Not surprisingly, Donald Trump has become a full-fledged warmonger and paid up member of the military-industrial-intelligence complex. From William J. Astore at antiwar.com:
Donald Trump is a con man. Think of Trump University or a juicy Trump steakor can’t-lose casinos (that never won). But as president, one crew he hasn’t conned is the Pentagon. Quite the opposite, they’ve conned him because they’ve been at the game a lot longer and lie (in Trump-speak) in far biglierways.
People condemn President Trump for his incessant lying and his con games – and rightly so. But few Americans condemn the Pentagon and the rest of the national security state, even though we’ve been the victims of their long con for decades now. As it happens, from the beginning of the Cold War to late last night, they’ve remained remarkably skilled at exaggerating the threats the U.S. faces and, believe me, that represents the longest con of all. It’s kept the military-industrial complex humming along, thanks to countless trillions of taxpayer dollars, while attempts to focus a spotlight on that scam have been largely discredited or ignored.
One thing should have, but hasn’t, cut through all the lies: the grimly downbeat results of America’s actual wars. War by its nature tells harsh truths – in this case, that the U.S. military is anything but “the finest fighting forcethat the world has ever known.” Why? Because of its almost unblemished record of losing, or at least never winning, the wars it engages in. Consider the disasters that make up its record from Vietnam in the 1960s and 1970s to, in the twenty-first century, the Iraq War that began with the invasion of 2003 and the nearly 18-year debacle in Afghanistan – and that’s just to start down a list. You could easily add Korea (a 70-year stalemate/truce that remains troublesome to this day), a disastrous eight-year-old intervention in Libya, a quarter century in (and out and in) Somalia, and the devastating U.S.-backed Saudi war in Yemen, among so many other failed interventions.
Just what the military-industrial-intelligence complex needs, a huge new program that will put it in space. From Franklin C. “Chuck” Spinney at theamericanconservative.com:
Trump’s new missile defense plan will be a bonanza for political patronage in Washington, and a huge fail for peace.
Slim Pickens as Major T.J. Kong riding the bomb in “Dr. Stangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb” (1964). Screenshot/You Tube/Courtesy of Columbia Pictures.
President Donald Trump’s plan to escalate efforts in Ballistic Missile Defense (BDM), including the introduction of space-based weapons, should not be viewed in isolation.
It comes on top of the Defense Department’s plan to execute an across-the-board modernization of all our nuclear strike forces. It comes on top of the expansion of NATO under three presidents, despite earlier promises (here and here) to the contrary. It comes on top of the unilateral decision by President George W. Bush to withdraw from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty in June 2002, on top of Trump’s threat to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, and on top of Trump’s publication of a more aggressive Nuclear Posture Review. To argue that such a massive effort is directed at deterring Iran or North Korea is ludicrous. Russia and China know who these programs and policies are aimed at.
Viewed through the lens of the precautionary principle, any sensible strategic planner in Russia and China would have no choice but to see these efforts as being a consistent, integrated plan to harden the U.S. nuclear shield while sharpening the U.S. nuclear sword.
Consider that the makeup of the offensive modernization program—i.e., the nuclear sword—includes: 1) increased precision guidance; 2) improved command and control systems; 3) dial-a-yield warheads on nuclear gravity bombs; 4) new families of nuclear warheads for ballistic and cruise missiles; 5) new ICBMs; 6) new air launched cruise missiles; 7) new bombers; 8) new missile-launching submarines; 9) modernized SLBMs; 10) new sea-launched cruise missiles; and 11) new space-based C4ISR systems with the possibility of ASAT capabilities. Taking all of this into account, it is quite obvious that Russian and Chinese war planners will have no choice but to assume the worse about U.S. intentions. Russian and Chinese planners will be forced to assume that Washington is returning to the thoroughly discredited 1970s-era nuclear war-fighting theory of graduated nuclear escalation via the use of a series limited nuclear options, punctuated perhaps by diplomatic signaling. Application of the precautionary principle by Russian and Chinese nuclear war planners would force them to conclude that the U.S. believes it can fight and win a nuclear war regardless of any U.S. protestations about its sword-shield modernization plan being a defensive application of deterrence theory.
Posted in Business, Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Government, Intelligence, Military, Politics, Science, Technology
Tagged Cold War, military-industrial complex, Space
A blockbuster book details the many countries and elections in which the US government meddled. From Danny Haiphong at theantimedia.org:
The U.S. military state overthrows democratically-elected governments that it deems to be a threat to corporate interests.
“There is plenty of evidence that the United States is the most depraved and dangerous “meddler” in the affairs of other nations that history has ever known.”
Dan Kovalik is a labor and human rights lawyer, but most of all he is an anti-imperialist and an author of three books. Kovalik’s first two books tackled the specific US war drives against Russia and Iran. His third installment, The Plot to Control the World: How the US Spent Billions to Change the Outcome of Elections Around the World, addresses the broad scope of US election meddling abroad. The book provides much needed political and ideological life support to an anti-war movement in the U.S that has been rendered nearly invisible to the naked eye.
The Plot to Control the World is as detailed in its critique of U.S. imperialism as it is concise. In just over 160 pages, Kovalik manages to analyze the various ways that the U.S. political and military apparatus interferes in the affairs of nations abroad to achieve global hegemony. He wastes no time in exposing the devastating lie that is American exceptionalism, beginning appropriately with the U.S. imperialist occupations of Haiti and the Philippines at the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th. The U.S. would murder millions of Filipinos and send both nations into a spiral of violence, instability, and poverty that continues to this day. As Kovalik explains regarding Haiti, “While the specific, claimed justifications for [U.S.] intervention changed over time- e.g., opposing the end of slavery, enforcing the Monroe Doctrine, fighting Communism, fighting drugs, restoring law and order — the fact is that the interventions never stopped and the results for the Haitian people have been invariably disastrous.”
Posted in Civil Liberties, Crime, Cronyism, Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Governments, History, Imperialism, Intelligence, Military, Politics, War
Tagged elections, Interventionism, military-industrial complex
Few seem bothered that we may be hurtling towards extinction. From Paul Craig Roberts at paulcraigroberts.org:
Stephen Cohen and I are branded “Russian dupes” and “Putin agents,” because we object to the highly orchestrated and false portrayal of Russia as a threat to the West, a portrayal that is leading to war. The purpose of this orchestration is to prevent President Trump or any future president from reducing the dangerous tensions between nuclear powers that have accumulated since the Clinton regime. The military/security complex has resurrected its Cold War enemy so necessary for its outsized budget and power and intends to keep Russia as The Enemy. The Democrats have an interest in the villification of Russia as “Russiagate” explains Hillary’s loss of the 2016 Presidential election and gives Democrats hope of removing President Trump from office. The media lacks independence, knowledge, and integrity and is the tool used by the military/security complex to control explanations, a prostitution of the media that has made the term “presstitutes” an accurate description. As strategic and Russian studies are largely funded by the military/security complex, the universities are also complicit in the march toward nuclear war. Republicans are as dependent as Democrats on funding from the military/security complex and the Israel Lobby.
All of this self-serving is driving America and its vassals to war with Russia, which might also mean with China. The war would be nuclear and be the end of the West, an act of self-genocide. The US national security establishment is so crazed that Trump’s efforts to get off the war track and onto a peace track are characterized as treason and a threat to US national security. See for example: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/23/opinion/trump-mattis-syria-afghanistan.html?rref=collection%2Fsectioncollection%2Fopinion
Posted in Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Governments, History, Media, Military, Politics, War
Tagged China, military-industrial complex, Neocons, Russia
Brutally stupid, inconclusive wars that have inflicted immeasurable chaos and killed thousands of American military and the people they are supposedly protecting merited almost no mention during the latest campaign season. From Gerald Celente at The Trends Research Institute via lewrockwell.com:
Counting up the votes in a midterm election turnout that hit a 50-year high in the United States, all major party candidates running for the House and Senate championed America’s military/industrial/intelligence defense complex and its ballooning budget.
Throughout the election cycle, not one Republican or Democratic candidate presented a campaign platform to end America’s longest, losing Afghan War, nor to end its other illegal and unconstitutional foreign engagements in the Middle East and Africa that’s killing people, destroying nations and intensifying the hatred against We the People.
Indeed, not only was “Peace” a dirty word on the 2018 campaign trail, eight House seats that went to Democratic candidates were won by former members of the military/national security complex… veterans, Central Intelligence Agency and State Department officials. And even the gubernatorial race in solidly Republican Kansas was won by a Democrat who touted her family’s strong military credentials.
Imagine, trillions spent and millions killed in illegal, immoral wars with no end in sight – launched on platforms based on lies from Washington and promoted by the media – and it was NEVER a campaign issue in the 2018 midterm elections.
Posted in Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Government, History, Imperialism, Media, Military, Politics, War
Tagged Military spending, military-industrial complex, Peace, US Wars
Wars do not end war. From John LaForge at antiwar.com:
It gets harder to commemorate World War I, because of time and the public’s embrace of, or indifference to, a permanent war economy.
About the Great War British novelist H.G. Wells wrote on August 14, 1914, “This is already the vastest war in history. … For this is now a war for peace. It aims straight at disarmament. It aims at a settlement that shall stop this sort of thing for ever. Every soldier who fights against Germany now is a crusader against war. This, the greatest of all wars, is not just another war — it is the last war!”
An in-depth study of the military-industrial racket by Robert Higgs at mises.org:
“The business of buying weapons that takes place in the Pentagon is a corrupt business — ethically and morally corrupt from top to bottom. The process is dominated by advocacy, with few, if any, checks and balances. Most people in power like this system of doing business and do not want it changed.” – Colonel James G. Burton (1993, 232)
In countries such as the United States, whose economies are commonly, though inaccurately, described as “capitalist” or “free-market,” war and preparation for war systematically corrupt both parties to the state-private transactions by which the government obtains the bulk of its military goods and services.
On one side, business interests seek to bend the state’s decisions in their favor by corrupting official decision-makers with outright and de facto bribes. The former include cash, gifts in kind, loans, entertainment, transportation, lodging, prostitutes’ services, inside information about personal investment opportunities, overly generous speaking fees, and promises of future employment or “consulting” patronage for officials or their family members, whereas the latter include campaign contributions (sometimes legal, sometimes illegal), sponsorship of political fund-raising events, and donations to charities or other causes favored by the relevant government officials.