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How Empires Decline (including ours)

Chalmers Johnson (1931-2010)


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Is the US an Empire?


Books by Chalmers Johnson answer that question

"Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire"

"The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic"

"Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic"

Maintaining an Empire is an expensive proposition. Historian Howard Zinn once pointed out that the best way to undermine a tyrant is to give him everything we wants - and then sit back and let him manage it.

At last count the US had 737 military bases in foreign countries. Each one requires hundreds and sometimes thousands of troops, full armaments and a massive support staff. They burn fuel, consume electricity, eat food, receive medical care. This is an expensive proposition and takes money from development at home.

How long can this drain of resources take place?

By more striking is what are they doing there in the first place?

Why should any country have troops in another countries borders, let alone permanent military installations.

Put the shoe on another foot for a moment.

How would you like it if the Russians had a military based up the road from you. Or when you went to the beach, the Chinese Navy occupied some prime real estate.

The whole system is quite mad and as Chalmers points out bound to end badly.

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