An explosive new vision of geopolitics from two trail-blazing political scientists
Deep beneath our feet, vast and sprawling, lies one of the most sophisticated empires the world has ever known. At first glance, it might not look like much – it is made up of fibre optic cables and obscure payment systems. But according to prominent political scientists Henry Farrell and Abraham Newman, the United States has turned the most vital pathways of the world economy into tools of domination over foreign businesses and countries, whether they are rivals or allies, allowing it to maintain global supremacy.
Drawing on original reporting and ground-breaking research, Farrell and Newman explain how this underground empire has allowed the United States to eavesdrop on other countries and isolate its enemies. Now, efforts by countries such as China and Russia to untether themselves from this coercive US-led system are turning the global economy into a battle zone. Today’s headlines about trade wars, sanctions, and controls on technology exports are merely tremors hinting at far greater seismic shifts beneath the surface, as we sleepwalk into a dangerous new struggle for empire.
Essential reading for anyone who wants to understand how power is wielded today, Underground Empire weaves together tales of economic conflict, shadowy surveillance and covert infrastructure projects to explain how the world order has been brought to the brink of chaos – and how we might find a way back from the edge.