So-Called Bloodless Wars: The Conquest of the Philippines

An Interview with Noam Chomsky, by Carl Whithaus


Chomsky: In fact, the [impulse to use complex communication for social control] has been true of US colonial practice for a long time. The real innovation the US brought about in imperialism occurred about a century ago after the conquest of the Philippines. The conquest itself was just murderous and bloody; it killed a couple hundred thousand people. But then they had to occupy and control. The place was not under control yet. And the U.S. instituted a highly sophisticated surveillance and control system using the technology of the day—the telephone and wireless. That turned into an extremely efficient system of surveillance, control, and penetration, which essentially left the structure of a police state that still remains in the Philippines.

[The goal of using the latest information technology available at the time] was feedback to the home country as a means of providing techniques of surveillance and control. The use of IT by the US military remains at the highest peak of information technology as developed over the century. This is kind of second nature.


Chomsky's face and glasses with lines Introduction
West Point Cadets Training U.S. Military Officers
Red Block The Conquest of the Philippines
Flying Drone IT in the Early 21st Century
Binary Numbers Cyber Section of the Pentagon The Cyber Section of the Pentagon
Lt. General William Caldwell's name on a uniform Blogs and Schizophrenia
Intellectual Property Intellectual Property
partial Israeli flag Israel
Circuit Board High Tech Corporations
War Photograph War Images
Chomsky Closing

Note: The complete audio recording of the interview is available to listen to as you browse the edited webtext.