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.

 

 

 

 

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Episode Archive

Fight the Empire on 07/05/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 07/05/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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A discussion of the global drug trade.

The global drug trade brings in profits of more than $300 billion a year. Where does all that money go?

Mark Karlin, editor of Buzz Flash at Truthout, writes that it serves the empire in several ways -- starting with the banks.

 

Photo by Mark Karlin

Fight the Empire on 06/21/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 06/21/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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Tom Engelhardt on The History and Future of Drone Warfare

Host Per Fagereng speaks with Tom Engelhardt, co-author with Nick Turse of the new book, "Terminator Planet: The First History of Drone Warfare, 2001-2050."

Fight the Empire on 06/07/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 06/07/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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Murder City

Host Per Fagereng speaks with Charles Bowden, the critically acclaimed author of many books including Murder City: Ciudad Juarez and the Global Economy's New Killing Fields, Down by the River: Drugs, Money, Murder, and Family, A Shadow in the City: Confessions of an Undercover Drug Warrior, Blood Orchid, and Some of the Dead Are Still Breathing: Living in the Future.

Fight the Empire on 05/17/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 05/17/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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INTEL WARS: The Secret History of the Fight Against Terror

Host Per Fagereng interviews intelligence historian Matthew Aid, author of INTEL WARS: The Secret History of the Fight Against Terror, a detailed overview of U.S. intelligence since President Obama’s election which finds more problems than solutions.

Matthew M. Aid is the author of Intel Wars: The Secret History of the Fight Against Terror (January 2012) and The Secret Sentry, the definitive history of the National Security Agency. He is a leading intelligence historian and expert on the NSA.

Fight the Empire on 05/03/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 05/03/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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An interview with Michael Klare

Oil and other resources are dwindling, and the nations of the world grow desperate for more. Will the hunt end badly or can it lead to a lasting era of global justice? Fight The Empire talks with Michael Klare, author of The Race for What's Left: The Global Scramble for the World's Last Resources.

Fight the Empire on 04/19/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 04/19/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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Bruce Gagnon on Weapons in Space, Military Expansion, War, Climate Change and Corporate Domination

Host Per Fagereng speaks with Bruce Gagnon, Coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He was a co-founder of the Global Network when it was created in 1992.

Between 1983–1998 Bruce was the State Coordinator of the Florida Coalition for Peace & Justice and has worked on space issues for 29 years. In 1987 he organized the largest peace protest in Florida history when over 5,000 people marched on Cape Canaveral in opposition to the first flight test of the Trident II nuclear missile. He was the organizer of the Cancel Cassini Campaign (launched 72 pounds of plutonium into space in 1997).

Fight the Empire on 04/05/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 04/05/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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PAKISTAN ON THE BRINK:The Future of America, Pakistan, and Afghanistan.

Host Per Fagereng speaks with journalist Ahmed Rashid about the relationship between Islamabad and Kabul and U.S.-Pakistani relations.

Ahmed Rashid is a Pakistani journalist based in Lahore, is a regular contributor to the Financial Times and The Washington Post, and has written for the New York Review of Books, BBC Online, and The Nation as well as various academic and foreign affairs journals. His most recent book is Pakistan on the Brink: The Future of America, Pakistan, and Afghanistan.

Fight the Empire on 03/15/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 03/15/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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Interview with Ellen Brown

Ellen Brown has written extensively on state banks, debt and other economic issues. Now she describes how the Greek financial crisis could take down Wall Street.

Fight the Empire on 03/01/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 03/01/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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An interview with Gilad Atzmon, author of The Wandering Who?

When Gilad Atzmon first heard the music of Charlie Parker his life changed. The philosophy behind Bird's musical freedom seemed increasingly at odds with Gilad's life in Israel. He now lives in London, plays jazz and is the author of The Wandering Who: A Study of Jewish Identity Politics?

Fight the Empire on 01/19/12

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 01/19/2012 - 9:30am - 10:00am
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Gareth Porter on his article, "Clinton Revives Dubious Charge of "Covert" Iranian Nuclear Site"

Host Per Fagereng speaks with Gareth Porter is an investigative historian and journalist specializing in U.S. national security policy about Iran. Porter is the author of the recent article, "Clinton Revives Dubious Charge of "Covert" Iranian Nuclear Site.

Audio

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)
  • Format: MP3 Mono 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)

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.

Wendy Brown: "Surviving the Apocalypse in the Suburbs: The Thrivalist's Guide to Life Without Oil"

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 05/05/2011

Host Per Fagereng speaks with Wendy Brown, author of Surviving the Apocalypse in the Suburbs: The Thrivalist's Guide to Life Without Oil.

In the age of Peak Oil,environmental catastrophe and a failing economy it is imperative that we transform the suburbs into sustainable communities.

Surviving the Apocalypse in the Suburbs envisions a suburban evolution -- from isolated cookie-cutter houses with manicured lawns and 2-car garages to small, closely packed, productive, interdependent homesteads. Thisguide to simplifying suburbia and adopting a lower energy lifestyle breaks down all our basic needs and describes how they might be met after the loss of the modern conveniences we currently take for granted. From small-space gardening techniques and a guide to small livestock, to tips on cooking, heating, and sanitation options and much more, this is a complete guide to becoming more self-sufficient wherever you live.

Wendy Brown is a suburban homesteader growing roots (both literally and figuratively) in Southern Maine. Until 2005 her family was living the American Dream, complete with credit card debt, car payments and two mortgages. Concerns about the environment, Peak Oil, and the economy combined with a growing desire to live a more self-sufficient life caused her and her family to reevaluate their lives. The result has been a transition from a completely dependent, consumerist lifestyle to one of living debt-free in a comfortable, more energy efficient home in a desirable location with a bountiful garden. 

 

Recognizing Palestine?

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 04/21/2011

Per Fagereng discusses an article by Ali Abunimah, "Recognizing Palestine?," which discusses how the Palestinian Authority is attempting to bring about an independent Palestinian state.  Ali Abunimah is the author of One Country: A Bold Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse and a fellow with the Palestine Centre in Washington, DC. Abunimah is Executive Director of The Electronic Intifada.  Per also provides some background for understanding  the recent election in the Ivory Coast.

William Pepper on the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 04/07/2011

Host Per Fagereng speaks with William Pepper, an American lawyer who practices international human rights law, about the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. on April 4th, 1968.

Pepper was present at Martin Luther King's April 4, 1967 Riverside Church speech in which King launched a strong campaign against the Vietnam War.

Pepper thought that King's assassination was part of a government conspiracy and became James Earl Ray's last attorney. Following Ray's death Pepper represented the King family in a wrongful death suit.

William Pepper's books include Orders to Kill: The Truth Behind the Murder of Martin Luther King, 1995, and An Act Of State: The Execution of Martin Luther King, 2003.

Conn Hallinan on the Irish Economy

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 03/17/2011

 In a special edition of Fight the Empire, Per Fagereng hosts  Conn Hallinan, columnist for Foreign Policy in Focus, who talks about the Irish economy.

Ann Jones advocates for increased role for Afghani women

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Fight the Empire
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Fri, 03/04/2011

Host Per Fagereng speaks with writer, reporter, photographer and humanitarian Ann Jones about her article "In Afghanistan, a Woman's Place Is at the Peace Table," which says "Let women play a bigger role in the country's affairs and see what happens to the peace process."

www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-jones-afghanistan-women-20110113-11,0,7690540.story 

 

Juan Cole discusses his book, "Engaging the Muslim World;" and Egyption uprising

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 02/03/2011

Host Per Fagereng speaks with Juan Cole about the current uprising in Egypt and his book Engaging the Muslim World.
Juan Cole is Richard P. Mitchell Collegiate Professor of History at the University of Michigan. For three decades, he has sought to put the relationship of the West and the Muslim world in historical context. His most recent book is Engaging the Muslim World (Palgrave Macmillan, March, 2009) and he also recently authored Napoleon’s Egypt: Invading the Middle East (Palgrave Macmillan, 2007).
Juan Cole has written widely about Egypt, Iran, Iraq, and South Asia. He has commented extensively on al-Qaeda and the Taliban, the Iraq War, the politics of Pakistan and Afghanistan, and Iranian domestic struggles and foreign affairs. He has a regular column at Truthdig. He continues to study and write about contemporary Islamic movements, whether mainstream or radical, whether Sunni and Salafi or Shi`ite. Cole commands Arabic, Persian and Urdu and reads some Turkish, knows both Middle Eastern and South Asian Islam. He lived in various parts of the Muslim world for nearly 10 years, and continues to travel widely there.  www.juancole.com/about

Dr. Nasser Abufarha, author of "The Making of a Human Bomb: An Ethnography of Palestinian Resistance"

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Fight the Empire
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Thu, 01/20/2011

 

Host Per Fagereng speaks with Palestinian scholar and social entrepreneur Dr. Nasser Abufarha, author of The Making of a Human Bomb: An Ethnography of Palestinian Resistance (The Cultures and Practice of Violence).

Abufarha earned his PhD in Cultural Anthropology and International Development from the University of Wisconsin in 2006. His first book, which focuses on landscapes, the environment and violence, was published by Duke University Press in 2009.

Abufarha is the founder of the Palestine Fair Trade Association and Canaan Fair Trade, which is bringing Palestinian olive oil and other traditional foods to mainstream American and European markets, while also improving economic conditions for more than 1,700 farmers in the West Bank. Canaan Fair Trade today is the largest exporter of certified fair trade and organic Palestinian olive oil to America and Europe.

Nasser Abufarha will present a free public talk called "Insisting on Life" in the Equal Exchange office at 1033 SE Main, Portland, OR 97214 on Thursday, January 20, 2011. 
There is a reception prior to the presentation starting at 5:00 pm in Banyan Tree Portland
at 18 SW 1st Avenue, Portland 97204 (in the Mercy Corps building), with an informal talk at 5:30pm.

There will be fair trade olive oil tasting and sales at both locations on Thursday. Equal Exchange will provide fair trade coffee, tea and chocolate for the evening presentation. 

 

 

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