The Forging of the American Empire
From the Revolution to Vietnam
Today’s costly and brutal occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan do not represent merely the mismanagement of the United States military as the largest military force on the planet, nor a misuse of the nation’s position as the world’s unrivaled superpower. Rather, as Sidney Lens’ unparalleled study demonstrates, these conflicts represent the logical culmination of over a century of empire building.
The Forging of the American Empire tells the story of a nation that has conducted more than 160 wars and other military ventures while insisting that it loves peace.
From Mexico to Lebanon, from China to the Dominican Republic, from Nicaragua to Vietnam, the U.S. has intervened regularly in the affairs of other nations.
Yet the myth that Americans are benevolent, peace-loving people who will fight only to defend the rights of others lingers on.
Excesses and cruelties, though sometimes admitted, usually are regarded as momentary aberrations.
In this comprehensive history of American imperialism, Sidney Lens punctures the myth once and for all by showing how the U.S., from the time it gained its own independence, has used every available means—political, economic, and military—to dominate other peoples.
This classic text is indispensable, both as an unflinching account of the United States’ legacy of violent conquest and struggle for hegemony, but also as a perspective to clarify and contextualize events unfolding today.
Includes a new introduction by Howard Zinn.
"The observations Sidney Lens made of American imperialism in the 1970s are still valid today. You could say they were prophetic. I’m so glad this book is being republished. It couldn’t be timelier.”