Tom Engelhardt

Tom Engelhardt is a co-founder of the American Empire Project and the author of The United States of Fear as well as a history of the Cold War, The End of Victory Culture. He is a fellow of the Nation Institute and runs TomDispatch.com. His sixth and latest book, just published, is A Nation Unmade by War (Dispatch Books).

America in the Mid-70s and 2020

Nov 02, 2020

It was summer almost half a century ago when I got into that Volkswagen van and began my trip across America with Peter, a photographer friend. I was officially doing so as a reporter for a small San Francisco news service, having been sent out to tap the mood of...

America’s Maestro of Death and Destruction

Oct 12, 2020

Yes, when he was running for president, he did indeed say: “I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody, and I wouldn’t lose any voters, OK? It’s, like, incredible.” Then he won — and on November 3 (or thereafter), whether he wins or loses, we’re likely to...

American Carnage From a Pandemic President

Oct 01, 2020

The year was 1991 and the United States was suddenly the globe’s lone superpower, its ultimate hyperpower, the last and greatest of its kind, the soon-to-be-indispensable nation. The only one left — alone, utterly alone and triumphant atop the world. Who could have asked for more? Or better? It had...

The Future Doesn’t Look Good

Aug 13, 2020

Let me be blunt. This wasn’t the world I imagined for my denouement. Not faintly. Of course, I can’t claim I ever really imagined such a place. Who, in their youth, considers their death and the world that might accompany it, the one you might leave behind for younger generations?...

How Osama bin Laden Got His Revenge

Jul 27, 2020

It’s July 2020 and I’ve just turned 76, which, as far as I’m concerned, officially makes me an old man. So, put up with my aging, wandering brain here, since (I swear) I wasn’t going to start this piece with Donald Trump, no matter his latest wild claims or bizarre...

Is This How the American Century Ends?

Jun 18, 2020

Let me rant for a moment. I don’t do it often, maybe ever. I’m not Donald Trump. Though I’m only two years older than him, I don’t even know how to tweet and that tells you everything you really need to know about Tom Engelhardt in a world clearly passing...

A Planet of Missing Beauties

Apr 02, 2020

The other morning, walking at the edge of a local park, I caught sight of a beautiful red cardinal, the first bird I ever saw some 63 years ago. Actually, to make that sentence accurate, I should probably have put either “first” or “ever saw” in quotation marks. After all, I...

The Global War of Error

Jan 09, 2020

Yes, our infrastructure stinks, our schools are failing, this country’s a nightmare of inequality and there’s a self-promoting madman in the White House. So, isn’t it time to take pride in the rare institutional victories America has had in this century? Arguably, none has been more striking than the triumphal success of the American...

The Donald Trump Show

Nov 26, 2019

French King Louis XV reputedly said, “Après moi, le déluge.” (“After me, the flood.”) Whether that line was really his or not remains unclear, but not long after his death did come the French Revolution. We should be so lucky! Our all-American version of Louis XV, Donald I, is incapable, I suspect,...

Donald Trump in Blunderland

Nov 05, 2019

There can be no question about it: Donald Trump is Lewis Carroll’s Queen of Hearts. “Off with his head!” was the president’s essential suggestion for — to offer just one example — a certain whistleblower who fingered him on that now notorious Ukrainian phone call. And if The Donald hasn’t also been playing the roles...

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