The Failure of Neoliberal Globalization and the End of Empire: Neoliberalism, Imperialism, and the Rise of the Anti-Globalization Movement

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This article offers a critical analysis of the development and dissolution of neoliberalism and neoconservatism, with emphasis on the role of popular resistance in bringing about the collapse of both forms of imperial domination. Responding to the brutal realities of the post-Cold War "new world order," opposition to neoliberal globalization grew over the 1990s, culminating in the protests against the 1999 meetings of the World Trade Organization in Seattle. Having successfully blocked the machinations of the leading capitalist powers for world domination, Seattle served as a model for a series of worldwide protests and demonstrations that, despite state repression and media obfuscation, prevented the expansion of the neoliberal globalization agenda. At the same time, the increasing inability of oil production to keep up with the growth of emerging industrial economies has further intensified inter-imperialist rivalry. Under the cover of the attacks of September 11th, the neoconservative forces in the United States adopted a policy of overt imperial intervention as a means of U.S. control over its rivals' access to oil, thus securing its global domination. Although this turn at first deflated the anti-globalization movement, growing condemnation of the U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq gave the anti-imperialist movement new life, and broadened its agenda. With vast majorities at home and abroad in opposition to U.S. aggression in Iraq and around the world, the failure of neoconservativism presages the end of empire.

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