Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire (American Empire Project)

4,05 valoración promedio
( 1.932 valoraciones por Goodreads )
 
9780805075595: Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire (American Empire Project)

Now with a new and up-to-date Introduction by the author, the bestselling account of the effect of American global policies, hailed as "brilliant and iconoclastic" (Los Angeles Times)

The term "blowback," invented by the CIA, refers to the unintended results of American actions abroad. In this incisive and controversial book, Chalmers Johnson lays out in vivid detail the dangers faced by our overextended empire, which insists on projecting its military power to every corner of the earth and using American capital and markets to force global economic integration on its own terms. From a case of rape by U.S. servicemen in Okinawa to our role in Asia's financial crisis, from our early support for Saddam Hussein to our conduct in the Balkans, Johnson reveals the ways in which our misguided policies are planting the seeds of future disaster.

In a new edition that addresses recent international events from September 11 to the war in Iraq, this now classic book remains as prescient and powerful as ever.

"Sinopsis" puede pertenecer a otra edición de este libro.

About the Author:

Chalmers Johnson, president of the Japan Policy Research Institute, is a frequent contributor to the Los Angeles Times and The Nation. Author of the forthcoming The Sorrows of Empire, and numerous books on Japan and Asia, including MITI and the Japanese Miracle and Japan: Who Governs?, he lives in southern California.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

1
BLOWBACK
Northern Italian communities had, for years, complained about lowflying American military aircraft. In February 1998, the inevitable happened. A Marine Corps EA-6B Prowler with a crew of four, one of scores of advanced American jet fighters and bombers stationed at places like Aviano, Cervia, Brindisi, and Sigonella, sliced through a ski-lift cable near the resort town of Cavalese and plunged twenty people riding in a single gondola to their deaths on the snowy slopes several hundred feet below. Although marine pilots are required to maintain an altitude of at least one thousand feet (two thousand, according to the Italian government), the plane had cut the cable at a height of 360 feet. It was traveling at 621 miles per hour when 517 miles per hour was considered the upper limit. The pilot had been performing low-level acrobatics while his copilot took pictures on videotape (which he later destroyed).
In response to outrage in Italy and calls for vigorous prosecution of those responsible, the marine pilots argued that their charts were inaccurate, that their altimeter had not worked, and that they had not consulted U.S. Air Force units permanently based in the area about local hazards. A court-martial held not in Italy but in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, exonerated everyone involved, calling it a “training accident.” Soon after, President Bill Clinton apologized and promised financial compensation to the victims, but on May 14, 1999, Congress dropped the provision for aid to the families because of opposition in the House of Representatives and from the Pentagon.1
This was hardly the only such incident in which American service personnel victimized foreign civilians in the post–Cold War world. From Germany and Turkey to Okinawa and South Korea, similar incidents have been common—as has been their usual denouement. The United States government never holds politicians or higher-ranking military officers responsible and seldom finds that more should be done beyond offering pro forma apologies and perhaps financial compensation of some, often minimal sort.
On rare occasions, as with the Italian cable cutting, when such a local tragedy rises to the level of global news, what often seems strangest to Americans is the level of national outrage elsewhere over what the U.S. media portray as, at worst, an apparently isolated incident, however tragic to those involved. Certainly, the one subject beyond discussion at such moments is the fact that, a decade after the end of the Cold War, hundreds of thousands of American troops, supplied with the world’s most advanced weaponry, sometimes including nuclear arms, are stationed on over sixty-one base complexes in nineteen countries worldwide, using the Department of Defense’s narrowest definition of a “major installation”; if one included every kind of installation that houses representatives of the American military, the number would rise to over eight hundred.2 There are, of course, no Italian air bases on American soil. Such a thought would be ridiculous. Nor, for that matter, are there German, Indonesian, Russian, Greek, or Japanese troops stationed on Italian soil. Italy is, moreover, a close ally of the United States, and no conceivable enemy nation endangers its shores.
All this is almost too obvious to state—and so is almost never said. It is simply not a matter for discussion, much less of debate in the land of the last imperial power. Perhaps similar thinking is second nature to any imperium. Perhaps the Romans did not find it strange to have their troops in Gaul, nor the British in South Africa. But what is unspoken is no less real, nor does it lack consequences just because it is not part of any ongoing domestic discussion.
I believe it is past time for such a discussion to begin, for Americans to consider why we have created an empire—a word from which we shy away—and what the consequences of our imperial stance may be for the rest of the world and for ourselves. Not so long ago, the way we garrisoned the world could be discussed far more openly and comfortably because the explanation seemed to lie at hand—in the very existence of the Soviet Union and of communism. Had the Italian disaster occurred two decades earlier, it would have seemed no less a tragedy, but many Americans would have argued that, given the Cold War, such incidents were an unavoidable cost of protecting democracies like Italy against the menace of Soviet totalitarianism. With the disappearance of any military threat faintly comparable to that posed by the former Soviet Union, such “costs” have become easily avoidable. American military forces could have been withdrawn from Italy, as well as from other foreign bases, long ago. That they were not and that Washington instead is doing everything in its considerable powers to perpetuate Cold War structures, even without the Cold War’s justification, places such overseas deployments in a new light. They have become striking evidence, for those who care to look, of an imperial project that the Cold War obscured. The byproducts of this project are likely to build up reservoirs of resentment against all Americans—tourists, students, and businessmen, as well as members of the armed forces—that can have lethal results.
For any empire, including an unacknowledged one, there is a kind of balance sheet that builds up over time. Military crimes, accidents, and atrocities make up only one category on the debit side of the balance sheet that the United States has been accumulating, especially since the Cold War ended. To take an example of quite a different kind of debit, consider South Korea, a longtime ally. On Christmas Eve 1997, it declared itself financially bankrupt and put its economy under the guidance of the International Monetary Fund, which is basically an institutional surrogate of the United States government. Most Americans were surprised by the economic disasters that overtook Thailand, South Korea, Malaysia, and Indonesia in 1997 and that then spread around the world, crippling the Russian and Brazilian economies. They could hardly imagine that the U.S. government might have had a hand in causing them, even though various American pundits and economists expressed open delight in these disasters, which threw millions of people, who had previously had hopes of achieving economic prosperity and security, into the most abysmal poverty. At worst, Americans took the economic meltdown of places like Indonesia and Brazil to mean that beneficial American-supported policies of “globalization” were working—that we were effectively helping restructure various economies around the world so that they would look and work more like ours.
Above all, the economic crisis of 1997 was taken as evidence that our main doctrinal competitors—the high-growth capitalist economies of East Asia—were hardly either as competitive or as successful as they imagined. In a New Year’s commentary, the columnist Charles Krauthammer mused, “Our success is the success of the American capitalist model, which lies closer to the free market vision of Adam Smith than any other. Much closer, certainly, than Asia’s paternalistic crony capitalism that so seduced critics of the American system during Asia’s now-burst bubble.”3
As the global crisis deepened, the thing our government most seemed to fear was that contracts to buy our weapons might now not be honored. That winter, Secretary of Defense William Cohen made special trips to Jakarta, Bangkok, and Seoul to cajole the governments of those countries to use increasingly scarce foreign exchange funds to pay for the American fighter jets, missiles, warships, and other hardware the Pentagon had sold them before the economic collapse. He also stopped in Tokyo to urge on a worried Japanese government a big sale not yet agreed to. He wanted Japan to invest in the theater missile defense system, or TMD, antimissile missiles that the Pentagon has been trying to get the Japanese to buy for a decade. No one knew then or knows now whether the TMD will even work—in fifteen years of intercept attempts only a few missiles in essentially doctored tests have hit their targets—but it is unquestionably expensive, and arms sales, both domestic and foreign, have become one of the Pentagon’s most important missions.
I believe the profligate waste of our resources on irrelevant weapons systems and the Asian economic meltdown, as well as the continuous trail of military “accidents” and of terrorist attacks on American installations and embassies, are all portents of a twenty-first-century crisis in America’s informal empire, an empire based on the projection of military power to every corner of the world and on the use of American capital and markets to force global economic integration on our terms, at whatever costs to others. To predict the future is an undertaking no thoughtful person would rush to embrace. What form our imperial crisis is likely to take years or even decades from now is, of course, impossible to know. But history indicates that, sooner or later, empires do reach such moments, and it seems reasonable to assume that we will not miraculously escape that fate.
What we have freed ourselves of, however, is any genuine consciousness of how we might look to others on this globe. Most Americans are probably unaware of how Washington exercises its global hegemony, since so much of this activity takes place either in relative secrecy or under comforting rubrics. Many may, as a start, find it hard to believe that our place in the world even adds up to an empire. But only when we come to see our country as both profiting from and trapped within the structures of an empire of its own making will it be possible for us to explain many elements of the world that otherwise perplex us. Without good explanations, we cannot possibly produce policies that will bring us sustained peace and prosperity in a post–Cold War world. What has gone wrong in Japan after half a century of government-guided growth under U.S. protection? Why should the emergence of a strong China be to anyone’s disadvantage? Why do American policies toward human rights, weapons proliferation, terrorism, drug cartels, and the environment strike so many foreigners as the essence of hypocrisy? Should American-owned and managed multinational firms be instruments, beneficiaries, or adversaries of United States foreign policy? Is the free flow of capital really as valuable as free trade in commodities and manufactured goods? These kinds of questions can only be answered once we begin to grasp what the United States really is.
If Washington is the headquarters of a global military-economic dominion, the answers will be very different than if we think of the United States as simply one among many sovereign nations. There is a logic to empire that differs from the logic of a nation, and acts committed in service to an empire but never acknowledged as such have a tendency to haunt the future.
The term “blowback,” which officials of the Central Intelligence Agency first invented for their own internal use, is starting to circulate among students of international relations. It refers to the unintended consequences of policies that were kept secret from the American people. What the daily press reports as the malign acts of “terrorists” or “drug lords” or “rogue states” or “illegal arms merchants” often turn out to be blowback from earlier American operations.
It is now widely recognized, for example, that the 1988 bombing of Pan Am flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, which resulted in the deaths of 259 passengers and 11 people on the ground, was retaliation for a 1986 Reagan administration aerial raid on Libya that killed President Muammar Khadaffi’s stepdaughter. Some in the United States have suspected that other events can also be explained as blowback from imperial acts. For example, the epidemic of cocaine and heroin use that has afflicted American cities during the past two decades was probably fueled in part by Central and South American military officers or corrupt politicians whom the CIA or the Pentagon once trained or supported and then installed in key government positions. For example, in Nicaragua in the 1980s, the U.S. government organized a massive campaign against the socialist-oriented Sandinista government. American agents then looked the other way when the Contras, the military insurgents they had trained, made deals to sell cocaine in American cities in order to buy arms and supplies.4
If drug blowback is hard to trace to its source, bomb attacks, whether on U.S. embassies in Africa, the World Trade Center in New York City, or an apartment complex in Saudi Arabia that housed U.S. servicemen, are another matter. One man’s terrorist is, of course, another man’s freedom fighter, and what U.S. officials denounce as unprovoked terrorist attacks on its innocent citizens are often meant as retaliation for previous American imperial actions. Terrorists attack innocent and undefended American targets precisely because American soldiers and sailors firing cruise missiles from ships at sea or sitting in B-52 bombers at extremely high altitudes or supporting brutal and repressive regimes from Washington seem invulnerable. As members of the Defense Science Board wrote in a 1997 report to the undersecretary of defense for acquisition and technology, “Historical data show a strong correlation between U.S. involvement in international situations and an increase in terrorist attacks against the United States. In addition, the military asymmetry that denies nation states the ability to engage in overt attacks against the United States drives the use of transnational actors [that is, terrorists from one country attacking in another].”5
The most direct and obvious form of blowback often occurs when the victims fight back after a secret American bombing, or a U.S.-sponsored campaign of state terrorism, or a CIA-engineered overthrow of a foreign political leader. All around the world today, it is possible to see the groundwork being laid for future forms of blowback. For example, it is estimated that from the Gulf War of 1991 through 1998, the U.S.-sponsored blockade of Saddam Hussein’s Iraq has helped contribute to the deaths of an estimated half million Iraqi civilians due to disease, malnutrition, and inadequate medical care. President Clinton’s national security adviser, Sandy Berger, takes pride in the thought that this blockade has been “unprecedented for its severity in the whole of world history.” By 1999, it had still not brought down Saddam Hussein, the single-minded goal of American policy in the area, but it had ensured that surviving Iraqis were likely to hold a grudge against the American government and its citizens. At the same time, the slipping of “CIA paramilitary covert operators” onto the United Nations teams of postwar weapons inspectors in Iraq, who were charged with uncovering Saddam Hussein’s efforts to develop weapons of mass destruction, has ensured that one of the most promising experiments in nonproliferation controls has been tainted forever.6
Blowback itself can lead to more blowback, in a spiral of destructive behavior. A good illustration of this lies in the government’s reaction to the August 7, 1998, bombings of American embassy buildings in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam, with the loss of 12 American and 212 Kenyan and Tanzanian lives and some 4,500 injured. The U.S. government promptly placed the blame on Osama bin Laden, a Saudi who had long denounced his country’s rulers and their American allies. On August 20, the United States retaliated by firing nearly eighty cruise missiles (at a cost of $750,000 each) into a pharmaceutical plant in Khartoum, Sudan, and an old mujahideen camp site in Afghanistan. (One missile went four hundr...

"Sobre este título" puede pertenecer a otra edición de este libro.

Los mejores resultados en AbeBooks

1.

Johnson, Chalmers
Editorial: Henry Holt & Company 2004-01-01 (2004)
ISBN 10: 0805075593 ISBN 13: 9780805075595
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: > 20
Librería
BookOutlet
(Thorold, ON, Canada)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Henry Holt & Company 2004-01-01, 2004. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Paperback. Publisher overstock, may contain remainder mark on edge. Nº de ref. de la librería 9780805075595B

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 5,28
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 5,13
De Canada a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

2.

Chalmers Johnson; With a New Introduction on Blowback in the Post-9/11 World
Editorial: MacMillan Publishers
ISBN 10: 0805075593 ISBN 13: 9780805075595
Nuevos Cantidad: > 20
Librería
INDOO
(Avenel, NJ, Estados Unidos de America)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción MacMillan Publishers. Estado de conservación: New. Brand New. Nº de ref. de la librería 0805075593

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 9,69
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 2,99
A Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

3.

Johnson, Chalmers
ISBN 10: 0805075593 ISBN 13: 9780805075595
Nuevos Cantidad: > 20
Librería
Paperbackshop-US
(Wood Dale, IL, Estados Unidos de America)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción 2004. PAP. Estado de conservación: New. New Book. Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000. Nº de ref. de la librería VV-9780805075595

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 9,43
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 3,41
A Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

4.

Chalmers Johnson
Editorial: Henry Holt Company Inc, United States (2004)
ISBN 10: 0805075593 ISBN 13: 9780805075595
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 1
Librería
The Book Depository
(London, Reino Unido)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Henry Holt Company Inc, United States, 2004. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Reissue. Language: English . Brand New Book. Now with a new and up-to-date Introduction by the author, the bestselling account of the effect of American global policies, hailed as brilliant and iconoclastic (Los Angeles Times) The term blowback, invented by the CIA, refers to the unintended results of American actions abroad. In this incisive and controversial book, Chalmers Johnson lays out in vivid detail the dangers faced by our overextended empire, which insists on projecting its military power to every corner of the earth and using American capital and markets to force global economic integration on its own terms. From a case of rape by U.S. servicemen in Okinawa to our role in Asia s financial crisis, from our early support for Saddam Hussein to our conduct in the Balkans, Johnson reveals the ways in which our misguided policies are planting the seeds of future disaster.In a new edition that addresses recent international events from September 11 to the war in Iraq, this now classic book remains as prescient and powerful as ever. Nº de ref. de la librería ABZ9780805075595

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 13,65
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

5.

Chalmers Johnson
Editorial: Henry Holt Company Inc, United States (2004)
ISBN 10: 0805075593 ISBN 13: 9780805075595
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 1
Librería
The Book Depository US
(London, Reino Unido)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Henry Holt Company Inc, United States, 2004. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Reissue. Language: English . Brand New Book. Now with a new and up-to-date Introduction by the author, the bestselling account of the effect of American global policies, hailed as brilliant and iconoclastic (Los Angeles Times) The term blowback, invented by the CIA, refers to the unintended results of American actions abroad. In this incisive and controversial book, Chalmers Johnson lays out in vivid detail the dangers faced by our overextended empire, which insists on projecting its military power to every corner of the earth and using American capital and markets to force global economic integration on its own terms. From a case of rape by U.S. servicemen in Okinawa to our role in Asia s financial crisis, from our early support for Saddam Hussein to our conduct in the Balkans, Johnson reveals the ways in which our misguided policies are planting the seeds of future disaster.In a new edition that addresses recent international events from September 11 to the war in Iraq, this now classic book remains as prescient and powerful as ever. Nº de ref. de la librería ABZ9780805075595

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 13,71
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

6.

Johnson, Chalmers
Editorial: Holt Paperbacks
ISBN 10: 0805075593 ISBN 13: 9780805075595
Nuevos PAPERBACK Cantidad: > 20
Librería
Mediaoutlet12345
(Springfield, VA, Estados Unidos de America)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Holt Paperbacks. PAPERBACK. Estado de conservación: New. 0805075593 *BRAND NEW* Ships Same Day or Next!. Nº de ref. de la librería NATARAJB1FI832664

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 10,97
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 3,41
A Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

7.

Chalmers Johnson
ISBN 10: 0805075593 ISBN 13: 9780805075595
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 1
Librería
READERS PRIDE
(PLANO, TX, Estados Unidos de America)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Paperback. Estado de conservación: BRAND NEW. NEW Book in Mint Condition -- Great DEAL !! Fast Shipping -- Friendly Customer Service -- Buy with Confidence!. Nº de ref. de la librería RP0805075593BN

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 11,08
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 3,38
A Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

8.

Chalmers Johnson
Editorial: Henry Holt Company Inc, United States (2004)
ISBN 10: 0805075593 ISBN 13: 9780805075595
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 10
Librería
Book Depository hard to find
(London, Reino Unido)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Henry Holt Company Inc, United States, 2004. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Reissue. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. Now with a new and up-to-date Introduction by the author, the bestselling account of the effect of American global policies, hailed as brilliant and iconoclastic (Los Angeles Times) The term blowback, invented by the CIA, refers to the unintended results of American actions abroad. In this incisive and controversial book, Chalmers Johnson lays out in vivid detail the dangers faced by our overextended empire, which insists on projecting its military power to every corner of the earth and using American capital and markets to force global economic integration on its own terms. From a case of rape by U.S. servicemen in Okinawa to our role in Asia s financial crisis, from our early support for Saddam Hussein to our conduct in the Balkans, Johnson reveals the ways in which our misguided policies are planting the seeds of future disaster.In a new edition that addresses recent international events from September 11 to the war in Iraq, this now classic book remains as prescient and powerful as ever. Nº de ref. de la librería BTE9780805075595

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 14,51
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

9.

Johnson, Chalmers
ISBN 10: 0805075593 ISBN 13: 9780805075595
Nuevos Cantidad: 2
Librería
Pbshop
(Wood Dale, IL, Estados Unidos de America)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción 2004. PAP. Estado de conservación: New. New Book.Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000. Nº de ref. de la librería IB-9780805075595

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 11,36
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 3,41
A Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

10.

Chalmers Johnson
ISBN 10: 0805075593 ISBN 13: 9780805075595
Nuevos Cantidad: 4
Librería
BWB
(Valley Stream, NY, Estados Unidos de America)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Estado de conservación: New. Depending on your location, this item may ship from the US or UK. Nº de ref. de la librería 97808050755950000000

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 17,06
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
A Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

Existen otras copia(s) de este libro

Ver todos los resultados de su búsqueda