The Changing Face of Empire (Ebook)

Special Ops, Drones, Spies, Proxy Fighters, Secret Bases, and Cyber Warfare

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The Changing Face of Empire is a devastating anatomy of the U.S. military’s new six-point program for twenty-first-century war. Following the failures of the Iraq and Afghan wars, as well as “military lite” methods and counterinsurgency, the Pentagon is now pioneering a new brand of global warfare predicated on special ops, drones, spy games, civilian soldiers, cyberwarfare, and proxy fighters. It may sound like a safer, saner brand of war-fighting -- a panacea for America’s national security ills. In reality, it will prove anything but, as Nick Turse’s pathbreaking reportage makes all too clear.

A Dispatch Books title, a project of

About the author

Nick Turse, an award-winning journalist and historian, is the author/editor of several books including The Changing Face of Empire: Special Ops, Drones, Spies, Proxy Fighters, Secret Bases, and Cyberwarfare (Haymarket), is the managing editor of, and a fellow at the Nation Institute.


Praise for The Complex:

“Americans who still think they can free themselves from the clutches of the military-industrial complex need to read this book. For example, the gimmicks the Pentagon uses to deceive, entrap, and sign up gullible 18 to 24 year-olds are anything but voluntary. Nick Turse has produced a brilliant exposé of the Pentagon’s pervasive influence in our lives.” — Chalmers Johnson, author of Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic

“This is a deeply disturbing audit of the Pentagon’s influence on American life, especially its subtle conscription of popular imagination and entertainment technology. If Nick Turse is right, the ‘Matrix’ may be just around the corner.”—Mike Davis, author of Buda's Wagon: A Brief History of the Car Bomb

“When President Eisenhower warned of the dangers to democracy posed by the military-industrial complex, he had no idea how far it would penetrate into every aspect of our everyday lives. In impressive detail, Nick Turse shows how the military is now tied to everything from your morning cup of Starbucks to the video games your kids play before turning in for the night. It's not just political anymore—it’s personal. Turse sounds the alarm bell about the militarization of everyday life. Now it’s up to us to do something about it.”—Bill Hartung, author of How Much Are You Making on the War Daddy?

“Nick Turse’s searing, investigative journalism reveals just how deeply embedded in our lives the war-making system is and why we should be viscerally alarmed. He exposes how, with a growing contingent of corporate/entertainment/academic/media collaborators, the Pentagon has not only garrisoned the globe, but come home to dominate the United States. For anyone interested in understanding the crisis this country is in, The Complex is indispensable reading.”—Dahr Jamail, author of Beyond the Green Zone

"Fascinating, no matter where you place yourself on the ideological spectrum."—Wired

Praise for The Case for Withdrawal from Afghanistan

“A pathbreaking synthesis of American and Russian perspectives on the illusions of empire and the impossibility of ‘victory’ in Afghanistan. As the contributors so eloquently emphasize, the only realistic and humane option can be spelled in three letters: O-U-T.” —Mike Davis, author of Planet of Slums

“A fascinating and essential guide which puts the war in Afghanistan in the context of its recent history and dispels propaganda stereotypes about how the US, Britain and their allies became involved.” -- Patrick Cockburn, author of The Occupation: War and Resistance in Iraq