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Why has it become acceptable that we and particularly our children take for granted wars to be normal?
It is because of the profits of Defense companies?
According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), the US continues to have the highest military expenditure of any country in the world. In 2017 the USA spent more on its military than the next seven highest-spending countries combined. At $610 billion, which does not include the strongly rumored secret funds available to the military/security industrial complex, thought to be an additional $200 billion; and they will do absolutely anything, and I mean anything, to protect their interests. Many expect that Congress by 2020 will approve close to a Trillion dollars a year budget for them!
Media is a critical part of their strategy.
Every type of media.
Social media in particular but that is a whole other subject of investigation of itself. Will leave that for someone else to write about. The reason of this piece is to open a window by giving one particularly pertinent example for the reader of the Pentagon’s influence on Hollywood and mention other facts seemingly kept hidden from the public, about how we treat our veterans.
The Military/Security Industrial Complex have a never ending quest to counter movies that do get through their net that put American soldiers and wars in a bad light.
The fact is that America and their surrogates are involved today in 2018 in 76*, yes 76 wars around the world. Another shocking fact is that U.S. military forces have directly been responsible for at least 15 million deaths since WW11.
(*This number was quoted in the closing minutes of an hour special on the legendary Seymour Hersh by DEMOCRACY NOW with Amy Goodman last month.)
These include the Korean and Vietnam Wars also including fatalities in Cambodia and Laos. The two Iraq Wars and Afghanistan, alone caused in excess of 3 million deaths.
Let’s not forget the disgrace of the millions of injured and currently still being killed for no reason whatsoever in Yemen by US Ally, Saudi Arabia.
In other past and present surrogate US wars there have been another 10 million plus deaths in such far off places as Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo, East Timor, Guatemala, Indonesia, Pakistan, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Libya, Syria and Sudan, to name a handful of the countries where America is responsible directly or indirectly for death, mayhem and destruction.
The zombie like American public seems unaware of these numbers and knows even less about the proxy wars that the United States is supporting. The main stream media, in part, we can thank for that.
How brainwashed has the public become?
How do they promote their propaganda for war?
Well, the US government agencies have worked behind the scenes on almost all major action movies and thousands of TV series over the years including for example 24, Homeland, Mission Impossible, Charlie Wilson’s War even Meet the Parents.
The most poignant and relevant example i can sight is from Jon Voight’s film ‘Transformers’ ; a scene, just after American troops have been attacked by a robot, the Pentagon’s Hollywood liaison for nearly 30 years based in Los Angeles, Phil Strub personally inserted the line “Bring ’em home”, reportedly according allegedly to Strub, a very important protective, paternalistic quality to be projected, when in reality, the Pentagon does not have any such rules, principles or morality; quite the opposite.
“Bring ’em home” to what?
Look at the real life situation; the disregard for American Veterans is legendary with an estimated 250,000 sleeping rough on the streets of America. Nearly 60,000 are reportedly awaiting immediate medical assistance, still not forthcoming. Suicides are at the highest rates in history amongst Vets.
In fact statistics show 10% of America’s total homeless population are US veterans, men who wore proudly the American uniform, who faced danger for their country. Yet there’s endless spending; trillions of dollars, of government, tax payers, money for corporate weapons contractors, yet no money for veterans. Why? The Pentagon spends $250m a day since shortly after 9/11 on wars and spends trillions of dollars to buy weapons, many useless or inadequate for purpose, mostly from the five big US defense companies. Something is seriously wrong with the system and American morality. One wonders are the American people aware of these facts?
In movie terms, the turning point, after a string of anti-war films about Vietnam in the 70s, was the movie TOP GUN. This changed everything. This made military sexy. A plethora of what can only be described as follow on films glamorizing the military and bravery of American forces personnel, which in reality is the opposite of the truth. The My Lai massacres being just one example of the obscenity of war.
The Orwellian bottom line is, the propaganda level must feed the now brainwashed and malleable public that Wars are a necessary part of life; making the public think it’s normal, which is of course complete nonsense.
All that money should be spent on US domestic infrastructure, health and education. Its out right political and corporate corruption that maintains the military/security industrial complex.
This man warned us in 1961 to beware of the current War mongering State that America has now become. Read it carefully. Let him have the last word.
In essence he, Eisenhower advocated peace not war. As did his successor John Kennedy; something that probably resulted in JFK’s assassination.
President Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961.
My fellow Americans:
Three days from now, after half a century in the service of our country, I shall lay down the responsibilities of office as, in traditional and solemn ceremony, the authority of the Presidency is vested in my successor, John Fitzgerald Kennedy.
Like every other citizen, I wish the new President, and all who will labor with him, Godspeed. I pray that the coming years will be blessed with peace and prosperity for all.
We now stand ten years past the midpoint of a century that has witnessed four major wars among great nations. Three of these involved our own country.
Our military organization today bears little relation to that known by any of my predecessors in peacetime, or indeed by the fighting men of World War II or Korea.
Until the latest of our world conflicts, the United States had no armaments industry. American makers of plowshares could, with time and as required, make swords as well. But now we can no longer risk emergency improvisation of national defense; we have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions. Added to this, three and a half million men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment. We annually spend on military security more than the net income of all United States corporations.
This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence — economic, political, even spiritual — is felt in every city, every State house, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society.
In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the militaryindustrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.
We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.
Akin to, and largely responsible for the sweeping changes in our industrial-military posture, has been the technological revolution during recent decades.
In this revolution, research has become central; it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.
We must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific technological elite.
Down the long lane of the history yet to be written America knows that this world of ours, ever growing smaller, must avoid becoming a community of dreadful fear and hate, and be instead, a proud confederation of mutual trust and respect.
Such a confederation must be one of equals. The weakest must come to the conference table with the same confidence as do we, protected as we are by our moral, economic, and military strength. That table, though scarred by many past frustrations, cannot be abandoned for the certain agony of the battlefield.
Disarmament, with mutual honor and confidence, is a continuing imperative. Together we must learn how to compose differences, not with arms, but with intellect and decent purpose. Because this need is so sharp and apparent I confess that I lay down my official responsibilities in this field with a definite sense of disappointment. As one who has witnessed the horror and the lingering sadness of war — as one who knows that another war could utterly destroy this civilization which has been so slowly and painfully built over thousands of years — I wish I could say tonight that a lasting peace is in sight.
Happily, I can say that war has been avoided. Steady progress toward our ultimate goal has been made. But, so much remains to be done. As a private citizen, I shall never cease to do what little I can to help the world advance along that road.
Richard Galustian is a frequent contributor to Global Research.