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Failed States The Abuse of Power and the Assault on Democracy

American Empire Project

Noam Chomsky

Holt Paperbacks

0805082840

9780805082845

Trade Paperback

320 Pages

$18.00

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The United States has repeatedly asserted its right to intervene against "failed states" around the globe. In this much anticipated sequel to his international bestseller Hegemony or Survival, Noam Chomsky turns the tables, charging the United States with being a "failed state," and thus a danger to its own people and the world.

"Failed states," Chomsky writes, are those "that do not protect their citizens from violence and perhaps even destruction, that regard themselves as beyond the reach of domestic or international law, and that suffer from a 'democratic deficit,' having democratic forms but with limited substance." Exploring recent U.S. foreign and domestic policies, Chomsky assesses Washington's escalation of the nuclear risk; the dangerous consequences of the occupation of Iraq; and America's self-exemption from international law. He also examines an American electoral system that frustrates genuine political alternatives, thus impeding any meaningful democracy.

REVIEWS

Praise for Failed States

"It's hard to imagine any American reading this book and not seeing his country in a new, and deeply troubling, light."—The New York Times Book Review
 
"Forget Iraq and Sudan—America is the foremost failed state, argues the latest polemic from America's most controversial Left intellectual. Chomsky contends the U.S. government wallows in lawless military aggression (the Iraq war is merely the latest example); ignores public opinion on everything from global warming to social spending and foreign policy; and jeopardizes domestic security by under-funding homeland defense . . . Disdaining euphemisms, he denounces American 'terror' and 'war crimes,' castigates the public-bamboozling 'government-media propaganda campaign' and floats comparisons to Mongols and Nazis. Chomsky's fans will love it, but even mainstream critics are catching up to the substance of his take on Bush Administration policies; meanwhile his uncompromising moral sensibility, icy logic and withering sarcasm remain in a class by themselves. Required reading for every thoughtful citizen."—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

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BOOK EXCERPTS

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Preface
 
The selection of issues that should rank high on the agenda of concern for human welfare and rights is, naturally, a subjective matter. But there are a few choices that seem unavoidable, because they bear so directly on the prospects for decent survival. Among them are at least these three: nuclear war, environmental disaster, and the fact that the government of the world's leading power is acting in ways that increase the likelihood of these catastrophes. It is important to stress the government, because the population, not surprisingly, does not agree. That brings up a fourth
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  • Failed States by Noam Chomsky--Audiobook Excerpt

    Listen to this audiobook excerpt from Noam Chomsky's book Failed States: The Abuse of Power and the Assault on Democracy. The United States has repeatedly asserted its right to intervene militarily against "failed states" around the globe. In this much-anticipated sequel to his international bestseller Hegemony or Survival, Noam Chomsky turns the tables, charging the United States with being a "failed state," and therefore a danger to its own people and the world.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Noam Chomsky

  • Noam Chomsky is the author of numerous bestselling political works, from American Power and the New Mandarins in the 1960s to Hegemony or Survival in 2003 and Imperial Ambitions in 2005. A professor of linguistics and philosophy at MIT, he lives outside Boston, Massachusetts.
  • Noam Chomsky ©John Soares
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