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Posted By : tot167 | Date : 01 Mar 2022 08:28:38 | Comments : 0 |

Laurence H. Shoup, William Minter, "Imperial Brain Trust: The Council on Foreign Relations and United States Foreign Policy"
Authors Choice Press | 2004 | ISBN: 0595324266, 0853453934 | 348 pages | PDF | 3,5 MB

News stories and academic studies often focus on the options chosen by a president and his officials during a crisis. Central to such decisions, however, are the forces that determine what options show up on the agenda and what options do not even make it to the table. Imperial Brain Trust, published in 1977, is the classic study of the Council on Foreign Relations, an organization that has, for decades, played a central behind the scenes role is shaping such foreign policy choices. This private club and think tank, bringing together the New York establishment and the Washington foreign policy elite as well as other powerful forces, took the lead in laying out the plans for post-World II international order. The Council also traced the key guidelines for Cold War intervention and vetted and advised generations of White House officials. Rival think tanks, such as the far-right Heritage Foundation, now have a higher profile. But the Council on Foreign Relations continues to mark the boundaries of what insiders consider to be respectable foreign policy discussion, helping aspirants to policy influence test out their schemes for establishment approval.

"...A thoroughly researched expose of the discreet workings of the powerful Council on Foreign Relations...an influential oligarchy which not only studies but forms U.S. policy. With keen insight, the authors trace the origins of the increased power of the organization..."
--American Library Association Booklist

"...the first in-depth analysis of the activities and influence of the most important private institution in the formulation of U.S. foreign policy...Shoup and Minter's work is based on detailed research, including examination of material hitherto unavailable to the public...this work will stand as a milestone."
--Library Journal

Summary: crucial documentation of the American Empire
Rating: 5

Shoup & Minter's devastating research on the planning behind the U.S. Empire is finally back in print 27 years after its 1977 publication by Monthly Review Press! The CFR, the Council on Foreign Relations, was formed by the international wing of U.S. capital after the League of Nations fell apart and inter-imperialist collaboration proved ineffective, leading to WWII. The farsighted few took measures to see that such a debacle did not recur. The CFR, the "imperial brain trust" of the title, carried out research concerning the optimal strategy for the U.S. in the war. They identified a minimum and maximum "Grand Area" that the U.S. needed to control, based on an assessment of factors including raw materials, and decided long before Pearl Harbor that the U.S. would need to control the Pacific Basin. War with Japan was the plan, with or without Pearl Harbor. Everything that happened in Europe was secondary to this consideration. The CFR Grand Area planning team was imported wholesale into FDR's State Department -- it became the State Department and directed the war strategy. So the U.S. was not in the war to defend itself, or to fight for Freedom, or to liberate anyone, cherished propaganda to the contrary. The goal was to seize as big a chunk of the globe as possible along with its raw materials and markets. This proved quite successful, of course, and with a few pesky holdouts that were encircled and attacked with variations on containment and rollback over the years, the U.S. Empire replaced the 19th century British Empire, with an unprecedented military reach and military bases everywhere. Since 1945 the sun has never set on the American Empire.

The name Noam Chomsky is much better known than Shoup & Minter, and Chomsky's analysis draws heavily on their groundbreaking research. The original source material from the CFR's study project is archived in the library of Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, just north of Chicago. It goes without saying that this book is just as timely as ever. For anyone still hypnotized by the sugar-coated lies about the reasons for the U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq, thinking that we are the selfless Caped Crusaders for Justice, this book is the wakeup call. No, there is no Santa Claus, and no, the U.S. is not "doing God's will" when it continuously invades country after country. It is the most powerful Empire in history, currently taking action to secure control of the remaining and fast-diminishing reserves of OIL.

This is why, all the fulminations of lobotomized Republicans to the contrary, there is such strong bipartisan unity in U.S. foreign policy. The disagreements are all over tactics -- the basic imperial strategy is never in question, and any presidential candidate who does question it, whether from the Right (Buchanan) or the Left (McGovern, Dean) is preemptively defeated by the united efforts of the American ruling class. Of course there was that exception, JFK, and for that there are other methods...

Summary: Authentic, Convincing and Reliable
Rating: 5

"Imperial Brain Trust" is one of the most authentic books I have read on this topic. As it was originally an acedamic thesis of the writer, beside it's convincing approach, it does not leave the reader wondering for resources, it gives all bibliographic details to check the sources and matters. Reading this book was a pleasure for me and I am fully agreed with the writers point of view.





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