This article was originally published by Jacob G. Hornberger at The Future of Freedom Foundation.
Doing his best to justify President Biden’s $750 billion military budget, Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told Congress that China’s military has been building its military capabilities at “a very serious and sustained rate.”
Well, of course, it has been. How else would the US national-security establishment justify its ever-increasing budgets? I’m just surprised that Milley didn’t mention Russia in the same breath, as well as North Korea, Cuba, the Taliban, Venezuela, Iran, and all the other minor official enemies, maybe even communist Vietnam too.
China and Russia were the two official enemies — or “rivals,” “opponents,” “enemies” — during the Cold War that kept the Pentagon, the CIA, and the NSA in high cotton. That was when both countries were supposedly part of an international communist conspiracy that was supposedly based in Moscow. If increasing amounts of US taxpayer money were not shifted into the coffers of the US national-security establishment, it was argued, America would end up falling to this international communist conspiracy.
In fact, it was this supposed threat of “godless communism” that was emanating from Moscow that was the justification for converting the federal government to a national-security state in the first place. For more than 150 years, the federal government operated as a limited-government republic with limited powers. After World War II, it was converted to a national-security state to wage the Cold War against China, Russia and the rest of the Soviet Union, other communist countries, and communism in general. That’s when the US national-security establishment acquired omnipotent powers, including the power of assassination.
As we pointed out in our recent online conference “The National Security State and the Kennedy Assassination,” by the summer of 1963 President Kennedy had achieved a breakthrough and recognized that this Cold War fear-mongering was nothing more than a racket. At his Peace Speech at American University, he threw the gauntlet down by declaring an end to the Cold War and an intention to have the United States exist in peaceful harmony with the communist world.
That sealed John Kennedy’s fate. No president since Kennedy has dared to do that.
After Kennedy was removed from office, Americans got the Vietnam War and another 25 years of ever-increasing money, influence, and power for the national-security establishment,
It was always assumed by most everyone that the Cold War racket would go on forever. To the shock of the US national-security establishment, the Soviet Union unilaterally called it quits in 1989. China was, of course, still around, just as North Korea and Cuba were. But the Pentagon and the CIA knew that without the Soviet Union, their Cold War racket would no longer be sufficiently powerful to justify ever-increasing budgets.
That’s when they went into the Middle East and began killing, destroying, and humiliating people, knowing that this would almost certainly produce terrorist “blowback” or retaliation. And sure enough, it did: the World Trade Center in 1993, the USS Cole, and the US embassies in East Africa. But none of them was large enough to become a gigantic new official enemy that would replace the Soviet Union and godless communism.
But then the 9/11 attacks came, which provided the new official enemy to replace communism — “terrorism.” The Pentagon, the CIA, and the NSA were back in high cotton again with ever-increasing annual budgets to wage their “global war on terrorism.”
The 9/11 terrorist attacks were then used as the excuse to invade Afghanistan and Iraq, where US forces wreaked massive death and destruction over many years, which guaranteed more anger and rage, which ensured a never-ending supply of new terrorists.
Thus, the Pentagon and the CIA had found another official enemy, one that was likely to last for decades, perhaps even longer than the Soviet Union and godless communism.
But after 20 years of interventionism in Afghanistan and the Middle East, US forces are now in retreat, which means that all the fear-mongering about how the terrorists are coming to get us will lack the impact it had on Americans in the years after the 9/11 attacks.
What to do now? The answer is obvious: It’s now time to return to China and Russia as America’s old and new official enemies. Oh, sure, the threat of an international conspiracy involving godless communism supposedly emanating from Moscow will not be available but the hope is that Americans will nonetheless be just as afraid so that they don’t question the ever-increasing amounts of taxpayer largess going into the military intelligence coffers.
There is only one solution to this sordid, deadly, destructive, and corrupt racket: the dismantling, not the reform, of the national-security state apparatus and the restoration of America’s founding governmental system of a limited-government republic. That’s the way to lead America to peace, prosperity, and harmony with the people of the world.
Old or new enemies, makes no difference. The main goal of the State is to keep the people in fear. HL Mencken said “The whole aim of politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary”. Nietzsche said “Everything the State says is a lie, everything it has it has stolen”.
It’s time people stop listening the propaganda. It has never been about protecting the citizens of America, that’s silly and naive. In the end, it has always been about the State accumulating more and more power, both foreign and domestically (under a variety of guises). Besides, the State sees its citizens as nothing more than managed disposable resources.
Forget about reform, one may try to polish a turd, but it is still a turd. The effort to reform would be wasted anyway. The State, gov’t, and officialdom, and their ruling class associates are hopelessly and irrevocably debased, depraved, and degenerate. We have a kakistocracy, which is a gov’t by the most incompetent, degenerate, unprincipled people society has to offer. The system they’ve built is well on its way to collapse anyway. There is nothing of value or virtue to sustain it. It will invariably drag the US down into oppression, misery, and poverty. The hallmarks of their type of governance is mass snitching, mass propaganda, hyper concentration of wealth, loss of rights and individual freedoms, constant wars, unmanageable gov’t debt, mass distraction, political ideology superseding facts and reality, and public policy is formed in secret behind closed doors. These very things are the essence of what is now called “governance”.
The best way to counter this is not to cooperate, not freely comply, not believe what the State tells you, to ignore the State’s edicts, to hold the State in public ridicule. When one person does this he is ignored, if millions do this the State would panic. It’s not enough that the State must rob our income to be sustained. It also requires that we buy into the notion it is legitimate, it must have popular support, that we must willingly submit to it, that we believe it. Take these away and the State either collapses or becomes heavily authoritarian, then it collapses.
As long as there are certain groups of people in this world that want to rule it, there can NEVER be peace and to dismantle our troops is to put this country at a very high risk. THAT is the truth plain and simple. A strong military is the only way to ensure our safety,
I’m not a political or military strategist, but I can think rationally. It is highly unlikely there would be a nuke war. The Russians certainly don’t want one, we know this because the USSR had nuclear parity or even superiority in several areas during the Cold War and yet did not use them. Indeed, their protocols for use may have been even stricter than ours. Besides all that, Russia is a European country with a European culture, they are not suicidal maniacs. They have an incredibly vast territory and unbelievable natural resources, but a small population. They are allies with China not only because they don’t trust us, but also likely they don’t entirely trust the Chinese. The Chinese look across the Amur river (their national boundary) into Russia and see only landscapes devoid of people and super rich in natural resources from horizon to horizon. The Chinese have designs on it and the Russians know it.
The Chinese are different in philosophy of course, but even they do not want to initiate any use of nuke weapons. This is because they not only want to be the main hegemonic power in the world, but actually want to occupy various lands around the world, to turn them into permanent extensions of their homeland. They do not want to radiate and wreck lands and render them unlivable, they want to live in these lands and exploit them, they want to fill these areas up with Chinese.
The days of the US steamrolling over the world is over. China and Russia now have comparable power to the US. We can no longer dictate, we now have to accept our hegemonic limitations and deal with them as equals. (Russia would bow out of any war with us as long as we left them alone, it is China that is feeling it’s oats.) The problem is, the “elites”/the State/PTB don’t like the modern situation. If necessary, they are more than willing to provoke hostility, and throw your children and grandchildren away and use them as cannon fodder to maintain their hegemony. They are willing to commit this nation to a venture that would bring on untold loss.
Of course as a nation we do have to stand up for ourselves. But I for one don’t give a f*ck about the Chinese, as long as they leave us alone. I have to give DT credit when he was prez. The Chinese knew they could only get away with so much and respected DT’s resolve and power, I assure you this is not the case now.
As a nation we will pour vast amounts of money (in our case it’s all borrowed money) to build up its resources, to create strategic positions, to increase its power; but in reality we only get weaker. We lack leadership, we lack moral superiority, we lack love of country, we lack resolve, we lack clear vision, these are the real weapons. We only have weakness and rot now. It’s always, always, always the people who continue paying the horrible price.
750 spent on defense pumps 750 billion into the general economy (the one you and I live our lives in).
Take that 750 billion out of it and what would our economy look like?
Anonymous – this is a simplistic view. First, the gov’t is notoriously inefficient (documented 1,000 dollar hammer, 50 dollar a gallon fuel, 10 dollars per rifle round, etc.). Every single weapons programs whether ships, subs, planes, tanks, everything, always has massive cost overruns in the billions (the F-35 program alone will be over a trillion dollars). Modern weapons are necessary, but the bang we’re getting for our buck is very poor.
Secondly, a huge chunk of the money spent by gov’t is borrowed, including the money spent on national defense. The strength of a nation is not a big military, the real strength is a sound economic and financial system. We currently have a 29 trillion dollar deficit (fed. gov’t alone, not counting trillions more in city, county, and state debt), and more than 150 trillion in future unfunded liabilities. As debt grows, economic and financial systems weaken, and money loses its value. As the deficit grows we get less and less bang per dollar.
Thirdly, it is not strictly officials that are acting in the best interests of the country that determine our defense policies, it is the Mil. Ind. Comp. even more so. And with their lobbyists throwing millions and millions at both elected and non-elected officials, its going to stay this way, inefficiencies and deficits don’t really matter much anyway to them.
How are we going to finance the national defense in the future? Likely by stripping the remaining personal wealth of the citizens, and thereby dramatically lowering the standard of living and quality of the people so the wealth can be used by the State. However, to get away with this the State will first have to strip the citizens of their rights and freedoms.
Really, what has the trillions spent just in the past few years gotten us. Besides, in the past, much of the technology has been stolen, or sold to our enemies so that the trillions spent don’t have the desired deterrence.
Though we need national defense, the 750 billion you mention, outside the control of the State, would be better spent and far more effective in the economy, contributing in both standard of living and quality of life.
I mostly agree with this. However, 9/11 wasn’t blowback. It was an inside job to manufacture consent to invade the Middle East to secure the petrodollar and ensure the oil was controlled by approved corporate oilcos and not some local leader who apparently thought the oil belonged to them. It worked.
And Communism is just another boogeyman. designed to manufacture consent to war if needed(yes, sanctions are an act of war). The whole purpose of making these countries enemies is not their type of government. Vietnam is communist and a big trading partner. No problems there. It is the fact that the bankers and corporate financiers on Wall Street are not allowed access.
China reserves a 51% stake in any foreign company doing business there. Smart move. This is to protect their economy from being pillaged and plundered by foreign economic interests. No, it’s not capitalism. But who says they are required to be capitalist. China has resisted takeover by not allowing international banking and investing a foothold in their country. Countries that do allow it eventually become subservient to the bankers through takeover of the monetary system and usury. Read the book “Confessions of an Economic Hitman” to see how the US does this.
Very few countries have escaped Wall Street financialization of their economy. The bankers own the US government and the economy through the Federal Reserve. Russia was nearly taken down in the 1990s before Putin took over. All countries that resist the bankers are deemed enemies by the west. Few are still standing. Some are Russia, China, Iran, Venezuela and several others. They are demonized by both the left and right and the demonization never changes from administration to administration.
If Smedley Butler were alive today, he would say “Cold war is a racket”.
Don’t fall for the propaganda.