In the aftermath of the Cold War, Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer offers his most challenging book to date: a probing assessment of the meaning and implications of what U.S. leaders have called a "new world order." While the end of the Cold War and the mobilization of sanctions against Iraq opened the possibility of a truly new world order, Nelson-Pallmeyer argues that the Gulf War was used to serve a very different purpose. United States elites in the national security establishment instead sought to make the world safe for future wars, to derail the post-Cold War "peace dividend," and to foreclose the possibility of a world order based on international justice and commitment to human rights.
From the perspective of the Third World, where ever-greater debt leads to ever-greater death, Nelson-Pallmeyer shows how the "new world order" is only a new way of managing the old world order: the misery of the poor will continue to sustain the appetites of the rich. Parallel to the increased pauperization of the Third World, the 1980s saw the massive transfer of wealth within the United States, from the poor to the very wealthy. The consequences: the decay of our cities and dramatic increases in racial violence, drug abuse, and crime. At the same time, the impending ecological crisis has escalated rapidly.
Finally, Nelson-Pallmeyer turns his attention to the role of Christians in blessing the "new world order." Appalled by the abuse of religious rhetoric in justification of the Gulf War he examines how Jesus confronted the "world order" of his day, and calls for a radical discipleship that worships the God of life rather than the idols of power and wealth.