American Empire

Howard Zinn Guest Editorial (1968): “Refuse to play the game of silence in the midst of murder”

In this editorial, Howard Zinn nominates Eartha Kitt for Woman of the Year and Dr. Benjamin Spock for Man of the Year because “both refused to play the game” by speaking out against the Vietnam War.

Excerpt:

We’ve become fanatic about the word communist and this is part of the game.…

‘One Long Struggle for Justice’

Author on Air • January 19, 2010 In early January of 2010, the Zinn Education Project joined with HarperCollins, publisher of Howard Zinn’s classic A People’s History of the United States, to sponsor an “Ask Howard” online radio interview, and invited teachers from around the country to participate. Sixty teachers and students submitted written questions to Professor Zinn. The Jan. 19 interview was conducted by Rethinking Schools Curriculum Editor Bill Bigelow. Below is the full audio recording, followed by excerpts from that interview, edited for length and clarity.

War and Peace Prizes

President Obama with Nobel Prize • Photo by Pete Souza • WikiCommons Published in The Guardian • October 10, 2009 I was dismayed when I heard Barack Obama was given the Nobel peace prize. A shock, really, to think that a president carrying on two wars would be given a peace prize. Until I recalled that Woodrow Wilson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Henry Kissinger had all received Nobel peace prizes. The Nobel committee is famous for its superficial estimates, won over by rhetoric and by empty gestures, and ignoring blatant violations of world peace.

Untold Truths About the American Revolution

Revolutionary War Battle • Artist unknown • Georgia Studies Published in The Progressive • July 20, 2009 There are things that happen in the world that are bad, and you want to do something about them. You have a just cause. But our culture is so war prone that we immediately jump from, “This is a good cause” to “This deserves a war.” You need to be very, very comfortable in making that jump.

‘You have to go beyond capitalism’: Dave Zirin Interviews Howard Zinn

Howard Zinn and David Zirin, 2009 | HowardZinn.org

On May 2, 2009, sportswriter Dave Zirin, author of A People’s History of Sports (New Press) and What’s My Name Fool? (Haymarket Books), interviewed Howard Zinn. Some 250 people attended the event at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. It was sponsored by Haymarket Books.…

U.S. ‘In Need of Rebellion’

Interviewed by Al Jazeera • Sept. 13, 2008 Q: Is there any hope the US will change its approach to the rest of the world? "If there is any hope, the hope lies in the American people. [It] lies in American people becoming resentful enough and indignant enough over what has happened to their country, over the loss of dignity in the world, over the starving of human resources in the United States, the starving of education and health, the takeover of the political mechanism by corporate power and the result this has on the everyday lives of the American people."

Rebels Against Tyranny: An Interview with Howard Zinn on Anarchism

Interview by Žiga Vodovnik • Published at CounterPunch • May 12, 2008 "There is one central characteristic of anarchism on the matter of means, and that central principle is a principle of direct action. ... In the South, they did not wait for the government to give them a signal, or to go through the courts, to file lawsuits, wait for Congress to pass the legislation. They took direct action; they went into restaurants, were sitting down there and wouldn’t move. They got on those busses and acted out the situation that they wanted to exist."

What the Classroom Didn’t Teach Me About the American Empire

Published on TomDispatch.com • April 1, 2008 With an occupying army waging war in Iraq and Afghanistan, with military bases and corporate bullying in every part of the world, there is hardly a question any more of the existence of an American Empire. Indeed, the once fervent denials have turned into a boastful, unashamed embrace of the idea. However, the very idea that the United States was an empire did not occur to me until after I finished my work as a bombardier with the Eighth Air Force in the Second World War, and came home. Even as I began to have second thoughts about the purity of the "Good War," even after being horrified by Hiroshima and Nagasaki, even after rethinking my own bombing of towns in Europe, I still did not put all that together in the context of an American "Empire."