The Middle East,
Changing the World

excerpted from the book

The Secret History of the American Empire

the Truth about Economic Hit Men, Jackals, and How to Change the World

by John Perkins

Plume Book, 2007, paperback

After peace was declared [WWII] , U.S. oil company executives formulated a plan that would change the course of history. They decided that it was in their best interests (and therefore the country's!) to convince the president and congress to save U.S. reserves for future wars and other emergencies. Why drain domestic oil fields when those of other continents could be exploited? In collaboration with U.K. and European companies, they persuaded governments to grant them tax breaks and other incentives they claimed were required to ensure domination of global petroleum supplies.

This decision-which has been endorsed by every president and congress since-led to policies that have redefined national borders, created kingdoms, and brought down governments. Like gold, oil turned into a symbol of power and the basis for valuing currencies; unlike gold, it is essential to modern technologies-to the plastics, chemical, and computer businesses.

At first, it appeared that the oil executives' plan would heap wealth on Third World oil-producing countries. However, following in gold's footsteps, oil became an albatross. Petroleum-rich countries were similar to prospectors in the boomtowns of the Old West; as soon as they filed claims, they became the targets of scoundrels and robber barons.

The lessons of Iran [overthrow of Mossadegh in 1953] were clear: An empire could be built without the risks of war and at far less expense. The CIA's tactics could be applied wherever resources existed that the corporatocracy wanted.

... We turned the World Bank, the IMF, and other "multinational" institutions into colonizing tools. We negotiated lucrative deals for U.S. corporations, established "free" trade agreements that blatantly served our exporters at the expense of those in the Third World, and burdened other countries with unmanageable debts. In effect, we created surrogate governments that appeared to represent their people but in reality were our servants.

... [with the Mossadegh overthrow in Iran] the United States served notice that it was not a country to be trusted, not the defender of democracy we portrayed ourselves to be, and that our aim was not to help the Third World. We simply wanted to control resources.

Washington's first ally in the struggle to defend the sovereignty of the dollar was Israel. Most people, including the majority of Israelis, believed that Tel Aviv's decision to launch attacks against Egyptian, Syrian, and Jordanian troops along its borders in what came to be known as the Six-Day War of 1967 was driven by Israel's determination to protect its borders. Territorial expansion was the most obvious outcome; by the end of that bloody week, Israel had quadrupled its land holdings, at the expense of people living in East Jerusalem, parts of the West Bank, Egypt's Sinai, and Syria's Golan Heights. However, the Six-Day War served another purpose.

Arabs were humiliated and infuriated by the loss of their territories. Much of their anger was aimed at the United States; they knew that Israel could never have succeeded without American financial and political support, as well as the not-so-veiled threat that our troops were standing by in the unlikely event that Israel needed them. Few Arabs understood that Washington had motives that were far more selfish than defending the Jewish homeland, or that the White House would turn Arab anger to its advantage.

Nixon's second, and wholly unsuspecting, ally was the entire Islamic Middle East. In response to the Six-Day War of 1967, Egypt and Syria simultaneously attacked Israel on October, 6, 1973
(Yom Kippur, the holiest of Jewish holidays). Knowing that strategically he was on shaky ground, Egypt's President Anwar Sadat pressured Saudi Arabia's King Faisal to strike against the United States and therefore Israel in a -different way-by employing what Sadat referred to as "the oil weapon." On October 16, Saudi Arabia and four other Arab states in the Persian Gulf announced a 70 percent increase in the posted price of oil; Iran (which is Muslim but not Arab) in an act of Islamic solidarity joined them. During the ensuing days, Arab oil ministers, agreeing that the United States should be punished for its pro-Israel stance, unanimously backed the idea of an oil embargo.

It was a classic game of international chess. President Nixon asked Congress for $2.2 billion in aid to Israel on October 19. The next day, led by Saudi Arabia, Arab oil producers imposed a total embargo on oil shipments to the United States. At the time, few people perceived the cunning behind Washington's move, or the fact that it was driven by a determination to shore up a weakened dollar. '(

The impact was immense. The selling price of Saudi oil leaped to new records; by January 1, 1974, it had soared to nearly seven times its price four years earlier. The media warned that the U.S. economy was on the verge of collapse. Long lines of cars formed at gas stations across the nation, while economists expressed fears of the possibility of another 1929-style depression. Protecting our oil supplies had been a priority; suddenly, it became an obsession.

We know now that the corporatocracy played an active role in driving oil prices to these record highs. Although business and political leaders, including oil executives, feigned outrage, they were the puppet masters pulling the strings. Nixon and his advisors realized that the $2.2 billion aid package to Israel would force the Arabs into taking drastic actions. By supporting Israel, the administration engineered a situation that generated what was the craftiest and most significant EHM deal of the twentieth century.

The U.S. Treasury Department contacted MAIN and other firms with proven records as corporatocracy henchmen. Our assignment was twofold: to formulate a strategy to ensure that OPEC would funnel the billions of dollars we spent on oil back to U.S. companies and to establish a new "oil standard" that would replace the former "gold standard." We EHMs knew that the key to any such plan was Saudi Arabia; because it possessed more oil than any other country, it controlled OPEC; the Saudi "royal" family was corrupt and highly vulnerable. Like other "kings" in the Middle East, the Sauds understood the politics of colonialism. Royalty had been bestowed on the House of Saud by the British.

Details behind the strategy I helped engineer-the Saudi Arabian Money-laundering Affair (SAMA) are provided in Confessions of an Economic Hit Man. In summary, as far as the media was concerned, the House of Saud agreed to three important conditions; it would: 1) invest a large portion of its petrodollars in U.S. government securities; 2) allow the U.S. Treasury Department to use the trillions of dollars in interest from these securities to hire U.S. corporations to westernize Saudi Arabia; and 3) maintain the price of oil within limits acceptable to the corporatocracy. For its part, the U.S. government promised to keep the Saud family in power.

There was an additional agreement, one that made few headlines but was crucial to the corporatocracy's need to maintain the dollar as the standard global currency. Saudi Arabia committed to trading oil exclusively in U.S. dollars. With the scratch of a pen, the dollar's sovereignty was reestablished. Oil replaced gold as the measure of a currency's value.

... a side benefit-one appreciated only by the most savvy economists-also allowed Washington to continue imposing a hidden tax on every foreign creditor. Because the dollar reigned supreme, we bought their goods and services on credit. By the time they used that credit to purchase oil (or something else) from our companies, the value of their funds had diminished, due to inflation; the difference between these amounts was cash-in-the-pocket for the corporatocracy - a tax without the need for tax collectors.

... When Tel Aviv and Washington drove the Arab world into a corner, Arabs had little choice but to strike back, in the Yom Kippur War and through the OPEC embargo. This propelled the U.S. Treasury Department into action. EHMs were enlisted to forge a deal with Saudi Arabia that wed the dollar to oil. The dollar was crowned king, and has reigned supreme ever since.

SAMA changed geopolitics. It helped bring down the U.S.S.R., established the United States as an unchallenged superpower, and angered Osama bin Laden, the Saudi millionaire who would mastermind 9/Il.

a young Indonesian university English major - to John Perkins

The West, especially its leader, the U.S., is determined to take control of all the world, to become the greatest empire in history. It has already gotten very close to succeeding. The Soviet Union currently stands in its way, but the Soviets will not endure. They have no religion, no faith, no substance behind their ideology. History demonstrates that faith-soul, a belief in higher powers-is essential. We Muslims have it. We have it more than anyone else in the world, even more than the Christians. So we wait. We grow strong.

... Stop being so greedy, and so selfish. Realize that there is more to the world than your big houses and fancy stores. People are starving and you worry about oil for your cars. Babies are dying of thirst and you search the fashion pages for the latest styles. Nations like ours are drowning in poverty, but your people don't even hear our cries for help. You shut your ears to the voices of those who try to tell you these things. You label them radicals or Communists. You must open your hearts to the poor and downtrodden, instead of driving them further into poverty and servitude. There's not much time left. If you don't change, you're doomed.

a Turkish college history professor at a hotel in Bandar-e-Abbas to John Perkins

Jews are your watchdogs. You give them nuclear warheads so they can keep us Muslims in our place. You fund their army. The Palestinians have no army, just a few patriots. They have no government, no land to live on.

"For you, Israelis all about domination, about controlling oil. For the Jews, it is a dream - one that will prove illusory. For Palestinians, it is their home - a home they've been forced to vacate. For Arabs it is an enemy fortress built on Arab lands. For Muslims everywhere, it is an insult, a humiliation, a reason for us to hate you.

Throughout the 1980s, Washington supported Saddam's war on Iran. Not only was he our vehicle for revenge against the ayatollahs who had deposed the shah, stormed our embassy, humiliated American hostages, and expelled our oil companies, but also he sat on the world's second-largest oil reserves. The EHMs went to work on him. We gave him billions of dollars. Bechtel built him chemical plants that we knew would produce sarin and mustard gas for killing Iranians, Kurds, and Shi'a rebels. We provided him with fighter jets, tanks, and missiles and trained his military to operate them. We pressured the Saudis and Kuwaitis to lend him $50 billion.

Watching events unfold in Iraq, I often thought back to the words of that Iranian engineer who escorted me and the other two MAIN employees from Kerman to Bandar-e Abbas. "Iranians are not Arabs, we're Persians, Arians," he had said. "The Arabs threaten us. We're with you guys 100 percent." Suddenly the tables had turned. The Iranians had become the bad guys and an Arab named Saddam was our ally.

The eight-year Iraq-Iran war was one of the longest, costliest, and bloodiest in modern history. By the time it ended in 1988, more than a million people were dead. Villages, farms, and the economies of both countries were devastated. But the corporatocracy had enjoyed another victory. Military suppliers and contractors profited handsomely. Oil prices were up. Throughout, the EHMs tried to convince Saddam to accept a deal similar to SAMA, the one I had helped forge with the House of Saud. They wanted him to join the empire.

But Saddam kept refusing. If he had complied, like the Saudis, he would have received our guarantees of protection as well as more U.S.-supplied chemical plants and weapons. When it became obvious that he was entrenched in his independent ways, Washington sent in the jackals. Assassinations of men like Saddam,)usually have to involve collusion by bodyguards. In the cases I knew personally - Ecuador's Roldós and Panama's Torrijos - I was certain that bodyguards trained at the United States' School of the Americas were bribed to sabotage the airplanes. Saddam understood jackals and their techniques. He had been hired by the CIA in the sixties to assassinate Qasim and had learned from us, his ally, during the eighties. He screened his men rigorously. He also hired look-alike doubles. His bodyguards were never sure if they were protecting him or an actor.

The jackals failed. So in 1991, Washington chose the option of last resort. The first President Bush sent in the U. S. military. At this point the White House did not want to take Saddam out. He was their type of leader: a strongman who could control his people and act as a deterrent against Iran. The Pentagon assumed that by destroying his army, they had chastised him; now he would come around. EHMs went back to work on him during the nineties. He did not buy their package. Once again the jackals failed. A second President Bush deployed the military. Saddam was deposed and executed.

The corporatocracy thrives on an economy that depends on manufacturing military equipment. Our arms companies rank among the world's most profitable businesses.

The corporatocracy has managed to link the business of selling death with international diplomacy. Example: Israel and Egypt each receive billions of dollars every year from Washington because they participated in the 1978 Camp David Peace Accords; as part of this "peace" deal, they must earmark a large portion of the money they are given for purchasing U. S. military equipment.

The EHMs and media moguls excelled at providing disinformation that translated greed and domination into liberty and democracy. They served the corporatocracy magnificently.

The corporatocracy reaped immense profits, regardless of all the miscalculations - or, some would say, because of them. The War Machine was a financial success even when it failed militarily; U.S. contractors reaped windfall profits in Vietnam, Afghanistan, and Iraq, as well as in dozens of other places suffering from armed conflicts.

... the United States - the assassination of Patrice Lumumba in the Congo, our support of dictators like Jonas Savimbi in Angola, Mobutu Sese Seko and Laurent Kabila in the Congo, Abacha and Olusegun Obasanjo in Nigeria, and Samuel Doe in Liberia, as well as recent atrocities in Rwanda, the Sudan, and Liberia.

Forty-three of the fifty-three African nations suffer from chronic hunger and low income levels; famine and drought periodically plague large areas; mineral resources are exploited by foreign industries that take advantage of lax regulations and corrupt officials to avoid investing their profits locally, thus perpetuating weak economies and incompetent governments; people are driven to violence, ethnic conflict, and Civil War; three million children die each year from hunger and hunger-related diseases; the average life expectancy for the continent is forty-six, approximately that of the United States in I900; and 45 percent of the population is under the age of fifteen but will never realize their productive potentials because of hunger, cholera, yellow fever, malaria, tuberculosis, polio, HIV/AIDS, and war. Nearly thirty million Africans suffer from HIV, and millions of children have been orphaned by AIDS.

Jenny Williams, worked with NGOs in Africa - emailed John Perkins in September 2006

We're [NGOs} like a fig leaf that Western governments hide behind when they don't have -or want - a diplomatic or political solution," one [NGO] coworker told me. "In any conflict, any crisis, who goes in first? Aid organizations of course, so the West can say 'look, we're doing something,' even if they don't really want to solve the real problems in the end."

... the West has a real stake in keeping Africa poor. People in Western countries have sincere feelings of charity and they have faith that aid works-but Western governments and multi-national corporations reap enormous benefits from the continued instability and destitution of African countries. The successful manipulation of cheap labor and agricultural products, smuggled resources, and arms trading relies on corrupt politicians, prolonged warfare, and an underdeveloped civil society that lacks the capacity to stand up for its rights. If there were peace and transparency in the Congo, it would be much more difficult-if not impossible-for foreign corporations to exploit the mineral resources; f there were no rebel groups or tribal conflicts, there would be no market for small arms.

... if the West truly wanted to see a stable, developed Africa, the continent would be well on its way. Instead, the situation is worse after decades of Western involvement and billions of dollars of aid money.


Four million people have been killed in what is euphemistically called the Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Zaire) since 1998. They have died so that wealthier people can buy inexpensive computers and cell phones. Although the country won its independence from Belgium in 1960, it soon fell under Washington's influence. TIME magazine, in a 2006 cover story entitled "The Deadliest War In The World," stated bluntly that Congo's "first elected Prime Minister (Lumumba) had been killed by Belgian- and U.S.-backed opponents because of his growing ties to the Soviet Union."

After Lumumba's assassination army general Mobutu Sese Seko eventually took control. In TIME's words, "A U.S. favorite during the cold war, Mobutu presided over one of the most corrupt regimes in African history."

Mobutu's long rule was ruthless, as well as corrupt, and deeply disturbing to neighboring countries. In 1996 and 1997, Rwanda and Uganda sent soldiers into Congo, overthrew Mobutu, and installed the rebel leader, Laurant Kabila, as its new president. However, social and economic conditions deteriorated rapidly under Kabila's administration. Uganda and Rwanda invaded again in 1998. Six other countries, seeing this as an opportunity to take advantage of Congo's rich resources, joined what became known as Africa's first world war.

Ethnic, cultural, and tribal conflicts played a role in the war; however, mostly it is a struggle over resources. According to TIME: Congo's "soils are packed with diamonds, gold, copper, tantalum (known locally as coltan and used in electronic devices such as cell phones and laptop computers) and uranium." The country is vast-about one and a half times the size of Alaska-and is covered in many places with lush tropical forests and fertile agricultural lands. As I had discovered in conducting my studies of this region, the waters of the Congo River have the potential of providing hydroelectric power to much of the continent.

Without Congo's tantalum, we would not have many of our computer-based products (for example, a tantalum shortage resulted in the scarcity of the Sony PlayStation 2 during the 2000 Christmas season). Militias from Rwanda and Uganda may justify invasions on the grounds that they are defending their people against rebels, but they earn billions of dollars from the tantalum they collect and smuggle across borders during these raids.

EHMs, jackals, and government agents from the United States, the United Kingdom, and South Africa constantly flame the fires of conflict. Fortunes are made from arms sales to all sides. War enables corporations to dodge the scrutiny of human rights and environmental groups and avoid paying taxes and tariffs.

Congo is but one of many places where similar things are happening. U.S. congresswoman Cynthia McKinney (D-Georgia) exposed many aspects of this "Anglophone conspiracy" during a hearing she chaired on April 16, 200! Her opening statement included the following indictment:

Much of what you will hear today has not been widely reported in the public media. Powerful forces have fought to suppress these stories from entering the public domain.

The investigations into the activities of Western governments and Western businessmen in post-colonial Africa provide clear evidence of the West's long-standing propensity for cruelty, avarice, and treachery. The misconduct of Western nations in Africa is not due to momentary lapses, individual defects, or errors of common human frailty. Instead, they form part of long-term policy designed to access and plunder Africa's wealth at the expense of its people.

... at the heart of Africa's suffering is the West's, and most notably the United States', desire to access Africa's diamonds, oil, natural gas, and other precious resources.. . the West, and most notably the United States, has set in motion a policy of oppression, destabilization and tempered, not by moral principle, but by a ruthless desire to enrich itself on Africa's fabulous wealth... Western countries have incited rebellion against stable African governments ... have even actively participated in the assassination of duly elected and legitimate African Heads of State and replaced them with corrupted and malleable officials.

Although the United Nations has committed to halting the bloodshed in Congo (in the summer of 2006, the largest U.N. force in the world was stationed there), the United States and other G8 countries have not cooperated. In TIME's words:

... the world has been willing to let Congo bleed. Since 2000, the U.N. spent billions on its peacekeeping mission in Congo... In February the U.N. and aid groups working in Congo asked for $682 million in humanitarian funds. So far, they have received just $94 million-or $9.40 for every person in need.

former Peace Corps volunteer Cindy Platt to John Perkins

... USAID and Monsanto were working together to rewrite Malian legislation. We learned directly from someone inside USAID-Mali that the U.S. government agency is working with Monsanto to write into the Malian constitution language that will allow the introduction, sale, and patent rights of GMO crops.

... By allowing American farmers to sell their cotton at artificially low prices, our government undercuts African producers in world markets. African farmers often have to store their cotton for a year or more and then may be forced to sell at rock-bottom prices, or not at all. To make matters worse, our 'experts' are persuading farmers to shift from food crops to cotton, as a cash crop.

former Peace Corps volunteer Greg Platt

... economic development in Mali is driven by corporate interests. The faces of the development organizations appear benevolent. They depict themselves as aid organizations that work to improve the lives of these folks. However, the publicity campaigns serve to mask their true intentions, the control of natural and human resources and the domination of markets. Because economic development in Mali is corporate driven, the process is not democratic. The great majority of programs are not requested, initiated, managed, or governed by Malians. The results are often devastating, leaving Mali in worse economic and social situations than before. Furthermore, the development industry has created a large sector of highly paid foreigners who live luxurious lives and who are out of touch with the very people they are supposed to serve."

former Peace Corps volunteer Greg Platt

In general the good ones [NGOs] work directly with local people - the little guys. Their employees speak the language and live like their constituents.

We have allowed ourselves to be drugged into a stupor of self-deception. We succumb to television ads hawking cheap diamonds and gold. We brag about declining prices for laptops and cell phones. We waste gasoline and complain when the prices rise. We sweep the faces of diamond and gold miners and children poisoned by oil spills under the rug of materialistic greed.

We forget that our own children will inherit that rug. They will be called upon to replace it. They will have to clean up the terrible messes we leave behind.

... the corporation enjoys the same rights as a living person under the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution. This concept was upheld in 1886 by the Supreme Court in Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad Company and has been a fact of law ever since.

In actual practice, corporations are the opposite of good citizens. They bribe politicians to write laws that cheat society on a mammoth scale, most significantly by allowing them to avoid paying many of the very real costs incurred in conducting their businesses. What economists refer to as "externalities" are left out of pricing calculations. These include the social and environmental costs of destruction of valuable resources, pollution, the burdens on society of workers who become injured or ill and receive little or no health care, the indirect funding received when companies are permitted to market hazardous products, dump wastes into oceans and rivers, pay employees less than a living wage, provide substandard working conditions, and extract natural resources from public lands at less-than-market prices. Furthermore, most corporations are dependent on public subsidies, exemptions, massive advertising and lobbying campaigns, and complex transportation and communications systems that are underwritten by taxpayers; their executives receive inflated salaries, perks, and "golden retirement parachutes," which are written off as tax deductions.

Under proper accounting all these "externalities" would be factored into the costs of products. Those goods and services that are inherently "clean" would also be the cheapest. Consumers would pay a premium for products that strain the environment and society; the price would include funds for correcting the damage. In a truly "free" market economy, these very real costs would be "internalized"-included. But they are not. Why? Because accounting firms are not obligated to enforce sound accounting principles; they only need to adhere to those required by the laws-which are written by politicians who are dependent on the corporatocracy.

Modern corporations have all the rights of individuals but none of the responsibilities. In fact, they are licensed to steal. From an economic standpoint, there is simply no other word for it. They plunder the poor and future generations in order to further enrich the wealthy.

Because of corporatocracy policies and actions...

* More than half the world's population survives on less than $2 a day-about the same real income as they had thirty years ago.

* More than two billion people lack access to basic amenities, including electricity, clean water, sanitation, land titles, phones, police, and fire protection.

* There is a 55-60 percent failure rate for all World Bank-sponsored projects (according to a study by the joint Economic Committee of U.S. Congress).

* The cost of servicing Third World debt is greater than all Third World spending on health or education and nearly two times the amount those countries receive each year in foreign aid. Despite current lip service to forgiving it, Third World debt grows every year, currently approaching $3 trillion. The record is not encouraging. During the 1996 round of "debt forgiveness," the G7 countries, IMF, and World Bank announced a cancellation of up to 8o percent in HIPC (Heavily Indebted Poor Countries) debt, but between 1996 and 1999 the overall amount of debt-servicing payments from HIPC actually increased by 25 percent, from $88.6 billion to $114.4 billion.

* A trade surplus of $' billion for developing countries in the 1970S turned into an $u billion deficit at the beginning of the new millennium and continues to grow.

* Ownership of Third World wealth is more concentrated than it was before the 1970s era of massive infrastructure development and the 1990S privatization wave. In many countries, the top r percent of households now accounts for more than 90 percent of all private wealth.

* Transnational corporations have taken control over much of the production and commerce in developing countries. For exampie, 40 percent of the world's coffee is traded by just four companies while thirty supermarket chains account for almost one-third of worldwide grocery sales. A handful of oil and other resource-extractive companies control not only the markets but also the governments of countries that possess the resources.

* Corporate greed was highlighted when Exxon Mobil announced another record-breaking profit, $10.4 billion, in the second quarter of 2006-the second biggest profit ever reported by a U.S. company, surpassed only by Exxon's $10.7 billion in the fourth quarter of 2005; both were years when rising oil prices caused intense suffering among the world's poor. Oil companies are highly subsidized through tax breaks, trade agreements, and international environmental and labor laws that favor them.

* The overall share of federal taxes paid by U.S. corporations is now less than 10 percent, down from 21 percent in 2001, and more than o percent during World War II. One-third of America's largest and most profitable corporations paid zero taxes in at least one of the first three years in the new millennium. In 2002 U.s. corporations booked $149 billion in tax-haven countries such as Ireland, Bermuda, Luxembourg, and Singapore.

* Of the one hundred largest economies in the world, fifty-one are corporations. Of these, forty-seven are U.S.-based.

* At least thirty-four thousand children under five years old die every day from hunger or preventable diseases.

* The United States and many of the countries Washington touts as democracies exhibit the following undemocratic characteristics: the media is manipulated by huge corporations and the government; politicians are beholden to wealthy campaign contributors; and policies made "behind closed doors" ensure that voters are not informed about key issues.

* When the international treaty to ban land mines was passed by the U.N. in 1997' by a vote of 142-0, the United States abstained; the United States refused to ratify the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child, the International Biological Weapons Convention, the Kyoto Protocol, and an International Criminal Court.

* Global military spending reached a new record high of $1.1 trillion in 2006, with the United States accounting for nearly half of that (averaging $i,600 for every U.S. man, woman, and child).

* The United States was ranked #53 011 the World Press Freedom list in 2006 (compared to #17 in 2002) and has been severely criticized by Reporters Without Borders and other NGOs for jailing and intimidating journalists.

* The U.S. national debt (amount of money owed by the U.S. federal government to creditors who hold U.S. debt instruments), the largest in the world, reached $8.5 trillion in August 2006 or $28,500 for every U.S. citizen; it was increasing by $1.7 billion a day. A large percentage of this debt is held by the central banks of Japan and China and by members of the EU, rendering us extremely vulnerable to them.

* U.S. external debt (total public and private debt owed to non-residents repayable in foreign currency, goods, or services) is also the largest in the world, estimated at $9 trillion in 2005. (It is noteworthy that Washington uses the National and External Debts of other countries as weapons, forcing their governments to comply with corporatocracy demands or face bankruptcy, economic sanctions, and severe IMF-imposed "conditionalities"; yet the United States is the largest debtor nation in the world.

The Secret History of the American Empire

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