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From the Publisher
"Authors Secunda and Moran investigate how the US goes to war--from the Spanish-American War to the war on terror--with the thesis that several administrations used propaganda to sell war to the American public. In the case of wars declared by Congress, administrations were often aided by third parties and fortuitous events: the sinking of the Maine, and a jingoistic Hearst-Pulitzer press's call for war with Spain; in WWI, U-boat attacks, the sinking of the Lusitania, and the British invention of bogus atrocities to arouse the public; in WWII, isolationist America's response to Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor. The authors find that undeclared wars were often prompted by presidential actions: Korea was a UN police action; Vietnam was fought to halt the spread communism; the Gulf War ostensibly was fought to restore an insubstantial Arab democracy (Kuwait) and retaliate for atrocities (staged and promoted by a public relations firm). The authors devote major attention to the Iraq War, instigated by doubtful CIA intelligence and phantom weapons of mass destruction in a nation not proven to be a sponsor of terror. The authors argue that Bush and Cheney sold the war by exploiting post-9/11 fears. A provocative book. Recommended. General readers, all undergraduate students, graduate students, and research faculty."