Summary of Deterring Democracy

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Deterring Democracy book summary


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Noam Chomsky’s Deterring Democracy is a political Rorschach test. What you see inside depends entirely upon your political leanings. Put simply, if you think that the United States played the role of the villain in the Cold War, you’ll likely see this book as an enormously detailed, highly researched look at what the U.S. government would probably prefer you didn’t know. If you think the U.S. was the defender of democracy, you’ll probably see it as more blathering from an unrepentant Bolshevik. Either way, this book was significant when published early in the post-Cold War period and certainly illuminates several of the shadier policies ever undertaken by the U.S. government. As such, getabstract suggests that any well-read and well-informed person in either the professional or academic world acquire a working knowledge of the arguments made by Chomsky in this book, in order to decide on their merits for yourself.

In this summary, you will learn

  • Why the image of America as the democratic system par excellence is false;
  • How America actually has a history of “deterring democracy” – at home and abroad;
  • How the U.S. used the Cold War as a smoke screen; and
  • How international interests drive U.S. foreign policy – at any cost.

About the Author

Noam Chomsky  was called "the left’s answer to William F. Buckley" by the Los Angeles Times. His books include Necessary Illusions: Thought Control in Democratic Societies, Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media, On Power and Ideology, Turning the Tide: U.S. Intervention in Central America, The Struggle for Peace, The Fateful Triangle: the United States, Israel and the Palestinians, and Towards a New Cold War: Essays on the Current Crisis and How We Got There.



Although the United States has always been synonymous with democracy, that image is merely a cleverly crafted illusion. By looking at history as well as current affairs, no matter what your political leanings might be, you can see clearly that the American empire poses a danger...

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