War, Peace, and the State

I. Introduction

This essay lists essential historical readings on wars (and related matters) which have involved or affected the United States (plural), starting in 1776. The framework is a Rothbardian one, in which wars are not sealed off from domestic politics, the ambitions of state bureaucrats, economic life and motives, and ideological currents. The perspective chosen is broadly "revisionist," although general works are included which will add to the reader's overall knowledge of the subject. I begin with a chronological listing of works dealing with America's wars – hot and cold – and go on to a thematic listing of works on statism and war, propaganda, and unconventional war. Our goal is to present, in one place, a broad bibliography of works which go against conformist "liberal-internationalist" – and now one would have to add "neo-conservative" – readings of the history of US foreign relations.

"Revisionism" is, simply put, part of an ongoing improvement of our historical knowledge.

Any new interpretation, right or wrong, amounts to a revision of some previously accepted view. In the case of foreign affairs, revisionism is of critical importance. Each official reading of a war becomes an honored precedent to be referred to when debating any new situation which could give rise to war. Thus, US policy-makers typically believe, or pretend to believe, that any new crisis comes down to a case of Fort Sumter, 1861, or Munich, 1938. It follows, then, that whatever was done at such times provides valuable guidance. Anyone who doubts this is invited to note the many references to World War II, Pearl Harbor, Lincoln, and so on, which have filled the press since September 11, 2001.

Official readings can even be arranged into a seamless series exhibiting the same causes and, therefore, demanding the same or analogous responses. Thus is created a sort of "myth of the eternal return" with respect to US foreign relations. In this mythical world, the United States bumbles along amiably – and in utter conformity with international law and high-minded principles – for years at a time, when it is "suddenly and deliberately attacked" out of the blue, for no discernible reason, by forces of total evil. If the seamless web of US innocent-bystanderhood is broken, however, things take on a far different look. This is all to the good, as it makes possible a genuine understanding of our situation and, at the same time, makes it possible to think of alternatives to officially offered policy options, which are usually limited to sanctions, bombing, more bombing, or invasion.

The late Murray Rothbard made a useful distinction between "narrow" and "broad" revisionism as regards US foreign relations. Those of the former school concerned themselves with the causes of the two world wars. Without a broader framework such writers fell prey to the Cold War, or any other cause or crusade, provided only that it was unconnected with European affairs from 1914-1945. Broad revisionists, by contrast, concerned themselves with wars and the causes of wars, generally, and were thus led to question much conventional wisdom about states, international relations, and the formation of public opinion.

Thus, it is no accident that libertarians – with their critical view of states and state behavior – should be among those interested in war and imperialism, both of which represent a widening of state power – first abroad, and then at home. War and empire, whatever immediate benefits they confer on those in position to enjoy such benefits, multiply the opportunities for a state to extend its power over its "own" citizens and their wealth. Libertarians and classical liberals have not had this field all to themselves, however. Old-line Progressives like Charles Beard and Harry Elmer Barnes, for example, became great critics of the drive to intervention in 1939-1941, and found themselves allied with right-wing Republicans with whom they previously had little in common.

Similarly, Leftists and Marxists sometimes ask very good questions about the interest and motivation of political actors and states and do very useful research on the basis of such questions. We may profit from their work, while disagreeing with their ultimate values. Here, we are interested in useful books and essays which shed light on war and peace. There is not enough space to analyze or quarrel with the politics of each item listed. The discerning reader will have to make allowance for such things.

The net has been cast fairly wide here, in the direction of the broadest possible revisionism. Useful "mainstream" works are also cited from time to time. No pretense is made of providing "balance": the Court Intellectuals and the kept media dominate the discussion and finding their works is no hardship for readers unsympathetic with our purposes. The end product is, I hope, a politically varied but thematically focused list of readings on war, peace, and states.

II. General Histories and Diplomatic Histories

Thomas A. Bailey, A Diplomatic History of the American People (Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1974) and Alexander DeConde, A History of American Foreign Policy, 2nd edition (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1971) are mainstream works. More critical are William Appleman Williams, The Contours of American History (New York: New Viewpoints, 1973) and The Shaping of American Diplomacy, 2 volumes (Chicago: Rand McNally, 1956), William Appleman Williams, ed., From Colony to Empire: Essays in the History of American Foreign Relations (New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1972), and Walter LaFeber, The American Age: United States Foreign Policy at Home and Abroad Since 1750 (New York: W.W. Norton, 1989). The Anti-Imperialist Reader: A Documentary History of Anti-Imperialism in the United States, 2 volumes, eds. Philip S. Foner and Richard C. Winchester (New York: Homes and Meier, 1984) is a useful collection of documents. See also, Arthur A. Ekirch Jr., The Decline of American Liberalism (New York: Atheneum, 1969), The Civilian and the Military: A History of the American Antimilitarist Tradition (Colorado Springs: Ralph Myles, 1972), and Ideas, Ideals, and American Diplomacy (New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts, 1966).

III. The American Revolution, 1776-1783

For the American Revolution, see William F. Marina, "Militia, Standing Armies and the Second Amendment," Law and Liberty, 2, 4 (Spring 1976), pp. 1-4, and "Revolution and Social Change: The American Revolution As a People's War," Literature of Liberty, I, 2 (April-June 1978), pp. 5-39, which stress the role of partisan warfare in the struggle. [More will be added here, eventually.]

IV. The War for Southern Independence: 1861-1865

For the complex ideological, political, and economic causes of the "Civil" War, see Jeffrey Rogers Hummel, Emancipating Slaves, Enslaving Free Men: A History of the American Civil War (Chicago: Open Court, 1996), Joseph R. Stromberg, "The War for Southern Independence: A Radical Libertarian Perspective," Journal of Libertarian Studies, 3, 1 (1979), 31-53, and John S. Rosenberg, "Toward A New Civil War Revisionism" in Gerald N. Grob and George Athan Bilias, eds., Interpretations of American History, I (New York: The Free Press, 1972), 459-479.

The essays in David Gordon, ed., Secession, State and Liberty (New Brunswick: Transaction Publishers, 1998) are very useful, in particular Murray N. Rothbard, “Nations by Consent: Decomposing the Nation-State,” pp. 79-88. See as well Richard Gamble, “Rethinking Lincoln,” pp. 135-144, Thomas Fleming, “Did the South Have to Fight?”, pp. 145-154, and Clyde Wilson, “War, Reconstruction and the End of the Old Republic,” pp. 155-167, all in John V. Denson, ed., The Costs of War, 2d ed. (New Brunswick: Transaction Publishers, 1999). Finally, Charles Adams puts revenue issues on center stage in When in the Course of Human Events: Arguing the Case for Southern Secession (Lanham, Mass.: Rowman & Littlefield, 2000).

For military aspects of the war, see R. Kerby, "Why the Confederacy Lost the Civil War," Review of Politics, 35, 3 (July 1973), 326-45, Richard E. Beringer, Herman Hattaway, Archer Jones, and William N. Still, Jr., Why the South Lost the Civil War (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1986), and Virgil Carrington Jones, Gray Ghosts and Rebel Raiders (New York: Henry Holt, 1956), James J. Williamson, Mosby’s Rangers (New York: Ralph B. Kenyon, 1896 [reprint 1982])

For the war's impact on civil and economic liberty, see Henry Clay Dean, Crimes of the Civil War and Curse of the Funding System (Wiggins, Miss.: Crown Rights Book Co., 1998 [1868]), Dean Sprague, Freedom under Lincoln: Federal Power and Personal Liberty Under the Strain of Civil War (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1965), John A. Marshall, American Bastille: A History of the Illegal Arrests and Imprisonments During the Late Civil War (Philadelphia: T. W. Hartley, 1875), and Ekirch, The Decline of American Liberalism, chapters 8 and 9 (pp. 116-146).

Rise of Total War

Total warriors regard the enemy's entire society as a legitimate target. For the practice's origins in the 1860s, consult John Bennett Walters, "General William T. Sherman and Total War," Journal of Southern History, 14, 4 (November 1948), pp. 447-480, Lance Janda, "Shutting the Gates of Mercy: The American Origins of Total War, 1860-1880," Journal of Military History, 59, 1 (January 1995), pp. 7-26, Daniel E. Sutherland, "Abraham Lincoln, John Pope, and the Origins of Total War," Journal of Military History, 56, 4 (October 1992), pp. 567-586, and James M. McPherson, Drawn With the Sword: Reflections on the American Civil War (New York: Oxford University Press, 1996), chapter 5, "From Limited to Total War," pp. 66-86. An interesting comparative symposium on total war is Stig Förster and Jörg Nagler, On the Road to Total War: The American Civil War and the German Wars of Unification, 1861-1871 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997). See, as well, Russell F. Weigley, The American Way of War: A History of United States Military Strategy and Policy (Bloomington: University of Indiana Press, 1977).

V. Rounding Out the Continental Empire

Robert Drinnon, Facing West: The Metaphysics of Indian-Hating and Empire Building (New York: New American Library, 1980) and Albert K. Weinberg, Manifest Destiny: A Study of Nationalist Expansion in American History (Chicago: Quadrangle Books, 1963) see 20th-century US empire as a continuation of forcible 19th-century expansion over land. The frontier theme is taken further by Lloyd E. Ambrosius, "Turner's Frontier Thesis and the Modern American Empire: A Review Essay," Civil War History, XVII, 4 (December 1971), pp. 332-339, and Wilbur R. Jacobs, "National Frontiers, Great World Frontiers, and the Shadow of Frederick Jackson Turner," International History Review, VII, 2 (May 1985), pp. 261-270. Ernest N. Paolino, The Foundations of the American Empire: William Henry Seward and U.S. Foreign Policy (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1973) emphasizes the neo-mercantilist, economic side of things.

VI. 1898 and US Empire

William Appleman Williams, The Tragedy of American Diplomacy (New York: Dell, 1962), The Roots of the Modern American Empire (New York: Random House, 1969), and The Contours of American History, Thomas McCormick, The China Market: America's Quest for Informal Empire, 1893-1901 (Chicago: Quadrangle, 1967), Lloyd C. Gardner, A Different Frontier: Selected Readings in the Foundations of American Economic Expansion (Chicago: Quadrangle, 1966), and Walter LaFeber, The New Empire: An Interpretation of American Expansion, 1860-1898 (Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 1967) and "The World and the United States," American Historical Review, 100, 4 (October 1995), pp. 1015-1033, all view US imperialism as centering on neo-mercantilist economic objectives.

The birth of the US overseas empire is treated in Philip S. Foner, The Spanish-Cuban-American War and the Birth of American Imperialism, 1895-1898, 2 volumes (New York, Monthly Review Press, 1972), Joseph R. Stromberg, "The Spanish-American War as Trial Run, or Empire Its Own Justification," in Denson, ed., The Costs of War, pp. 169-201, Walter Millis, The Martial Spirit (Boston: Literary Guild of America, 1931), and Walter Karp, The Politics of War (New York: Harper and Row, 1979). Robert L. Beisner, Twelve against Empire: The Anti-Imperialists, 1898-1900 (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1968) and William F. Marina, "Opponents of Empire: An Interpretation of American Anti-Imperialism" (Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Denver, 1968) treat the opponents of US imperialism, one of whom was William Graham Sumner; Sumner's War and Other Essays (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1914) remains very useful.

Stuart Creighton Miller, Benevolent Assimilation: American Conquest of the Philippines, 1899-1903 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1982), Walter L. Williams, "United States Indian Policy and the Debate over Philippine Annexation: Implications for the Origins of American Imperialism," Journal of American History, 66, 4 (March 1980), pp. 810-831, and John W. Rollins, "The Anti-Imperialists and Twentieth Century American Foreign Policy," Studies on the Left, III, 1 (1962), pp. 9-24, with comments by Harold Baron (pp. 24-27) and Thomas J. McCormick (pp. 28-33), deal with various aspects and outcomes of the 1898 war.

On late 19th and early 20th-century European and US imperialism, see such classic studies as John A. Hobson, Imperialism: A Study (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1965 [1904]), Scott Nearing, The Twilight of Empire (New York: Vanguard Press, 1930), Scott Nearing and Joseph Freeman, Dollar Diplomacy: A Study in American Imperialism (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1966 [1925]), and Parker Thomas Moon, Imperialism and World Politics (New York: Macmillan, 1930).

VII. World War I and US Intervention

Sidney Fay, The Origins of the World War, 2 volumes (New York: Macmillan, 1948 [1928]) and Harry Elmer Barnes, The Genesis of the World War (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1929) and In Quest of Truth and Justice: De-Bunking the War Guilt Myth (Colorado Springs, Colorado: Ralph Myles, 1972 [1928]) deal with the origins of the great disaster.

More recent studies include L.F.C. Turner, Origins of the First World War (New York: W.W. Norton, 1970), Joachim Remak, The Origins of World War I, 1871-1914 (New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1967), A. J. P. Taylor, A History of the First World War (New York: Berkley Publishing, 1966), Arno Mayer, The Persistence of the Old Regime: Europe to the Great War (New York: Pantheon, 1981), and James Joll, The Origins of the First World War (New York: Longman, 1992). Niall Ferguson, in The Pity of War (New York: Basic Books, 1999), is especially skeptical about British intervention in the continental conflict.

C. Hartley Grattan, Why We Fought (New York: Vanguard, 1929, reprint New York: Bobbs Merrill, 1969), Walter Millis, The Road to War, America 1914-1917 (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1935), Charles C. Tansill, America Goes to War (Boston: Little, Brown, 1938), Walter Karp, The Politics of War (above), Ralph Raico "World War I: The Turning Point" in Denson, ed., The Costs of War, pp. 203-247, and the classic H.C. Engelbrecht and F. C. Hanighen, Merchants of Death: A Study of the International Armament Industry (New York: Dodd, Mead & Company, 1934), examine why the United States entered World War I. Tansill's The Purchase of the Danish West Indies (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1932) looks at a neglected case of a big power intimidating a little power.

Carroll Quigley's The Anglo-American Establishment (New York: Books in Focus, 1981) discusses US Anglophiles, while Robert Lansing's War Memoirs (Indianapolis: Bobbs Merrill, 1935) proves the point. Paul Fussell, The Great War and Modern Memory (New York: Oxford University Press, 1975) and Modris Eksteins, Rites of Spring: The Great War and the Birth of the Modern Age (New York: Doubleday, 1989) explore literary and cultural sides of the catastrophe. In Stephen Kern, The Culture of Time and Space (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1983), discusses World War I as the first "cubist war" (pp. 287-312). Finally, Arno Mayer, Wilson vs. Lenin: Political Origins of the New Diplomacy, 1917-1918 (New York: Meridian Books, 1964) and N. Gordon Levin, Woodrow Wilson and World Politics: America's Response to War and Revolution (New York: Oxford University Press, 1968) show how ambitious US leaders sought to deal – this early – with their potential communist rivals for world power. For more on the ideological fallout of Wilson's policies, see Paul Gottfried, "Wilsonianism: The Legacy That Won't Die," Journal of Libertarian Studies, IX, 2 (Fall 1990), pp. 117-126. For a study of clerical opinion, see Richard M. Gamble, "War for Righteousness: The Progressive Clergy and the Great War" (PhD Dissertation, University of South Carolina, 1995).

Conditions on the Home Front

For Wilson's reign of terror and the expansion of government during the war, see H. C. Peterson and Gilbert C. Fite, Opponents of War, 1917-1918 (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1957), Theodore Hornberger, "World War I and the Crisis of American Liberty," American Quarterly, 16, 1 (Spring 1964), pp. 104-112, and Ronald Schaffer, America in the Great War: The Rise of the War Welfare State (New York: Oxford University Press, 1991). For the role of progressive-statist intellectuals, see Randolph Bourne, War and the Intellectuals: Collected Essays, 1915-1918, ed. Carl Resek (New York: Harper & Row, 1964), Clarence Karier, "Making the World Safe for Democracy: An Historical Critique of John Dewey's Pragmatic Liberal Philosophy in the Warfare State," Educational Theory, 27, 1 (Winter 1977), pp. 12-47, and

Murray N. Rothbard, "World War I as Fulfillment: Power and the Intellectuals," Journal of Libertarian Studies, IX, 1 (Winter 1989), pp. 81-125, and "War Collectivism in World War I" in Ronald Radosh and Murray N. Rothbard, eds., A New History of Leviathan (New York: E. P. Dutton, 1972), pp. 66-110. For a caustic survey of the same topics, see H. L. Mencken, The Vintage Mencken (New York: Vintage Books, 1955), especially "Star-Spangled Men" and "The Archangel Woodrow," pp. 106-120.

Further Progress of Total War

Colin Simpson, The Lusitania (Boston: Little, Brown, 1972) and Ralph Raico, "The Politics of Hunger: A Review," Review of Austrian Economics, 3 (1989), pp. 253-259 deal with aspects of World War I as a total war.

VIII. Inter-War Years and The Fight Against Intervention, 1939-1941

Carl P. Parrini, Heir to Empire: United States Economic Diplomacy, 1916-1923 (Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press, 1969), Emily S. Rosenberg, Spreading the American Dream: American Economic and Cultural Expansion, 1890-1945 (New York: Hill & Wang, 1982), and Stanley Lebergott, "The Returns to U.S. Imperialism, 1890-1929," Journal of Economic History, XL, 2 (June 1980), pp. 229-252, are useful for the interwar years. For essential background on the Middle East – soon to become an important US interest – see David Fromkin, A Peace to End All Peace: Creating the Modern Middle East, 1914-1922 (New York: Henry Holt & Co., 1989) and Harvey O'Connor, The Empire of Oil (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1956). Murray N. Rothbard, "The New Deal and the International Monetary System" in Leonard P. Liggio and James J. Martin, eds., Watershed of Empire: Essays on New Deal Foreign Policy (Colorado Springs: Ralph Myles, 1976), pp. 19-64, and Robert Freeman Smith, "American Foreign Relations, 1920-1942" in Barton J. Berstein, ed., Towards a New Past: Dissenting Essays in American History (New York: Vintage Books, 1969) are important for the interwar years, especially the former.

William Appleman Williams, "The Legend of Isolationism in the 1920s," pp. 104-159 of The Tragedy of American Diplomacy, is essential reading. And see, on one important anti-interventionist, Orde S. Pinckney, "William E. Borah: Critic of American Foreign Policy," Studies on the Left, I (1960), pp. 48-61. On the "isolationist" movement, see Selig Adler, The Isolationist Impulse: Its Twentieth-Century Reaction (New York: Collier Books, 1961) (hostile) and Wayne Cole, America First: The Battle against Intervention, 1940-1941 (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1953), Manfred Jonas, Isolationism in America, 1935-1941 (Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 1966), Justus Doenecke, "Power, Markets and Ideology: The Isolationist Response to Roosevelt Policy, 1940-1941" in Liggio and Martin, Watershed of Empire, pp. 132-161 (much friendlier), and Manfred Jonas, "Pro-Axis Sentiment and American Isolationism," The Historian, 29 (February 1967), 221-237 (who finds very little such sentiment).

Other studies include Leonard P. Liggio, "Isolationism, Old and New – Part I," Left and Right, II, 1 (Winter 1966), pp. 19-35, Michele Flynn Stenehjem, An American First: John T. Flynn and the America First Committee (New Rochelle, N.Y.: Arlington House, 1976), A. Scott Berg, Lindbergh (New York: G. P. Putnam's, 1998), and In Danger Undaunted: The Anti-Interventionist Movement of 1940-1941 as Revealed in the Papers of the America First Committee, Justus Doenecke, ed. (Stanford: Hoover Institution Press, 1990).

Contemporary statements by "isolationists" include General Smedley Butler, War Is a Racket (Costa Mesa, California: Noontide Press, 1991 [1935]), Bruce Knight, How to Run a War (New York: Arno Press, 1972 [1936]), Charles A. Beard, Giddy Minds and Foreign Quarrels (New York: Macmillan, 1939) and A Foreign Policy for America (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1940), Edwin M. Borchard and W. P. Lage, Neutrality for the United States (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1940), Porter Sargent, Getting Us Into War (Boston: Porter Sargent, 1941),

William Henry Chamberlin, "War – Shortcut to Fascism," American Mercury, LI, 204 (December 1940), pp. 391-400, Lawrence Dennis, The Dynamics of War and Revolution (New York: Weekly Foreign Letter, 1940), and John T. Flynn, Country Squire in the White House (New York: Doubleday, Doran & Co., 1940).

Thomas E. Mahl, Desperate Deception: British Covert Operations in the United States, 1939-1944 (Washington: Brassey's, 1998) deals with foreign agents of influence. For ideological currents of the period, see James J. Martin, American Liberalism and World Politics, 1931-1941, 2 volumes (New York: Devin Adair, 1964) and Justin Raimondo, Reclaiming the American Right: The Lost Legacy of the Conservative Movement (Burlingame, Ca.: Center for Libertarian Studies, 1993), pp. 11-148.

IX. World War II: Causes and Consequences

General works on World War II include Captain B. H. Liddell-Hart, History of the Second World War (New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1970) and Esmonde M. Robertson, ed., The Origins of the Second World War (New York: St. Martins, 1971), as well as such revisionist works as A.J.P. Taylor, The Origins of the Second World War (New York: Premier Books [Fawcett World Library], 1961[1965]), and Charles A. Beard, American Foreign Policy in the Making, 1932-1940 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1946) and President Roosevelt and the Coming of the War, 1941: A Study in Appearances and Realities (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1948). See also, William Appleman Williams, The Tragedy of American Diplomacy, "The War for the American Frontier," 160-200.

On the origins of the Pacific War, see A. Whitney Griswold, The Far Eastern Policy of the United States (New York: Harcourt, Brace, 1938), Charles C. Tansill, Back Door to War: The Roosevelt Foreign Policy, 1933-1941 (Chicago: Henry Regnery, 1952), Paul Schroeder, The Axis Alliance and Japanese-American Relations, 1941 (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1958), William L. Neumann, America Encounters Japan: From Perry to MacArthur (New York: Harper & Row, 1963), Justus Doenecke, "The Debate Over Coercion: The Dilemma of America's Pacifists and the Manchurian Crisis," Peace and Change, II, 1 (Spring 1974), pp. 47-52, and Thomas Breslin, "Mystifying the Past: Establishment Historians and the Origins of the Pacific War," Bulletin of Concerned Asian Scholars, 8, 4 (October-December 1976), pp. 18-36.

Pearl Harbor Debate

The growing literature on Pearl Harbor includes George Morgenstern, Pearl Harbor: The Story of the Secret War (New York: Devin Adair, 1947), Rear Admiral Robert A. Theobald, The Final Secret of Pearl Harbor (New York: Devin Adair, 1954), Husband Edward Kimmel, Admiral Kimmel’s Story (Chicago: Regnery, 1955), Harry Elmer Barnes, Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace Caldwell, Idaho: Caxton, 1953), and "Pearl Harbor After Half a Century," Left and Right, IV (1968), pp. 9-132, reprinted as Pearl Harbor After Half a Century (New York: Arno Press, 1972), Ronald Radosh, "Democracy and the Formation of Foreign Policy: The Case of FDR and America's Entrance into World War II," Left and Right, III, 3 (Autumn 1967), pp. 31-38, Bruce R. Bartlett, Cover-Up: The Politics of Pearl Harbor, 1941-1946 (New Rochelle, N.Y.: Arlington House, 1978), John Toland, Infamy: Pearl Harbor and Its Aftermath (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1982), James Rusbridger and Eric Nave, Betrayal at Pearl Harbor: How Churchill Lured Roosevelt into World War II (New York: Summit Books, 1991), Robert Smith Thompson, A Time for War: Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Path to Pearl Harbor New York: Prentice Hall, 1991), and Robert B. Stinnett, Day of Deceit: The Truth about FDR and Pearl Harbor (New York: Free Press, 1999).

William Henry Chamberlin, America’s Second Crusade (Chicago: Henry Regnery, 1950), George N. Crocker, Roosevelt's Road to Russia (Chicago: Henry Regnery, 1959), and William L. Neumann, "Roosevelt's Foreign Policy Decisions, 1940-1945," Modern Age (Summer 1975), pp. 272-284, are critical assessments of US participation in the war. For arguments that US entry was unnecessary, see Bruce M. Russett, No Clear and Present Danger: A Skeptical View of the United States’ Entry into World War II (New York: Harper & Row, 1972) and Patrick J. Buchanan, A Republic Not an Empire: Reclaiming America's Destiny (Washington, DC: Regnery, 1999), pp. 231-298.

John T. Flynn, As We Go Marching (Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1944) and The Roosevelt Myth (San Francisco: Fox & Wilkes, 1998 [1948]), Dwight MacDonald, Memoirs of a Revolutionist (New York: Meridian Books, 1958), Richard Drinnon, Keeper of Concentration Camps: Dillon S. Myer and American Racism (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1987), and Thomas J. Fleming, The New Dealers' War: Franklin D. Roosevelt and the War Within the War (New York: Basic Books, 2001), treat some domestic consequences of the war. For a collection of Flynn's antiwar (and other) essays, see Gregory P. Pavlik, Forgotten Lessons: Selected Essays of John T. Flynn (Irvington-on-Hudson, NY: Foundation for Economic Education, 1996).

For displacement of the British empire by the US, see Gabriel Kolko, The World and United States Foreign Policy, 1943-1945 (New York: Vintage Books, 1968), John Charmley, Churchill's Grand Alliance: The Anglo-American Special Relationship, 1940-1957 (New York: Harcourt Brace, 1995), and Ralph Raico, "Rethinking Churchill" in Denson, ed., The Costs of War, pp. 321-360

Total War and World War II

For World War II as a high point of total war – in theory and practice – see F.J.P. Veale, Advance to Barbarism: The Development of Total Warfare from Sarajevo to Hiroshima (Appleton, Wisconsin: C. C. Nelson Publishing Co., 1953), Capt. Russell Grenfell, Unconditional Hatred: German War Guilt and the Future of Europe (New York: Devin Adair, 1958), David Irving, The Destruction of Dresden (New York: Ballantine Books, 1965), William L. Neumann, "Hiroshima Reconsidered," Left and Right, II, 2 (Spring 1966), pp. 33-38, James J. Martin, Revisionist Viewpoints: Essays in a Dissident Historical Tradition (Colorado Springs: Ralph Myles, 1971), "The Bombing and Negotiated Peace Questions – in 1944," pp. 71-124, Barton J. Bernstein, "Hiroshima Reconsidered – Thirty Years Later," Foreign Service Journal (August 1975), pp. 8-34, and "Wrong Numbers," The Independent Monthly (July 1995), pp. 41-44, and Martin J. Sherwin, A World Destroyed: Hiroshima and the Origins of the Arms Race (New York: Vintage Books, 1987). Elbridge Colby, "Aerial Law and War Targets," American Journal of International Law, 19, 4 (October 1925), pp. 702-715, gives a rationale for future Anglo-American bombing practices before the fact.

US Wartime Planning Foretells the Cold War Order

How US imperial wartime planning presaged the Cold War is explained in William Appleman Williams, "The Large Corporation and American Foreign Policy," in David Horowitz, ed., Corporations and the Cold War (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1969), 71-104, and, in the same volume, Lloyd C. Gardner, "The New Deal, New Frontiers, and the Cold War: A Re-examination of American Expansion, 1933-1945," pp. 105-141, and David W. Eakins, "Business Planners and America's Postwar Expansion," pp. 143-171; these essays complement those in Liggio and Martin, Watershed of Empire cited above.

See, as well, Lloyd C. Gardner, Economic Aspects of New Deal Diplomacy (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1964), James J. Martin, "u2018Defense' Origins of the New Imperialism,'" in Revisionist Viewpoints, pp. 1-27, Noam Chomsky, "Intervention in Vietnam and Central America: Parallels and Differences," Monthly Review, 37, 4 (September 1985), pp. 1-29, and Melvin Leffler, "The American Conception of National Security and the Beginnings of the Cold War, 1945-1948," American Historical Review, 89, 2 (April 1984), pp. 346-381. See as well Clyde Wilson, "Global Democracy and American Tradition," Intercollegiate Review, 24, 1 (Fall 1988), pp. 3-14.

X. The Cold War As a System of Power and the American Empire

Cold War histories include Kenneth Ingram, The Cold War (London: Darwen Finlayson, 1955), mildly revisionist, Hugh Thomas, Armed Truce: The Beginnings of the Cold War, 1945-1946 (New York: Atheneum, 1987), fairly conventional, D.F. Fleming, The Cold War and Its Origins, 2 volumes (Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1961), revisionist, John Lukacs, A New History of the Cold War (Garden City, N.Y.: Anchor Books, 1966), somewhat critical, and Louis J. Halle, The Cold War as History (New York: Harper & Row, 1967), fairly conventional, and Stephen E. Ambrose, Rise to Globalism: American Foreign Policy Since 1938-1976 (New York: Penguin Books, 1976), somewhat critical.

Thomas G. Paterson, ed., Cold War Critics: Alternatives to American Foreign Policy in the Truman Years (Chicago: Quadrangle, 1971), including Henry W. Berger, "Senator Robert Taft Dissents from Military Escalation," pp. 167-204, and Ronald Radosh and Leonard P. Liggio, "Henry A. Wallace and the Open Door," pp. 76-113, David Horowitz, The Free World Colossus: A Critique of American Foreign Policy in the Cold War (New York: Hill & Wang, 1971), Gabriel and Joyce Kolko, The Limits of Power: The World and United States Foreign Policy, 1945-1954 (New York: Harper & Row, 1972), Richard J. Walton, Cold War and Counterrevolution: The Foreign Policy of John F. Kennedy (Baltimore: Penguin Books, 1973), Thomas G. Paterson, ed., The Origins of the Cold War (Lexington, Mass.: D.C. Heath & Co., 1974), Charles Mee, Meeting at Potsdam (New York: M. Evans, 1975), and Walter LaFeber, American, Russia, and the Cold War, 1945-1975 (New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1976), are all revisionist works.

For a study stressing close neo-mercantilist cooperation of government and business in shaping US foreign policy, see Gabriel Kolko, The Roots of American Foreign Policy (Boston: Beacon Press, 1969). And compare William Appleman Williams, Empire as a Way of Life (New York: Oxford University Press, 1980), and the relevant sections of Contours of American History and The Tragedy of American Diplomacy. For the men who conducted policy, see Lloyd Gardner, Architects of Illusion: Men and Ideas in American Foreign Policy, 1941-1949 (Chicago: Quadrangle Books, 1970) and Walter Isaacson and Evan Thomas, The Wise Men (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1986).

The Right-wing "Isolationist" Critique of the Cold War

It is insufficiently appreciated that a "right-wing" critique of the Cold War existed, especially in its early years. Works of such critics include Felix Morley, "Judges in Our Own Cause," Vital Speeches of the Day, X, 16 (June 1, 1944), pp. 499-502, "Conservatism and Foreign Policy," ibid., XXI, 7 (January 15, 1955), pp. 974-979, and "American Republic or American Empire," Modern Age, I, 1 (Summer 1957), pp. 20-32, Robert Taft, A Foreign Policy for Americans (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1951), F. A. Harper, "In Search of Peace" (Menlo Park, California: Institute for Humane Studies, Reprint #1, 1970 [1951]), Louis Bromfield, A New Pattern for a Tired World (London: Cassell & Company, 1954), Garet Garrett, The People’s Pottage (Reprinted 2004 by Caxton Press with an introduction by Bruce Ramsey) Boston: Western Islands, 1965), and Frank Chodorov, Out of Step: The Autobiography of an Individualist (New York: Devin-Adair, 1962), especially the chapter on "Isolationism," pp. 113-123.

Libertarian Old Right critics of the Cold War are treated in Henry W. Berger, "A Conservative Critique of Containment: Senator Taft on the Early Cold War Program" in David Horowitz, ed., Containment and Revolution (Boston: Beacon Press, 1967), pp. 125-139, Ronald Radosh, Prophets on the Right: Profiles of Conservative Critics of American Globalism (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1975), Joseph R. Stromberg, "Felix Morley: An Old-Fashioned Republic Critic of Statism and Interventionism," Journal of Libertarian Studies, 2, 3 (Fall 1978), 269-277, and Leonard P. Liggio, "Felix Morley and the Commonwealthman Tradition: The Country-Party, Centralization and the American Empire," ibid., 279-286, and Justus D. Doenecke, Not to the Swift: The Old Isolationists in the Cold War Era (Lewisburg: Bucknell University Press, 1979.

Other Cold War criticisms are found in Murray N. Rothbard, "Myths of the Cold War," Rampart Journal of Individualist Thought, 2, 2 (Summer 1966), 65-76, Leonard P. Liggio, "Why the Futile Crusade?" (New York: Center for Libertarian Studies, Occasional Paper #6, April 1978), and Robert Griffith, "The Old Progressives and the Cold War," Journal of American History, 66, 2 (September 1979), pp. 334-347. See also Murray N. Rothbard, "Harry Elmer Barnes as Revisionist of the Cold War," in Arthur Goddard, ed., Harry Elmer Barnes, Learned Crusader: The New History in Action (Colorado Springs: Ralph Myles, 1968), pp. 314-342.

Military, Industrial, University Complex

The new order of permanent mobilization is discussed in Fred J. Cook, The Warfare State (New York: Macmillan, 1962), Seymour Melman, Our Depleted Society (New York: Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 1965), Pentagon Capitalism: The Political Economy of War (New York: McGraw Hill, 1970), and The Permanent War Economy: American Capitalism in Decline New York: Simon & Schuster, 1974), Richard F. Kaufman, The War Profiteers (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1972), A. Ernest Fitzgerald, The High Priests of Waste (New York: W. W. Norton, 1972), Sidney Lens, The Military-Industrial Complex (Philadelphia: Pilgrim Press, 1972), and Robert Higgs, ed., Arms, Politics, and the Economy (New York: Holmes & Meier, 1990).

On the defense intellectuals, see Leonard P. Liggio, "American Foreign Policy and National-Security Management," in Rothbard and Radosh, A New History of Leviathan, pp. 224-259, Christopher Lasch, The Agony of the American Left (New York: Vintage Books, 1968), chapter three, "The Cultural Cold War: A Short History of the Congress for Cultural Feedom," pp. 63-114, and Robin W. Winks, Cloak and Gown: Scholars in the Secret War, 1939-1961 (New York: Morrow, 1987).

The war-in-peace theme is prefigured in Harold Lasswell, Essays on the Garrison State (New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Books, 1997 [reprint]) and taken further in Vernon K. Dibble, "The Garrison Society" in Frank Lindenfeld, ed., Radical Perspectives on Social Problems (New York: Macmillan, 1973), 305-315. Also very useful, generally, is Edward Mead Earle, ed., Makers of Modern Strategy: Military Thought from Machiavelli to Hitler (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1971).

On the relations between reformist intellectuals and the state apparatus, see George B. de Huszar, ed., The Intellectuals (Glencoe, Ill.: The Free Press, 1960), Murray N. Rothbard, "The Great Society: A Libertarian Critique," in Marvin E. Gettleman and David Mermelstein, eds., The Great Society Reader: The Failure of American Liberalism (New York: Random House, 1967), pp. 502-511, Robert J. Bresler, "The Ideology the Executive State: Legacy of Liberal Internationalism" in Liggio and Martin, eds., Watershed of Empire, pp. 1-18, Arthur A. Ekirch Jr., A, "The Reform Mentality, War, Peace, and the National State: From the Progressives to Vietnam," Journal of Libertarian Studies, 3, 1 (1979), 55-72, and Bernard Semmel, Imperialism and Social Reform: English Social-Imperial Thought, 1895-1914 (Garden City, N.Y.: Anchor Books, 1968).

Constitutional Issues

J Allen Smith, The Growth and Decadence of Constitutional Government (New York: Henry Holt & Co., 1930), Edward S. Corwin, The Constitution and Total War (Freeport, NY: Books for Libraries, 1970 [1947]), Merlo J. Pusey, The Way We Go To War (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1969), and Raoul Berger, Executive Privilege: A Constitutional Myth (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1974) address some constitutional questions arising in an age of empire.

The "Peace Movement"

Lawrence Wittner, Rebels Against War: The American Peace Movement, 1941-1960 (New York: Columbia University Press, 1969) and Charles Chatfield, Jr., For Peace and Justice: Pacifism in America, 1914-1941 (Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press, 1971).

Case Studies of the Empire's Client States

The effects of empire on its beneficiaries are treated in Richard J. Barnet, Intervention and Revolution: The United States in the Third World (New York: New American Library, 1968), and – out of a vast literature – Constantine Tsoucalas, The Greek Tragedy (Baltimore: Penguin Books, 1969), Robert Freeman Smith, The United States and Cuba: Business and Diplomacy, 1917-1960 (New Haven, Conn.: College & University Press, 1960), Walter LaFeber, Inevitable Revolutions: The United States and Central America (New York: W. W. Norton, 1984), Stanley Karnow, In Our Image: America's Empire in the Philippines (New York: Random House, 1989), H. W. Brands, Bound to Empire: The United States and the Philippines (New York: Oxford University Press, 1992), Fred Halliday, Iran, Dictatorship and Development (New York: Penguin, 1979), and Gary Sick, All Fall down: America's Tragic Encounter With Iran (New York: Penguin, 1986).

Total War, Nuclear and Cosmic

Nuclear and other questions are dealt with in C. Wright Mills, The Causes of World War III (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1958), Gar Alperovitz, Cold War Essays (Cambridge, Mass.: Schenkman Publishing Co., 1970) and Atomic Diplomacy: Hiroshima and Potsdam (New York: Viking Penguin, 1985), George Kennan, The Nuclear Delusion: Soviet-American Relations in the Atomic Age (New York: Pantheon, 1983), E.P. Thompson, The Heavy Dancers: Writings on War, Past and Future (New York: Pantheon Books, 1985), Avner Cohen and Steven Lee, eds., Nuclear Weapons and the Future of Humanity: The Fundamental Questions (Totowa, NJ: Rowman and Allanheld, 1986), Charles R. Morris, Iron Destinies, Lost Opportunities: The Arms Race between the U.S.A. and the U.S.S.R., 1945-1987 (New York: Harper & Row, 1988),and John Mueller, "The Essential Irrelevance of Nuclear Weapons," International Security, 13, 2 (Fall 1988), pp. 55-79, and Retreat from Doomday: The Obsolescence of Major War (New York: Basic Books, 1989). For a chilling restatement of total war principles, see William S. Lind, Col. Keith Nightengale, Capt. John F. Schmidt, Col. Joseph W. Sutton, and Lt. Col. Gary I. Wilson, "The Changing Face of War: Into the Fourth Generation," Marine Corps Gazette (October 1989), pp. 22-26.

XI. Korean War

On the Korean War, Joseph C. Goulden, Korea: The Untold Story of the War (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1982) is a useful, conventional account. I.F. Stone, The Hidden History of the Korean War (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1969 [1952]) is a radically revisionist critique. Helen Mears, "A Note on Atrocities," Dissent, I, 1 (Winter 1954), pp. 103-106, looks at civilian casualties. Col. David H. Hackworth and Julie Sherman, About Face (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1989) gives a soldier's view of America's Asian wars.

XII. Vietnam War and After

Critical accounts include Robert Scheer, How the United States Got Involved in Vietnam (Santa Barbara, California: Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions, 1965), Marvin E. Gettleman, ed., Vietnam: History, Documents, and Opinions on a Major World Crisis (Greenwood, Con.: Fawcett, 1965), Hackworth and Sherman, About Face, Jean Lacoutre, Vietnam: Between Two Truces (New York: Random House, 1966), Robert Shapleen, The Lost Revolution: The U.S. in Vietnam, 1946-1966 (New York: Harper & Row, 1966) and Time out of Hand: Revolution and Reaction in Southeast Asia (New York: Harper & Row, 1969), Carl Oglesby and Richard Shaull, Containment and Change (London: Macmillan, 1967), Seymour M. Hersh, My Lai 4: A Report on the Massacre and Its Aftermath (New York: Vintage Books, 1970), Noam Chomsky, American Power and the New Mandarins (New York: Vintage Books, 1969), At War With Asia (New York: Pantheon, 1970), and For Reasons of State (New York: Vintage Books, 1973), Gabriel Kolko, Anatomy of a War (New York: Pantheon, 1985), and Neil Sheehan, A Bright Shining Lie: John Paul Vann and America in Vietnam (New York: Random House, 1988)

Follow the trail of US imperialism through the 1970s and into the 1980s, one can consult Noam Chomsky, Towards A New Cold War: Essays on the Current Crisis and How We Got Here (New York: Pantheon, 1982) Holly Sklar, ed., Trilateralism: The Trilateral Commission and Elite Planning for World Management (Boston: South End Press, 1980), Robert Scheer, With Enough Shovels: Reagan, Bush, and Nuclear War (New York: Vintage Books, 1983) Jonathan Kwitney, Endless Enemies: The Making of an Unfriendly World (New York: Congdon and Weed, 1984), Frances Moore Lappé, Rachel Schurman, and Kevin Danaher, Betraying the National Interest: How U.S. Foreign Aid Threatens Global Security by Undermining the Political and Economic Stability of the Third World (New York: Grove Press, 1987),and Holly Sklar, Reagan, Trilateralism, and the Neoliberals: Containment and Intervention in the 1980s (Boston: South End Press, 1986). Murray N. Rothbard, Wall Street, Banks, and American Foreign Policy (Burlingame, California: Rothbard-Rockwell Report, 1995), dealing with the late 1970s and early 1980s, is especially useful for its analysis of economic interests in foreign policy.

XIII. Soviet Collapse and Renewed Debate

The collapse of the Soviet Union briefly opened up debate on US foreign policy. Among those calling for a more modest or even non-interventionist world role for the US were Earl C. Ravenal, "The Case for Adjustment, Foreign Policy, 81 (Winter 1990-1991), pp. 3-19, Ted Galen Carpenter, "The New World Disorder," ibid., 84 (Fall 1991), pp. 24-39, Doug Bandow, "Avoiding War," ibid., 89 (Winter 1992-1993), pp. 156-176, Christopher Layne and Benjamin Schwarz, "American Hegemony – Without an Enemy," ibid., 92 (Fall 1993), pp. 5-23, and Doug Bandow, "Keep the Troops at Home: American Nonintervention," Current, 364 (July-August 1994), pp. 26-32. And see, as well, Eric A. Nordlinger, Isolationism Reconfigured: American Foreign Policy for a New Century (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1995).

XIV. Gulf War

On the Gulf War, Rick Atkinson, Crusade: The Untold Story of the Persian Gulf War (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1993) is a useful but conventional military history, while Ramsey Clark, Fire This Time: US War Crimes in the Gulf (New York: Thunder’s Mouth Press, 1994) focuses on other matters. [More will be added here.]

XV. Serbian War

See Justin Raimondo, Into the Bosnian Quagmire: The Case Against U.S. Intervention in the Balkans (Burlingame, Ca.: America First Political Action Committee, 1996) and Christopher Layne and Benjamin Schwarz, "Dubious Anniversary: Kosovo One Year Later," Policy Analysis, 373 (Cato Institute, June 10, 2000). [More will be added here.]

XVI. War and Generic Statism: The Warfare State against Civil Society

Various theoretical views on the state are found in Franz Oppenheimer, The State (New York: Free Life Editions, 1975), Murray N. Rothbard, "The Anatomy of the State," in Egalitarianism as a Revolt Against Nature and Other Essays (Auburn, Alabama: Ludwig von Mises Institute, 2000), 55-88, and "War, Peace and the State," 115-132, Karl Wittfogel, Oriental Despotism: A Comparative Study of Total Power (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1957), Bertrand de Jouvenel, On Power: Its Nature and the History of Its Growth (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 1993 [1948]), C. Wright Mills, The Power Elite (New York: Oxford University Press, 1956), and Robert L. Carneiro, "A Theory of the Origin of the State," in Kenneth S. Templeton, Jr., ed., The Politicization of Society (Indianapolis: Liberty Press, 1979), pp. 27-51. In the same volume (Templeton), see also Felix Morley, "State and Society," pp. 53-82, Robert A. Nisbet, "The New Despotism," pp. 167-207, and John A. Lukacs, "The Monstrosity of Government," pp. 391-408.

Interesting early discussions of the issued raised in the above works are found in Destutt de Tracy, A Treatise on Political Economy (New York: Augustus M. Kelley, 1970 [1817]) and John Taylor of Caroline, Tyranny Unmasked (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 1992 [1822]).

For the extension of a state's power outside its boundaries – imperialism – consult Hobson, Imperialism, already mentioned, Joseph A. Schumpeter, Imperialism, Social Classes: Two Essays (New York: Meridian Books, 1955), William F. Marina, "Egalitarianism and Empire" in Templeton, Politicization of Society, 127-165, Paul Kennedy, The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers: Economic Change and Military Conflict from 1500 to 2000 (New York: Random House, 1987), E.M. Winslow, "Marxian, Liberal, and Sociological Theories of Imperialism," Journal of Political Economy, 39, 6 (December 1931), pp. 713-758, and The Pattern of Empire (New York: Columbia University Press, 1948), and Norman Etherington, Theories of Imperialism: War, Conquest, and Capital (London: Croom Helm, 1984). Still useful is Eugene Staley, War and the Private Investor (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1935).

An important addition to the literature is Murray N. Rothbard, "The Origins of the Federal Reserve," Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics, 2, 3 (Fall 1999), pp. 3-51, which analyzes the connections between central banking and monetary (and other) forms of imperialism. Of a quite different character is Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn, Leftism Revisited: From de Sade and Marx to Hitler and Pol Pot (Washington, DC: Regnery Gateway, 1990), which is unclassifiable, but abounds with insights into the various topics treated in this listing.

For domestic corporatism (alliance of business and state), see Robert A. Brady, Business as a System of Power (New York: Columbia University Press, 1943), Paul Baran, The Political Economy of Growth (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1957), a Marxist view, Thomas J. McCormick, "Drift or Mastery? A Corporatist Synthesis for American Diplomatic History," Reviews in American History, 10, 4 (December 1982), pp. 318-330, Michael J. Hogan, "Corporatism," Journal of American History, 77, 1 (June 1990), pp. 153-160, and Hans-Hermann Hoppe, "Marxist and Austrian Class Analysis," Journal of Libertarian Studies, IX, 2 (Fall 1990), pp. 80-93, and "Banking, Nation States and International Politics: A Sociological Reconstruction of the Present Economic Order," Review of Austrian Economics, 4 (1990), pp. 55-87.

For more on the interplay of state power, economic interest, and war, consult Ludwig von Mises, Nation, State, and Economy (New York: New York University Press, 1983 [1919]) and Omnipotent Government (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1944), John U. Nef, War and Human Progress (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1950), Frederic C. Lane, "Economic Consequences of Organized Violence," Journal of Economic History, XVIII, 4 (December 1958), pp. 401-417, William Hardy McNeill, The Pursuit of Power: Technology, Armed Force, and Society Since 1000 A.D. (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1982), Charles Tilly, "War Making and State Making as Organized Crime" in Peter Evans, Dietrich Rueschemeyer, and Theda Skocpol, eds., Bringing the State Back In (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1985), pp. 169-191, Higgs, Crisis and Leviathan, mentioned above, Anthony Giddens, The Nation-State and Violence (Cambridge: Polity Press, 1987), and Hans-Hermann Hoppe, "Time Preference, Government, and the Process of De-Civilization: From Monarchy to Democracy" in Denson, ed., The Costs of War, pp. 455-493, and Democracy: The God That Failed (New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Books, 2001). For the inherent expansionism built into states, see Jörg Guido Hülsmann, "Political Unification: A Generalized Progression Theorem," Journal of Libertarian Studies, 13, 1 (Summer 1997), pp. 81-96.

On the central role of war in the expansion of state power, see Richard Barnett, Roots of War: The Men and Institutions Behind U.S. Foreign Policy (Baltimore: Penguin Books, 1973), John Brewer, The Sinews of Power: War, Money and the English State, 1688-1783 (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1989), Bruce Porter, War and the Rise of the State: The Military Foundations of Modern Politics (New York: The Free Press, 1994), and Martin Van Creveld, The Rise and Decline of the State (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1999). On militarism, see Alfred Vagts, A History of Militarism (Meridian Books, 1959 [1937]) and Tristram Coffin, The Armed Society: Militarism in Modern America (Baltimore: Penguin, 1964); and on war generally, John Keegan, The Face of Battle (New York: Viking Press, 1976).

The essays in John V. Denson, ed., Reassessing the Presidency: The Rise of the Executive State and the Decline of Freedom (Auburn, Alabama: Ludwig von Mises Institute, 2001) treat critically – for the entire span of US history – the political institution which became the main bulwark of the rising empire. It is the first scholarly collection to treat the office of president as a standing menace to the peace, freedom, and prosperity of the American people.

XVII. Propaganda and Opinion-Management

Control and manipulation of public opinion is a crucial lever for those who wish to launch wars. The following are useful on this subject: Stuart Chase, The Tyranny of Words (New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, 1966 [1938]), especially chapter 18, "Stroll With the Statesmen," pp. 328-349, Harold D. Lasswell, Propaganda Techniques in the World War (New York: Peter Smith, 1938), H.C. Peterson, Propaganda for War: The Campaign Against American Neutrality, 1914-1917 (Norman, Oklahoma: University of Oklahoma Press, 1939), William L. Neumann, "How to Merchandise Foreign Policy: from ERAP to MAP," American Perspective, 3 (1949), 183-193, 235-250, Harold M. Hyman, To Try Men's Souls: Loyalty Tests in American History (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1959), Merle Curti, The Roots of American Loyalty (New York: Atheneum, 1968), Phillip Knightley, The First Casualty: From the Crimea to Viet Nam (New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1975), Benjamin Ginsberg, The Captive Public: How Mass Opinion Promotes State Power (New York: Basic Books, 1986), Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky, Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media (New York: Pantheon, 1988), and Mahl, Desperate Deception (already listed). And see also, Harry Elmer Barnes, "Revisionism: A Key to Peace," Rampart Journal of Individualist Thought, 2, 1 (Spring 1966), 8-74, reprinted with other pieces in Revisionism: A Key to Peace and Other Essays (San Francisco: Cato Institute, 1980) and Walter Karp, Indispensable Enemies: The Politics of Misrule in America (Baltimore: Penguin Books, 1973)

XVIII. Unconventional Warfare and Alternate Models of Defense

Attempts to break out of the imperialist world order have fostered irregular forms of warfare. On this see Lin Piao, Long Live the Victory of People's War! (Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1965), Vô Nguyen Giap, People's War, People’s Army (New York: Bantam Books, 1962), Michael Collins, The Path to Freedom (Boulder: Roberts Rinehart, 1996), Ernesto Che Guevara, Guerrilla Warfare (New York: Vinatage Books, 1968), Deneys Reitz, Commando: A Boer Journal of the Boer War (London: Faber & Faber, 1975 [1929]), John Ellis, A Short History of Guerrilla Warfare (London: Ian Allan, 1975), Robert B. Asprey, War in the Shadows: The Guerrilla in History (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1975), and Joseph P. Kutger, "Irregular Warfare in Transition," Military Affairs, 24, 3 (Autumn 1960), pp. 113-123.

For libertarian perspectives, see William F. Marina, "Weapons, Technology, and Legitimacy," in Morgan Norval, ed., The Militia in 20th Century America (Falls Church, Va.: Gun Owners Association, 1985), pp. 185-226, Murray N. Rothbard, "Society Without a State," Nomos, 19 (1978), 191-207, and Hans-Hermann Hoppe, "The Private Production of Defense" (Auburn: Ludwig von Mises Institute, Essays in Political Economy, n.d.) and Democracy: The God That Failed, Jeffrey Rogers Hummel, "National Goods Versus Public Goods: Defense, Disarmament, and Free Riders," Review of Austrian Economics, 4 (1990), 88-122. For a pacifist view, consult Gene Sharp, The Politics of Nonviolent Action: The Methods of Nonviolent Action (Boston: Extending Horizons Books, 1973).

For guerrilla warfare in US history, see Marina, "Militia, Standing Armies and the Second Amendment" and "Revolution and Social Change: The American Revolution As a People's War," Kerby, "Why the Confederacy Lost," Jones, Gray Ghosts and Rebel Raiders, and Williamson, Mosby’s Rangers, cited in previous sections.

XIX. Just War Theory

For modern restatements of Just War theory, see Robert M. Palter, "The Ethics of Extermination," Ethics, 74, 3 (April 1964), pp. 208-218, José A. Fernández, "Erasmus on the Just War," Journal of the History of Ideas, 34,2 (April-June 1973, pp. 209-226, and C. A. J. Coady, "Deterrent Intentions Revisited," Ethics, 99, 1 (October 1988), pp. 98-108. For an argument that traditional Just War theory is too permissive, consult Laurie Calhoun, "Just War? Moral Soldiers?", Independent Review, IV, 3 (Winter 2000), pp. 325-345. See also, Thomas Nagel, "War and Massacre," Philosophy and Public Affairs 1, 2 (Winter 1972), pp. 123-144.

XX. Other Bibliographies

Bibliographies consulted include Harry Elmer Barnes, Select Bibliography of Revisionist Books Dealing with The Two World Wars and Their Aftermath (Oxnard, Ca.: Oxnard Press Courier, n.d.), and Justus D. Doenecke, "Isolationists of the 1930s and 1940s: An Historiographical Essay," West Georgia College Studies in the Social Sciences, 13 (June 1974), 5-39, and The Literature of Isolationism: A Guide to Non-Interventionist Scholarship, 1930-1972 (Colorado Springs: Ralph Myles, 1972). I have also benefited from Ralph Raico, "A Brief Annotated Bibliography of Revisionist Works" (unpublished).

XXI. Websites

  • https://www.lewrockwell.com

  • http://www.antiwar.com

  • http://www.emperors-clothes.com

  • http://www.antibombing.com

  • http://www.polyconomics.com

Book reviews on war, from various viewpoints, can be found at http://www.ess.uwe.ac.uk/genocide/reviewsw.htm

XXII. The Debate Over US Empire in the Age of Bush II

The opportunity provided US rulers by the criminal attacks of 9/11/01 has led to an outpouring of new works on the theme of American empire. On the pro-imperial side of the ledger stand those who see the US Empire as a benign, essential upholder of world order on the model of the Athenian, Roman, or British empires. In general, the British example is the one most on offer, for obvious cultural-linguistic reasons.

That so many pro-imperial writers now use the actual E-word is a sign that they think they have won and that there really is no debate needed. On the other hand, the new state of affairs may be an improvement on earlier discussions taking the form of "first there is an empire, then there is no empire, then there is."

Pride of place in pushing the shining example of the British Empire goes, naturally to our cousins across the water. Foremost among these is Niall Ferguson, whose book, Empire: The Rise and Decline of the British World Order and the Lessons for Global Power (New York: Basic Books, 2003), draws the expected lessons.

Paul Johnson, "From the Evil Empire to the Empire for Liberty," The New Criterion, 21, 10 (June 2003), meditates on sovereignty and is glad it slipped from the hands of the Papacy and ended up where it belongs, with the British, and then the American state.

Stanley Kurtz, "Democratic Imperialism: A Blueprint," Policy Review, 118 (April 2003), exhorts Americans to look to the "liberal imperialism" developed at the India Office by such worthies as John Stuart Mill. (For a negative view of liberal imperialism, see Joseph R. Stromberg, "Kantians With Cruise Missiles," Antiwar.com, December 23, 2003, and "John Stuart Mill and Liberal Imperialism," Antiwar.com, May 18, 2002.)

Finally, for reason in the service of madness, nothing beats the many books and essays, widely available and too numerous to cite, by Victor Davis Hanson of National Review.

Given the sheer size of the Liberal and Conservative – and now Neo-Conservative – interventionist scholarly infrastructure that grew up during the long constitutional and intellectual coma known as the Cold War, there is far too much pro-imperial and "benign hegemonist" literature to discuss here. For a useful overview of the imperial "socialists of the chair," see the Right Web a site that is perhaps unique in being able to tell libertarians and paleoconservatives from the now largely Neo-Colonized Right Wing.

Poised somewhere between the paladins of empire and the critics of empire, is Michael Ignatieff, “The American Empire: The Burden,” New York Times Magazine, January 5. 2003.

We now turn to the critics of the current phase of empire building.

Gore Vidal, Dreaming War (New York: Nation Books, 2003), and Norman Mailer, Why Are We At War? (New York: Random House, 2003), carry forth a long-running critique of the imperial process.

Michael Mann, Incoherent Empire (London: Verso, 2003), is a tour de force by an Anglo-American sociologist who has long been interested in forms of power in human history. Here he argues that various ideological and structural faults will make the run of the US Empire rather briefer than its advocates think.

Chalmers Johnson, The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic (New York: Henry Holt and Company, 2004), is an important critique by a long-established authority on East Asia. See also Johnson's earlier book, Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire (New York: Henry Holt & Co., 2000).

Claes Ryn, America the Virtuous: The Crisis of Democracy and the Quest for Empire (New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Publishers, 2003) sees the US imperial thrust as arising from ideological deformations of American democracy traceable to Rousseau. A shorter version of the thesis is found in Claes Ryn, "The Ideology of American Empire," Orbis, (Summer 2003).

In American Empire: Realities and Consequences of U.S. Diplomacy (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2002), Andrew Bacevich rediscovers the wisdom in the historical vision of Charles Beard and William Appleman Williams. Bacevich's doubts about empire may be traced through a series of essays in First Things appearing from about 1995 onwards. In addition, The Imperial Tense: Prospects and Problems of American Empire (Chicago: Ivan R. Dee, 2003), a collection edited by Bacevich, brings together a range of writings on the US Empire – from those of empire-deniers and empire defenders to those of mild and harsh critics of the empire.

Written before the recent excitement, Isabelle Grunberg, "Exploring the u2018myth' of hegemonic stability," International Organization, 44, 4 (Autumn 1990), pp. 431–477, usefully debunks, as a form of myth, the claim that a benevolent empire is necessary to an orderly world. Another pre-9/11 piece, Jeffry A. Frieden, "International Investment and Colonial Control: A New Interpretation," International Organization, 48, 4 (Autumn 1994), pp. 559–593, suggests that under certain circumstances a metropolitan power will intervene to secure control of physically immoveable resources important to that power's extractive industries. (Oil comes to mind.)

Anatol Lieven, "A Trap of Their Own Making," London Review of Books, 25, 9 (8 May 2003) is a moderate critique of the US imperial project, and from the Marxist Left, Tariq Ali, "Re-Colonizing Iraq," New Left Review, 21 (May–June 2003) is of interest.

For a useful collection of articles from the Left on empire, see Third World Traveler. For libertarian and/or paleoconservative treatments, see LewRockwell.com, American Conservative, and Antiwar.com, which is also a huge clearinghouse for many points of view, as well as Americans Against Bombing.

Several journalists have made hard-hitting contributions to the analysis of imperial doctrine and practice since 9/11, too many to list here; they include Eric Margolis, Robert Fisk, Jim Lobe, Justin Raimondo, Alan Bock, John Pilger, Karen Kwiatkowski (ex-military with an insider's perspective), among others.

A Final Note

This bibliography is a work in progress. Suggestions are welcome, even if not every book or essay can be included here.

Joseph Stromberg Archives