The Violent American Century

Author: John W. Dower
Publisher: Haymarket Books
ISBN: 9781608467266
Release Date: 2017-03-20
Genre: Political Science

World War II marked the apogee of industrialized “total war.” Great powers savaged one another. Hostilities engulfed the globe. Mobilization extended to virtually every sector of every nation. Air war, including the terror bombing of civilians, emerged as a central strategy of the victorious Anglo-American powers. The devastation was catastrophic almost everywhere, with the notable exception of the United States, which exited the strife unscathed and unmatched in power and influence. The death toll of fighting forces plus civilians worldwide was staggering. The Violent “American Century” addresses the U.S.-led transformations in war conduct and strategizing that followed 1945—beginning with brutal localized hostilities, proxy wars, and the nuclear terror of the Cold War, and ending with the asymmetrical conflicts of the present day. The military playbook now meshes brute force with a focus on non-state terrorism, counterinsurgency, clandestine operations, a vast web of overseas American military bases, and—most touted of all—a revolutionary new era of computerized “precision” warfare. By contrast to World War II, postwar death and destruction has been comparatively small. By any other measure, it has been appalling—and shows no sign of abating. The winner of numerous national prizes for his historical writings, including the Pulitzer and the National Book Award, Dower draws heavily on hard data and internal U.S. planning and pronouncements in this concise analysis of war and terror in our time. In doing so, he places U.S. policy and practice firmly within the broader context of global mayhem, havoc, and slaughter since World War II—always with bottom-line attentiveness to the human costs of this legacy of unceasing violence.

The Violent American Century

Author: John Dower
Publisher:
ISBN: 1608467236
Release Date: 2017-02-07
Genre: Political Science

World War II marked the apogee of industrialized "total war.” Great powers savaged one another. Hostilities engulfed the globe. Mobilization extended to virtually every sector of every nation. Air war, including the terror bombing of civilians, emerged as a central strategy of the victorious Anglo-American powers. The devastation was catastrophic almost everywhere, with the notable exception of the United States, which exited the strife unscathed and unmatched in power and influence. The death toll of fighting forces plus civilians worldwide was staggering. The Violent "American Century” addresses the U.S.-led transformations in war conduct and strategizing that followed 1945--beginning with brutal localized hostilities, proxy wars, and the nuclear terror of the Cold War, and ending with the asymmetrical conflicts of the present day. The military playbook now meshes brute force with a focus on non-state terrorism, counterinsurgency, clandestine operations, a vast web of overseas American military bases, and--most touted of all--a revolutionary new era of computerized "precision” warfare. By contrast to World War II, postwar death and destruction has been comparatively small. By any other measure, it has been appalling--and shows no sign of abating. The winner of numerous national prizes for his historical writings, including the Pulitzer and the National Book Award, Dower draws heavily on hard data and internal U.S. planning and pronouncements in this concise analysis of war and terror in our time. In doing so, he places U.S. policy and practice firmly within the broader context of global mayhem, havoc, and slaughter since World War II--always with bottom-line attentiveness to the human costs of this legacy of unceasing violence.

Ways of Forgetting Ways of Remembering

Author: John W. Dower
Publisher: New Press, The
ISBN: 9781595589378
Release Date: 2014-02-04
Genre: History

Historian John W. Dower’s celebrated investigations into modern Japanese history, World War II, and U.S.–Japanese relations have earned him critical accolades and numerous honors, including the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, and the Bancroft Prize. Now Dower returns to the major themes of his groundbreaking work, examining American and Japanese perceptions of key moments in their shared history. Both provocative and probing, Ways of Forgetting, Ways of Remembering delves into a range of subjects, including the complex role of racism on both sides of the Pacific War, the sophistication of Japanese wartime propaganda, the ways in which the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki is remembered in Japan, and the story of how the postwar study of Japan in the United States and the West was influenced by Cold War politics. Ways of Forgetting, Ways of Remembering offers urgent insights by one of our greatest interpreters of the past into how citizens of democracy should deal with their history and, as Dower writes, “the need to constantly ask what is not being asked.”

Cultures of War

Author: John W. Dower
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 9780393061505
Release Date: 2010-09-07
Genre: History

A Pulitzer Prize-winning historian presents a comparative analysis of September 11 and the subsequent War on Terror with Pearl Harbor and World War II, addressing institutional failures of intelligence and imagination and the driving forces behind Pan-Asian and Pan-Islam movements

Overthrow

Author: Stephen Kinzer
Publisher: Macmillan
ISBN: 1429905379
Release Date: 2007-02-06
Genre: History

A fast-paced narrative history of the coups, revolutions, and invasions by which the United States has toppled fourteen foreign governments -- not always to its own benefit "Regime change" did not begin with the administration of George W. Bush, but has been an integral part of U.S. foreign policy for more than one hundred years. Starting with the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy in 1893 and continuing through the Spanish-American War and the Cold War and into our own time, the United States has not hesitated to overthrow governments that stood in the way of its political and economic goals. The invasion of Iraq in 2003 is the latest, though perhaps not the last, example of the dangers inherent in these operations. In Overthrow, Stephen Kinzer tells the stories of the audacious politicians, spies, military commanders, and business executives who took it upon themselves to depose monarchs, presidents, and prime ministers. He also shows that the U.S. government has often pursued these operations without understanding the countries involved; as a result, many of them have had disastrous long-term consequences. In a compelling and provocative history that takes readers to fourteen countries, including Cuba, Iran, South Vietnam, Chile, and Iraq, Kinzer surveys modern American history from a new and often surprising perspective. "Detailed, passionate and convincing . . . [with] the pace and grip of a good thriller." -- Anatol Lieven, The New York Times Book Review

Irregular Army

Author: Matt Kennard
Publisher: Verso Books
ISBN: 9781844679058
Release Date: 2012-09-17
Genre: Political Science

Since the launch of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars—now the longest wars in American history—the US military has struggled to recruit troops. It has responded, as Matt Kennard’s explosive investigative report makes clear, by opening its doors to neo-Nazis, white supremacists, gang members, criminals of all stripes, the overweight, and the mentally ill. Based on several years of reporting, Irregular Army includes extensive interviews with extremist veterans and leaders of far-right hate groups—who spoke openly of their eagerness to have their followers acquire military training for a coming domestic race war. As a report commissioned by the Department of Defense itself put it, “Effectively, the military has a ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy pertaining to extremism.” Irregular Army connects some of the War on Terror’s worst crimes to this opening-up of the US military. With millions of veterans now back in the US and domestic extremism on the rise, Kennard’s book is a stark warning about potential dangers facing Americans—from their own soldiers. From the Trade Paperback edition.

America s War on Terrorism

Author: Michel Chossudovsky
Publisher:
ISBN: 0973714719
Release Date: 2005
Genre: History

Millions of people have been misled regarding the causes and consequences of September 11.When people across the US and around the World find out that Al Qaeda is not an outside enemy but a creation of US foreign policy and the CIA, the legitimacy of the bipartisan war agenda will tumble like a deck of cards." Across the land, the image of an "outside enemy" is instilled in the consciousness of Americans. Al Qaeda is threatening America and the world. The repeal of democracy under the Patriot legislation is portrayed as a means to providing "domestic security" and upholding civil liberties.The 9/11 Commission Report destroys the historical record of US covert support to international terrorism, while creating the illusion that America and "Western Civilization" are threatened. In turn, the various terrorist warnings and code orange alerts have created, across America, an atmosphere of fear and intimidation.

Just War Against Terror

Author: Jean Elshtain
Publisher: Basic Books
ISBN: 9780786723591
Release Date: 2008-08-04
Genre: History

Jean Bethke Elshtain advocates "just war" in times of crisis and mounts a reasoned attack against the anti-war contingent in American intellectual life. Advocating an ethic of responsibility, Elshtain forces us to ask tough questions not only about the nature of terrorism, but about ourselves. This paperback edition features a new introduction by the author, addressing the Iraq war and other events in the Middle East.

With the Old Breed at Peleliu and Okinawa

Author: Eugene Bondurant Sledge
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 0195067142
Release Date: 1981
Genre: History

Based on notes he kept on slips of paper tucked secretly away in his Bible, Eugene Sledge has written a devastingly powerful memoir of his experience fighting in the South Pacific during WWII. John Keegan describes this stirring account of the vitality and bravery of the Marines as "one of the most arresting doceuments in war literature".

In the Shadows of the American Century

Author: Alfred W. MCCoy
Publisher: Haymarket Books
ISBN: 9781608467747
Release Date: 2017-09-12
Genre: History

In a completely original analysis, McCoy explores America’s rise as a world power, from the 1890s through the Cold War and its bid to extend its hegemony deep into the twenty-first century through a fusion of cyberwar, space warfare, trade pacts, and military alliances. McCoy then analyzes the marquee instruments of American hegemony—covert intervention, client elites, psychological torture, and worldwide surveillance. Alfred W. McCoy’s 2009 book Policing America’s Empire won the Kahin Prize from the Association for Asian Studies.

What Every Person Should Know About War

Author: Chris Hedges
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1416583149
Release Date: 2007-11-01
Genre: History

Acclaimed New York Times journalist and author Chris Hedges offers a critical -- and fascinating -- lesson in the dangerous realities of our age: a stark look at the effects of war on combatants. Utterly lacking in rhetoric or dogma, this manual relies instead on bare fact, frank description, and a spare question-and-answer format. Hedges allows U.S. military documentation of the brutalizing physical and psychological consequences of combat to speak for itself. Hedges poses dozens of questions that young soldiers might ask about combat, and then answers them by quoting from medical and psychological studies. • What are my chances of being wounded or killed if we go to war? • What does it feel like to get shot? • What do artillery shells do to you? • What is the most painful way to get wounded? • Will I be afraid? • What could happen to me in a nuclear attack? • What does it feel like to kill someone? • Can I withstand torture? • What are the long-term consequences of combat stress? • What will happen to my body after I die? This profound and devastating portrayal of the horrors to which we subject our armed forces stands as a ringing indictment of the glorification of war and the concealment of its barbarity.

Rightlessness

Author: A. Naomi Paik
Publisher: UNC Press Books
ISBN: 9781469626321
Release Date: 2016-01-08
Genre: History

In this bold book, A. Naomi Paik grapples with the history of U.S. prison camps that have confined people outside the boundaries of legal and civil rights. Removed from the social and political communities that would guarantee fundamental legal protections, these detainees are effectively rightless, stripped of the right even to have rights. Rightless people thus expose an essential paradox: while the United States purports to champion inalienable rights at home and internationally, it has built its global power in part by creating a regime of imprisonment that places certain populations perceived as threats beyond rights. The United States' status as the guardian of rights coincides with, indeed depends on, its creation of rightlessness. Yet rightless people are not silent. Drawing from an expansive testimonial archive of legal proceedings, truth commission records, poetry, and experimental video, Paik shows how rightless people use their imprisonment to protest U.S. state violence. She examines demands for redress by Japanese Americans interned during World War II, testimonies of HIV-positive Haitian refugees detained at Guantanamo in the early 1990s, and appeals by Guantanamo's enemy combatants from the War on Terror. In doing so, she reveals a powerful ongoing contest over the nature and meaning of the law, over civil liberties and global human rights, and over the power of the state in people's lives.

Hiroshima

Author: Ronald Takaki
Publisher: Back Bay Books
ISBN: 0316831247
Release Date: 1996-09-01
Genre: History

The bombing of Hiroshima was one of the pivotal events of the twentieth century, yet this controversial question remains unresolved. At the time, General Dwight Eisenhower, General Douglas MacArthur, and chief of staff Admiral William Leahy all agreed that an atomic attack on Japanese cities was unnecessary. All of them believed that Japan had already been beaten and that the war would soon end. Was the bomb dropped to end the war more quickly? Or did it herald the start of the Cold War? In his probing new study, prizewinning historian Ronald Takaki explores these factors and more. He considers the cultural context of race - the ways in which stereotypes of the Japanese influenced public opinion and policymakers - and also probes the human dimension. Relying on top secret military reports, diaries, and personal letters, Takaki relates international policies to the individuals involved: Los Alamos director J. Robert Oppenheimer, Secretary of State James Byrnes, Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson, and others... but above all, Harry Truman.

The Better Angels of Our Nature

Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: Penguin Books
ISBN: 9780143122012
Release Date: 2012-09-01
Genre: Psychology

Presents a controversial history of violence which argues that today's world is the most peaceful time in human existence, drawing on psychological insights into intrinsic values that are causing people to condemn violence as an acceptable measure.

Modernizing Repression

Author: Jeremy Kuzmarov
Publisher: Univ of Massachusetts Press
ISBN: 9781558499171
Release Date: 2012
Genre: History

As American troops became bogged down first in Iraq and then Afghanistan, a key component of U.S. strategy was to build up local police and security forces in an attempt to establish law and order. This approach, Jeremy Kuzmarov shows, is consistent with practices honed over more than a century in developing nations within the expanding orbit of the American empire. From the conquest of the Philippines and Haiti at the turn of the twentieth century through Cold War interventions and the War on Terror, police training has been valued as a cost-effective means of suppressing radical and nationalist movements, precluding the need for direct U.S. military intervention and thereby avoiding the public opposition it often arouses. Unlike the spectacular but ephemeral pyrotechnics of the battlefield, police training programs have had lasting consequences for countries under the American imperial umbrella, fostering new elites, creating powerful tools of social control, and stifling political reform. These programs have also backfired, breeding widespread resistance, violence, and instability--telltale signs of "blowback" that has done more to undermine than advance U.S. strategic interests abroad.