The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End o... and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Color:
Image not available

To view this video download Flash Player

 
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.

Used - Good | See details
Sold by hippo_books.
Access codes and supplements are not guaranteed with used items.
 
   
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Start reading The Sorrows of Empire on your Kindle in under a minute.

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic [Hardcover]

Chalmers Johnson
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (123 customer reviews)


Available from these sellers.


Free Two-Day Shipping for College Students with Amazon Student

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition $8.89  
Hardcover --  
Paperback $13.83  
Audio, CD $23.70  
Audible Audio Edition, Unabridged $17.95 or Free with Audible 30-day free trial

Book Description

January 13, 2004 0805070044 978-0805070040 First Edition
From the author of the prophetic national bestseller Blowback, a startling look at militarism, American style, and its consequences abroad and at home

In the years after the Soviet Union imploded, the United States was described first as the globe’s “lone superpower,” then as a “reluctant sheriff,” next as the “indispensable nation,” and now, in the wake of 9/11, as a “New Rome.” Here, Chalmers Johnson thoroughly explores the new militarism that is transforming America and compelling its people to pick up the burden of empire.

Reminding us of the classic warnings against militarism—from George Washington’s farewell address to Dwight Eisenhower’s denunciation of the military-industrial complex—Johnson uncovers its roots deep in our past. Turning to the present, he maps America’s expanding empire of military bases and the vast web of services that supports them. He offers a vivid look at the new caste of professional warriors who have infiltrated multiple branches of government, who classify as “secret” everything they do, and for whom the manipulation of the military budget is of vital interest.

Among Johnson’s provocative conclusions is that American militarism is putting an end to the age of globalization and bankrupting the United States, even as it creates the conditions for a new century of virulent blowback. The Sorrows of Empire suggests that the former American republic has already crossed its Rubicon—with the Pentagon leading the way.


Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Since September 2001, the United States has "undergone a transformation from republic to empire that may well prove irreversible," writes Chalmers Johnson. Unlike past global powers, however, America has built an empire of bases rather than colonies, creating in the process a government that is obsessed with maintaining absolute military dominance over the world, Johnson claims. The Department of Defense currently lists 725 official U.S. military bases outside of the country and 969 within the 50 states (not to mention numerous secret bases). According to the author, these bases are proof that the "United States prefers to deal with other nations through the use or threat of force rather than negotiations, commerce, or cultural interaction." This rise of American militarism, along with the corresponding layers of bureaucracy and secrecy that are created to circumvent scrutiny, signals a shift in power from the populace to the Pentagon: "A revolution would be required to bring the Pentagon back under democratic control," he writes.

In Sorrows of Empire, Johnson discusses the roots of American militarism, the rise and extent of the military-industrial complex, and the close ties between arms industry executives and high-level politicians. He also looks closely at how the military has extended the boundaries of what constitutes national security in order to centralize intelligence agencies under their control and how statesmen have been replaced by career soldiers on the front lines of foreign policy--a shift that naturally increases the frequency with which we go to war.

Though his conclusions are sure to be controversial, Johnson is a skilled and experienced historian who backs up his claims with copious research and persuasive arguments. His important book adds much to a debate about the realities and direction of U.S. influence in the world. --Shawn Carkonen

From Publishers Weekly

In his prescient 2000 bestseller, Blowback, East Asia scholar Johnson predicted dire consequences for a U.S. foreign policy that had run roughshod over Asia. Now he joins a chorus of Bush critics in this provocative, detailed tour of what he sees as America's entrenched culture of militarism, its "private army" of special forces and its worldwide archipelago of military "colonies." According to Johnson, before a mute public and Congress, oil and arms barons have displaced the State Department, secretly creating "a military juggernaut intent on world domination" and are exercising "preemptive intervention" for "oil, Israel, and... to fulfill our self-perceived destiny as a New Rome." Johnson admits that Bill Clinton, who disguised his policies as globalization, was a "much more effective imperialist," but most of the book assails "the boy emperor" Bush and his cronies with one of the most startling and engrossing accounts of exotic defense capabilities, operations and spending in print, though these assertions are not new and not always assiduously sourced. Fans of Blowback will be pleased despite Johnson's lack of remedies other than "a revolution" in which "the people could retake control of Congress... and cut off the supply of money to the Pentagon."
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Metropolitan Books; First Edition edition (January 13, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0805070044
  • ISBN-13: 978-0805070040
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.2 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (123 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #321,053 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Chalmers Johnson, president of the Japan Policy Research Institute, is the author of the bestselling Blowback and The Sorrows of Empire. A frequent contributor to the Los Angeles Times, the London Review of Books, and The Nation, he appeared in the 2005 prizewinning documentary film Why We Fight. He lives near San Diego.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
653 of 683 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'War is a Racket' - General Smedley Butler USMC April 1, 2004
Format:Hardcover
Am I the only one who thinks the the rest of his countryman are nuts? For the past 60 years and three generations, Americans have been led to believe that that spending billions for the Defense of the country is not only necessary but patriotic.
Forget conspiracy theories and ideological agendas, just contemplate one fact: The USA spends more on military and intelligence funding in 2004 than it has spent at any one time in history. Fourteen carrier groups to defeat the two remaining countries of the axis of evil, N. Korea and Iran? 750 and counting military bases outside the USA? However, the government tells us it is powerless to defend the country against an attack from a terrorist group with WMD??? So, the next time you watch television and the commentator tells you why we need another aircraft carrier, more tanks, more F-16's, etc., ask yourself: Who are we defending ourselves against? And, as Chalmers Johnson points out, follow the money!
This book is an excellent primer on how our beloved country is being led down the road to ruin by a group of people who are lining the pockets of themeselves and their friends and supporters. All of this is being done in the name of Democracy, Freedom and Globalization. But, why do we want to liberate people who sit on oil while those countries being ruthlessly exploited and practcially enslaved are ignored since they can contribute little or nothing to the "world economy" (pick any poor third world country)?
This review is written by a conservative American, cold war supporter and US Navy veteran (like Chalmers Johnson)who believes in the old Republic (when is the last time you heard that word mentioned in the era of the imperial presidency). Forget whether you are democrat or republican, take the blinders off and seek the truth, excellently told by Chalmers Johnson.
Was this review helpful to you?
143 of 149 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This double-spaced book is an indictment of American militarism and unilateralism, and it merits reading by every citizen. It loses one star to a lack of structure and sufficient references to a broader range of supporting literature, and to the author's tendency to go "a bridge too far" in blaming the CIA for everything and in assuming that our troops and their families are somehow enjoying their "luxurious" overseas deployments.
It may be best to begin the review where the author ends, by agreeing with the case he makes for the potential collapse of America if the people fail to take back the power and restore integrity and participatory democracy to the Congress. Absent a radical reverse, four really bad things will happen to America: 1) it will be in a state of perpetual war, inspiring more terrorism than it can defeat in passing; 2) there will be a loss of democracy and constitutional rights; 3) truthfulness in public discourse will be replaced by propaganda and disinformation; and 4) we will be bankrupt.
It merits comment that today, as I read and reviewed the book, which documents over 725 US bases around the world, many of them secret, there is a public discussion in which the Pentagon is acknowledging only 400 or so bases to exist.
There is a considerable amount of short-hand history in the book that can be skimmed rapidly--from the roots of American militarism in the Spanish-American war, to the non-partisan efforts of both Clinton and Bush fils to establish a military base structure in Arabia and in Central Asia.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
251 of 276 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars essential truths rather than pablum and propaganda January 16, 2004
Format:Hardcover
Essential truths are discomforting but critically important while there may still be time to save the United States from its worst enemies - antidemocratic ruling cliques that are part of the military industrial-complex (now oil and communications industries included) at its worst. This is not the pabulum and propaganda of most of the press and right wing think tanks or corporate media but rather a tough minded well documented and truly scary reality that most would prefer to ignore -- at their own risk. The American Empire of Bases, hidden expenses and private corporate military contracts, together with a plethora of lies make for mass hallucination that has but an inkling of truth. One chapter could stand on its own as a great description of recent economic and military history "What Happened to Globalization?". The chapter also effectively highlights how mythological is the "free market capitalism" that is ideology and far from reality. It is clear that the problem is not new - but also that is far worse than ever with the megalomaniac boy emperor and his irresponsible quest that is destroying everything from the Constitution to the economy. The practical first step - not mentioned directly by Johnson - is to get Bush out of office and work for major restoration of the promise of America for the people and the world rather than a few oil and war profiteers. Wake up! Pray there is still time to restore our country! Johnson does not say it in so many words but it becomes clear that no one has done more to make enemies and reduce our security than this President and his administration. After reading this one is not likely to be a total 'sucker' like Goering's public that could be manipulated by freaking people out about their enemies abroad and calling anyone who disagrees unpatriotic or traitorous.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars ALL Americans need to read this!
If you really want to know what America is really about, read all of Chalmers Johnson's books. He explains in detail how we started our empire, how we got to the point where we are... Read more
Published 3 months ago by D. Denton
5.0 out of 5 stars clear concise and damning of american policy
If you have doubts about how our gov't is viewed globally and can't understand why most of the globe fears us and hates.....read this
Published 5 months ago by Ronald Abbott
5.0 out of 5 stars Chalmers Johnson was an excellent historian of American policy
I always love Chalmers Johnson's clear and keen analyses of American foreign policy. This book sums up his main ideas well. Needs to be read by everyone.
Published 5 months ago by SciMed Reviewer
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazingly insightful and an easy read
It would be easy to make this subject matter so dry and fact based that would couldn't get through the first chapter but luckily it wasn't the case here. Read more
Published 7 months ago by R. Carr
3.0 out of 5 stars Depressingly compelling
Johnson makes a depressingly compelling case for the state of the nation, where we've been, where we are, and, unfortunately, where we seem determined to go—the way of all empires!
Published 7 months ago by Dan Cieloha
5.0 out of 5 stars If you have no question, you can't get answer
This book is just incredible, opening mind in many ways. After reading still staying most important question: How is possible that there is no will too really change? Read more
Published 8 months ago by Josef Kubik
5.0 out of 5 stars Graduate Sociology Read Eye Opener
This book continued to open my eyes into my graduate work in Sociology. It really got to the heart of Sociology for me with the study of corruption, which was most interesting,... Read more
Published 9 months ago by dvegan28
5.0 out of 5 stars The American Empire Project
Along with Blowback and Nemesis, this book is essential reading for anyone interested in understanding how the United States got to the point of having a huge, permanent... Read more
Published 11 months ago by TLR
5.0 out of 5 stars Thinking cap
This book was a perfect read for my long car ride - it makes you actually think and understand the American situation at large.
Published 15 months ago by Thatgirlthatreadsalot
5.0 out of 5 stars Read Him ASAP
If you haven't heard of Prof. Johnson from CIA via uCalBerkeley, maybe that's the fault of the machine.
They want you to not-have-heard of this guy. Read more
Published 15 months ago by modbantam
Search Customer Reviews
Search these reviews only


Forums

Topic From this Discussion
Cancellation of Order Be the first to reply
Have something you'd like to share about this product?
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 


Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions


Look for Similar Items by Category