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Postmodern Imperialism:
Geopolitics and the Great Games

New Book By Eric Walberg

Al-Jazeerah, CCUN, June 27, 2011



Geopolitics and the Great Games



Clarity Press, Inc. is pleased to announce the publication of Eric Walberg’s POSTMODERN IMPERIALISM: Geopolitics and the Great Games, a riveting and radically new analysis of the imperialist onslaught which first engulfed the world in successive waves in the 19th–20th centuries and is today hurtling into its endgame.

The term “Great Game” was coined in the nineteenth century, reflecting the flippancy of statesmen (and historians) personally untouched by the havoc that they wreaked. What it purported to describe was the rivalry between Russia and Britain over interests in India. But Britain was playing its deadly game across all of Eurasia, from the Balkans and Palestine to China and southeast Asia, alternately undermining and carving up “premodern” states, disrupting the lives of hundreds of millions, with consequences that endure today.

With roots in the European enlightenment, shaped by Christian and Jewish cultures, and given economic rationale by industrial capitalism, the inter-imperialist competition turned the entire world into a conflict zone, leaving no territory neutral.

The first “game” was brought to a close by the cataclysm of World War I. But that did not mark the end of it. Walberg resurrects the forbidden “i” word to scrutinize an imperialism now in denial, but following the same logic and with equally horrendous human costs. What he terms Great Game II then began, with America eventually uniting its former imperial rivals in an even more deadly game to destroy their common revolutionary antagonist and potential nemesis—communism. Having “won” this game, America and the new player Israel—offspring of the early games—have sought to entrench what Walberg terms “empire and a half” on a now global playing field—using a neoliberal agenda backed by shock and awe.

With swift, sure strokes, Walberg paints the struggle between domination and resistance on a global canvas, as imperialism engages its two great challengers—communism and Islam, its secular and religious antidotes.

Paul Atwood (War and Empire: The American Way of Life) calls it an “epic corrective”. It is a “carefully argued—and most of all, cliche-smashing—road map” according to Pepe Escobar (journalist Asia Times). Rigorously documented, it is “a valuable resource for all those interested in how imperialism works, and sure to spark discussion about the theory of imperialism”, according to John Bell (Capitalism and the Dialectic).

Specializing in economics at the University of Toronto, then Cambridge, Walberg also lived, worked and studied in the former Soviet Union, experienced its collapse and aftermath in Uzbekistan, and is presently a writer for the foremost Cairo newspaper Al Ahram. Known internationally as a journalist specializing in the Middle East, Central Asia and Russia, his purpose is to deconstruct traditional western analysis with its Eurocentric bias, to show the twentieth century as it was experienced by the victims of the imperial games rather than the supposed victors, and to provide the reader with the tools necessary to analyze the current game as it evolves.

Walberg is a regular contributor to Counterpunch, Dissident Voice, Global Research, Al-Jazeerah and Turkish Weekly, and is a commentator on RT television and Voice of the Cape radio. His articles appear in regularly in Russian, are translated into Spanish, Italian, German and Arabic, and are accessible at his website Walberg was a moderator and speaker at the Leaders of Change Summit ( in Istanbul in 2011.


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“Those who think that the “Great Game” played for control of Central Asia is a superannuated relic of Europe’s imperial past must read Walberg’s epic corrective to their egregious error. In extensive, richly textured and carefully documented detail he reveals the evolution of this competition into the planetary quest for dominance it has become, as well as the imperatives animating its new “players,” among whom many will find, to their surprise or consternation, tiny Israel and its symbiotic liaison with America Inc. Prime imperial architect, Zbigniew Brzezinski actually called the blood-soaked playing field The Grand Chessboard, but like all his rapacious forebears omitted to mention the pawns. Walberg places them at the heart of this much needed remediation of the sinister falsehoods propagated in a political culture manufactured from above and offers hope that this anti-human playboard may yet be overturned."

              PAUL ATWOOD, American Studies, University of Massachusetts and author of War and Empire: The American Way of Life (2010)


“Walberg’s book is a sharp and concise energizer package required to understand what may follow ahead of the Great 2011 Arab Revolt and related geopolitical earthquakes. It’s a carefully argued—and most of all, cliche-smashing—road map showing how the New Great Game in Eurasia is in fact part of a continuum since the mid-19th century. Particularly refreshing is how Walberg characterizes Great Games I, II and III—their strategies and their profiteers. Walberg also deconstructs an absolute taboo—at least in the West: how the US/Israeli embrace has been a key feature of the modern game. It will be hard to understand the complex machinery of post-imperialism without navigating this ideology-smashing road map.”

PEPE ESCOBAR, roving correspondent for Asia Times, author of Globalistan: How the Globalized World is Dissolving into Liquid War (2007)

"Imperialism is as alive today as in the days of the original Great Game. Central Asia and the Middle East are as strategically important today for the US and Great Britain as they were in earlier games, if for different reasons. Postmodern Imperialism is a continuation of Kwame Nkrumah’s Neocolonialism: The Last Stage of Imperialism (1965) and carries forward the struggle of the pen against the sword."

                  GAMAL NKRUMAH, international editor, Al-Ahram Weekly, Cairo

"Walberg’s provocative work traces the transformation of the imperial world through the twentieth century. It is a valuable resource for all those interested in how imperialism works, and is sure to spark discussion about the theory of imperialism and the dialectic of history."

                    JOHN BELL, author of Capitalism and the Dialectic (2009)






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