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Rogue State: A Guide to the World's Only Superpower [Paperback]

William Blum
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)

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Book Description

1 Feb 2002
'The American empire': these words sound to Americans like an oxymoron, suggesting that their country has a lust for political, economic and military hegemony over the rest of the world. But William Blum shows here that encounters between the US and other nations have been of the cruellest kind.

Product details

  • Paperback: 323 pages
  • Publisher: Zed Books Ltd; 2nd Revised edition edition (1 Feb 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 184277221X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1842772218
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 18.6 x 24.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 562,330 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

William Blum is one of the United States' leading non-mainstream experts on American foreign policy. He left the State Department in 1967, abandoning his aspiration of becoming a Foreign Service Officer because of his opposition to what the US was doing in Vietnam. He then became a founder and editor of the Washington Free Press, the first 'alternative' newspaper in the capital. Mr Blum has been a freelance journalist in the US, Europe and South America. His stay in Chile in 1972-3, writing about the Allende government's 'socialist experiment', and then its tragic overthrow in a CIA-designed coup, instilled in him a personal involvement and an even more heightened interest in what his government was doing in various corners of the world. He is the author of 'Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II', and the controversial bestseller 'Rogue State: A Guide to the World's Only Superpower'. He currently sends out a monthly Internet newsletter, the Anti-Empire Report.

Product Description


'William Blum, once of the US State Department, gives a chilling reminder that while there may be no justification for 11 September, there may be reasons' --Mavis Cheek in The Observer, Books of the Year 2001

'This is not a book for anyone who wishes to maintain any cosy illusions about their own liberty... we find in these pages, meticulously detailed and annotated, all the instances of assassination, covert and overt destabilisation, election-rigging, sponsorship of terrorism, secret surveillance, brainwashing and provocation that the US has employed to further its burgeoning corporate empire... After reading Rogue State, it is impossible to hang fast to the comforting illusion that the 'American Way' is some kind of enlightenment' --Will Self in The New Statesman

'Rogue State is a book of charges to be tied to a paving stone and thrown at the men in Washington' --The Independent on Sunday

About the Author

WILLIAM BLUM left the State Department in 1967, abandoning his aspiration of becoming a Foreign Service Officer because of his opposition to what the US was doing in Vietnam. He founded the Washington Free Press, the capital's first 'alternative' newspaper, and developed an alternative career as a freelance journalist in the US, Europe and South America. He is the author of The CIA: A Forgotten History (Zed Books, 1988).

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First Sentence
Washington's war on terrorism is as doomed to failure as its war on drugs has been. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant survey of US foreign policy 15 Dec 2006
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is an indispensable guide to the domestic and foreign policies of the US state. In Part I, Blum analyses the US state's use of terrorists, particularly those who fought in Afghanistan, and its use of mass murderers like Pol Pot. In Part II, he analyses the US uses of weapons of mass destruction - bombing, depleted uranium, cluster bombs, chemical and biological weapons. In Part III, he analyses the US role in the world, its relationships with democracy and elections.

He looks at the notion that 9/11 is explicable only in terms of evil. He cites the Pentagon's own Defense Science Board, which quoted, and contradicted, Bush when it said, "Muslims do not `hate our freedom', but rather they hate our policies." He writes, "This idée fixe - that the rise of anti-American terrorism owes nothing to American policies - in effect postulates an America that is always the aggrieved innocent in a treacherous world, a benign United States government peacefully going about its business but being `provoked' into taking extreme measures to defend its people, its freedom and its democracy."

He writes, "Throughout the period of the Cuban revolution, 1959 to the present, Latin America has witnessed a terrible parade of human rights violations - systematic, routine torture; legions of `disappeared' people; government-supported death squads picking off selected individuals; massacres en masse of peasants, students and other groups, shot down in cold blood. The worst perpetrators of these acts during this period have been the military and associated paramilitary squads of El Salvador, Guatemala, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Peru, Mexico, Uruguay, Haiti and Honduras.
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68 of 72 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating and frightening 1 April 2002
Mr Blum's book is well researched and well written. It is not, as I first suspected it might be, a vitriolic anti-American rant. The facts are presented with a minimum of embelishment.
No doubt there will be some who will dispute some of the arguements he presents, but much of it is beyond reproach, such as the section on the US's shameful voting at the UN.
For those of us who are concerned that the British are following the US into one mistaken action after another, it makes very sobering reading.
In his war against terrorism George Dubya needs to look no further than his own secret service to find examples of murder and coercion.
Read this book, then have a stiff drink as you remind yourself that the USA is leader of the free world.
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84 of 90 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a superb book that NEEDS to be read by all 19 Sep 2002
William Blum's book is the perfect antidote to the endless pack of lies that we are presently being told by Bush, Blair and the BBC about Iraq and the constant presumption of good that is bestowed upon the USA.
In the 60's Blum worked for the State Department but could only take so much. He has since dedicated himself to trying to counter through one medium or another to mythology of US political credibility. Like all great American dissident writers he cares first and foremost about the victims of terror, torture, genocide and aggression. That may sound familiar as it is the same claim made by the usual suspects who forever appear on Newsnight BUT with one great difference. Their indignation is also about the far lesser crimes of the enemies of the USA (who almost always owe their careers to the CIA in the first place)
while Blum is concerned with the far greater crimes committed upon vastly greater numbers of people by the American Empire.
His style of writing is clear, precise, verifiable and designed for a generation of people who want clear writing that can be read on the commuter trains and time spent in airports and on planes as well as a good read at home.
The only reason I did not give it 5 stars is that should be reserved for grander works like Chomsky's YEAR 501 but this work is far accessible for a wider audience.
Excellent book.
An important account of US conduct in the world that the folks on the tele refuse to mention.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrifying! 7 Aug 2006
As I flowed through the pages of this book, I kept looking at the cover to make sure I hadn't inadvertently picked up a Stephen King book... The content of this book is terrifying, enough to age a person with a conscience. William Blum is meticulous in his referencing; throughout the book he is concientious in not getting carried away with 'rumors' or 'conspiracy theories'... I cross referenced many of the facts. As chapter followed chapter I felt my hair turn white, and realised the mafia that sits unperturbed in the highest powers. It is shocking, but rings so true. Furthermore, current world events seem to be adding the 'seal of truth' to everything mentioned in this book.

I recommend it to anyone who wants to understand how the world runs, but be aware that many of the pages contain material that is too difficult to digest, in particular when referencing tortures. I close with this quote strategically placed in the book:

'None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free' Goethe
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
By awj
This book has been thoroughly researched and I find no reason to doubt the veracity. My guess is that most readers of this book will not be surprised by most of the content, though because of the author's pedigree and the span of the book, most readers also may not be aware of. So for that reason, if you're thinking about reading this then you probably won't be disappointed.

However, the book lacks any progression. This book is simply a catalogue of affairs in which the US has meddled, and as a consequence it reads more like a reference book. It doesn't go anywhere, by and large it doesn't explain the background to each affair, and nor does it follow up with the eventual outcome; it simply contains bursts of historical fact - on average about a page in length although some take short (approx. 5 page) chapters.

The information is certainly well worth knowing - and more people should know about this - but soon after I started I found myself flicking ahead to see if the course changed in any way. It doesn't.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars A bully is a bully
William Blum is in the same class as Michael Moore only Michael has more style, wit and backs his examples with clever analysis which William tends not to have. Read more
Published 9 months ago by T. Mahmood
5.0 out of 5 stars both fascinating and disturbing
this book will leave you wondering whether the UK should be proud or embarrassed by its 'special' relationship with America.
Published 11 months ago by Zeus22
5.0 out of 5 stars Rogue State
Anyone who has the slightest interest in world affairs and wishes to know why the world we live in is such a violent mess, will find most of their questions answered in this... Read more
Published 17 months ago by G. Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars Must read
People need to wake up and realise that most of what they were told in history classes at school were lies and falsehoods. Read more
Published on 2 Jan 2011 by amere-brush-hand
5.0 out of 5 stars what is true democracy?
There is no true democracy, this book is one of the best books I've ever read. there appears in the background an insidious control by multinationals, banks and governments of... Read more
Published on 13 Nov 2009 by R W Lewis
5.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing
This book exposes the crimes of the US since the end of WW2. It's shocking and depressing and the big question is: how does it get away with it? Read more
Published on 25 May 2009 by L. Taylor
3.0 out of 5 stars More criticism than critique
An unsettling catalogue of nasty deeds - assassinations, torture, tyrant-funding, electoral meddling and the like - all apparently carried out or supported by the United States... Read more
Published on 18 April 2009 by Steve
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book to start with on American terrorism
I'll keep it short because others have already adequately sung this book's praises.
I agree that this is the best place to start for a quick overview of the huge wrongs... Read more
Published on 28 Jan 2008 by Jm Leven
5.0 out of 5 stars The book to start you off....
As previously mentioned this book is absoloutely perfect for those just beginning on the path of truth. Read more
Published on 2 Jan 2008 by Mr. M. G. Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars The real history of the 20th century
Blum has chosen a superb title for this book, recounting the horrors inflicted on the world by US imperialism in it's never-ending goal of domination of the world's resouces and... Read more
Published on 22 Aug 2006 by Mr. B. I. Precious
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