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The authors argue that the USA needs to adopt a new policy, of “respect our sovereignty and we will respect yours.” This entails, “don’t expect us to embrace your values in this country and we won’t expect you to embrace our values in your country: or to be even more blunt about it: we’ll be us. You be you. ‘You be you’ means there would be no more government-sponsored proselytization of the American Way abroad. There would be no more inveigling by the U.S. government to get others to change. This buttresses the respect that sovereignty is supposed to accord, whereas self-respect requires a much more concerted focus by us on our domestic problems.” As the authors write, “populations should be able to live under whatever system of governance they choose, to use their natural resources in whatever manner they see fit, and to run their economies according to the principles that most suit them …” They point out that aid has failed, citing Kishore Mahbubani: “the story of Western aid to the developing world is essentially a myth. Western countries have put significant amounts of money into their overseas development assistance budgets, but these funds’ primary purpose is to serve the immediate and short-term security and national interests of the donors rather than the long-term interests of the recipients.” They observe that from 1985 to 2005 the World Bank pressed Malawi to adopt free-market policies and slash or end fertiliser subsidies. The 2005 harvest was the worst ever: 5 million of Malawi’s 13 million people needed food aid. Then the country’s new president adopted the policies the West practised (not those it preached) and subsidised its fertiliser production. Now it is feeding its own people and selling food to its neighbours. As the authors state, nation-building from outside always fails, so instead: “we would share our values, ideals, and principles, and let people make of them what they will. But we wouldn’t build or finance projects or inject large sums of anything that can be pocketed or siphoned off. We would educate. We would train.” As they point out, so-called ‘humanitarian interventions’ also always fail. They quote Alan Kuperman, “the emerging norm of humanitarian military intervention, which is intended to prevent genocide and ethnic cleansing, perversely causes such violence through the dynamic of moral hazard. The norm, intended as a type of insurance policy against genocidal violence, unintentionally encourages disgruntled sub-state groups to rebel because they expect intervention to protect them from retaliation by the state. Actual intervention, however, is often too late or too feeble to prevent such retaliation. Thus, the norm causes some genocidal violence that otherwise would not occur.” Again, occupations too always fail. No country welcomes foreign invaders or occupiers. As the authors point out, upon occupation, the initiative at once moves to the occupied. They advocate US disentanglement from the internal affairs of all other nations. On their own logic, they should be calling for an immediate end to the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan. They are wrong to claim that Hezbollah and Hamas are ‘attacking the United States’. Again, on their own logic, the USA should withdraw all its forces from the Middle East. This is a rational, radical and effective critique of longstanding US foreign policy.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.