I think most Americans would agree that war is big business. It doesn’t serve the interest of the public only those of speacial corporations. In the documentary Iraq for sale the filmmakers focus on the fact that special interrogation companies took part in the prisoner abuse scandal.
Earlier this year the Congressional Research Service reported that at least 55,000 private armed security forces are in Iraq and Afghanistan – maybe up to 70,000 in Afghanistan alone. In 2008 defense contractors were given contracts amounting to the sums of $150 billion dollars. Someone’s getting rich. But war is big business. Taken from a British website, here are the top three defense contractors:
Lockheed Martin is the largest military contractor in the world with 140,000 employees, taking in over $40 billion annually, over $35 billion of which comes from the U.S. government. Lockheed Martin boasts that they have increased their dividend payments by more than 10 percent for the seventh consecutive year – perfectly in line with the increase in war spending by the US. Its chairman, Robert Stevens, received over $72 million in compensation over the past three years.
Lockheed’s board of directors includes a former Under Secretary of Defense, a former U.S. Air Force Commander of the U.S. Strategic Command, a former Deputy Director of Homeland Security, and a former Supreme Allied Commander of Europe. These board members receive over $200,000 a year in compensation. Its political action committee gave over a million dollars a year to federal candidates in 2009, and is consistently one of the top spending PACs in the U.S. They appeal to all members of Congress because they strategically have operations in all fifty states. And, since 1998, Lockheed has spent over $125 million to lobby Congress.
Northrop Grumman is a $33 billion company with 120,000 employees. In 2008, it received nearly $25 billion in federal contracts. Its chairman, Ronald Sugar, received over $54 million in compensation over the past three years.
Northrop’s Board includes a former Admiral of the Navy, a former 20 year member of Congress, a former chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, a former commissioner of the Security and Exchange Commission and a former U.S. Naval officer. The members of its board of directors received over $200,000 each in 2009. Its PAC is listed as making over $700,000 in federal campaign donations in 2009. Since 1998, it has spent over $147 million lobbying Congress.
Boeing has 150,000 employees and took in over $23 billion in federal contracts in 2008. With revenues of $68 billion in 2009, its chair, James McNerney, was paid over $51 million over the past three years. Its board members are paid well over $200,000 a year. Boeing’s directors include a former U.S. Secretary of Commerce, a former White House chief of staff, a former vice chair of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, and a former U.S. Ambassador and U.S. Trade Representative. It hosts the 10th largest political action committee, giving away more than one million dollars to federal candidates in 2009. Since 1998, it has spent $125 million lobbying Congress.
Notice how these companies are comprised of former defense secretaries, politicians, soldiers. These men have everything to gain from war, and everything to lose from not fighting it. Why hasn’t the honest and upright Sean Hannity and Glenn Beck talked about this?
In 1913 the power and soveriegnty of the United States over our own economy was arrested from us with the creation of the Federal Reserve. Leap forward ninety-seven years and you see the havoc that they have reaked on our economy. The have overseen one depression, twelve recessions, and numerous wars. They inflated our system and destroyed our currency. Maybe Thomas Jefferson was right when he said that a central bank is more threatening to a nation than a standing army.
Before Iraqi Freedom Iraq had no central bank. They did, however, have one thing – debt. In 2004 a number of countries came together to forgive Iraqi debt incured und Saddam. There’s just one catch, read the following…Iraq will surrender its economic sovereignty to global financial institutions.
This leads me to believe that not only were we going to war in Iraq because the – and I hate to say it, Nate – military industrial complex profits from it, but the global elite wanted a central bank in Iraq to enslave their people to debt just as we have been enslaved to the likes of the Federal Reserve.
Is there any other reason why Bush would constantly say “stay the course”? Is there any other reason why the mainstream media ( Fox News) helped the Bush administration shift the Middle Eastern debate from WMDs to “we can’t leave it like this now”? All the while polaring those of us who are opposed to the conflicts as left-wing liberal nutjobs who blame America.
The arrest, trial and quick execution fo Saddam Hussein was nothing more than a Mafia style rubout. Meant to hide the fact that the United States in the 1980’s gave Hussein biological weapons. Iraq and Afghanistan are nothing more than objectiveless procedures. Gen. Casey recently said that the U.S. will need to remain in the conflicts for at least another decade for economic help.
Now I know why.
“The most important thing is for us to find Osama bin Laden. It is our number one priority and we will not rest until we find him.” G.W. Bush, 9/13/01
“I don’t know where bin Laden is. I have no idea and really don’t care. It’s not that important. It’s not our priority.”
– G.W. Bush, 3/13/02