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Cultures of War : Pearl Harbor / Hiroshima / 9-11 / Iraq - John W. Dower

Cultures of War

Pearl Harbor / Hiroshima / 9-11 / Iraq

Hardcover

Published: 7th September 2010
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Published: 12th September 2011
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Over recent decades, John W. Dower, one of America's preeminent historians, has addressed the roots and consequences of war from multiple perspectives. In War Without Mercy (1986), winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award, he described and analyzed the brutality that attended World War II in the Pacific, as seen from both the Japanese and the American sides. Embracing Defeat (1999), winner of numerous honors including the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award, dealt with Japan's struggle to start over in a shattered land in the immediate aftermath of the Pacific War, when the defeated country was occupied by the U.S.-led Allied powers. Turning to an even larger canvas, Dower now examines the cultures of war revealed by four powerful events--Pearl Harbor, Hiroshima, 9-11, and the invasion of Iraq in the name of a war on terror. The list of issues examined and themes explored is wide-ranging: failures of intelligence and imagination, wars of choice and "strategic imbecilities," faith-based secular thinking as well as more overtly holy wars, the targeting of noncombatants, and the almost irresistible logic--and allure--of mass destruction. Dower's new work also sets the U.S. occupations of Japan and Iraq side by side in strikingly original ways. One of the most important books of this decade, Cultures of War offers comparative insights into individual and institutional behavior and pathologies that transcend "cultures" in the more traditional sense, and that ultimately go beyond war-making alone.

"Starred Review. An unrelenting, incisive, masterly comparative study." -- Kirkus Reviews
"Among Dower's gifts is a striking ability to embed provocative conclusions within such rich analysis that they cannot be dismissed as outrageous." -- Michael Sherry - American Scholar

List of Illustrationsp. xiii
Preface: The Evolution of an Inquiryp. xix
Acknowledgmentsp. xxxv
ôPearl Harborö As Code Wars of Choice and Failures of Intelligence
Infamy and the Cracked Mirror of Historyp. 3
ôPearl Harborö As Codep. 4
The Boomerang of ôPearl Harboröp. 14
The Failure of Intelligencep. 22
Prelude to Pearl Harborp. 22
Prelude to 9-IIp. 27
Postmortems: Pearl Harborp. 34
Postmortems: 9-IIp. 38
The Failure of Imaginationp. 42
ôLittle Yellow Sons-of-Bitchesöp. 42
Rationality, Desperation, and Riskp. 50
Aiding and Abetting the Enemyp. 53
ôThis Little Terrorist in Afghanistanöp. 57
Innocence, Evil, and Amnesiap. 62
Catastrophe and the Transfer of Innocencep. 62
Evil and the Transfer of Evilp. 68
Amnesia and Frankenstein's Monsterp. 74
Evil Where the Price Is Worth Itp. 87
Wars of Choice and Strategic Imbecilitiesp. 95
Pearl Harbor and ôOperation Iraqi Freedomöp. 95
The Emperor System and Imperial Presidencyp. 101
Choosing Warp. 111
Strategic Imbecilitiesp. 115
Deception and Delusionp. 125
Victory Disease and the Gates of Hellp. 132
ôPearl Harborö as Godsendp. 138
Ground Zero 1945 and Ground Zero 2001 Terror and Mass Destruction
ôHiroshimaö as Codep. 151
Air War and Terror Bombing in World War IIp. 162
Ghost Citiesp. 162
Extirpating ôNoncombatantsöp. 166
ôIncreasing the Terrorö In Germanyp. 171
Targeting Japanp. 175
Firebombing the Great Citiesp. 179
ôBurn Jobsö and ôSecondary Targetsöp. 184
Morale, Shock, and Psychological Warfarep. 187
ôThe Most Terrible Bomb in the History of the Worldöp. 197
Ground Zeroes, 1945p. 197
Anticipating Zerop. 205
Becoming Deathp. 208
Ending the War and Saving American Livesp. 212
The Irresistible Logic of Mass Destructionp. 221
Brute Forcep. 221
August 1945 and the Rejected Alternativesp. 225
Unconditional Surrenderp. 233
Power Politics and the Cold Warp. 241
Partisan Politicsp. 248
Sweetness, Beauty, and Idealistic Annihilationp. 251
Scientific Sweetness and Technological Imperativesp. 252
Technocratic Momentum and the War Machinep. 257
The Aesthetics of Mass Destructionp. 268
Revengep. 275
Idealistic Annihilationp. 281
New Evils in the World: 1945/2001p. 286
Evil Beyond Recallp. 286
Arrogating Godp. 289
Holy War Against the West: Seisen and Jihadp. 294
Ground Zeroes: State and Nonstate Terrorp. 299
Managing Savageryp. 301
Wars and Occupations Winning the Peace, Losing the Peace
Occupied Japan and Occupied Iraqp. 313
Winning the War, Losing the Peacep. 313
Occupied Japan and the Eye of the Beholderp. 315
Incommensurable Worldsp. 318
Planning Postwar Japanp. 324
Eyes Wide Shut: Occupying Iraqp. 338
Repudiating Nation Buildingp. 346
Baghdad Burningp. 353
Convergence of a Sort: Law, Justice, and Transgressionp. 359
Jiggering the Lawp. 359
Legal and Illegal Occupationp. 362
War Crimes and the Ricochet of Victor's Justicep. 366
Spheres of Influence and the Limbo of Defeated Armiesp. 377
Dissipating Intangible Assetsp. 389
Nation Building and Market Fundamentalismp. 394
Controls and Capitalismsp. 394
Corruption and Crimep. 397
Successful and Disastrous Demilitarizationp. 400
ôGeneralistsö Versus ôArea Expertsöp. 404
Privatizing Nation Buildingp. 408
Rendering Iraq ôOpen For Businessöp. 413
Aid In Two Erasp. 418
Combating Carpetbagging in an Earlier Timep. 429
Mixed Legacies in an Age of Forgettingp. 431
Epilogue: Fools' Errands and Fools' Goldp. 437
Secular Priesthoods and Faith-Based Policiesp. 437
Fools' Errandsp. 443
Fools' Goldp. 446
Notesp. 453
Illustration Creditsp. 553
Indexp. 557
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780393061505
ISBN-10: 0393061507
Audience: General
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 640
Published: 7th September 2010
Publisher: WW Norton & Co
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 24.4 x 16.8  x 4.6
Edition Number: 1