Failed States: The Abuse of Power and the Assault on Democracy

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Macmillan, Apr 3, 2007 - Political Science - 320 pages
201 Reviews

The world's foremost critic of U.S. foreign policy exposes the hollow promises of democracy in American actions abroad—and at home

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.

Forceful, lucid, and meticulously documented, Failed States offers a comprehensive analysis of a global superpower that has long claimed the right to reshape other nations while its own democratic institutions are in severe crisis, and its policies and practices have recklessly placed the world on the brink of disaster. Systematically dismantling America's claim to being the world's arbiter of democracy, Failed States is Chomsky's most focused—and urgent—critique to date.


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Review: Failed States: The Abuse of Power and the Assault on Democracy

User Review  - Abudsain - Goodreads

Excellent. What else can I say?! Puts it to you in black and white. Ignorance and denial have to be chucked out of the window. Read full review

Review: Failed States: The Abuse of Power and the Assault on Democracy

User Review  - Shaun Campbell - Goodreads

I learned a lot about foreign relations from this book but it is presented as academic material and very hard to absorb. After reading this book, I felt like I should receive 3 credit hours of college ... Read full review



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About the author (2007)

Noam Chomsky is the author of numerous bestselling political works, including Hegemony or Survival, Failed States, Imperial Ambitions and What We Say Goes. A professor of linguistics and philosophy at MIT, he is widely credited with having revolutionized modern linguistics. He lives outside Boston, Massachusetts.

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