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United States as a republic and empire

United States as a republic and empire
For Johan Galtung, the US is simultaneously a republic and an empire, a distinction he believes is highly relevant. The US is on one hand loved for its republican qualities, and on the other loathed by its enemies abroad for its perceived military aggressions. Its republican qualities include its work ethic and dynamism, productivity and creativity, the idea of freedom, or liberty, and a pioneering spirit. On the other hand, its military and political manipulation are censured for their aggressiveness, arrogance, violence, hypocrisy and self-righteousness, as well as the US public ignorance of other cultures and extreme materialism.[24]

In 1973, Galtung criticised the “structural fascism” of the US and other Western countries that make war to secure materials and markets, stating: “Such an economic system is called capitalism, and when it’s spread in this way to other countries it’s called imperialism”, and has praised Fidel Castro for “break[ing] free of imperialism’s iron grip”. Galtung has stated that the US is a “killer country” guilty of “neo-fascist state terrorism” and compared the US to Nazi Germany for bombing Kosovo during the 1999 NATO bombing of Yugoslavia.[25][26]

According to Galtung, the US empire causes “unbearable suffering and resentment” because the “exploiters/ killers/ dominators/ alienators, and those who support the US Empire because of perceived benefits” are engaging in “unequal, non-sustainable, exchange patterns”. In an article published in 2004, Galtung predicted that the US empire will “decline and fall” by 2020. He expanded on this hypothesis in his 2009 book titled The Fall of the US Empire – and Then What? Successors, Regionalization or Globalization? US Fascism or US Blossoming?.[27][28]

However, the decline of the US empire did not imply a decline of the US republic, and the “relief from the burden of Empire control and maintenance…could lead to a blossoming of the US Republic”. Elaborating on the radio and television program Democracy Now, he stated that he loved the American republic and hated the American empire. He added that many Americans had thanked him for this statement on his lecture tours, because it helped them resolve the conflict between their love for their country and their displeasure with its foreign policy