War Without End: The Iraq War in Context

In this razor-sharp analysis, TomDispatch.com commentator Michael Schwartz demolishes the myths used to sell the U.S. public the idea of an endless “war on terror” centered in Iraq.

He demonstrates how the U.S. occupation is fueling rather than restraining civil war in Iraq, and how U.S. officials systematically dismantled the Iraqi state and economy, helping to destroy rather than rebuild the country.

In a popular style, reminiscent of the best writing against the Vietnam war, he shows how the real U.S. interests in Iraq have been rooted in the geopolitics of oil and the expansion of a neoliberal economic model in the Middle East—and around the globe—at gunpoint.

War Without End also reveals how the failure of the United States in Iraq has forced U.S. planners to fundamentally rethink the imperial fantasies driving recent foreign policy.

About the author

Michael Schwartz, professor of sociology and faculty director of the Undergraduate College of Global Studies at Stony Brook University, has written extensively on the war in Iraq at sites including TomDispatch, ZNet, Asia Times, and Mother Jones, and in numerous magazines, including Contexts, Against the Current, and Z.


Michael Schwartz discusses the neoliberal occupation of Iraq:


“Americans have all along needed a sociologist, not a general, to help them understand Iraq. They need to know about social movements, not just militias, and about oil politics, not just personalities in the news. We have the incredible good fortune that the perspicacious Michael Schwartz boldly stepped forward to cast floods of illumination on the Iraq War and its tragic social costs.”
—Juan Cole, Informed Comment

“The best history of the U.S. occupation of Iraq that I've seen.… This book puts incidents of violence we hear about in the context of the massive violence we don't hear much about, and puts all of it in the context of the economic and social devastation imposed on Iraq…. Schwartz also helps to make the complex clearer and simpler by framing his account in terms of the actual oily motivations of our government, rather than any of the pretended rationales.”
—David Swanson, Global Research

"War Without End is a brilliant and readable introduction to the destruction wrought by America’s lust for oil and an insightful look at 21st century colonialism."
—Eleanor J. Bader, The Indypendent