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'How could such a book speak so powerfully to our present moment? The short answer is that we, too, live in dark times' Washington Post Hannah Arendt's chilling analysis of the conditions that led to the Nazi and Soviet totalitarian regimes is a warning from history about the fragility of freedom, exploring how propaganda, scapegoats, terror and political isolation all aided the slide towards total domination. 'A non-fiction bookend to Nineteen Eighty-Four' The New York Times 'The political theorist who wrote about the Nazis and the 'banality of evil' has become a surprise bestseller' Guardian
On 7 March 2004, former SAS soldier and mercenary Simon Mann prepared to take off from Harare International Airport with a plane full of heavy weaponry and guns for hire. Their destination: Equatorial Guinea. Their intention: to remove one of the most brutal dictators in Africa in a privately organised coup d’etat. The plot had the tacit approval of Western intelligence agencies. It had the backing of a European government, and the endorsement of a former Prime Minister. Simon Mann had personally planned, overseen and won two wars in Angola and Sierra Leone. Everything should have gone right. Why, then, did it go so wrong?
When Simon Mann was released from five years’ incarceration in some of Africa’s toughest prisons, he made worldwide headlines. Since then, he has spoken to nobody about his experiences.
Now he is telling everything, including:
A SUNDAY TIMES HISTORY BOOK OF THE YEAR 2017 'A brilliant, compelling, propulsively written, magnificent tour de force' Simon Sebag Montefiore, Evening Standard 'The second volume of what will surely rank as one of the greatest historical achievements of our age ... The War and Peace of history: a book you fear you will never finish, but just cannot put down' Dominic Sandbrook, Sunday Times Well before 1929, Stalin had achieved dictatorial power over the Soviet empire, but now he decided that the largest peasant economy in the world would be transformed into socialist modernity, whatever it took. What it took, and what Stalin managed to force through, transformed the country and its ruler in profound and enduring ways. Rather than a tale of a deformed or paranoid personality creating a political system, this is a story of a political system shaping a personality. Building and running a dictatorship, with power of life or death over hundreds of millions, in conditions of capitalist self-encirclement, made Stalin the person he became. Wholesale collectivization of agriculture, some 120 million peasants, necessitated levels of coercion that were extreme even for Russia, but Stalin did not flinch; the resulting mass starvation and death elicited criticism inside the party even from those Communists committed to the eradication of capitalism. By 1934, when the situation had stabilized and socialism had been built in the countryside too, the internal praise came for his uncanny success in anticapitalist terms. But Stalin never forgot and never forgave, with bloody consequences as he strove to consolidate the state with a brand new elite. Stalin had revived a great power with a formidable industrialized military. But the Soviet Union was effectively alone, with no allies and enemies perceived everywhere. The quest to find security would bring Soviet Communism into an improbable pact with Nazi Germany. But that bargain did not work out as envisioned. The lives of Stalin and Hitler, and the fates of their respective countries, drew ever closer to collision. Stalin: Waiting for Hitler: 1929-1941 is, like its predecessor Stalin: Paradoxes of Power: 1878-1928, nothing less than a history of the world from Stalin's desk. It is also, like its predecessor, a landmark achievement in the annals of the biographer's art. Kotkin's portrait captures the vast structures moving global events, and the intimate details of decision-making.
"The most intimate portrait yet produced of Zimbabwe's clever yet
brutal leader." -"The Economist"
?????? Saparmurat Niyazov, President of the Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic of Turkmenistan, died early on 21st December 2006 in a strange new world of his own creation. ?????? His official title, bestowed on himself, was 'Turkmenbashi', or 'leader of Turkmen'. ?????? Coming from a humble orphaned background, he soon worked his way up through the Communist party, and was eventually made President of a newly independent Turkmenistan from the collapsing Soviet Union. ?????? The surreal reality that followed was a twenty-year long dictatorship, considered one of the hardest in the world, where he gave his people free salt, electricity and gas - but also the lowest minimum wage possible. ?????? Even the months of the year were renamed to pay homage to Niyazov and his family. ?????? By 2001 all internet cafes were closed and ballet and opera were banned, and in 2004, the state even forbade young men from growing long hair or beards and it was prohibited for news readers to wear make-up ?????? LOVE ME Turkmenistan is a vivid, colourful and often very humorous depiction of a country dominated by the dark shadow of its ex-leader, with full-technicolour depictions of its capital, its monuments, and its people, now released from a surreal chapter in their country's history. ?????? Each vivid image is accompanied by an actual quote from Niyazov, forming a strong and often outrageous commentary.
'Brilliant and disturbing' Yuval Noah Harari The past is another country, the old saying goes. The same might be said of the future. But which country? For Europeans and Americans today, the answer is Russia. In this visionary work of contemporary history, Timothy Snyder shows how Russia works within the West to destroy the West; by supporting the far right in Europe, invading Ukraine in 2014, and waging a cyberwar during the 2016 presidential campaign and the EU referendum. Nowhere is this more obvious than in the creation of Donald Trump, an American failure deployed as a Russian weapon. But this threat presents an opportunity to better understand the pillars of our freedoms and face the choices that will determine the future: equality or oligarchy, individualism or totalitarianism, truth or lies.
'A brilliant and disturbing analysis, which should be read by anyone wishing to understand the political crisis currently engulfing the world' YUVAL NOAH HARARI author of SAPIENS The past is another country, the old saying goes. The same might be said of the future. But which country? For Europeans and Americans today, the answer is Russia. Today's Russia is an oligarchy propped up by illusions and repression. But it also represents the fulfilment of tendencies already present in the West. And if Moscow's drive to dissolve Western states and values succeeds, this could become our reality too. In this visionary work of contemporary history, Timothy Snyder shows how Russia works within the West to destroy the West; by supporting the far right in Europe, invading Ukraine in 2014, and waging a cyberwar during the 2016 presidential campaign and the EU referendum. Nowhere is this more obvious than in the creation of Donald Trump, an American failure deployed as a Russian weapon. But this threat presents an opportunity to better understand the pillars of our freedoms, confront our own complacency and seek renewal. History never ends, and this new challenge forces us to face the choices that will determine the future: equality or oligarchy, individualism or totalitarianism, truth or lies. The Road to Unfreedom helps us to see our world as if for the first time. It is necessary reading for any citizen of a democracy.
In 2017, Myanmar's military launched a campaign of violence against the Rohingya minority that UN experts later said amounted to a genocide. More than seven hundred thousand civilians fled to Bangladesh in what became the most concentrated flight of refugees since the Rwanda genocide of 1994. The warning signs of impending catastrophe that had built over years were downplayed by Western backers of the political transition, and only when the exodus began did the world finally come to acknowledge a catastrophe that had been long in the making. In this updated edition of the book that foreshadowed a genocide, Francis Wade explores how the manipulation of identities by an anxious ruling elite laid the foundations for mass violence. It asks: who gets to define a nation? How can democratic rights be weaponised against a minority? And why, at a time when the majority of citizens in Myanmar had begun to experience freedoms unseen for half a century, did much-lauded civilian leaders like Aung San Suu Kyi become complicit in the most heinous of crimes?
America's secret war in the Caribbean during the Cold War is revealed as never before in this riveting story of the machinations and blunders of superpowers, and the daring of the mavericks who took them on. During the presidencies of Eisenhower, Kennedy and Johnson, the Caribbean was in crisis, while the United States and the USSR acted out the world's rising tensions in its island nations. Meanwhile the leaders of these nations - the charismatic Fidel Castro, and his mysterious brother Raul; the ideologue Che Guevara; the capricious psychopath Rafael Trujillo; and Francois 'Papa Doc' Duvalier, a buttoned-down doctor with interests in Vodou, embezzlement and torture - had ambitions of their own. Alex von Tunzelmann's brilliant narrative follows these five rivals and accomplices from the beginning of the Cold War to its end. The superpowers thought they could use these Caribbean leaders as puppets, but what neither bargained on was that their puppets would come to life. The United States, in its all-consuming fight against communism, stumbled into one disaster after another. First, with the Bay of Pigs, and then with the Cuban Missile Crisis, it helped bring the world as close to catastrophic nuclear war as it has ever been. Red Heatis an authoritative and eye-opening account of a wildly dramatic and dangerous era of international politics that has unmistakable resonance today.
A Book of the Year for The Times and the Sunday Times `The writer is the engineer of the human soul,' claimed Stalin. Although one wonders how many found nourishment in Turkmenbashi's Book of the Soul (once required reading for driving tests in Turkmenistan), not to mention Stalin's own poetry. Certainly, to be considered great, a dictator must write, and write a lot. Mao had his Little Red Book, Mussolini and Saddam Hussein their romance novels, Kim Jong-il his treatise on the art of film, Hitler his hate-filled tracts. What do these texts reveal about their authors, the worst people imaginable? And how did they shape twentieth-century history? To find out, Daniel Kalder read them all - the badly written and the astonishingly badly written - so that you don't have to. This is the untold history of books so terrible they should have been crimes.
How do dictators stay in power? When, and how, do they use repression to do so? Dictators and their Secret Police explores the role of the coercive apparatus under authoritarian rule in Asia - how these secret organizations originated, how they operated, and how their violence affected ordinary citizens. Greitens argues that autocrats face a coercive dilemma: whether to create internal security forces designed to manage popular mobilization, or defend against potential coup. Violence against civilians, she suggests, is a byproduct of their attempt to resolve this dilemma. Drawing on a wealth of new historical evidence, this book challenges conventional wisdom on dictatorship: what autocrats are threatened by, how they respond, and how this affects the lives and security of the millions under their rule. It offers an unprecedented view into the use of surveillance, coercion, and violence, and sheds new light on the institutional and social foundations of authoritarian power.
Once little more than a glorified porn filter, China's `Great Firewall' has evolved into the most sophisticated system of online censorship in the world. As the Chinese internet grows and online businesses thrive, speech is controlled, dissent quashed, and attempts to organise outside the official Communist Party are quickly stamped out. But the effects of the Great Firewall are not confined to China itself. Through years of investigation James Griffiths gained unprecedented access to the Great Firewall and the politicians, tech leaders, dissidents and hackers whose lives revolve around it. As distortion, post-truth and fake news become old news James Griffiths shows just how far the Great Firewall has spread. Now is the time for a radical new vision of online liberty.
Exam Board: Edexcel Level: A level Subject: History First teaching: September 2015 First exams: June 2017 This book: covers the essential content in the new specifications in a rigorous and engaging way, using detailed narrative, sources, timelines, key words, helpful activities and extension material helps develop conceptual understanding of areas such as evidence, interpretations, causation and change, through targeted activities provides assessment support for both AS and A level with sample answers, sources, practice questions and guidance to help you tackle the new-style exam questions. It also comes with three years' access to ActiveBook, an online, digital version of your textbook to help you personalise your learning as you go through the course - perfect for revision.
The dictator who grew so rich on his country's cocoa crop that he built a 35-storey-high basilica in the jungles of the Ivory Coast. The austere, incorruptible leader who has shut Eritrea off from the world in a permanent state of war and conscripted every adult into the armed forces. In Equatorial Guinea, the paranoid despot who thought Hitler was the saviour of Africa and waged a relentless campaign of terror against his own people. The Libyan army officer who authored a new work of political philosophy, The Green Book, and lived in a tent with a harem of female soldiers, running his country like a mafia family business.
And behind these almost incredible stories of fantastic violence and excess lie the dark secrets of Western greed and complicity, the insatiable taste for chocolate, oil, diamonds and gold that have encouraged dictators to rule with an iron hand, siphoning off their share of the action into mansions in Paris and banks in Zurich and keeping their people in dire poverty.
The word `fascism' sometimes appears to have become a catch-all term of abuse, applicable to anyone on the political right, from Hitler to Donald Trump and from Putin to Thatcher. While some argue that it lacks any distinctive conceptual meaning at all, others have supplied highly elaborate definitions of its `essential' features. It is therefore a concept that presents unique challenges for any student of political theory or history. In this accessible book, Roger Griffin, one of the world's leading authorities on fascism, brings welcome clarity to this controversial ideology. He examines its origins and development as a political concept, from its historical beginnings in 1920s Italy up to the present day, and guides students through the confusing maze of debates surrounding the nature, definition and meaning of fascism. Elucidating with skill and precision its dynamic as a utopian ideology of national/racial rebirth, Griffin goes on to examine its post-Second World War mutations and its relevance to understanding contemporary right-wing political phenomena, ranging from Marine Le Pen to Golden Dawn. This concise and engaging volume will be of great interest to all students of political theory, the history of political thought, and modern history.
Why did so many Latin American leftists believe they could replicate the Cuban Revolution in their own countries, and why did so many rightists fear the spread of Communism? Cognitive-psychological insights about people's distorted inferences and skewed interest calculations explain why the left held exaggerated hopes and why the right experienced excessive dread. The resulting polarization provoked a powerful backlash in which the right uniformly defeated the left. To forestall the feared spread of revolution, the military in many countries imposed authoritarian regimes and brutally suppressed left-wingers. Overly worried about the advance of Cuban-inspired radicalism as well, the United States condoned and supported the installation of dictatorship, but Latin American elites took the main initiative in these regressive regime changes. With a large number of primary and secondary sources, this book documents how the misperceptions on both sides of the ideological divide thus played a crucial role in the frequent destruction of democracy.
Generally regarded as the definitive work on totalitarianism, this
book is an essential component of any study of twentieth-century
political movements. Arendt was one of the first to recognize that
Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union were two sides of the same coin
rather than opposing philosophies of Right and Left. "With the
Origins of Totalitarianism Hannah Arendt emerges as the most
original and profound-therefore the most valuable-political
theoretician of our times" (New Leader). Index.
Santiago, Chile. The city is covered in ash. Three children of ex-militants are facing a past they can neither remember nor forget. Felipe sees dead bodies on every corner of the city, counting them up in an obsessive quest to square these figures with the official death toll. He is searching for the perfect zero, a life with no remainder. Iquela and Paloma, too, are searching for a way to live on. When the body of Paloma's mother is lost in transit, the three take a hearse and a bottle of pisco up the cordillera for a road trip with a difference.Intense, intelligent, and extraordinarily sensitive to the shape and weight of words, this remarkable debut presents a new way to count the cost of a pain that stretches across generations.
Over much of its rule, the regime of Hafez al-Asad and his successor Bashar al-Asad deployed violence on a massive scale to maintain its grip on political power. In this book, Salwa Ismail examines the rationalities and mechanisms of governing through violence. In a detailed and compelling account, Ismail shows how the political prison and the massacre, in particular, developed as apparatuses of government, shaping Syrians' political subjectivities, defining their understanding of the terms of rule and structuring their relations and interactions with the regime and with one another. Examining ordinary citizens' everyday life experiences and memories of violence across diverse sites, from the internment camp and the massacre to the family and school, The Rule of Violence demonstrates how practices of violence, both in their routine and spectacular forms, fashioned Syrians' affective life, inciting in them feelings of humiliation and abjection, and infusing their lived environment with dread and horror. This form of rule is revealed to be constraining of citizens' political engagement, while also demanding of their action.
In contrast to previous studies of the South Korea-United States alliance, Uk Heo and Terence Roehrig analyze the bigger picture, including the history, economics, security, alliance structure, politics, and the future of the alliance. Taking alliance theory as a starting point, the authors argue that the alliance provides an ideal case study to examine how the political development and economic growth of junior partners impact an alliance. As South Korea's capabilities and ambitions have grown, the alliance has evolved from an asymmetric regional security relationship to an economic partnership with global interests, while China's rise and North Korea's nuclear development mean that South Korea remains of strategic importance for American interests in East Asia. This book will be read both as a major contribution to Korean studies and the study of alliance politics and theory.
The victory of Donald Trump in the 2016 election left specialists of American politics perplexed and concerned about the future of US democracy. Because no populist leader had occupied the White House in 150 years, there were many questions about what to expect. Marshaling the long-standing expertise of leading specialists of populism elsewhere in the world, this book provides the first systematic, comparative analysis of the prospects for US democracy under Trump, considering the two regions - Europe and Latin America - that have had the most ample recent experiences with populist chief executives. Chapters analyze the conditions under which populism slides into illiberal or authoritarian rule and in so doing derive well-grounded insights and scenarios for the US case, as well as a more general cross-national framework. The book makes an original argument about the likely resilience of US democracy and its institutions.
Democracy is struggling in America--by now this statement is almost cliche. But what if the country is no longer a democracy at all? In Democracy Incorporated, Sheldon Wolin considers the unthinkable: has America unwittingly morphed into a new and strange kind of political hybrid, one where economic and state powers are conjoined and virtually unbridled? Can the nation check its descent into what the author terms "inverted totalitarianism"? Wolin portrays a country where citizens are politically uninterested and submissive--and where elites are eager to keep them that way. At best the nation has become a "managed democracy" where the public is shepherded, not sovereign. At worst it is a place where corporate power no longer answers to state controls. Wolin makes clear that today's America is in no way morally or politically comparable to totalitarian states like Nazi Germany, yet he warns that unchecked economic power risks verging on total power and has its own unnerving pathologies. Wolin examines the myths and mythmaking that justify today's politics, the quest for an ever-expanding economy, and the perverse attractions of an endless war on terror. He argues passionately that democracy's best hope lies in citizens themselves learning anew to exercise power at the local level. Democracy Incorporated is one of the most worrying diagnoses of America's political ills to emerge in decades. It is sure to be a lightning rod for political debate for years to come. Now with a new introduction by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Chris Hedges, Democracy Incorporated remains an essential work for understanding the state of democracy in America.
For the first time since the end of the Cold War, the world is steadily becoming less democratic. The true culprits are dictators and counterfeit democrats. But, argues Klaas, the West is also an accomplice, inadvertently assaulting pro-democracy forces abroad as governments in Washington, London and Brussels chase pyrrhic short-term economic and security victories. Friendly fire from Western democracies against democracy abroad is too high a price to pay for a myopic foreign policy that is ultimately making the world less prosperous, stable and democratic. The Despot's Accomplice draws on years of extensive interviews on the frontlines of the global struggle for democracy, from a poetry-reading, politician-kidnapping general in Madagascar to Islamist torture victims in Tunisia, Belarusian opposition activists tailed by the KGB, West African rebels, and tea-sipping members of the Thai junta. Cumulatively, their stories weave together a tale of a broken system at the root of democracy's global retreat.
THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER 'These 128 pages are a brief primer in every important thing we might have learned from the history of the last century, and all that we appear to have forgotten' Observer History does not repeat, but it does instruct. In the twentieth century, European democracies collapsed into fascism, Nazism and communism. These were movements in which a leader or a party claimed to give voice to the people, promised to protect them from global existential threats, and rejected reason in favour of myth. European history shows us that societies can break, democracies can fall, ethics can collapse, and ordinary people can find themselves in unimaginable circumstances. History can familiarise, and it can warn. Today, we are no wiser than the Europeans who saw democracy yield to totalitarianism in the twentieth century. But when the political order seems imperilled, our advantage is that we can learn from their experience to resist the advance of tyranny. Now is a good time to do so.
This is the first comprehensive exploration of ancient and modern tyranny in the history of political thought. Waller R. Newell argues that modern tyranny and statecraft differ fundamentally from the classical understanding. Newell demonstrates a historical shift in emphasis from the classical thinkers' stress on the virtuous character of rulers and the need for civic education to the modern emphasis on impersonal institutions and cold-blooded political method. By diagnosing the varieties of tyranny from erotic voluptuaries like Nero, the steely determination of reforming conquerors like Alexander the Great and Julius Caesar and modernizing despots such as Napoleon and Ataturk to the collectivist revolutions of the Jacobins, Bolsheviks, Nazis and Khmer Rouge, Newell shows how tyranny is every bit as dangerous to free democratic societies today as it was in the past.
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