the USA was one of the biggest war criminals on the planet in the eighties, frequently using their UN veto power to overturn condemnation for their frequent invasions and unprovoked attacks on other countries for the explicit purpose of enriching big American business. News of these votes rarely made it into the news. Or, if they did, it was with complete fabrication as to the vote and what it really meant. Interestingly enough, this kind of behaviour was not new in the media's history of misrepresenting American foreign practices. For example, the non-reporting of the role America played in their support for and re-establishment into positions of capitalist influence many of the pre-war German industrialists that included convicted war criminals. Nor was America's support for pro-Nazi sympathizers in the brutal suppression of democracy in Greece following WWII that resulted in the torture and/or deaths of hundreds of thousands of people and the establishment of a brutal dictatorship (p335, 342).

DD is well written, and Chomsky's anger is tempered with a wry kind of humour at just how deluded and delusional the press is about their role in paving the way for American military brutality and unrelenting violation of the UN and the most basic tenets of respect for the rights of others. As always, the footnoting to the references is extensive.

For me, the detailed and somewhat organic way Chomsky writes solidifies the connections between the way the American military functions as the arm of Big Business, and Big Business's function as the manager of the controlled understanding of America's 'generous' role as planetary policeman. That perhaps the planet's greatest violator of the basic tenets of human rights and democracy is lauded by its corporate media as the singular champion of those ideals is nothing short of an astonishing proof that delusion knows no bounds. The level of hypocrisy that the media relays or creates with a straight face cannot be described in a review without the reviewer being seen as a complete idiot.
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Product Details

Chomsky, Noam
Hill & Wang
Chomsky, Noam, Et
New York :
United states
International Relations
Government and political science
Foreign relations
History & Theory - Radical Thought
United States Foreign relations 1989-
Estados Unidos
International Relations - General
United States Foreign relations 1989-1993.
Politics - General
Edition Description:
Trade Paperback
Series Volume:
no. 5
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
Notes, index
9.28 x 5.98 x 1.25 in

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Politics » Chomsky Noam
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » Politics » United States » Foreign Policy

Deterring Democracy Used Trade Paper
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$10.95 In Stock
Product details 424 pages Hill & Wang - English 9780374523497 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , In this highly praised and widely debated book, America's leading dissident intellectual offers a revelatory portrait of the American empire and the danger it poses for democracy, both at home and abroad. Chomsky details the major shift in global politics and economic potency and reveals the potentially catastrophic consequences of this new imbalance.
"Synopsis" by , 'One of the West's most influential intellectuals in the cause of peace. Independent
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