Sanctions as War: Anti-imperialist Perspectives on American Geo-Economic Strategy offers the first comprehensive account of economic sanctions as a tool for exercising American power on the global stage. Since the 1980s, the US has steadily increased its reliance on economic sanctions, or the imposition of extensive financial penalties for violation of given rules, to fight its foreign policy battles. Perceived as a less costly and damaging alternative to kinetic military engagement, economic sanctions have been levied against over 25 other countries. In the process, sanctions have destroyed thousands of innocent lives and wreaked inestimable damages to civil society.
To understand how sanctions function as a war-making strategy, this collection offers chapters that address the theory and history of economic sanctions as well as chapter-length case studies of sanctions exercised against the civilian populations of Iraq, Venezuela, and other nations.
Contiributors are: Shireen Al-Adeimi; Tim Beal; Renate Bridenthal; Jesse Bucher; Stuart Davis; Gregory Elich; Manu Karuka; Jeremy Kuzmarov; Fangfei Lin; Washington Mazorodze; Tanner Mirrlees; Corinna Mullin; Junki Nakahara; Nima Nakhaei; Immanuel Ness; Sarah Raymundo; Muhammad Sahimi; Saif Shahin; Greg Shupak; Gregory Wilpert; Zhun Xu; Helen Yaffe
Stuart Davis is Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication Studies at the City University of New York, Baruch College.
Immanuel Ness is Professor of Political Science at City University of New York and Visiting Professor of Sociology at University of Johannesburg. He edits the Journal of Labor and Society. His most recent publications are Organizing Insurgency: Workers’ Movements in the Global South (Pluto Press, 2021) and The Oxford Handbook of Economic Imperialism (Oxford University Press, forthcoming in 2022).
List of Illustrations
Notes on Contributors
1 Introduction Why Are Economic Sanctions a Form of War? Stuart Davis and Immanuel Ness
part 1 Theorizing and Situating Economic Sanctions in International Political Economy 2 Sanctions as Instrument of Coercion Characteristics, Limitations, and Consequences Tim Beal
3 Hunger Politics Sanctions as Siege Warfare Manu Karuka
4 Economic Sanctions, Communication Infrastructures, and the Destruction of Communicative Sovereignty
5 All the President’s Media How News Coverage of Sanctions Props up the Power Elite and Legitimizes US Hegemony Junki Nakahara and Saif Shahin
6 Transnational Allies of Sanctions ngoHuman Rights Organizations’ Role in Reinforcing Economic Oppression Immanuel Ness
7 Sanctioning China’s Tech Industry to ‘Secure’ Silicon Valley’s Global Dominance
part 2 Profiles of Sanctioned Nation-States 8 US Sanctions Cuba ‘to Bring About Hunger, Desperation and the Overthrow of the Government’
9 The Western Frontier US Sanctions against North Korea and China Tim Beal
10 A Century of Economic Blackmail, Sanctions and War against Iran
11 Sanctions and Nation Breaking Yugoslavia, 1990–2000 Gregory Elich
12 Targeted Sanctions and the Failure of the Regime Change Agenda in Zimbabwe
13 Iraq Understanding the ‘Sanctions Warfare Regime’ Nima Nakhaei
14 Writing out Empire The Case of the Syria Sanctions Greg Shupak
15 The Blockade on Yemen
16 The US War on Venezuela
17 Trying to Unbalance Russia The Fraudulent Origins and Impact of US Sanctions on Russia Jeremy Kuzmarov
18 The Political Economy of US Sanctions against China
Zhun Xu and Fangfei Lin
part 3 Resistance to Economic Sanctions and Economic Sanctions as Resistance 19 Blowback to US Sanctions Policy
20 International Solidarity against US Counterinsurgency
21 Boycott and Sanctions as Tactics in the South African Anti-Apartheid Movement
Jesse Bucher and Stuart Davis
22 Settler Colonialism, Imperialism and Sanctions from Below Palestine and thebdsMovement Corinna Mullin