Colossus The Rise and Fall of The American Empire by Niall Ferguson

By Niall Ferguson

Is the United States the hot international Empire? the U.S. executive emphatically denies it. regardless of the conquest of 2 sovereign states in as a long time, regardless of the presence of greater than 750 army installations throughout two-thirds of the world's international locations and regardless of his said goal "to expand some great benefits of freedom - to each nook of the world," George W. Bush continues that "America hasn't ever been an empire". "We do not search empires," insists security Secretary Rumsfeld. "We're no longer imperialistic." In Colossus Niall Ferguson unearths the paradoxical truth of yank strength. In financial and army phrases, he argues, the US could be the strongest empire the realm has ever obvious. And its goals are heavily similar to these of the final nice Anglophone empire: to globalize loose markets, the rule of thumb of legislations and consultant govt. but american citizens turn away from the long term commitments of manpower, money and time which are additionally an intrinsic a part of empire. This, Ferguson argues, is an empire with an recognition deficit disease, enforcing ever extra unrealistic timescales on its in another country interventions. Worse, it really is an empire in denial - a hyperpower that refuses to recognize the dimensions of its worldwide obligations. And this persistent myopia can also practice to US household politics. while overstretch comes, he warns, it's going to come from inside of - and it'll exhibit that the yankee Colossus has greater than purely toes of clay.

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Example text

BOB WOODWARD, quoting President Bush2 I set out to write this book in the belief that the role of the United States in the world today could be better understood by comparing it with past empires. I understood well enough that most Americans feel uneasy about applying the word empire to their country, though an influential minority (as the first epigraph above confirms) are not so inhibited. But what I had not fully understood until the first edition of Colossus was published was the precise nature of “imperial denial” as a national condition.

Then, as now, hopes for China’s development ran euphorically high, especially in the United States. But those hopes were dashed, and could be disappointed again. A Chinese currency or banking crisis could have immense ramifications, especially when Western investors realize the difficulty of repatriating assets held in China. When foreigners invest directly in factories rather than through intermediaries such as bond markets, there is no need for domestic capital controls. It is no easy thing to repatriate a steel mill.

We’re not an imperial power,” declared President George W. ”5 Of all the misconceptions that need to be dispelled here, this is perhaps the most obvious: That simply because Americans say they do not “do” empire, there cannot be such a thing as American imperialism. As I write, American troops are engaged in defending governments forcibly installed by the United States in two distant countries, Afghanistan and Iraq. 7 Empire also means economic, cultural, and political predominance within (and sometimes also without) that frontier.

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