"The publication of Underground Empire could thus not be more timely. Henry Farrell and Abraham Newman offer an important corrective to a dominant narrative in US foreign policy circles that positions the US and other Western governments as innocent by-standers, caught off-guard by their main rivals. The authors explain instead that, since the early 2000s, the US has become increasingly adept at detecting economic vulnerabilities and turning them against its adversaries. Economic coercion is not new; China and Russia have simply learnt how to play the US at its own geostrategic game. The book’s title is apt. The economic vulnerabilities that the US government has learnt to exploit are largely hidden out of sight. The modern global economy runs on complex and arcane networks including payments systems, undersea cables and data centres, conduits through which finance and information flow."
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