Saturday, September 3, 2011

Are They Deterring Democracy?

United States of America is a nation that has launched attacks on several other countries from the time of its inception. The reason told for most of them is safeguarding democracy. A common factor that can be noticed about most of these attacks is the fact that they were against third world nations endowed with rich natural resources. Is the interest of USA to upkeep the democracy in third world genuine?

Deterring Democracy is an extensive study by Nom Chomsky about interference of United States in the internal affairs of other nations. The book was written in 90's, just after the fall of Soviet Union. Till then the communist demon and its plan for world domination was cited as the major reason for invasion into third world. But even after the fall of USSR, USA continued the same policy with the pretext of saving the world by perpetuating the ideals of democracy.

The book starts with an analysis of cold war period and gradually tries to deconstruct the myth of American effort to maintain democratic practice. Chomsky quotes liberally from politicians, media, policymakers and military sources, whose quotes are in public domain, to contradict the cover up that was done to the public. The book effectively states that all these efforts in several countries were in actual effect detrimental to Free thinking and democracy and has only served to put tyrants who are sympathetic to American needs and wants into power.

Nicaragua, Panama, Vietnam, Iraq, Honduras, Costa Rica, Namibia, Columbia... The list is endless. Chomsky proves that if the rulers are ready to heed to US interests, they are given every freedom to rule however they want. But if that is not the case, even a democratic government will be toppled and someone who is ready to be a puppet will be put to the place. Business is important than human life.

US media also highlights only what the policymakers want to reveal. If a news serves the propaganda, it is highlighted and if it does not suit the purpose, it nowhere features. Many tyrants like Mussolini and Saddam were darlings of government and media when their policies were according to US interest. Once they comes on the way of making profit, immediately the demonizing starts.

What reading Deterring Democracy does is to make us wonder about the possibility of an alternative history, which is much distant and contrary to what we read in textbooks or newspapers..


  1. You are an avid reader Harish...I wish I could read as much...Sigh!

  2. LOve books like such... hope too pick up a copy soon :)

    Weakest LINK

  3. yes its like saying half glass is empty or half glass is full
    interesting read

  4. @alka: my only regret is that i cannot write as much..

    @rachit : I'm sure you will love this one. Try it.

    @sm: well said, though I'm not sure about the context of that comment.

  5. Food for thought SIR .. Food for thought if Only...


  6. There is always a hidden part of history and sometimes entire historical events are distorted or hidden. And as for the US interest in protecting democracy, it is as much a sham as its talking of human rights violation and racism with so much of it in its own backyard.

  7. That sounds very interesting; but, like you've labelled it, it sounds a bit too current-affair-sey for my taste! I might just give it a try, see if I understand it!!

  8. History has always been the tool of winners. And America is no exception, just following the age old practice of war for wealth or land.
    Democratic ideology collapses at some point thanks to mankind's insatiable greed....the Greeks, Romans and even the largest democracy in the world today...

  9. Excellent review. I love Chomsky. I love the ideas he plays with. His book, 'Media control' as well. Its all about the media's role in tweaking people's opinions.