Dismantling the Empire
America's Last Best Hope
By Chalmers Johnson
(Metropolitan Books, Paperback, 9780805094237, 224pp.)
Publication Date: March 29, 2011
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From the author of the bestselling Blowback Trilogy, an urgent call to confront America's waning power
In his prophetic book Blowback, published before 9/11, Chalmers Johnson warned that our secret operations in Iraq and elsewhere around the globe would exact a price at home. Now, in a brilliant series of essays written over the last three years, Johnson measures that price and the resulting dangers America faces. Our reliance on Pentagon economics, a global empire of bases, and war without end is, he declares, nothing short of "a suicide option."
Dismantling the Empire explores the subjects for which Johnson is now famous, from the origins of blowback to Barack Obama's Afghanistan conundrum, including our inept spies, bad behavior in other countries, ill-fought wars, and capitulation to a military that has taken ever more control of the federal budget. There is, he proposes, only one way out: President Obama must begin to dismantle America's empire of bases before the Pentagon dismantles the American dream. If we do not learn from the fates of past empires, he suggests, our decline and fall are foreordained. This is Johnson at his best: delivering both a warning and a crucial prescription for a remedy.
Chalmers Johnson, president of the Japan Policy Research Institute, is the author of the bestselling books Blowback, The Sorrows of Empire, and Nemesis, which make up his Blowback Trilogy. He has written for the Los Angeles Times, the London Review of Books, Harper's Magazine, The Nation, and TomDispatch.com.
"Stimulating and prescient. . ."—Times Literary Supplement "Succinct, hard-hitting attacks on what the author perceives as America's ruinous imperial follies..."—Publishers Weekly, starred review "Concise, clear, hard-hitting. . . Dismantling the Empire is a must read for anyone looking for meaningful information concerning the future of the American Empire."—Foreign Policy Journal Praise for Chalmers Johnson“Johnson wants the scales to fall from American eyes so that the nation can see the truth about its role in the world. His is a patriot’s passion: his motive is to save the American republic he loves.”
—Jonathan Freedland, The New York Review of Books
“The role of the prophet is an honorable one. In Chalmers Johnson the American empire has found its Jeremiah. He deserves to be heard.”
—Andrew J. Bacevich, The Washington Post Book World “Chalmers Johnson’s important new book is something with which everyone who aspires to a worthwhile opinion about this country’s future must contend.”
—The Los Angeles Times (on Nemesis) “Trenchantly argued, comprehensively documented, grimly eloquent. . . Worthy of the republic it seeks to defend.”
—The Boston Globe (on The Sorrows of Empire)
“Stunning and shocking. . . Blowback is a wake-up call for America.”
—John Dower, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Embracing Defeat