The Sorrows of Empire by Chalmers Johnson
Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic

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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.


About Chalmers Johnson

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Chalmers Johnson, president of the Japan Policy Research Institute and professor emeritus at the University of California, San Diego, is a frequent contributor to the Los Angeles Times and The Nation. His previous books include MITI and the Japanese Miracle. He lives in Southern California.
Published April 1, 2007 by Metropolitan Books. 412 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, War. Non-fiction

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“Like other empires of the past century,” writes Japan Research Policy Institute president Johnson (Blowback, 2000, etc.), “the United States has chosen to live not prudently, in peace and prosperity, but as a massive military power athwart an angry, resistant globe.” In the absence of rivals suc...

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California Literary Review

(This was a compromise between the left wing No Empire forces, who wanted all monies to go into the energy program and the libertarian/anarchist No Empire supporters who wanted all savings returned to the citizens.) For once, the voters were making a significant choice about what kind of country ...

Apr 24 2007 | Read Full Review of The Sorrows of Empire: Milita...


Chalmers Johnson's The Sorrows of Empire is a title of the American Empire Project, whose authors in addition to Johnson include Noam Chomsky and Michael Klare.

Nov 24 2010 | Read Full Review of The Sorrows of Empire: Milita...


These are books that take aspects of the economy, as Goodwin has done, and dissect them using normal English.

Dec 14 2012 | Read Full Review of The Sorrows of Empire: Milita...

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