The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic

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Henry Holt and Company, Apr 1, 2007 - Political Science - 400 pages

From the author of the prophetic national bestseller Blowback, a startling look at militarism, American style, and its consequences abroad and at home

In the years after the Soviet Union imploded, the United States was described first as the globe's "lone superpower," then as a "reluctant sheriff," next as the "indispensable nation," and now, in the wake of 9/11, as a "New Rome." Here, Chalmers Johnson thoroughly explores the new militarism that is transforming America and compelling its people to pick up the burden of empire.

Reminding us of the classic warnings against militarism—from George Washington's farewell address to Dwight Eisenhower's denunciation of the military-industrial complex—Johnson uncovers its roots deep in our past. Turning to the present, he maps America's expanding empire of military bases and the vast web of services that supports them. He offers a vivid look at the new caste of professional warriors who have infiltrated multiple branches of government, who classify as "secret" everything they do, and for whom the manipulation of the military budget is of vital interest.

Among Johnson's provocative conclusions is that American militarism is putting an end to the age of globalization and bankrupting the United States, even as it creates the conditions for a new century of virulent blowback. The Sorrows of Empire suggests that the former American republic has already crossed its Rubicon—with the Pentagon leading the way.


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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - kukulaj - LibraryThing

I felt pretty beat up by the end of this book. That it was published in 2004! How is it that I have fond memories of G. W. Bush? Oh, yeah, that's why... that the horrific trends that Johnson outlines ... Read full review

THE SORROWS OF EMPIRE: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic

User Review  - Kirkus

A Ciceronian indictment of our nation's transformation from lone superpower to imperial bully."Like other empires of the past century," writes Japan Research Policy Institute president Johnson ... Read full review

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The Unveiling of the American Empire
Imperialisms Old and New
Iraq Wars
Whatever Happened to Globalization?
The Sorrows of Empire

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Page 12 - Every bureaucracy seeks to increase the superiority of the professionally informed by keeping their knowledge and intentions secret. Bureaucratic administration always tends to be an administration of 'secret sessions': in so far as it can, it hides its knowledge and action from criticism.

About the author (2007)

Chalmers Johnson, president of the Japan Policy Research Institute and professor emeritus at the University of California, San Diego, is a frequent contributor to the Los Angeles Times and The Nation. His previous books include MITI and the Japanese Miracle. He lives in Southern California.

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