Magazine article New Internationalist

Web of Deceit; Britain's Real Role in the World by Mark Curtis

Magazine article New Internationalist

Web of Deceit; Britain's Real Role in the World by Mark Curtis

Article excerpt

`If we were honest,' writes Mark Curtis, `we would see Britain's role in the world to a large extent as a story of crimes against humanity.' He should know: in 1996 he broke the story of British complicity in a million Indonesian deaths at the hands of General Suharto. In his third book on British foreign policy Curtis shows how the historic pattern of securing and exploiting resources from developing countries remains unchanged whichever party is in power. Installing and maintaining brutally repressive regimes (such as the Middle- Eastern client states) and compliant `polyarchies' is all part of the picture. The name of the game is maintaining and consolidating privilege and elite power.

Using declassified Foreign Office records Curtis unearths hidden aspects of British history in Iran, Kenya, Malaya and British Guiana in the 1950s but he also comes right up to date to expose the reality behind Tony Blair's sadly laughable liberal-humanitarian rhetoric and the `War on Terror'. …

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