Exodus from Empire: Terrence Paupp’s new work on the decline of U.S. hegemony and the rise of global community

In his powerful new work Exodus from Empire, Paupp depicts an unwelcomed major historical transition being undergone by the Unites States, from a functional democracy into a fading veritable Empire. The crumbling Bush-2 regime’s unilateralist approach to international affairs has embraced some of the usual characteristics of a fascist state by authorizing torture abroad and the truncation of civil liberties at home. The Empire, which once relied heavily upon an extensive military-industrial complex, is now in the early phases of suffering from a crippling financial crisis brought on by the combination of “imperial overstretch” and a growing deficit in order to fund its many foreign adventures.

At the same time, Paupp argues that we are now witnessing the emergence of a countertrend represented by an emerging “Global Community,” reflects a unique development in world history. Not only individual nations, but entire regional blocs are being forged into an opposition in order to frustrate the US drive for global hegemony in world affairs. This “counter-hegemonic alliance” is evidenced in the recent de facto alliance among Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Bolivia’s President Evo Morales, along with Cuba’s President Castro. Russia and China have entered into a mutual security pact in response to what they see as implicit military threats from the US as it jockeys to encircle and cut off these two potential hegemons. In short, a rising Global Community is being architected both in response to threats from the US Global Empire from the aspirations of ordinary citizens seeking genuine democratic development in a benign international environment. The advent of a rising Global Community may be seen as proactive behavior by national movements, nations, and regional alliances seeking protection against American-bred acts of arrogance.

An Alternative to Washington’s Imperialistic Order

Specifically, this newly emerging counter-hegemonic alliance embodies an alternative to the US imperialistic order. Paupp’s central thesis is now unfurled when he posits that only by distancing itself from the US Empire will the Global Community have sufficient autonomy to possess the economic and political capacity to allow for its own path. The financial dominance of such Western-authored institutions as the IMF, World Bank, and WTO has for too long forestalled genuine national development throughout the Global South. Now, contemporary history has placed all of humanity at new points of convergence and confrontation that will resolve the legacy of decades of financial exploitation and the related injustices that have created a “global apartheid” of the rich isolating the poor. In response to these XXX conditions, we find that a rising Global Community will be increasingly characterized by more examples of counter-hegemonic alliances aimed at thwarting worldwide dominance by the US Global Empire. This emerging international commitment to building a new, democratic and humanistic transnational coalition carries with it an increasing readiness to embark, if need be, upon a forced march away from the US Global Empire.

Chapter 1 of the Paupp work identifies resistance to empire as an historical constant. It contrasts the Bush-2 vision of world domination by means of a Pax Americana with an alternative vision of a world based upon the protection of diversity. Chapter 2 examines the vulnerabilities and the abuses of empire. Chapter 3 analyses the breakdown of national and international law under the weight of the Empire’s projects. It exposes the reality of “Superpower law” —the means through which the US Global Empire seeks to rule itself and the world. Chapter 4 challenges the “clash of civilizations” thesis as argued by Samuel Huntington. The unequal hierarchy of global power and the varied geography of resource-rich nations remain ultimately responsible for opening the door to the inevitability of “resource wars.” The “clash-thesis” is merely an ideological fig leaf to cover up the unequal distribution and sharing of resources. The common elements that unite the traditions of the world’s great religions are discussed in terms of their universal principles eventually being incorporated into international law and organizations. The United Nations, the European Union, and NGOs are a few examples of the evolution of a rising Global Community that is converging toward a condition of “unity in diversity.” Chapter 5 examines the “hidden history” of empire. It compares the irresistible drive toward the Vietnam War with the history of the momentum behind the Iraq War. Leading up to the Vietnam War were the Warren Commission Report cover-up and the Gulf of Tonkin incident. Leading up to the Iraq War was the false claim of weapons of mass destruction followed by what happened with the mixed fate of the 9/11-Comission findings. In both cases, the truth was concealed in order to facilitate the accomplishment of certain very controversial foreign policy goals. Chapter 6 lays out an alternative vision to the one proposed by the authors of the “Project for the Next American Century” (PNAC) and its goal of global empire. Solutions to IMF and World Bank-imposed Third World debt creation strategies include resorting to the legal doctrine of “odious debt,” the forging South-South linkages in a counter-hegemonic alliance to the Empire, the establishment of world tribunals and truth commissions, achieving forms of inclusionary governance as well as ending all practices and forms of exclusionary governance, and advancing an enlightened social democratic-live model of world governance. Chapter 7 provides a short summary of the book’s findings.

Pre-publication edition is available in November 2006.

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