Humane by Samuel Moyn audiobook

Humane: How the United States Abandoned Peace and Reinvented War

By Samuel Moyn
Read by Stephen R. Thorne

Blackstone Publishing 9780374173708
15.12 Hours 1
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A prominent historian exposes the dark side of making war more humane. In the years since 9/11, we have entered an age of endless war. With little debate or discussion, the United States carries out military operations around the globe. It hardly matters who’s president or whether liberals or conservatives operate the levers of power. The United States exercises dominion everywhere. In Humane: How the United States Abandoned Peace and Reinvented War, Samuel Moyn asks a troubling but urgent question: What if efforts to make war more ethical—to ban torture and limit civilian casualties—have only shored up the military enterprise and made it sturdier? Moyn looks back at a century and a half of passionate arguments about the ethics of using force, from the nineteenth-century struggle to make war less lethal to the eventual shift from opposing the crime of war to opposing war crimes, with fateful consequences. The ramifications of this shift became apparent in the post-9/11 era. By that time, the US military had embraced the agenda of humane war, driven both by the availability of precision weaponry and the need to protect its image. The battle shifted from the streets to the courtroom, where the tactics of the war on terror were litigated, but its foundational assumptions went without serious challenge. These trends only accelerated during the Obama and Trump presidencies. Even as the two administrations spoke of American power and morality in radically different tones, they ushered in the second decade of the “forever” war. Humane is the story of how America went off to fight and never came back, and how armed combat was transformed from an imperfect tool for resolving disputes into an integral component of the modern condition. As American wars have become more humane, they have also become endless. This provocative audiobook argues that this development might not represent progress at all.

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Summary

Summary

A prominent historian exposes the dark side of making war more humane.

In the years since 9/11, we have entered an age of endless war. With little debate or discussion, the United States carries out military operations around the globe. It hardly matters who’s president or whether liberals or conservatives operate the levers of power. The United States exercises dominion everywhere.

In Humane: How the United States Abandoned Peace and Reinvented War, Samuel Moyn asks a troubling but urgent question: What if efforts to make war more ethical—to ban torture and limit civilian casualties—have only shored up the military enterprise and made it sturdier? Moyn looks back at a century and a half of passionate arguments about the ethics of using force, from the nineteenth-century struggle to make war less lethal to the eventual shift from opposing the crime of war to opposing war crimes, with fateful consequences.

The ramifications of this shift became apparent in the post-9/11 era. By that time, the US military had embraced the agenda of humane war, driven both by the availability of precision weaponry and the need to protect its image. The battle shifted from the streets to the courtroom, where the tactics of the war on terror were litigated, but its foundational assumptions went without serious challenge. These trends only accelerated during the Obama and Trump presidencies. Even as the two administrations spoke of American power and morality in radically different tones, they ushered in the second decade of the “forever” war.

Humane is the story of how America went off to fight and never came back, and how armed combat was transformed from an imperfect tool for resolving disputes into an integral component of the modern condition. As American wars have become more humane, they have also become endless. This provocative audiobook argues that this development might not represent progress at all.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“In this profound and deeply disturbing book, Samuel Moyn shows how efforts to curb war’s brutality—to make it more humane—find the United States today caught in a bind in which war has become perpetual. As technology further dehumanizes war’s conduct, this bind will become increasingly difficult to escape.” Andrew J. Bacevich, president of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft and New York Times bestselling author
“Upends the conventional stories that are told about law, progress, and war…This book is a cry for moral and political engagement that should be very widely read.” Naz Khatoon Modirzadeh, founding director of the Harvard Law School Program on International Law and Armed Conflict
“Moyn…recovers the now long-forgotten abolitionist tradition, which sought to end war rather than to reform it. This profound historical retelling is an essential and groundbreaking contribution.” Aziz Rana, author of The Two Faces of American Freedom
“Humane is a deeply original, powerfully argued, mind-changing book. I predict it will become an activist bible for Gen Z.” Anne-Marie Slaughter, CEO of New America
“History at its finest, Samuel Moyn’s Humane recasts the iconic narratives of warfare, unearthing the ideas that led to today’s forever wars. Rich in detail, Humane taps loudly at the conscience of the complacent, sounding a clarion call for peace.” Karen J. Greenberg, author of Subtle Tools
“This is what books are for: to change our minds. Samuel Moyn has written a surprising, sharp, and deeply compelling reflection on the price of making war humane.” Daniel Immerwahr, author of How to Hide an Empire
“This is a singularly important book by a singularly incisive thinker. How, Samuel Moyn asks, might we imagine a more moral, generous, efficacious, and just plain sensible approach to the end of violence and the alleviation of human suffering?” Walter Johnson, professor of history at Harvard University and author of The Broken Heart of America

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Samuel Moyn

Author Bio: Samuel Moyn

Samuel Moyn is the Henry R. Luce Professor of Jurisprudence at Yale Law School and a professor of history at Yale University. He has published several books and writes in venues such as the Boston Review, Chronicle of Higher Education, Dissent, The Nation, New Republic, New York Times, and Wall Street Journal.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, Digital Rental, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction/History
Runtime: 15.12
Audience: Adult
Language: English