Empire of Liberty: A Global History of the U.S. Military, a course offered by the Columbia University History Department, presents America’s wars in context, from King Philip's War in 1675 to Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. This course charts the expansion of U.S. military power from a band of colonists to a globe-girdling colossus with almost three million personnel, over 900 bases around the world, and an annual budget of about $700 billion — approximately half of all federal discretionary spending, and equal to the military spending of the next 21 nations combined. It introduces students to the history of U.S. military power; the economic, political, and technological rise of the military-industrial complex and national security state; the role of the armed services in international humanitarian work; and the changing role of the military in domestic and international politics.
"Born a hero, napalm lives a pariah:" the first history of the devastating incendiary weapon, published in 2013 by the Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. Reviewers around the world have applauded: "Meticulously researched and vitally important." Nick Turse, The San Francisco Chronicle. "Learned, fair and historically accurate.” Victor Davis Hanson, The Times Literary Supplement. "There is no question that Neer has done a masterful job of writing a compelling history of one of the major villains of the 20th century.” Kit Gillet, The South China Morning Post. Named one of the Best Books of 2013 by Mother Jones magazine. Visit the book's website at NapalmBiography.com.
Awarded the TOMS Core Faculty Fellowship for excellence in teaching Columbia College's oldest course — its "flagship academic offering," according to a recent dean — to hundreds of undergraduates since 2006 as a Core Lecturer in History. Contemporary Civilization is a survey of 2,500 years of political philosophy from Plato, Aristotle and The Bible, through such works as the Qur'an and Machiavelli, to Locke, Rousseau, and Nietzsche.