Fight the Empire

We live in an empire that began 500 years ago with the European conquest of the Americas. This program looks at how the empire permeates our lives.

 

What are we doing in the world? What are we doing to the world?

George Kennan was an influential US diplomat during the Cold War years. It was he who devised the containment strategy against the Soviet Union (as opposed to a more aggressive rollback policy). In February 1948 Kennan presented a document to President Truman, Presidential Policy Statement #23, which includes the following:

"The US has  50 percent of the world's wealth, but only 6.3 percent of its population. Our real task in the coming period is to devise a pattern of relationships which permits us to maintain this position of disparity...To do so we will have to dispense with all sentimentality and day-dreaming, and our attention will have to be concentrated everywhere on our immediate national objectives.

"We should cease to talk about vague and unreal objectives such as human rights, the raising of living standards, and democratization. The day is not far off when we are going to have to deal in straight power concepts. The less we are hampered by idealistic slogans the better."

Some have claimed that Kennan was speaking as a foreign policy "realist," and arguing against an ideological anti-Communist crusade. That may be so, but his words are clear, as Noam Chomsky has pointed out. The US intends to keep for itself an unfair share of the world's resources. The main difference between the realists and the ideologues is one of tactics in pursuing this ignoble goal.

 

 

 

 

Coming Soon

A short history of Rwanda
 

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Episode Archive

Fight the Empire on 01/03/13

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 01/03/2013 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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Christian Parenti discusses "The Limits To Growth."

Forty years ago a ground-breaking book was published, called "The Limits To Growth." MIT researchers used computer models to project a future world economy, and many of the results pointed to collapse. Thursday's guest will be author Christian Parenti, to discuss "The Limits To Growth" and where it leads.

Fight the Empire on 12/20/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 12/20/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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History and events in Syria

As the year comes to an end we'll look at events in Syria, their links to past and future, and the chaos spreading beyond borders.

Fight the Empire on 12/06/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 12/06/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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Tamim Ansary about his new book Games Without Rules: The Often Interrupted History of Afghanistan

 Host Per Fagereng speaks with writer Tamim Ansary about his new book Games Without Rules: The Often Interrupted History of Afghanistan.

In GAMES WITHOUT RULES Tamim Ansary draws on his Afghan background, Muslim roots, and Western and Afghan sources to explain history from the inside out, and to illuminate the long, internal struggle that the outside world has never fully understood. It is the story of a nation struggling to take form, a nation undermined by its own demons while, every 40 to 60 years, a great power crashes in and disrupts whatever progress has been made.

Fight the Empire on 11/15/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 11/15/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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Alfred McCoy on “Beyond Bayonets and Battleships, Space Warfare and the Future of U.S. Global Power”

Host Per Fagereng speaks with historian and author Alfred McCoy, about his recent piece on TomDispatch.com about the Pentagon’s dreams and plans for maintaining U.S. preeminence on planet Earth from the ground to outer space via an array of new robotic weaponry now in development.  McCoy is famous for his book on the CIA and heroin (which the Agency tried unsuccessfully to suppress). McCoy's latest book is Endless Empire.

Fight the Empire on 11/01/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 11/01/2012 - 9:00am - 10:00am
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Hurricane Sandy and climate change

Per Fagereng hosts a special hour-long edition of Fight the Empire on Hurricane Sandy, climate change, unusual weather patterns, energy and more.

Fight the Empire on 10/18/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 10/18/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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Connecting history with the latest world events

Fight the Empire on 10/04/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 10/04/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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Tough Talk for America, A Guide to the Presidential Debates You Won’t Hear

Host Per Fagereng speaks with Mattea Kramer, senior research analyst at the National Priorities Project and lead author of the new book A People’s Guide to the Federal Budget. She just wrote the piece “Tough Talk for America, A Guide to the Presidential Debates You Won’t Hear,” which states: “Five big things will decide what this country looks like next year and in the 20 years to follow, but here’s a guarantee for you: you’re not going to hear about them in the upcoming presidential debates.

Fight the Empire on 09/20/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 09/20/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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Journalist and author Hedrick Smith on his book Who Stole the American Dream?

Host Per Fagereng speaks with Hedrick Smith, Pulitzer Prize-winning former New York Times reporter and editor and Emmy award-winning producer/correspondent whose career spans fifty years. His new book Who Stole The American Dream? is an account of how, over the past four decades, we have become two Americas. Smith takes us across America to show how seismic changes, sparked by a sequence of landmark political and economic decisions, have transformed America. He starts with Lewis Powell’s provocative memo that triggered a political rebellion that dramatically altered the landscape of power in Washington from then until today.

Fight the Empire on 09/06/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 09/06/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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Gareth Porter on Iran's reducing the amount of enriched uranium

Host Per Fagereng speaks with Gareth Porter, investigative historian and journalist specialising in U.S. national security policy, about his recent article on the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report called "IAEA Report Shows Iran Reduced Its Breakout Capacity." They will also talk about the US warnings to Israel, the non-aligned nations meeting, and Romney's foreign policy team.

The paperback edition of Gareth Porter's latest book, Perils of Dominance: Imbalance of Power and the Road to War in Vietnam, was published in 2006.

Fight the Empire on 08/16/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 08/16/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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$21 Trillion the Wealthy are Hiding: The Shocking Facts -- and the Great Opportunity

Host Per Fagereng speaks with  James Henry, lead researcher for a new report by the Tax Justice Network that finds that the super-rich are hiding at least $21 trillion in accounts outside their home countries. The wealth hidden in these tax shelters is the equivalent of the United States and Japanese economies combined, according to the report, 'The Price of Offshore Revisited.'" PDF summary of report: http://www.taxjustice.net/cms/upload/pdf/The_Price_of_Offshore_Revisited_Presser_120722.pdf

Audio

Libya: Qaddafi, the neighborhood bully? NATO, the mafia?

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 09/15/2011

 Per Fagering connecting history with the latest world events focusses on Libya, and ponders "Who's worse, the local thug or a shadowy organization with tentacles everywhere?"  He starts out with an article from Afro: "Walter Fauntroy, Feared Dead in Libya, Returns Home—Guess Who He Saw Doing the Killing?" 

The S&P Downgrade -- insider Trading? Who benefits?

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 09/01/2011

 "Titanic Battle or Insider Trading? The S&P Downgrade and the Bilderbergers: All Part of the Plan?"

Host Per Fagereng interviews Ellen Brown, author of "Web of Debt: The Shocking Truth about Our Money System and How We Can Break Free (Revised and Updated)" about her recent article, "Titanic Battle or Insider Trading? The S&P Downgrade and the Bilderbergers: All Part of the Plan?" 

Stephen Glain: "State vs. Defense, the Battle to Define America's Empire"

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 08/18/2011

Per Fagering hosts Stephen Glain, author of State vs. Defense,  the Battle to Define America's Empire,  described as a masterful account of how sixty years of American militarism created the Cold War, fanned decades of unnecessary conflict, helped to fuel Islamist terror, and threatens to bankrupt the country. In eye-opening fashion, State vs. Defense shows how America truly operates as a superpower and explores the constant tension between the diplomats at State and the warriors at Defense.

"In crisp, authoritative writing, the author sets down some scathing portraits, from MacArthur to Rumsfeld, and in a powerful conclusion, exposes the disequilibrium between the U.S. civilian versus military resources throughout the world and the continued “appeasement” by President Obama to the Joint Chiefs of Staff. A work of smoldering focus and marshaled evidence."--Kirkus Reviews

Stephen Glain has been a journalist for twenty years. He spent four years in Hong Kong writing for the local South China Morning Post before joining the Wall Street Journal in 1991 with stints in Tokyo, Seoul, and then Tel Aviv and Amman. His book Mullahs, Merchants, and Militants was named the best book of 2004 by online magazine The Globalist. His articles on U.S. foreign policy, East Asia, and the Arab world have appeared in The New Republic, The Atlantic, The Nation, the Financial Times, Gourmet, Smithsonian, Newsweek, The National, and elsewhere. Visit his website at www.StephenGlain.com.

The debt ceiling fiasco: an update with economist Richard Wolff

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 08/04/2011

Economist Richard Wolff returns returns to Fight the Empire with an update on the debt ceiling fiasco. (Host Per Fagereng also hosted Wolff 2 weeks ago on 7/21/11.) 

Richard D. Wolff is Professor of Economics Emeritus, University of Massachusetts, Amherst where he taught economics from 1973 to 2008. He is currently a Visiting Professor in the Graduate Program in International Affairs of the New School University, New York City. He also teaches classes regularly at the Brecht Forum in Manhattan.

Richard Wolff on The Economy and the Capitalist Crisis

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 07/21/2011

Host Per Fagereng hosts a special one-hour Fight the Empire show with economist Richard Wolff on the economy and the global capitalist crisis. Your calls welcome at 503 231-8187.

Richard D. Wolff is Professor of Economics Emeritus, University of Massachusetts, Amherst where he taught economics from 1973 to 2008. He is currently a Visiting Professor in the Graduate Program in International Affairs of the New School University, New York City. He also teaches classes regularly at the Brecht Forum in Manhattan.

www.rdwolff.com/

  • Length: 57:56 minutes (26.52 MB)
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Peter Bergen on his recent book “The Longest War: The Enduring Conflict Between America and Al-Qaeda”

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 07/07/2011

Peter Bergen is the national security analyst for CNN. In his recent book The Longest War, Bergen writes that Osama bin Laden fell victim to hubris. With his 9-11 attack on the World Trade Center, according to Bergen, bin Laden and his al Qaeda organization over-reached and paid the price.

Afghanistan Present and Future; Talk Radio

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Fight the Empire
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Fri, 06/24/2011

Host Per Fagereng interviews Professor Zaher Wahab and journalist Gareth Porter about Afghanistan, Obama's announcement about troops there, and the future of the country.

Zaher Wahab is Professor of Education at Lewis and Clark College and a native of Afghanistan. Dr. Wahab served as senior advisor to the Minister of Higher Education in Afghanistan 2002-2006 and as a visiting researcher-professor in a masters degree program for teacher education faculty from Afghanistan’s 16 teacher training colleges 2007-2010. He has been spending about four months annually in that country since 2002. He just returned from three months in Afghanistan.

  • Length: 56:16 minutes (51.51 MB)
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Matthew Fox on the Pope's War

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 06/16/2011

Matthew Fox, a Roman Catholic liberation theorlogian, was silenced by the church but he refused to stay silent. In his latest book, The Pope's War, he discusses the new Inquisition of Cardinal Ratzinger, now Pope Bnedict. We also talk about the suspicious death of John Paul 1, who was pope for only 34 days.

  • Length: 29:09 minutes (26.68 MB)
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Fight the Empire on 06/02/11, interview with Michael Shermer

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 06/02/2011

 The Believing Brain—How We Construct Beliefs and Reinforce Them as Truths

 Host Per Fagereng interviews Michael Shermer, author of numerous books including the most recent, "The Believing Brain: From Ghosts and Gods to Politics and Conspiracies—How We Construct Beliefs and Reinforce Them as Truths,"a comprehensive theory on how beliefs are born, formed, nourished, reinforced, challenged, changed, and extinguished. This book synthesizes Dr. Shermer’s 30 years of research.

Dr. Michael Shermer is the Founding Publisher of Skeptic magazine, the Executive Director of the Skeptics Society, a monthly columnist for Scientific American, the host of the Skeptics Distinguished Science Lecture Series at Caltech, and Adjunct Professor at Claremont Graduate University.

 

How does American-style permanent-war resemble the warfare of European monarchs centuries ago?

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 05/19/2011

 Host Per Fagereng speaks with historian and retired Air Force Lieutenant Colonel William J. Astore about his latest TomDispatch post in which he takes up permanent-war, American-style, and its eerie similarity to “enlightened” wars fought by European monarchs centuries ago.

 

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