The New American Imperialism: Bush's War on Terror and Blood for Oil

The New American Imperialism: Bush's War on Terror and Blood for Oil

The New American Imperialism: Bush's War on Terror and Blood for Oil

The New American Imperialism: Bush's War on Terror and Blood for Oil

Synopsis

With the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the United States' long war on communism was replaced by a perpetual "war on terror." The authors posit that this neo-imperialistic phase is but the latest development in a line of thought and action established after World War II. But, they say, 2005 is not 1945. Today, they argue, the United States uses its power to deplete the resources of the developing world, and to compel the rest of the world to remain dependent on American management of the global economy. Contending that this situation is ultimately untenable, they assert that the United States is entering a period of deep crisis. The best thing for American neo-imperialists to do to avert their worst nightmare--a strategic and economic alliance among Europe, Russia, China, and OPEC--would be to arrange for the orderly withdrawal of American power before it is too late for the human and environmental security of the world.

Excerpt

The Bush administration' s strategic turn after 9/11 has produced a profound intellectual and ethical shock for liberal opinion—the American state' s main popular constituency—throughout the world. The enormous and wildly exaggerated liberal hopes of the 1990s that somehow the collapse of the Soviet bloc would produce an end to power politics lie in intellectual ruin. All over the world, one question dominates serious discussion of international relations, a question that would have seemed unthinkable to most commentators five years ago: the nature and dynamics of the new American imperialism.

As Vassilis Fouskas and Bulent Gokay note, American expansionism during the twentieth century has had a qualitatively different character than that of the earlier European empires: it has always been a project for global dominance, not just in the sense of making America the dominant world power but in the much more ambitious sense of reconstructing the world to produce an American global order, one in which states as social systems are brought into harmony with or at least made compatible with the structural characteristics of American capitalism as a social system. This extraordinarily ambitious impulse is masked by an effort on the part of American leaders to equate American capitalist imperatives for the world with those of capitalism in general, an equation belied by the obvious fact that capitalism as a social system can take an extraordinary variety of political and economic forms, as the history of the twentieth century has illustrated.

This central impulse in American imperialism then generates a paradoxical secret: that the most serious threat to American global . . .

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