- Hardcover: 320 pages
- Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (June 1, 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0471694797
- ISBN-13: 978-0471694793
- Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.1 x 9.4 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 36 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,257,844 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death 1st Edition
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""An engaging book that helps explain how the myth-making machine works."" (The Texas Observer, July 8, 2005)
""Brutally persuasive...a must-read for those who would like greater context with their bitter morning coffee, or to arm themselves for the debates about Iraq that are still to come."" (Los Angeles Times, June 29, 2005)
"Norman Solomon is one of the bravest and best American journalists, especially when he is dissecting the topics of war and the media. War Made Easy exposes and explains the lies and deceptions that have misled our nation into vile and bloody disasters from Vietnam to El Salvador to Iraq; it reveals the frequent cowardice and culpability of the US media that often behaves as a propaganda arm of the Pentagon. War Made Easy is a sobering and essential book that Americans should read, share, and discuss."
—John Stauber, co-author of Weapons of Mass Deception and Banana Republicans
"If you don't have fun reading Norman Solomon's War Made Easy, you don't know how to have a good time. This exceptional book will drive our bonkers leaders and their mouthpieces in the US press crazier than they are already. Read one passage each night to your children to protect them from the brain-snatchers and dummy-fication zombies of America's news media of the living dead."
—Greg Palast, author of The Best Democracy Money Can Buy
"If you want to help prevent another war (Iran? Syria?), read War Made Easy now. This is a stop-the-presses book filled with mind-blowing facts about Washington¹s warmongers who keep the Pentagon budget rising. It would be funny if people weren't dying. War Made Easy exposes the grisly game and offers the information we need to stop it."
—Jim Hightower, author of Let’s Stop Beating Around the Bush.
"America's mainstream media didn't launch the war on Iraq, but the Bush administration sure couldn't have waged it without them. The great lesson of War Made Easy is that, alas, such journalistic malfeasance is nothing new; our media have a history of enabling Washington's foreign misadventures. Perhaps if enough people read--and act on--this book, it won't be so easy next time."
—Mark Hertsgaard, journalist and author of On Bended Knee: The Press and the Reagan Presidency.
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Solomon mentioned the US invasion of Panama on December 26, 1989 to oust the Noriega regime. The invaders attacked innocent civilians and medical personnel who tried to rescue the injured civilians. Noriega was in good graces while he used Panama as a conduit for drug trafficking to help the Contras. When he said he was done with these efforts, he suddenly became a "bad guy."
Solomon exposed the nonsense during the Nixon Administration. Toward the end of the Vietnam War, Nixon wanted to use nuclear weapons against the Vietnamese. He was unaware that the Soviets and the Chinese, who supported the North Vietnamese, had nuclear weapons and one must rhetorically ask who had more people.
Solomon had good material re US "policy" in Western Asia and the Middle East. From 1988-1990, Iraq was viewed as an "ally" vs. the Iranians during the Iraqi-Iranian war from 1980 to 1988. Suddenly Iraq became and enemy, and US forces invaded Iraq between 2002-2003. As Solomon mentioned, US authorities gave weapons and ammunition to Hussein's opposition grounds which are now being used against US troops. Solomon also cited the refusal of US policy makers to give accurate statistics on innocent civilian casualties.
Solomon's diagnosis of events in Afghanistan is informative. Policy makers forgot that Afghanistan has been "The graveyard of empires." Solomon cited chapter and verse of the US policy makers who got the US involved in tar baby wars in both Afghanistan of Iraq. To be blunt, no one knows who the "enemy" at any given moment. Yet, as Solomon, remarked several times, the loss of innocent lives means the loss of people like us and the subsequent tragedy and sadness.
Another issue that Solomon examined is dissent. The current "official" view is that anyone who dissents from a chaotic foreign policy is somehow "giving aid and comfort to the enemy" whoever that may be at any given instant. As an aside, Thomas Paine (1737-1809) once wrote that if the truth be treason make the most of it. Dissent and truth should be protected by the First Amendment of the US Constitution.
Unfortunately, foreign defines and often distorts whom we are. Solomon wrote at the end of this book that government and media should not define our conscience. We do. The undersigned remembered some young man who was among a very few who protested against nuclear weapons and nuclear war. A journalist asked this young man if he thought he could change the world. The young man said no. The journalist the young man why he was protesting. The young fellow said he could change the world, but he protested because he demonstrated that the world could not change him.
James E. Egolf
May 22, 2016
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Otherwise, it is preaching to the choir.Read more