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The Untold History of the United States
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The Untold History of the United States [Format Kindle]

Oliver Stone , Peter Kuznick
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The Untold History of the United States

Chapter 1


Wilson vs. Lenin


The election of 1912 found Woodrow Wilson, a former president of Princeton University and governor of New Jersey, in a hard-fought four-party race against two former presidents—Theodore Roosevelt and William Howard Taft—and Socialist Eugene Debs. Though Wilson won the electoral college vote handily, the popular vote was closer: he received 42 percent to 27 percent for Roosevelt, the Progressive Party candidate, and 23 percent for Taft. Debs, running for a fourth time, tallied 6 percent of the vote.

Wilson would put his personal stamp on the office and the country to a much greater extent than his immediate predecessor or his successors. Descended from Presbyterian ministers on both sides of the family, Wilson could be strongly moralistic and infuriatingly and self-righteously inflexible. His rigidity was often fueled by the dangerous belief that he was carrying out God’s plan. He shared his predecessors’ sense of the United States’ global mission. In 1907, the Princeton president declared, “The doors of the nations which are closed must be battered down. . . . Concessions obtained by financiers must be safeguarded by ministers of state, even if the sovereignty of unwilling nations be outraged in the process.”1 In keeping with that sentiment, he would repeatedly transgress against the sovereignty of unwilling nations. And he shared his southern forebears’ sense of white racial superiority, taking steps to resegregate the federal government during his tenure in office. Wilson even screened D. W. Griffith’s pioneering though notoriously racist film Birth of a Nation at the White House in 1915 for cabinet members and their families. In the film, a heroic Ku Klux Klan gallops in just in time to save white southerners, especially helpless women, from the clutches of brutish, lascivious freedmen and their corrupt white allies—a perverse view of history that was then being promulgated in less extreme terms by William Dunning and his students at Columbia University. Upon viewing the film, Wilson commented, “It is like writing history with Lightning and my only regret is that it is all so terribly true.”2

As Richard Hofstadter noted over seventy years ago, Wilson’s “political roots were Southern, his intellectual traditions were English.” Among the English thinkers, he was most taken with the conservative views of Walter Bagehot. Bagehot’s influence was apparent in Wilson’s 1889 study The State, in which Wilson wrote, “In politics nothing radically novel may safely be attempted. No result of value can ever be reached . . . except through slow and gradual development, the careful adaptations and nice modifications of growth.” What he liked about the American Revolution was that, in his view, it wasn’t revolutionary at all. The French Revolution, on the other hand, was an abomination. He deplored Thomas Jefferson’s embrace of revolution in general and the French Revolution in particular. He disapproved of labor and agrarian radicalism and expressed greater sympathy for business than for labor. Overall, Wilson had a deep abhorrence of radical change in any form.3

Wilson’s hatred of revolution and staunch defense of U.S. trade and investment would color his presidency and influence his policies both at home and abroad. “There is nothing in which I am more interested than the fullest development of the trade of this country and its righteous conquest of foreign markets,” he told the Foreign Trade Convention in 1914.4

Together these views shaped Wilson’s policy toward Mexico, where American bankers and businessmen, particularly oilmen, had a major stake in the outcome of the revolution. Between 1900 and 1910, U.S. investments in Mexico doubled to nearly $2 billion, giving Americans ownership of approximately 43 percent of Mexican property values, 10 percent more than Mexicans themselves owned.5 William Randolph Hearst alone held over 17 million acres.

U.S. and British corporations had thrived under Porfirio Díaz’s three-decade dictatorship, laying siege to almost all of Mexico’s minerals, railroads, and oil.6 They had reason for concern when Francisco Madero’s revolutionary forces overthrew Díaz in 1911. Many U.S. businessmen quickly soured on the new regime and applauded when Victoriano Huerta, with the support of U.S. Ambassador to Mexico Henry Lane Wilson, ousted Madero in the waning days of the Taft administration.7 But Woodrow Wilson, upon coming to power, not only refused to recognize the new government, whose legitimacy he questioned, he sent tens of thousands of troops to the Mexican border and warships to the oil fields near Tampico and the port of Vera Cruz.

Wilson, who had once voiced a desire to teach Latin Americans “to elect good men,”8 itched for an excuse to intervene directly, overthrow Huerta, and tutor the backward Mexicans in good government. He got what he wanted on April 14, 1914, when U.S. sailors who rowed to Tampico were arrested for being in a war zone without a permit. When the Mexican commanding officer released them a couple hours later, he apologized both to them and to their U.S. commanding officer, Admiral Henry Mayo, who refused to accept the apology in the face of such an insult. Mayo demanded that the Mexican forces give a twenty-one-gun salute to the American flag. Instead, General Huerta added his apology and promised to punish the responsible Mexican officer. Over the objections of Secretary of State William Jennings Bryan and Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels, Wilson backed Mayo. He rejected Huerta’s offer of a reciprocal salute by the two sides and asked Congress to authorize the U.S. military to exact “the fullest recognition of the rights and dignity of the United States.”9 Congress eagerly complied. Wilson sent a force of seven battleships, four fully manned marine troop transports, and numerous destroyers to Mexico. When Mexicans at Vera Cruz resisted U.S. seizure of a customhouse, over 150 were killed. Six thousand marines occupied Vera Cruz for seven months.

In August 1914, U.S.-backed Venustiano Carranza replaced Huerta. But Carranza, a staunch nationalist, refused to bargain with Wilson, who then threw his support behind Pancho Villa, beginning a bungled series of political and military interventions into the Mexican Revolution.

While the United States was busy policing its neighbors to the south, far more ominous developments were occurring in Europe. The assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria by a Serbian fanatic on June 28, 1914, triggered a chain of events that, in August, plunged the world into the most brutal orgy of bloodshed and destruction humanity had yet seen. That predominantly European bloodletting—the Great War, World War I—would be only the start of a century of unending warfare and horrific violence, human and technological barbarism on an unimaginable scale, that would later come to be known as the American Century.

The twentieth century dawned with a rush of optimism. War seemed a distant relic of a cruel and primitive past. Many people shared the optimistic belief propounded by Norman Angell in his 1910 book The Great Illusion that civilization had advanced beyond the point where war was possible. Such optimism proved illusory indeed.

Europe was awash in imperial rivalries. Great Britain, with its powerful navy, had reigned supreme in the nineteenth century. But its economic model of cannibalizing the economies of increasing parts of the globe and not investing in its own homegrown manufacturing was failing. Reflecting Great Britain’s ossified social order and lack of investment at home was the fact that, in 1914, only 1 percent of young Brits graduated from high schools compared with 9 percent of their U.S. counterparts.10 As a result, Great Britain was being eclipsed by the United States in terms of industrial production, and, more ominously, its continental rival Germany was competing in the production of steel, electrical power, chemical energy, agriculture, iron, coal, and textiles. Germany’s banks and railroads were growing, and in the battle for oil, the newest strategic fuel that was necessary to power modern navies, Germany’s merchant fleet was rapidly gaining on Great Britain’s. Great Britain was now 65 percent dependent on U.S. oil and 20 percent on Russian and was coveting potential new reserves of the Middle East, which were part of the tottering Ottoman Empire.

A latecomer to the imperial land grab, Germany felt cheated of its due. It intended to right that wrong. Its economic and political penetration of the Ottoman Empire worried Great Britain. It set its sights on Africa. It wanted more.

Other troubling signs appeared. A European arms race was occurring on land and, especially, at sea, where Great Britain and Germany battled for naval dominance. Great Britain’s big-gun dreadnought class ...

Revue de presse

"Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick have done what many would consider impossible. They have written a political history of the United States in the 20th Century that tells us exactly how the United States became an empire through conscious decisions, and how the struggle to maintain that empire will go on despite which political party holds office. It is a brilliant survey of the untold story." (Lloyd C. Gardner, author of The Road to Tahrir Square)

“Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick provide a critical overview of US foreign policy during the past few decades. There is much here to reflect upon. Such a perspective is indispensable…At stake is whether the United States will choose to be the policeman of a “Pax Americana,” which is a recipe for disaster, or partner with other nations on the way to a safer, more just and sustainable future.” (President Mikhail Gorbachev)

“A brave revisionist study which shatters many foreign policy myths… the Stone-Kuznick team grapples with the unsavory legacy of American militarism. . . . Make room on your book shelf for this compelling leftist primer.” (Douglas Brinkley, New York Times bestselling author of The Great Deluge)

"Howard [Zinn] would have loved this ‘people’s history’ of the American Empire. It's compulsive reading: brilliant, a masterpiece!” (Daniel Ellsberg, author of Secrets: A Memoir of Vietnam and the Pentagon Papers)

“Finally, a book with the guts to challenge the accepted narrative of recent American history… This is the 'Washington didn't really chop down the cherry tree' book for our last hundred years." (Bill Maher)

“Kuznick and Stones’ Untold History is the most important historical narrative of this century.” (Martin Sherwin, Pulitzer Prize-winning co-author of American Prometheus)

"By casting a spotlight on the shadier aspects of America's past, as well as the humane alternatives, Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick provide a thought-provoking rebuttal to the nationalist myths that are far too often served up as history. They remind us that, until Americans have the courage to confront reality, they will remain trapped by their illusions." (Lawrence Wittner, author of One World or None: A History of the World Nuclear Disarmament Movement Through 1953)

"Stone and Kuznick provide a boldly critical view of the most painful aspects of American history. Their perspective on nuclear danger is especially illuminating. They make clear how close we have come to the ultimate human absurdity of annihilating ourselves as a species with our own technology. One thinks of the Enlightenment motto, "Dare to know!" The knowledge we gain can be a source of powerful wisdom." (Robert Jay Lifton, author of Thought Reform and the Psychology of Totalism)

"We won't be able to manage America's future if we don't know its past. In their Untold Story, Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick peel away layers of misleading myth about America in the 20th century. Some will be surprised, others angry. Most will understand their nation much better, especially the young. Then perhaps we can move forward in the new century." (Jeff Madrick, author of Taking America)

It’s time for serious people to confront rather than avoid or attempt to denigrate the profound challenges raised by Stone and Kuznick. They are asking (and answering!) all the right questions. (Gar Alperovitz, author of The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb)

Many books have been written about specific episodes of American intervention and military aggression. And yet the master narrative remains intact: the US is the "indispensable nation," relied upon by people and nations around the world to preserve the peace and defend freedom. The immense contribution of The Untold History of the United States is to shatter the conventional wisdom, challenging readers to re-conceptualise the American role in the world...Everyone, who reads The Untold History will learn something new and be compelled to examine long held assumptions. For students of US history, this is an invaluable work. (Carolyn Eisenberg, author of Drawing the Line: The American Decision to Divide Germany, 1944-1949)

"A fascinating and provocative work. This courageous and clear-minded account of American history and the foundations of the American empire is a milestone in a surprisingly small genre of books, namely, critical history written of and for the people. It should have the widest possible reading." (Bruce Cumings, author of The Korean War)

"Kuznick and Stone tell the untold history of the United States--the often disastrous consequences of American exceptionalism and global domination--with passion and clarity... beautifully illustrated, well-argued, and compellingly written." (Marilyn Young, author of The Vietnam Wars)

"The Untold History of the United States is one of the most important books of our time. Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick disabuse us of the popular notion that this country has always been a force for good in the world. They document the tragic consequences of U.S. imperialism, the commission of war crimes, and the decimation of civil liberties under the guise of the ‘war on terror’. This work should give us pause whenever we are asked to uncritically accept the idea of American exceptionalism. " (Marjorie Cohn, author of Cowboy Republic: Six Ways the Bush Gang Has Defied the Law)

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  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 5718 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 784 pages
  • Editeur : Ebury Digital (30 novembre 2012)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B00A4B9A1U
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  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 Invaluable 13 avril 2014
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
The fact that Oliver Stone needs no introduction either as a award winning film director whose primary genre has been the high water marks of American history, or as a decorated war hero and a Vietnam Veteran, gives him a certain undeniable credibility as someone who is a truly patriotic American. That he should feel strongly enough to say that he would be doing his young daughter great disservice if he didn't attempt to set the record straight when it comes to the facts of American history as has been ladled out by the tureen by the American establishment. So, in collaboration with Peter Kuznick he sets about to get the record straight. And does he? Considering he has no other axe to grind but get the Truth out, he does so beyond belief. His referencing alone deserves applause. Impeccably researched he doesn't spare any facts that may cause pain to the American pride and in the end manages to show his fellow Americans (what many in the rest of the world already knew), that the word coined by the USA for enemies it hadn't been able to defeat, was the most apt to describe itself in the 21st Century, Rogue State! He manages to show us, battle by battle, event by event, policy by policy, how a nation founded on high principles had over time become the rich industrialists' powerful tool to get the world to do its bidding and how it had hijacked democracy itself. What remains is an empty shell of a once honourable idea. At the same time the military and financial might of this rogue state is as dangerous to the well being of humanity as the environmental disaster that awaits us right round the corner.
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 Excellent ouvrage! 14 septembre 2014
Par niro
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
A mettre dans toutes les mains de celles et ceux qui veulent (re)découvrir comment fonctionne le monde au delà de l'information formatée de la plupart des médias.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 4.2 étoiles sur 5  383 commentaires
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 Things that make you go Hmmm... 29 janvier 2013
Par Eric C. Petersen - Publié sur
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
I purchased this book with some trepidation as Stone is pretty well known as having a certain "bias" about US foreign policy and I feared the book might be a rant. Instead the book turned out to be a well-ordered and very-well footnoted history of roughly the last century of mainly, but not exclusively, American foreign policy, one that all too often has been shortsighted, foolish, and with the advent of the atomic bomb, terrifying. I'm a faily old dude going on 71 and the more history books I read the more apparent it is that there is no such thing as "the truth" or "reality." Stone looks at the past using a different set of facts that the American Exceptionalist crowd would omit from their histories. From these two different viewpoints two different conclusions could be drawn; however, as long as the facts presented are correct, so is each different view. It's up to the reader to decide where the weight of the evidence falls.

There were a number of times when I felt certain issues were dealt with too briefly - the Balfour Declaration being one - but given the scope of the book this brevity is understandable, and for those who might want a more thorough exegesis than a few sentences on something like Balfour whole books have been written. Guess my point is history, even very recent history, is comprised of many elements lurking in the shadows and a fuller understanding of events can only be achieved by looking at those the political class would rather have swept under the rug - permanently.

This book is probably a must-read for those of us concerned with the fact this country spends nearly half the planet's military budget and has less-than-nothing to show for it, a stupendous misallocaton of resources (at least in my book) that's gone on for now over half a century. Defenders of this policy would site "national security." Stone pretty well destroys this argument; Pogo was right. How we got stuck in this Tar Baby is a fascinating, if depressing, story that begins with the Truman administration, and continued to march on down the decades through various presidencies until here we are. If you have read David McCullough's "Truman" a rather positive image was revealed; not in this book. Many sides to any story and this one is definitely worth reading to better understand how we got from there to here.
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 What they never taught in school 21 décembre 2012
Par John Somerville - Publié sur
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
This book is criticized in the mass media for its bias. It is biased. Biased, however, is not the same as inaccurate and I have not read any accusations on that score. You'll know far more than you did, after reading what has not been told before..
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 The Darker Side of History 8 décembre 2012
Par J. Alan Bock - Publié sur
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
The authors of this book, Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick, tell us that: "The United States' run as a global hegemon - the most powerful and dominant nation the world has ever seen - has been marked by proud achievements and terrible disappointments. It is the latter - the darker side of U. S. history - that we explore in the following pages." That there is a considerable dark side can be attested by the fact that this book is 750 pages long. I don't know how many historical incidents are encompassed within its covers but there are 91 pages of notes and 37 pages of index just to give you a clue. In the index itself entries dealing with nuclear arms race, nuclear warfare and nuclear weapons take up almost an entire page of small print - by far the largest number of entries in any one category. In second place are entries dealing with the CIA which take up a half a page.

Fourteen chapters plus an introduction give us an alternative history of the growth of the American Empire as Stone and Kuznick see it. It's not a pretty picture (although there are many bright spots) and, while it may be untold, for the most part, it is not unknown.

Although Donald Rumsfeld has stated: "We don't seek empires. We're not imperialistic. We never have been," dissenting voices have proclaimed otherwise. One of the earliest of these was General Smedley Butler, who at the end of his long and highly decorated carreer, said: "I spent thirty-three years and four months in active military service as a member of this country"s most agile military force, the Marine Corps. I served in all commissioned ranks from Second Lieutenant to Major General. And during that period, I spent most of my time being a high-class muscle man for big business, for Wall Street and for the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism."

One of the most conflicted of our Imperialistic presidents was Woodrow Wilson. He hoped to spread democracy, end colonialism, and transform the world. His record is much less positive. "While supporting self-determination and opposing formal empire, he intervened repeatedly in other nations" internal affairs including Russia, Mexico and throughout Central America. . . . While championing social justice, he believed that property rights were sacrosanct and must never be infringed upon, Though endorseing human brotherhood, he believed that non-whites were inferior and resegregated the federal government. While extolling democracy and the rule of law, he oversaw egregious abuses of civil liberties. While condemning imperialism, he sanctioned the use of the global imperial order. And, while proclaiming a just, non-punitive peace, he acquiesced in a harsh, retributive peace and inadvertently helped create the preconditions for the rise of Hitler and the Nazis."

While this book is about the dark side of American history, it is not without its heroes. Here is one of FDR's most famous speeches: "We had to struggle with the old enemies of peace - business and financial monopoly, speculation, reckless banking, class antagonism, sectionalism, war profiteering. They had begun to consider the government of the United States as a mere appendage to their own affairs. We know now that government by orghanized money is just as dangerous as government by organized mob . . . They are unanimous in their hate for me --- and I welcome their hatred."

On the role of the Soviet Union in World War II: "Until the invasion of Normandy , the Red army was regularly engaging more than two hundred enemy divisions while the Americans and British together rarely confronted more than ten. Churchill admitted that it was the Russian army that tore the guts out of the German military machine. Germany lost over 6 million men on the eastern front and, approximately, 1 million on the western front and in the Mediterranean."

I was in high school when feisty little Harry Truman gave the Republicans their comeuppance in 1948 just as Barrack Obama did 64 years later. On both occasions the Republicans were "surprised." I've read David McCullough"s biography so you might say that I've been farorably disposed toward Truman over the years. I thought that his bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki was a military necessity. In this book there is overwhelming evidence that it was not. Generals Eisenhower and MacArthur strongly opposed its use as did Admiral Leahy and General Telford Taylor (the chief prosecutor at the Nuremberg War Crimes trials who stated the the "rights and wrongs of Hiroshma may be debateable but I have never heard of plausible justification for Nagasaki.") One hundred and fifty-five scientists at Chicago's met lab and uranium plant at Oakridge opposed it and the Vatican condemned the bombing. General "Hap" Arnold of the Air Force opposed it as did Admrals King and Nimitz and others too mumerous to mention. If the Japanese had used the atomic bomb on American civilians it would have been a "war crime." I fail to see that our using it on them should lead to any differect conclusion.

There is no question that the unsung hero of this book is Henry A. Wallace. According to the authors he had incurred the wrath of party conservatives by calling for a worldwide "people's revolution," toward which end the United States and the Soviet Union would work together" and by championing the cause of labor unions, women, African Americans, and the victims of European colonialism. His enemies included Wall Street bankers and other anti-union business interests, southern segregationists, and defenders of British and French colonialism. Henry Wallace has been largely lost to istory. Few people remember how close he came to getting the vice-presidential nomination on that steamy Chcago night in July 1944. What might this country have become had Wallace succeeded Roosevelt in April 1945 instead of Truman. Would atomic bombs still have been used in World War II? Could we have avoided the nuclear arma race and the Cold War? Would civil rights and women's rights have triumphed in the immediate postwar years? Might colonialism have ended decades earlier and the fruits of science and technology been spread more equitably around the globe? We'll never know.

During his time in office Dwight Eisenhower would be confronted with repeated opportunities to roll back the Cold War and arms race and he could have taken bold action that could have put the world on a different path. But because of ideology, political calculations, the exigencies of a militarized state, and limited imagination, he repeatedly failed to seize the opportunities that emerged. However, in his Farewell Address to the nation he gave one of the most memorable presidential speeches of all time warning of the dangers of a "military-industrial complex."

John F. Kennedy "had many enemies who deplored progressive change just as fervently as did those who had blocked Henry Wallace in 1944 when he was trying to lead the United States and the world down a similar path of peace and prosperity. Kennedy bravely defied the powerful forces who would have pushed the United State into a war with the Soviet Union. His courage was more than matched by Krushchev's. Future generations owe an enormous debt, and possibly their very existence, to the fact that those two men stared into the abyss and recoiled from what they saw. In his inaugural address Kennedy said that a torch had passed to a new generation but, with his death, it was passed back to Johnson, Nixon, Ford and Reagan who would systematically destroy the promise of the Kennedy years as they returned the country to war and repression."
It's hard to believe that a man as coarse, crude and vulgar as Lyndon Johnson could have been elevated to the presidency (his language frequently came right out of the toilet and the f-word was omnipresent.) When it came down to it Johnson made his fateful choice: he would rather lose the Great Society than be defeated in an illegal and immoral war in southeast Asia. The war, which the U.S. would lose ignominiously despite Johnson's best efforts, would also spell the end of the last significant period of social and political reform the United States has seen.

My favorite chapter title in the whole book: Chapter 9 "Nixon and Kissinger: The Madman and the Psychopath." That certainly sums it all up. Read this chapter and you will learn all you want to know about "the odd couple."

Jimmy Carter, "who has performed in exemplary fashion out of office, was inept in office disappointing his supporters, betraying his convictions, and leaving office with an approval rating of 34 percent. . . . His most enduring legacy was in opening the door to the dark side, legitimizing the often brutal policies of his successor, Ronald Reagan - policies that re-kindled the cold war and left a trail of innocent victims stretching from Afghanistan to the World Trade Center."

According to the authors Ronald Reagan was "one of the most poorly informed and least engaged chief executive's in U. S. history. He empowered a right-wing resurgence of hard-line anti-communists who militarized U.S. foreign policy and rekindled the cold war. He paid lip service to democracy while arming and supporting repressive dictators. He turned local and regional conflicts in the Middle East and Latin America into cold war battlegrounds, unleashing a reign of terror to suppress popular movements. He spent enormous sums on the military while cutting social programs for the poor. He sharply reduced taxes on the wealthy, tripling the national debt and transforming the United States from the world's leading creditor in 1981 to the world's biggest debtor by 1985. In October 1987 he oversaw the greatest stock market collapse since the Great Depression. He let the chance to rid the world of offensive nuclear weapons slip through his fingers because he wouldn't let go of a childish fantasy. And as for his much-vaunted role in ending the cold war, as we will see, the lion's share of credit goes instead to his Soviet counterpart, Mikhail Gorbachev."

Warning signs abounded in the summer of 2001 that something "spectacular" was about to happen. According to the writer Thomas Powers, in the nine months before September 11 intelligence personnel had warned the administration as many as forty times of the threat posed by Osama Bin Laden, but that is not what the administraitlon wanted to hear and they did not hear it. The Bush-Cheney administration then used this "surprise" criminal assault on the United States as an excuse to launch wars against two Islamic nations (one of them totally unjustified) - wars that would cause more damage to the United States than Osama Bin Laden ever could and to begin shredding the U.S.Constitution and the Geneva Convention.
George W. Bush was legendary for his misstatements and malapropisms. But sometimes, through the mangled syntax, a bit of truth would slip out. Such was the occasion in 2004 when he declared, "Our enemies are innovative and resourceful and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country or our people, and neither do we."

"Obama, Managing a Wounded Empire" is the longest chapter in the book (is this because it has the most dark sides?) There is no doubt in my mind that, as between the two major parties in America today, the Democratic Party is the lesser of the evils by several orders of magnitude. Fortunately, I live in a very "blue" state and was able to vote for a third party candidate (Dr. Jill Stein) wihout affecting the outcome in any way. Here are some of the reasons why I could not vote for Obama: President Obama has asserted and exercised the right and power to secretly place human beings, including U. S. citizens on "kill lists" and then ordered the CIA to extinguish their lives - all without due process of law; he refuses to prosecute war criminals(Bush, Chaney, et al) despite overwhelming evidence of their wrongdoing; he has declared war on whistle-blowers whose only wrongdoing has been to expose war criminals; he practices indefinite detention; he engages in warrantless surveillance of American citizens; he practices extraordinay rendition of individulas to other countries; he monitors citizens without court order; he engages in drone warfare resulting in the death of numerous innocent victims; and he contiues to engage in the torture (a war crime) of Bradley Manning.
293 internautes sur 361 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 U.S. HISTORY TOLD THE RIGHT WAY... FOR ONCE 2 novembre 2012
Par Michael P. Naughton - Publié sur
"History has many cunning passages, contrived corridors and issues." T.S. Eliot

Those of you who have read Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States: 1492-Present (Perennial Classics) or Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong, Revised and Updated Edition will devour Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick's The Untold History of the United States. These two intellects bring fresh insight to a benighted past. Minor footnotes and characters, like Henry Wallace, in our history's drama are bought to the forefront for once. The reader becomes Dante to Oliver Stone and Professor Kusnick's Virgil, taking us through the gates of Hell in our personal history. In these pages the real Truman, Eisenhower, Reagan are exposed, not extolled or lionized. It is inscrutable and unconscionable what Truman did in Hiroshima. The truth behind who really defeated Germany. Terror bombing in WWII to terrorism in present day. As Historian Henry Steele Commager once pointed out, "From the beginning of our history, we've been rather casual about our crimes."

Although the book is a companion to the documentary series on Showtime, which is highly recommended, the book stands alone and independent; it covers, in 14 chapters, the most important moments where we got history wrong. Cognitive dissonance will kick in. A certain sciolism exists in our culture as we whistle in the dark.

This book reads like a modern day version of Thucydides, the Greek historian, The History of the Peloponnesian War and the corruption of language.

As a culture inculcated by an embellished history, remember this:

If we do not choose our leaders carefully and become more engaged, and stop viewing history in hindsight, then we risk our nation becoming either a kakistocracy or catastrophe - you decide. You have more power then you think.
Think independently. "Question everything" as Marx once said.

Read this book.

Tell it right for once.

Warning: This book will keep you up all night... save it for a weekend read.
16 internautes sur 17 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Compelling reading 26 février 2013
Par Joseph E Brett - Publié sur
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
Oliver Stone's Untold History is Compelling. He states up front that there are other places to read all that is good about the US. His purpose is to show that throughout our nation's history there have always been competing ideologies for how best to govern at home and conduct foreign policy abroad. These forces are with us today as progressives are fending off attacks by the neo -conservatives over how we conduct war and peace.
As a fellow veteran of the Vietnam war, it is just amazing to read that throughout our history, according to Stone, children of the working classes are sent off to fight wars that are generated by those elites who own and profit from international trade, and often the via exploitation of peoples of other, weaker nations. The facts are well documented and sourced and the reader is left with more information from which to raise questions about our past and more importantly about our present policies. It should be required reading by all high school students.
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