Two decades ago, when I was working as an editor at a publishing house, Chalmers Johnson, then an eminent scholar of Asia and a former CIA consultant, sent in a proposal for a book he was already calling Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire. I still remember the passage from his prologue that convinced me it was indeed one that simply had to be done:
In the rush of Trumped-up events, history — of the last month, week, hour — repeatedly gets plowed (or tweeted) under. Who can remember what happened so long ago? Perhaps it’s not surprising then that, in the wave of abuse from the president and his men (including economic adviser Larry
There’s no other imperial tradition like it. For two millennia, dynasty after dynasty rose and fell, spread and shrank, reaching into Southeast Asia and far out into the steppes of Eurasia, its commercial fleets — 3,500
When you come from the South Bronx, you have the option of writing about different kinds of characters than those who so often inhabit the universe of fiction we’re used to. That was true of Beverly Gologorsky’s first novel, The Things We Do to Make It Home, which focused on the lost vets of the Vietnam era, their wives, and their children, all desperately trying
How the Last Superpower Was Unchained
American Wars and Self-Decline
By Tom Engelhardt
Think of it as the all-American version of the human comedy: a great power that eternally knows what the world needs and offers copious advice with a tone deafness that would be humorous, if it weren’t so grim. If you look, you can find examples of this just about anywhere. Here, for instance,
We know her name but not, as the courageous Israeli journalist Amira Hass has pointed out, the name of the Israeli sniper who shot her down in cold blood during an unarmed demonstration at the blockaded Gazan border as she ran to aid a man struck in the head by a tear gas shell.
In case you hadn’t noticed — and it wasn’t exactly front-page news — America’s eighth war commander in Afghanistan (and keep in mind that we’re only talking about this country’s second Afghan War), General John Nicholson, is about to be history.