Just as, in domestic affairs, all the evils caused by statism and government
controls were blamed on capitalism and the free market—so, in foreign affairs,
all the evils of statist policies were blamed on and ascribed to capitalism.
Such myths as “capitalistic imperialism,” “war-profiteering,” or the notion
that capitalism has to win “markets” by military conquest are examples of the
superficiality or the unscrupulousness of statist commentators and historians.
The essence of capitalism’s foreign policy is free trade—i.e., the abolition
of trade barriers, of protective tariffs, of special privileges—the opening of
the world’s trade routes to free international exchange and competition among
the private citizens of all countries dealing directly with one another. During
the nineteenth century, it was free trade that liberated the world,
undercutting and wrecking the remnants of feudalism and the statist tyranny of