OUR EMPIRE; ITS NATURE AND MAINTENANCE.
The global economy which delivers high "living standards" to us in rich countries is an imperial system; i.e., it involves domination, injustice, exploitation and repression and military action in order to secure for us far more than our fair share of world wealth.
(There is a c.120 page collection of documents providing evidence for this account; see refs. below.)
Who gets most world wealth?
Only a few people are getting most of the world's resource wealth. The one billion or so who live in rich countries are getting about 80% of resources produced, such as oil. Our per capita resource consumption is about 15-20 times the average for the poorest half of the world's people. Most Third World people are so seriously deprived of resources that large numbers are extremely poor and malnourished. For example the average energy consumption per person in a rich country is about 85 times as great as it is in Bangladesh. In other words, we in rich countries are getting far more than our fair share of the available resource wealth. We take most of the resources such as oil and fish and these are therefore not available for many who as a result suffer hunger and hardship.
Even more important, much of the productive capacity of the Third World, its land, forests, fisheries, factories and labour, are mostly geared to production of things to export to rich countries, not to producing things the people need. This is the crucial fault in conventional development theory and practice; Third World people have around them the resources and the labour necessary to produce for themselves the basic things they need for a satisfactory quality of life, but these resources are not being applied to those purposes. Instead they are going into producing to enrich the already-rich Third World elites, especially the corporations who own the plantations, and the people who shop in rich world supermarkets.
Thus the crucial point about "development" is to do with options foregone. It is easy to imagine forms of development that are far more likely to meet the needs of people, their society and their ecosystems, but these are prohibited by conventional/capitalist development. Needs would be most effectively met if people were able to apply their locally available resources of land, forest, fisheries, labour, skill and capital to the production for themselves of many of the basic items they need such as food and shelter. This is precisely what normal conventional/capitalist development prevents, because it ensures that the available resources and productive capacity are mostly put into the most profitable ventures, which means mostly into producing relatively luxurious items for export to richer people.
So achieving global economic justice is not possible unless we in rich countries stop taking more of the world’s resource wealth than is our fair share, and allow Third World productive capacity to be geared to needs in the Third World.
“. . . the high standard of living in the West is owing partly to the extraction of a surplus in the form of cheap labour in the least developed countries.” p. 251. “Our standard of living in the West depends in part on our exploitation of cheap labour and resources in the least developed countries...” p. 325.
W. Murdoch, The Poverty of Nations, Baltimore, Johns Hopkins University Press, 1980.
How do we take the wealth?
These unjust distributions and the inappropriate development are a direct, normal consequence of the economic system. They are an inevitable result of the market mechanism. In the present economy production, distribution and especially development are not determined by reference to the needs of humans, societies and ecosystems. They are determined mostly by “market forces”, i.e., the quest to maximise profits from selling, buying, investing, trade…. The inevitable results are that the rich get almost all of the valuable resources simply because they can pay most for them, and that almost all of the development that takes place is development of whatever rich people want because that is most profitable, i.e., will return most on invested capital. It is in other words a capitalist economic system and such a system ensures that the few who own most of the capital will only invest it in ventures that are most likely to maximise their profits, and therefore in ventures which produce for those people with most “effective demand”, i.e., rich people. No other forms of development are undertaken, hence much of the productive capacity of Tuvalu or Haiti lies idle because people with capital can make more money investing somewhere else.
More importantly, most people cannot imagine any other form of development. The dominant ideology has ensured that “development” cannot be thought of in any other way than as investing capital in order to increase the capacity to produce for sale in the market and thereby maximise profits. (On the alternaive conception see Trainer, 2000). Thus the possibility that development might be seen predominantly as improving the quality of life, security, the environment or social cohesion, or the possibility that these might be achievable only if the goal of increasing the GDP is rejected, almost never occurs in development literature or practice. Development can only be thought of in terms of movement along the single dimension to greater amounts of production for sale, business turnover, investment, consumption, exporting and GDP.
Thus conventional development is only the kind of development that results when you allow what is developed to be determined by whatever will most enrich those few with capital competing in a market situation. The inevitable result is development in the interests of the rich, i.e., those with the capital to invest and those with most purchasing power. The global economy now works well for perhaps less than 10% of the world’s people, i.e., the upper 40% of the people in rich counties, plus the tiny Third World elites.
Conventional development is, in other words, a form of plunder. It takes most of the Third World’s wealth, especially its productive capacity, and allocates it to the corporations and consumers of the rich countries. It takes much of this wealth from billions of people who are so seriously deprived that 850 million people are hungry and tens of thousands die from deprivation every day. Again the core point is that there are far better options than conventional “free market” or capitalist development, especially forms in which the resources and the productive capacity of Third World people are fully devoted to production by the people of the things they most urgently need.
Since the 1970s the most powerful mechanism determining rich world access to Third World wealth has been the World Bank's Structural Adjustment Packages. When a heavily indebted Third World country faces an impossible debt repayment situation the World Bank undertakes renegotiation of deadlines and provision of new loans – on condition that the country accepts a package of structural changes. These centre on opening the economy to market forces and foreign investment, increasing exports, devaluing the currency, allowing corporations to take over government enterprises, cutting state spending and subsidies to the poor and reducing the Third World government’s capacity to regulate and control its own economy.
The rationale seems to make some sense in conventional economic terms since the objective is claimed to be to reduce national debt and increase income. However there is extensive documentation that the strategy does not even achieve these conventional economic goals (and this is even shown in the World Bank’s own studies. See note 1.)
But this is a minor consideration. As many have explained, SAPs transfer access to resources to the transnational corporations, and they dismantle the economy and enable the transnational corporations and banks to come in and buy up the most profitable remains at low prices. For example Chussodovsky (1997) describes the sale of the USSR’s biggest aero engine factory for a mere $300,000. Deregulation gets rid of the restrictions previously put on the corporations. Devaluation makes the country's exports to us cheaper and its imports from us dearer. New loans to meet urgent debt repayments saddle the country with even higher and unrepayable debts to our banks. Debtors are told that they must cut their spending, so governments slash welfare and assistance to the poor. All this is a bonanza for rich world corporations, banks and supermarket shoppers, while it further impoverishes the poor and raises their death rates. The economy is prevented from producing to meet local needs and forced to let the corporations develop what they want with minimal interference. The process reduces the proportion of national wealth that the poor majority have access to and transfers this to the corporations and banks. (Again see the notes at DocsGLOBALISATION.html on the vast amount of literature documenting these effects.)
The “trickle down” rationale.
On those rare occasions when a rationale for conventional development is given, the “trickle down” theory is revealed. The fact that the already rich are immediately further enriched is justified on the grounds that in the long run the increased wealth will “trickle down” to lift the living standards of the poor majority. Conventional economists point to the ever rising GDP of Third World countries and rest their case, implying that conventional development will in time inevitably raise all to satisfactory “living standards”, and that it is the best/only way to do this.
The reasons why “trickle down” is grossly unacceptable development strategy include,
Appropriate development contradicts trickle down development, which is only development in the interests of the rich with incidental crumbs for the poor. (For a detailed critical discussion of development see ThirdWorldDev.long.htm)
Globalisation represents the acceleration and intensification of these processes. Central to globalisation is the elimination of the barriers which previously inhibited the access of corporations and banks to profitable business opportunities, i.e., to the wealth that was going to Third World people. The rules being brought in for trade, investment and service provision remove the capacity of government to preserve and protect the existing jobs, markets, forests, fisheries, water, minerals and public services. It is now becoming illegal for governments to protect their own people from the predatory intent of the corporations. There have already been cases where governments which have tried to block undesirable corporate activity have been charged with “interfering with the freedom of trade” and fined hundreds of millions of dollars. (See note 12.) Globalisation has been a stunningly brazen and successful grab by the corporate rich for even more of the world’s wealth. The impacts are most devastating on the Third World majority, whose previously protected access to local resources and markets and state assistance is being eliminated as the business and the resources are being taken by the corporations. It is no surprise that global inequality and polarisation are rapidly increasing. (See Globalisation; A summary.)
Hence we have an empire.
The living standards we have in rich countries could not be anywhere near as high as they are if the global economy did not function in these ways. We could not have the resources, the products, the comfort, the health standards or the security from turmoil if we were not getting far more than our fair share of the world’s wealth. It is a zero sum game; if we get the coffee then that land cannot grow food for local people. If we get oil to run a ski boat, others will get too little to sterilise the contaminated water that kills perhaps 5 million children every year. Because big fishing boats from rich countries are taking fish from the coasts of poor countries so our pets can have tinned food, those fish are no longer available to the poor people of those regions.
In most cases market forces are sufficient to keep people in the plantations and sweatshops producing mostly for the benefit of others. People have no choice but to accept work for very low wages. Often the rich countries can get poor countries to accept rules that suit the rich simply by virtue of their superior economic power, for instance by threatening to deny access to rich world markets or to deny them new loans when the can’t pay their debts.
However, from time to time people rebel against these conditions and threaten to divert their productive capacity and their local resources to their own benefit. Sometimes they contemplate replacing the coffee trees with corn for themselves. Sometimes they move to nationalise the mines so that most of the earnings can go back to the people, or they attempt to block the export of logs and the destruction of their forests. Sometimes they threaten our access to “our” oilfields (which happen to be under their sand.) Sometimes this has been termed “nationalist” development, i.e., development aimed at ensuring that the main goal is to benefit the nation, which means making sure that development is not just development of what corporations want. Rich countries have always fiercely opposed ‘”nationalist” development, labelling it “socialist” and therefore ill-advised and inefficient, and threatening to block aid and loans if the error is not corrected.
Rich countries do not hesitate to support oppressive regimes willing to keep their countries to economic policies that will benefit local elites and rich countries, or to get rid of governments that threaten not to go along with such policies. Usually the rationale is in terms of the need to help a friendly government to put down a rebellion. Until recently this could always be labelled “communist subversion”, thereby eliminating any concerns about the legitimacy of the action. However in Colombia it has recently been labelled as a “war on the drug trade”, and in general it can now be labelled as a "war on terrorism". On many occasions governments of rich countries have waged ruthless war to install or get rid of regimes, according to whether or not they would facilitate the access of our corporations and the diversion of their resources and productive capacity to purposes that suited us. (For extensive documentation see Note 13.)
In other words the rich countries have an elaborate and powerful empire which they protect and control mostly via their economic power but also via the supply of military equipment and training to the repressive client regimes they support, and often through the direct use of their own military force. Our living standards could not be as high as they are, and our corporations could not be so profitable, if a great deal of brutal repression was not being used to keep people to the economic policies which enrich us at their expense. As Herman says, there is a "…ruthless imposition of a neo-liberal regime that serves Western transnational corporate interests, along with a willingness to use unlimited force to achieve Western ends. This is genuine imperialism, sometimes using economic coercion alone, sometimes supplementing it with violence." (See Note 4.)
Following is a selection of statements which document the core situation; i.e., the fact that our affluent lifestyles and the prosperity of our corporations could not be as great as they are if we were not able to take much more than our fair share of the wealth of many other countries, and in many instances this involves oppression, brutality and military invasion.
"To maintain its levels of production and consumption…the US must be assured of getting increasing amounts of the resources of poor countries. …This in turn requires strong support of unpopular and dictatorial regimes which maintain political and police oppression while serving American interests, to the detriment of their own poor majorities. If on the other hand Third World people controlled their own political economies,…they could then use more of their resources themselves…much of the land now used to grow export cash crops…would be used to feed their own hungry people for example." W. Moyer, 1973 (source not recorded).
"It is in the economic interests of the American corporations who have investments in these countries to maintain this social structure (whereby poor masses are oppressed and exploited by local elites.) It is to keep these elites in power that the United States has …provided them with the necessary military equipment, the finance and training." F. Greene, The Enemy; Notes on Imperialism and Revolution, (New York, Vintage, 1980), p. 125.
"The impoverished and long abused masses of Latin America…will not stay quietly on the farms or in the slums unless they are terribly afraid…the rich get richer only because they have the guns. The rich include a great many US companies and individuals, which is why the United States has provided the guns…." Chomsky and Herman, 1979, p.3.
"No socialist or communist government giving top priority to the needs of its people would, if it had any choice in the matter, willingly sell natural resources, especially the produce of its soils, at such very low returns to the common people as the typical Third World government does now. '. . . no democratic government could permit its country's resources to be developed on terms favourable to American corporate and government interests." Katsnelson and Kesselman, 1983, p. 234.
To repeat, the essential evil within the system is to do with the extremely uneven shares of wealth received. For instance, the bulk of the wealth generated by coffee production now goes to plantation owners, transnational corporations, and consumers in rich countries. Coffee pickers often receive less than 1% of the retail value of the coffee they pick. Any genuinely "socialist" or "nationalist" government would drastically redistribute those shares, or convert the land to food production, if it could, meaning that people in rich countries would then get far less coffee etc., or pay much higher prices. Hence we again arrive at the basic conclusion: a more just deal cannot be given to the people in the Third World unless rich countries accept a marked reduction in the share they receive from wealth generated in the Third World. Any genuinely socialist government would certainly clamp down on the bonanza terms now granted to transnational corporations, such as long tax-free periods, few restrictions on transfers of funds, repressive labour laws, low safety standards, controlled or banned unions, and weak environmental laws. Even more important is the taken for granted doctrine that development can only be of what people with capital will make most profit from, not of the industries that will benefit most people. (See on “appropriate” development, within Third World Development.)
Anyone who challenges this system will be identified as an economic illiterate, or a communist or insurgent, and dealt with appropriately. When a hungry labourer picks coffee for you at one-twentieth the wage you would expect, you and the coffee corporation are enriched at his expense, and he will not go on picking your coffee unless he is forced to do so by economic circumstances or fear of violence.
“In order to impose the model of development which gives privilege to small minorities, it was necessary to create or maintain a repressive State. The development they wish to impose on the country can only provoke indignation among the people . . . If there were any type of freedom left the cries of protest would be so great that the only solution has been to impose absolute silence.” (Chomsky and Herman, 1979.)
These policies of repression are “… designed to keep large numbers in a state of serious deprivation while small upper classes, multinational business interests and elites of military enforcers "develop" these countries without any democratic constraint.”
“ (Herman, 1982.)
“The basic fact is that the United States has organized under its sponsorship and protection a neo-colonial system of client states ruled mainly by terror and serving the interests of a small local and foreign business and military elite.”
“U.S. economic interests in the Third World have dictated a policy of containing revolution, preserving an open door for U.S. investment, and assuring favourable conditions of investment. Reformist efforts to improve the lot of the poor and oppressed, including the encouragement of independent trade unions, are not conducive to a favourable climate of investment.” (Chomsky and Herman, 1979.)
Illustrating the violence and oppression taking place.
Following are some references illustrating the violence and oppression carried out by Western states or their "clients" in order to keep in place conventional/capitalist development strategies. Much of this evidence indicts the US but this is incidental. The core problem is the powerful acquisitive drive in the Western mentality which fuels the insatiable quest for greater personal wealth and higher “living standards”, greater corporate wealth, and a rising GDP. Given this, nations will compete for scarce resources and one will emerge as dominant, and run the empire in its own interests. In our era the dominant power just happens to be the US. The fundamental long term task is not to restrain US behaviour but to deal with the underlying motivation that comes from deep within Western culture and that generates imperialism and related problems, such as ecological destruction and resource depletion.
“In the early 1980s approximately 40,000 people were killed by the ruling class in El Salvador, mostly via "death squads” composed of off duty military officers and police. “The regime which presides over these measures would long since have collapsed were it not for the support of the US. US backed loans in 1981 amounted to $523 million. (New Internationalist, 1983.) The US ensures “…the maintenance of a violent and undemocratic regime…which without American intervention would clearly fall within the next three months…” (The Guardian, 1981.) Training by US military “…has directly aided the oligarchy to carry out its terror campaign against peasant and worker masses…” (CISAC, 1981.) "The US has unfailingly supplied the tools of terror and repression to the Salvadoran military, as well as training in their use." (George, 1991, p. 5.) After referring to massacres in El Salvador similar to those in Guatemala Chomsky says "…this is international terrorism, supported or directly organised in Washington with the assistance of its international network of mercenary states," (Chomsky, 1991, p. 23.)
In Indonesia in 1965 approximately 500,000 "communists" were slaughtered. The US fuelled the climate which led to the bloodbath, supplied names, provided equipment, and above all opted not to take steps to oppose the event it knew was coming. (See note 5.)
"…the US has undeniably launched major terrorist attacks against Cuba… including attempts to assassinate Castro. CIA trained Cuban exiles bombed a Cuban civilian airliner, killing all 73 aboard…" (Chomsky, 1991, p. 23.) George notes that most of these attacks of terrorism were organised by the Kennedy administration.(George, , p. 24.)
Chomsky says "…the worst single terrorist act of 1985 was a car-bombing in Beirut on March 8 that killed 80 people and wounded 256. According to Woodward the attack …was arranged by the CIA and its Saudi clients with the assistance of Lebanese intelligence and a British specialist…" (Chomsky, 1991, op. cit., p. 26.) In 1986 the major single terrorist act was the US bombing of Libya." (Chomsky, 1991, p. 27.)
US efforts to crush the Sandinista government in Nicaragua constitutes one of the clearest and most disturbing instances of sustained terrorism. The US helped to install and then to maintain the Somaza dictatorship for 46 years, (the Somoza family ended up with 30% of the country's farmland: Sydney Morning Herald, 17th July, 1979.) As Easterbrook says "…the US launched a war against Nicaragua. That was a terrible war. Tens of thousands of people died. The country was practically destroyed. The Nicaraguans went to the World Court…the World Court ruled in their favour and ordered the United States to stop its 'unlawful use of force ' (that means international terrorism) and pay substantial reparations….the United States responded by dismissing the court with contempt and escalating the attack. (Chomsky reports that a further $100m in military aid was immediately granted. Chomsky, 1991, p. 27.) At that point Nicaragua went to the UN Security council which passed a resolution calling on all states to obey international law. …the United States vetoed this resolution. Nicaragua then went to the UN General Assembly, which two years in a row passed a similar resolution with only the United States and Israel opposed." (See note 6.)
The Contras were organised by the CIA to attack the Nicaraguan government. "…the documentation of the murder of civilians as standard operating procedure of the Contras was already massive in 1984." (George, 1991b, p. 94. See also R. Brody, Contra Terror in Nicaragua, South End, 1998, and Americas Watch Reports.)
Former CIA director Stansfield Turner stated to a House subcommittee that US support for the Contras "…would have to be characterised as terrorism…" (See note 7.)
During the 1980s the US assisted South Africa in the wars it initiated against neighbouring states in its effort to defend apartheit. Gervasi and Wong detail the activities that resulted in 1.5 million war related deaths. (See note 8.).
East Timor provides another of the most disturbing instances of recent Western state behaviour. Rich Western countries did not speak out, let alone condemn, let alone block the Indonesian invasion of East Timor, which they recognised as being in their interests. Instead they sold the Indonesians the weapons used to kill some 200,000 East Timorese people. US presidents Ford and Carter supported the takeover. Budiardjo quotes a US State Department official as saying Indonesia is "…a nation we do a lot of business with...we are more or less condoning the incursion into East Timor." (Budiardjo, 1991, p. 200.) Britain "…offered the Indonesian regime continuous and increasing military, financial and diplomatic support." (George, 1991b, p. 81.) "It is well established that the Western powers…had already decided to give Indonesia a free hand." (Bundiardjo, op. cit.,1991, p. 200.)
In Iran "…the US installed the Shah as an amenable dictator in 1953, trained his secret services in "methods of interrogation" and lauded him as he ran his regime of torture." (See Herman, note 4.)
In Iraq the United States supported Saddam Hussein throughout the 1980s as he carried out his war (with Iran) …and turned a blind eye to his use of chemical weapons…" (Herman, ibid.)
"In Vietnam selected Vietnamese troops were organised into terror squads." (McClintok, 1991, p. 133.) "…indiscriminate killing of civilians was a central part of a 'counter-insurgency war' in which 20,000 civilians were systematically assassinated under the CIA's Operation Phoenix Program…" (Focus on the Global South, 2001.) Pilger says this operation was the model for the later terror carried out in Chile and Nicaragua. (Pilger, Note 5.)
In the 1960s Kennedy instituted "counterinsurgency, essentially the development of "special forces" trained in the use of terror to prevent peasants from supporting revolutionary groups. For decades the US School of the Americas has provided this training to large numbers of Laltin American police and military personnel, including many of the region’s worst tyrants and torturers. As Monbiot says, "The US has been training terrorists at a camp in Georgia for years - and it's still at it." (Monbiot, 2001.) Training manuals include explicit material on the use of torture and terror. "…torture, 'disappearance', mass killings and political imprisonment became the norm in many of the nations most heavily assisted by the United States…" (McClintock, 1991, p. 142.)
From time to time rich countries go beyond assisting repressive regimes and intervene either through clandestine activity or direct invasion to bring down or maintain a Third World government. "Our governments have intervened with troops or undercover agents to maintain friendly governments and unseat hostile ones. Since 1945 the USA intervened on average once every 18 months somewhere in the world. It included Iran 1953, Guatemala 1954, Lebanon 1958, Thailand 1959, Laos 1959, Cuba 1961, British Guiana 1963, South Vietnam 1964, Brazil 1964, Dominican Republic 1965, Cambodia 1968, Laos 1968, Chilc 1973, Jamaica 1975; British intervention included Egypt 1955, Malaya 1948, Aden 1963, Brunei 1966-1978; French intervention included: French Indo-China 1946, Algeria 1956 and continuously with troops since independence in Senegal, Ivory Coast, Mauretania, Central African Republic, Chad, Zaire 1978.' (New Internationalist, October 1978, p. 5.)
Again, there is a huge literature documenting these and many other cases. (See note 9.) Herman and Osullivan present a table showing that the overwhelming majority of terrorist actions, measured by death tolls, have been carried out by Western states, i.e., our governments, as distinct from the USSR. "State terror has been immense, and the West and it’s clients have been the major agents." (Herman and O.Sullivan, 1991.)
Any serious student of international relations or US foreign policy will be clearly aware of the general scope and significance of the empire which rich countries operate, and of the human rights violations, the violence and injustice this involves. Rich world “living standards”, corporate prosperity, comfort and security could not be sustained at anywhere near current levels without this empire, nor without the oppression, violence and military activity that keep in place conventional investment, trade and development policies.
It should therefore be not in the least surprising that several hundred million people more or less hate the rich Western nations. This is the context in which events like those of September 11 must be understood. (For documents relevant to Sept. 11, see Section 2 in DocsOUREMPIRE.html.) It is surprising that the huge and chronic injustice, plunder, repression and indifference evident in the global economic system has not generated a far greater level of hostile reaction from the Third World, and more eagerness to hit back with violence. This is partly explained by the fact that it is in the interests of Third World rulers to acquiesce in conventional development strategies.
Disqualifying and crushing alternative development examples.
A great deal of effort goes into ensuring that alternative non-capitalist approaches to development do not succeed. If any of them were to succeed, they might become examples showing other Third World countries that it was possible and desirable to pursue “nationalist’ capitalist development, let alone an appropriate path to development. This explains why even the smallest countries that opt for a non-capitalist path can become the object of intense economic and military action. Tiny Nicaragua or Grenada must not be allowed to opt out of the capitalist path to development and show other poor countries that they could do the same.
“... the tinier and weaker the country, the less endowed it is with resources, the more dangerous it is. If even a marginal and impoverished country can begin to utilize its own limited human and material resources and can undertake programs of development geared to the needs of the domestic population, then others may ask: why not us?” (Chomsky, 1986, p. 72.)
Hence the US waged war on Nicaragua as intensely as international opinion has permitted. Nicaragua is one of the most pathetically weak and impoverished countries in the world, due primarily to forty years of dictatorship and exploitation at the hands of Somoza, installed by the US and constantly propped up by US aid and arms. Somoza exemplified brutal rule in the interests of a greedy local elite while making his country a paradise for foreign investors. At the end of his rule his family owned approximately one-third of the country's arable land. Over 25,000 people were killed ”… in the 41 year reign of terror aided and abetted by Washington... Against all odds the Sandinistas finally overthrew Somoza. Despite great difficulties and many admitted mistakes they have achieved rapid improvements in the living conditions of most people, putting to shame almost all other countries in the region with the exception of Cuba. The USA has consistently done all it could to destroy the experiment. In the mid-1980s the US was spending millions of dollars in aid to the Contras fighting against the Sandinista government, and direct US invasion seemed imminent. In addition, all possible strategies for economic sabotage were being exercised, such as blocking trade, loans and aid, and attempting to get US allies do the same.
What about the claim that Nicaragua was a communist country right on America's doorstep? In terms of the proportion of its economy in private hands - over 60% Nicaragua was less socialist or communist than Australia. The Nicaraguan revolution was made by popular resistance, and the communist party was not centrally involved in it. There were few communists within high government circles, but they were far from dominant. Despite many claims, the USA has not been able to give any impressive evidence that Nicaragua is a base for Russian or Cuban activity, or is supplying arms to guerrillas in other regions such as El Salvador. As Berryman emphasises, “… at no point has the Reagan administration furnished convincing public proof for its repeated assertions that Nicaragua has sent massive and continual arms shipments to the Salvadoran rebels.”
Nicaragua's unforgivable error was to reject development defined in terms of permitting foreign investors, market forces, the profit motive and the obsession with economic growth to determine what happens, and to insist on some degree of rational control and planning of development in the interests of the majority. The US onslaught was intended to make sure that such an alternative path was not seen to succeed in Nicaragua.
Similarly US efforts to overthrow Cuba become understandable. Cuba threatens to show that a non-capitalist approach can solve many problems. Several Cuban social indicators, such as the infant mortality rate, are equal to or better than US indicators, despite the huge difference in “wealth “. This is especially important with respect to the large scale emergence of local organic food production after the collapse of the USSR cut Cuba's access to imported oil. The US has carried out many aggressive actions against Cuba including attempts to assassinate Castro. The US still refuses to let Cuba trade with the US after 30 years, which impacts heavily on the Cuban economy. (This is not to say that Cuba is ideal or that it does not have political repression.)
The role of the US.
Given the foregoing quotes it hardly needs to be added that in the modern era the US has been by far the greatest supporter of oppression and practitioner of terrorism. Again space permits no more than a brief selection from the many summary statements to this effect.
"The US has rained death and destruction on more people in more regions of the globe than any other nation in the period since the second world war…it has employed its military forces in other countries over 70 times since 1945, not counting innumerable instances of counter insurgency operations by the CIA." (The Editors, Monthly Review, 2001, p. 3.)
"…the US state has long been using terrorist networks, and carrying out acts of terror itself." ( Deak, 2001.) The US "…is the greatest source of terror on earth." (Pilger, Note 5.)
"The greatest source of terrorism is the US itself and some of the Latin American countries." (Said, 2001, p. 68.)
"…the US is itself a leading terrorist state." (Chomsky, 2001, p. 16.) "There are many terrorist states, but the United States is unusual in that it is officially committed to international terrorism, and on a scale that puts its rivals to shame. (Chomsky, 1991, p. 15.)
"We are the target of terrorists because in much of the world our government stands for dictatorship, bondage, and human exploitation… We are the target of terrorists because we are hated… And we are hated because our governments have done hateful things….Time after time we have ousted popular leaders who wanted the riches of the land to be shared by the people who worked it…We are hated because our government denies (democracy, freedom, human rights) to people in Third World countries whose resources are coveted by our multinational corporations." (Bowman, Note 10.)
“In 1998 Amnesty International released a report which made it clear that the US was at least as responsible for extreme violation of human rights around the globe -- including the promotion of torture and terrorism and state violence -- as any government or organisation in the world." (See note 11.)
"From any objective standpoint, Israel and the United States more frequently rely on terrorism, and in forms that inflict far greater quantums of suffering on their victims than do their opponents." (Falk, 1991, p. 108.)
That this situation has been clearly understood for decades by critical students of American Foreign Policy is evident in the following quotes from the late 1970s and early 1980s.
"..the US and its allies have armed the elites of the Third World to the teeth, and saturated them with counterinsurgency weaponry and training… Hideous torture has become standard practice in US client fascist states … Much of the electronic and other torture gear, is US supplied and great numbers of …interrogators are US trained…" (Chomsky and Herman, 1979, p. 10.)
"Many of the world's most brutal dictatorships "…are in place precisely because they serve US interests in a joint venture with local torturers at the expense of their majorities." (Herman, 1982, p. 15.)
After documenting supply of aid to 23 countries guilty of "human rights abuses", Trosan and Yates say, "Without US help they would be hard pressed to contain the fury of their oppressed citizens and US businesses would find it difficult to flourish. "Whenever their people have rebelled and tried to seize power, thereby threatening foreign investments, the US has on every occasion actively supported government repression and terror, or has promoted coups to overthrow popular governments." (Trosan and Yates, 1980, p. 44.)
“In South America and Africa we continue to prop up the regimes of generals who beat their countrymen with one hand and rob them with the other.” (Anderson, 1980.)
US aid “... has tended to flow disproportionately to Latin American governments which torture their citizens....” (Chomsky, 1986, p. 157.)
After documenting a number of cases of US complicity in torture by Third World countries, Chomsky and Herman state, '”… much of the electronic and other torture gear is U.S. supplied, and great numbers of client state police and military interrogators are U.S. trained. ... the U.S. is the prime sponsor of Third World fascism.” (Chomsky and Herman, 1979, p. 15.)
“Throughout the 1950s the United States government consistently fought against fundamental social and political change in underdeveloped countries. Under the guise of "protecting the world from communism" the United States has intervened in the internal affairs of at least a score of countries. In some, such as Guatemala and Iran, United States agents actually engineered the overthrow of the legitimate governments and replaced them with regimes more to American liking.” (Hunt and Sherman, 1972, p. 162.)
Klare's book Supplying Repression provides detailed evidence on US supply of weapons and other assistance to some of the most repressive regimes in the world. “Between 1973 and 1978 the US gave to the ten nations with the worst repression and human rights records $1,133 million in military aid and sold them an additional $18,238 million worth of military equipment.” (p. 28.)
E. S. Herman's book The Real Terror Network (p. 29) provides an extensively detailed account of the way in which most terrorism in the world is sponsored by the rich countries, through their assistance to their client regimes in the Third World, i.e., provision of military equipment, training and money. The title of the book is to do with the hypocritical fuss made by governments and the press in the rich countries about the terrorism inflicted by hijackers and guerrilla movements. This is terrorism on an almost trivial scale: by far the main source of terrorism is Third World governments sponsored by rich Western countries.
Finally, reference should be made to the approximately 450,000 US troops that have been stationed abroad at a particular point in time, in a total of three hundred major US military bases. The giant Subic Bay naval base in the Philippines was not there to protect American soil; it was there to protect American interests, and yours, i.e., to enable ships to patrol the sea lanes along which our wealth moves, to support client regimes, to move Rapid Deployment Forces into “trouble spots”, to remind “subversives” what they will be up against should they try to move their country from the free enterprise way. What would happen to your living standards if all those troops were brought home? Many Third World regimes would be swept away in no time if it were not for our support. Some of them would probably be replaced by even worse regimes, but some would take land out of coffee and distribute it to the peasants, thus causing your coffee prices to rise. Whatever else they are doing, those 450,000 troops are also protecting our high living standards.
Pretexts, hypocrisy, deception, spin…
Most people would probably not believe ther governments do the kinds of things discussed above. This would not be surprising because governments conceal what is going on and deny and distort, and make out that what they do is justified, e.g., because it is ”in the national interest”, or required for security purposes. Until the collapse of the Soviet Union any challenge to the oppressive client govern ment could be labelled “communist subversion” and therefore ruthlessly crushed without fear of protest. More recently Western interventions are more likely to have been justified as dealing with “insurgents” or “religious fanatics”, or as “humanitarian intervention”, dealing with “insurgents”, or bringing about “regime change” (Iraq.) Chomsky’s writings are especially valuable in illustrating the double-speak and hypocrisy in the official pronouncements, (eagerly reproduced in the media, which is owned by a few of the richest people.) Our side never does anything intentionally evil…although we admit that we do at times make innocent mistakes, and the other side is pure evil and without any reason or justification for what it does to “our interests”.
But attend to the outcomes; always the result is change to, or reinforcement of, a situation in which our corporations have secured the wealth. The new regime grants us more access, we get more bases, the corporations get easier access to resources. The outcome is never a regime that will divert resources that used to flow to us so that they can go to the poor majority.
Consider the “communist subversion” claim.
Before the 1990s whenever the US or another Western country intervened in the Third World or assisted a brutal Third World regime to harass or kill more of its own people, we would always say, “But we are only helping a friendly government to protect itself against communist subversion”. The conventional position admits that a number of the governments we support are far from satisfactory in their respect for human rights, but argues that we have to support them in order to prevent takeover by rebels, communists, terrorists, subversives etc. The Reagan administration said on a number of occasions that all the turmoil in Central America was due to subversion by the Russians. President Reagan himself said, '"The troubles in Central America are a power play by Cuba and the Soviet Union, pure and simple."
However, this whole argument constitutes one of the most easily dismissed myths surrounding US foreign policy. The pressure for revolution in the Third World derives from conditions which cry out for revolution, not from Russian subversion.
Firstly, the historical record shows that communists have been quite unimportant in revolutionary movements in Latin America. In fact they have often been embarrassed at not being given much of a part to play by those who have organised revolutions. As Berryman says, “... the guerrilla movements in Guatemala, Nicaragua, and El Salvador ... were not led by communist parties, i.e., parties linked to Moscow. In fact the existing communist parties in those countries repeatedly denounced the guerrilla organisations as "adventurist". Blasier (1983) also documents this point, stressing that communist parties have had only minor roles at best in these movements. He documents how the Cuban revolution was a people's revolt against a regime supported for years by the USA, in which communism was almost irrelevant. “Cuban communists and the U.S.S.R. contributed little or nothing ..." (p. 49.) Castro was in conflict with the local communists and later used their party to his advantage. “The communist parties in Latin America are being forced to come to terms with the reality that such broad, loose, national fronts are leading and winning revolutions almost without them.” Blasier adds, “In Central America, the revolutionary parties are led by non-communists . . . communists in Latin America have never led a revolution." (1983, p. 52.)
In most cases revolutionary movements (as distinct fro anti-Western governments) received little or no military assistance from Russia or Cuba. Mostly they have to arm themselves, usually from captured weapons. The USSR's record of assistance for revolutionary movements is surprisingly uneven. On a number of occasions they gave little or no support, notably to Allende in Chile. Cases such as these seem to reveal the Soviet Union has been about as self-interested as most countries are. Often it realised that to become entangled in foreign revolutions would be to cause itself more problems than it was worth.
The fact that the USSR sometimes did give arms and other assistance to revolutionary movements is not very significant in this discussion. Such assistance could not have been the cause of the trouble. If you can see that a situation has festered to the stage where a revolutionary movement has struggled into existence and is seeking arms, then you know that there are extremely serious problems of justice and repression which should have been attended to long ago.
Most importantly, revolutions can only be made by oppressed people. Anyone who has the slightest understanding of social movements in general and revolution in particular realises how extremely difficult it is to get a revolution going. It was absurd for the Reagan administration to suggest that Russian or Cuban agents could come into a Central American country and stir up a revolution. It is amazing what oppressed, exploited and brutalised people will continue to endure without attempting to hit back. In much of Latin America people have put up with decades, even centuries, of the most appalling treatment from exploitative and vicious ruling classes, without mounting any significant threat to those regimes. Many attempts to initiate revolution among people who have the most clear-cut reasons for hitting back have failed to win significant support from the oppressed classes. If there is any move whatsoever towards popular rebellion, let alone a successful people's revolution, you can be sure that there has been a long history of enormous suffering at the hands of a brutal and predatory ruling class. As Blasier (1983) says, “American leaders have not understood the fundamental causes of the revolutions . . . Their most serious misperception has been that the U.S.S.R., acting throughout the Communist parties or conspiratorial activities, actually caused social revolution in Latin America.” Chomsky and many others would argue that American leaders understand the situation only too well. The weakness in Blasier's account is its failure to recognise that these and other aspects of US foreign policy are not mistakes, but deliberate and essential elements in the defence of the empire.
It is possible for subversive agents to enter a Third World country and organise a coup without involving the people in general. The USA and the USSR have often been involved in activities of this sort. But this is entirely different from a popular revolt. As Blazier says, (p. 153), “Governments cannot export revolution.”
The groups who made most mileage out of the “communist threat” were the ruling classes of the Third World, especially in Latin America. At the slightest hint of a call for social justice or change that might impinge upon their interests they immediately cried “communists!” Dissent of any kind was branded as communist subversion. This was a marvellous mechanism for destroying challenges to their privileges, especially as it usually guaranteed immediate and generous US support. Herman sums the situation up neatly: “Among Latin American elites, a peasant asking for a higher wage or a priest helping organise a peasant cooperative is a communist. And someone going so far as to suggest land reform or a more equitable tax system is a communist fanatic”. Hence “... peasants trying to improve themselves, priests with the slightest humanistic proclivities, and naturally anyone trying to change the status quo, are communist ... evil, a threat to "security", and must be treated accordingly.” (Herman, 1982, p. l56.)
As Chomsky (1986) says, “The military juntas adopt a free enterprise - blind growth model. ... Since free enterprise-growth-profits-USA are good, anybody challenging these concepts of their consequences is ipso facto a Communist-subversive-enemy.” Hence “... any resistance to business power and privilege in the interests of equity ... is a National Security and police problem ... From the standpoint of the multinationals and latifundists, this is superb doctrine: reform is equated with subversion. In the words of the Guatemalan Foreign Minister, Toriello, any Latin American government that exerts itself to bring about a truly national program which affects the interests of the powerful foreign companies, in whose hands the wealth and the basic resources in large part repose in Latin America, will be pointed out as Communist . . . and so will be threatened with foreign intervention.“
The Soviet Union's empire.
The Soviet Union also had an empire, in which it did much the same nasty things that the Western rich nations do in theirs. It dominated the countries of Eastern Europe and invaded when it thought this was necessary to reassert control. More recently it invaded Afghanistan, a Third World country.
However, the Soviet Union's empire seems to have been rather different to ours in purpose and method. Theirs seems to have been primarily for the purpose of security, whereas ours is very much to do with securing wealth. The Soviet Union was relatively self-sufficient in resources, and it seems clear that it was not very interested in siphoning wealth from its empire. “... Soviet capital has shown little tendency to expand abroad.” Indeed in some ways the Soviet Empire was a drain on Soviet wealth. For instance there was a net flow of economic wealth from the Soviet Union to Eastern Europe, Cuba, and the 'internal colonies' (the many national minority groups within the Soviet Union). Cuba was costing the USSR between $4 and $6 million every day. These flows were to countries opposed to the West.
The USSR maintained its empire in Eastern Europe mainly as a defensive buffer zone of territory between itself and the West. This becomes more understandable in view of Russia's tragic military history. The USSR has been invaded and devastated a number of times; World War II alone cost the Soviet Union twenty million lives. They were therefore very determined to make sure they were not invaded again.
The purpose of this discussion is not to support either side but it does seem clear that the West is open to far more serious criticism for imperial activity than the USSR. In the last few decades the West intervened in the Third World about twelve times as often as the USSR, and trained about ten times as many military and police personnel for Third World client regimes. Of the 120 wars that broke out between 1945 and 1976, socialist or communist countries have been involved in only six, but the rich Western countries have been involved in no fewer than 64.
The longer view; Imperialism in history.
Let's step back from the current era and reflect briefly on the fact that throughout history humans have shown such a strong tendency to build and exploit empires. The Portuguese were replaced by the Spanish, then the Dutch became dominant. For a long period after them the British ran the world, fighting 72 colonial wars to gain control of their vast empire. World Wars I and II can be seen as attempts by Germany to carve out an empire, which the British strenuously resisted. These wars exhausted Europe enabling the Americans to emerge as the most powerful nation and to organise the world economy in the ways that suited them. So throughout history some power can usually be seen to have kicked and clawed its way to the top of the heap and then to have run things in ways that deliver most of the available wealth to itself. (Yet with the coming of globalisation the power and the wealth is becoming located more within a tiny international corporate class than within any one nation.)
Empires cannot be understood without attending to the ideas and values that sustain them. Firstly people in general seem to ha e little or no idea that the global economy is massively unjust in allocating most wealth to a few. They seem to see global inequality as due to “backwardness” and not the result of a system that is morally repugnant. Most seem to have even less understanding that they could not have their high “living standards” unless their governments work with Third World dictators and ruling elites to run local economies against the interests of local people, or that many terribly brutal things are done in this process. The media refuse to deal with these issues, which is not surprising since they are owned by a few of the very richest beneficiaries of the empire. What is more difficult to understand is why the many “intellectuals” who understand the situation do not try to raise public awareness of it. Reflect on the fact that everyone spends at least 7000 hours in classrooms, and twice that for university graduates, but mot are never told anything about way the global economy and the foreign policies of their governments deliver to them the resources billion of other people need. Most disturbing is the failure/refusal of the many officials and politicians who administer the empire to speak out.
When the British empire was supreme it seems that almost everyone was intensely proud of it, somehow convincing themselves that it was “civilizing” the savages. It never seemed to occur to anyone that you are not supposed to invade, kill and steal, or oppress people. But the mentality now seems to be even more difficult to deal with because it is about indifference. In “post-modern” culture people are obsessed with fleeting trivia, spectacles, celebrities, thrills, fun, mindless TV, sport, pop music, status, lifestyle consuming throw away products … which is precisely what the corporations want because of the lucrative marketing opportunities. They are not interested in the way their lifestyles affect the rest of the world. So they do not interfere with the corporate and government elites who quietly and invisibly go about the business of running the world in the ways that will maximise corporate wealth and keep the supermarket shelves in the rich countries well stocked.
These are the core problems in the human predicament – the failure/refusal to recognise that some of our fundamental ways, assumptions, values and systems are appallingly unacceptable.
We cannot expect to achieve a just world order, (nor a peaceful or ecologically sustainable one) until we grow out of this greedy, infantile and wilfully deluded imperial mentality. If nations continue to insist on manipulating and fighting their way to ever greater wealth, power and prestige, then we will continue to have an infallible recipe for endless and accelerating domination, conflict and imperialism. The USA just happens to be the current top dog. It is no more contemptible than the rest; if New Zealand or Ireland were able to dominate the world system it would surely do so, given that most people in any country subscribe to the false values and ideas that drive imperialism. Chief among these is the commitment to the competitive quest for endlessly rising 'living standards” and GNP. We cannot expect to see an end to imperialism and the domination of nations, nor to international conflict, until we outgrow the mindless obsession with affluence, growth and power and focus on the need to live according to The Simpler Way. (…which does not oblige us to take more than our fair share of the world’s resources; see note 14.).
Bush’s “War on terror”
After the destruction of the World Trade Centre on 9/11 the US reacted with a sense of stunned disbelief, injustice and indignant rage, and commenced a “war on terror”. This reveals how very far rich countries are from recognising the imperial situation.
Firstly I should emphasise here that in my view a) in general resorting to violence by oppressed people is not an effective strategy, and b) resorting to violence is morally problematic…although there can be circumstances in which one has little choice. The Simpler Way strategy for radical social change is a non-violent one; see Thoughts on the Transition.
Firstly, the consequences of the 9/11 attack, 3000 deaths, are miniscule compared with those brought about by the rich countries. Consider the direct military effects, e.g., of bombing Iraq, or of the sanctions against Iraq which probably killed 500,000 people, and the terrorism inflicted by regimes we support, arm and train, illustrated by many of the quotes above. Consider the history of rich world exploitation and contempt for the Third World; this might not be uppermost in your mind but several million Third World people have accumulated resentment going back 500 years, for example to when the European invasion of North America killed about 90% of its people or when the Europeans allowed Israel to dispossess Palestinians. Consider the tens of thousands butchered in Latin America over decades with the assistance of the US, and the possibly half a million killed by Suharto in Indonesia, and the one-third of the East Timorese Indonesia killed, all with the knowledge and nod of the US and using US military equipment. Note the subsequent bonanza of decades of rich world corporate access to Indonesian resources. Consider the effects of the SAPS and WTO regime, which slowly and invisibly kill large numbers every day. You might not be aware of or angry about these effects, but many millions of people are.
In this context, one cannot be surprised that events such as the 9/11 attack on the Twin Towers occur. In fact what is surprising is that there have not been huge numbers of them.
Are you sure that if you had been hungry and disease-ridden all your life, had been obliged to sell one of your children to have sufficient money to save the others from perishing, had cut sugar cane for starvation wages or worked seven days a week for thirteen years in mine dust that killed your father when you yourself were dying from silicosis, that you would not want to hit out? If you knew that your miserable conditions made possible the opulent waste enjoyed by the pampered few who can afford to fly in jumbo jets, and could see that the rich countries devoted millions of dollars every year to maintaining the empire enriching them and depriving you, are you quite sure that you would not react violently?
Yet the rich countries totally fail/refuse to recognise any of this. They interpret attacks on themselves as being due to religious mania, without reason, and totally unjustified. There is not the slightest awareness that their hogging of world wealth might have something to do with what happened. Studies of terrorism have found that it is mostly linked to efforts to rid occupied territory of oppressors. One of Bin Laden’s main goals is to get the Americans out of Saudi Arabia where they prop up a nasty dictatorship. Visit a Palestinian refugee camp where many have been condemned to live in hopeless squalor and you will quickly come to understand why there are suicide bombers.
The attack on the Trade Towers gave the US government a golden opportunity to strengthen their control over the empire. It enabled much more aggressive intervention in the Third World, it legitimised such action in the eyes of the world, It enabled establishment of more foreign military bases and greatly increased expenditure. It enabled increased power of surveillance and interrogation, reducing civil liberties and the probability of challenges.
All this has vastly enriched the corporations. When a country is destabilised or invaded or suffers economic collapse, enormous and lucrative opportunities for corporations are created, especially to come in and buy up the potentially profitable enterprises at bargain prices, but also to introduce new economic arrangements giving them free access to business opportunities and resources. For example Yougoslavia was “socialist” country, with no major enterprise such as electricity supply run by a private firm. Now it is not. Naomi Klein’s book Disaster Capitalism details the way disasters such as tsunamis, earthquakes, war, coups and economic collapse, create the “shock” conditions in which such new rules can be quickly imposed, before bamboozled people have a chance to understand or object. For instance after the Asian tsunami governments quickly rezoned much coastal land which peasants and fishing villagers used to occupy to be used for tourist resorts. More importantly, in the name of restructuring to get the economy going, neo-liberal policies benefiting the corporations and local rich replace those which provided for poor people (not that these were perfect, and not that many initial governments were free of corruption.)
What is the official view?
If they are ever pressed on these issues governments, the military and the media typically say yes we do some unpleasant things from time to time but we have to in order to defend “the national interest”, e.g., to deal with a rebellion or threat to an ally. After all it is a tough world out there and if we don’t get to the trough first someone else will get the resources. The Chinese are handing large amounts of aid to brutal regimes in Africa with no questions asked in order to secure resources, so we can‘t afford to be too pure or we will miss out. “Realpolitik” and the “national interest” requires tough policies at times.
Of course what is not said is that the “national interest” involves maintaining “living standards” and levels of business activity that would not be possible if we were not securing most of the world’s wealth and condemning billions to deprivation.
Notice also the “selective indignation” evident in our fierce condemnation of dictators who do not rule the ways that suit us (Noriega, Hussein…both of whom were supported by us while they did rule that way) alongside our aid and military supplies to those who will rule as we wish (Mobutu, Suharto, Pinochet, Central Asia, Saudi Arabia.)
But none of this is ever becomes an embarrassing problem, because officials are rarely if ever obliged to explain or defend what is done to defend the empire.
The core theme in this discussion has been that if you want to live in an affluent-consumer-capitalist society you must maintain your empire. We cannot expect to build a world in which there are no empires, no domination and oppression and in unjust flows of wealth unless we shift to The Simpler Way. (For the detail see Note 12.) This means living without unnecessary consumption, mostly in small, localised, self-governing and highly self-sufficient economies under local control (not market forces) and without growth. Ecological conditions, especially the petroleum problem, will force us in this direction. The Simpler Way would make it possible for us to live (well) on the resources of our region and without drawing wealth from others or taking more than our fair share of world resources.
For a collection of documents supporting th above analysis see Docs.OUREMPIRE1.htm,
1. Thesimplerway.info/DocsTHIRDWORLD.html and DocsGLOBALISATION.html
2. See Note 1.
4. E. S. Herman, 'Folks out there have a distaste of Western civilization and cultural values", www.globalresearch.ca, (15th Sept., 2001.)
6. C. G. Easterbrook, "Is there a non-violent response to September 11?',
email@example.com See also Chomsky, "International terrorism; Image and reality", p. 16, and George, "The discipline of terrorology", p. 82-83.)
7. George, 1991b, op. cit., p. 72. For further detail on the Nicaraguan case see D. Melrose, Nicaragua: The Threat of a Good Example, Oxfam, (1985), N. Chomsky, Turning the Tide, South End/Pluto, (1985), P. Kornbluh, Nicaragua;The Price of Intervention, Institute for Policy Studies, (1987), H. Sklar, Washington's War on Nicaragua, South End, (1989).
8. S. Gervaszi and S., Wong, "The Reagan doctrine and the destabilisation of Southern Africa", in A George, Ed., Western State Terrorism, Cambridge, Polity, (1991), pp. 222, 226. See also J. Hanlon, Beggar Your Neighbours; Apartheit Power in South Africa, Islington, London, Catholic Institute for International Relations.
9. See for example the overviews by E. S. Herman, The Real Terror Network, (Southend Press, 1982), W. Blum, The CIA; A Forgotten History, (London, Zed Books, 1986), N. Chomsky, Pirates and Emperors, International Terrorism in the Real World, (Claremont Research and Publications, 1986), A. Cockburn, Corruptions of Empire, A George, Ed., Western State Terrorism, (Cambridge, Polity, 1991), N. Chomsky and E. S. Herman, The Washington Connection and Third World Fascism, (Sydney, Hale and Iremonger, 1979.)
10. Bowman, "Who would hate a pious America?, http://www.rmbowman.com
11. E. C. Collier, Instances of Use of United States Forces Abroad 1798 - 1993, Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress, (Oct. 7., 1993). See Amnesty International, 1998, The United States of America; Rights for All, http://web.amnesty.org
Anderson, J., in The Guardian, 20th Jan, 1980.
G. Blasier, The Giant's Rival, 1983,
Block, F., The Origins of International Economic Disorder, 1977, p. 193.
Budiardjo, C., "Indonesia; Mass extermination and the consolidation of authoritarian power" in A George, Ed., Western State Terrorism, Cambridge, Polity, (1991), 180-212, pp. 200.
Chomsky, N., Turning The Tide, London, Pluto, 1986, p. 157.
Chomsky, N., "International terrorism; Image and reality", ", in A George, Ed., Western State Terrorism, Cambridge, Polity,p. 26.
Chomsky, N., "The US is a leading terrorist state", Monthly Review, 53, 6, (Nov, 2001), p. 16.
Chomsky, N., and E.S. Herman, The Washington Connetion and Third World Fascism, Boston, South End Press, 1979.
CISAC, El Salvador, A Dossier, Sydney, , (1981), p. 32.
M. Chussodovsky, The Globalisation of Poverty, (London, Zed Books, 1997 Deak, E, "Real fight is for control of central Asia's oil", Sydney Morning Herald, (25th Oct., 2001).
Eckersley, R., Perspectives on Progress; Is Life Getting Better?, (Canberra, CSIRO, 1997.)
Focus on the Global South, 3, (Sept. 18), 2001.
George, A, Introduction, in A George, Ed., Western State Terrorism, Cambridge, Polity, (1991).
E. S. Herman, The Real Terror Network, Boston, South End Press, 1982
Herman, E. S. and J. O'Sullivan, "'Terrorism,' as ideology and cultural industry", in A. George, Ed., Western State Terrorism, (Cambridge, Polity, 1991).
E. Hunt and H. Sherman, Economics, 1972.
Falk, R., "The terrorist foundations of recent US foreign policy", in A. George, Ed., Western State Terrorism, (Cambridge, Polity, 1991), p.108.
Katznelson, I., and M. Kesselman, The Politics of Power, 1983.
M. McClintock, "American doctrine and counterinsurgent state terror", in A George, Ed., Western State Terrorism, Cambridge, Polity, (1991).
G. Monbiot, The Guardian, (Tuesday, October 30, 2001).
New Internationalist, (Feb., 1983), p. 30. See also Sydney Morning Herald, (4th Feb., 1982), p. 4.
Said, E., "What they want is my silence", Third World Resurgence, 131/132; (2001), p. 68.
The editors, "After the attack…the war on terrorism", Monthly Review, 53.6, (Nov., 2001), pp. 1-9.
The Guardian, (8th March, 1981).
Trainer, F. E. (T.), “Why development is impossible”, Scandanavian Journal of Development and Area Studies, (Sept-Dec., 1997.)
Trainer, F. E. (T.), (2000), "What does development mean; A rejection of the unidimensional conception ", The International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, 20, 5/6, pp. 95-114.
Trosan and M. Yates, "Brainwashing under freedom", Monthly Review, (Jan. 1980), p. 44.