Former Bush Official Just Confirmed That Our Wars Are for Corporate Interests

March 29, 2016   |   Claire Bernish

Claire Bernish
March 29, 2016

(ANTIMEDIA) United States — “I think Smedley Butler was onto something,” Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, former George W. Bush administration heavyweight, told Salon in an exclusive interview.

Major General Smedley Butler earned the highest rank in the U.S. Marine Corps, accumulating numerous accolades as he helped lead the United States through decades of war. He later became an ardent critic of such militarism and imperialism.

“War is a racket,” Butler famously said, and Wilkerson — who has also turned critical of U.S. imperialist policy — agrees with and admires the esteemed Marine.

Wilkerson, who served as chief of staff to former secretary of state, Colin Powell, has grown tired of “the corporate interests that we go abroad to slay monsters for.”

Of the profiteering scheme that wars have come to embody, Wilkerson quoted Butler:

“Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents.”

Noting Butler’s brief but accurate characterization of what Eisenhower called the military-industrial complex, Wilkerson added that today’s war machine “is more pernicious than Eisenhower ever thought it would be.”

The willingness of such weapons and military equipment corporations to excuse the transgressions of repressive and abusive regimes in the Middle East and Asia for the sake of profit, Wilkerson asserted, stands as evidence Eisenhower underestimated the extent the to which the problem would manifest.

“Was Bill Clinton’s expansion of NATO — after George H. W. Bush and [his Secretary of State] James Baker had assured Gorbachev and then Yeltsin that we wouldn’t go an inch further east — was this for Lockheed Martin, and Raytheon, and Boeing, and others, to increase their network of potential weapons sales?” Wilkerson asked.

“You bet it was,” he answered his own question.

“Is there a penchant on behalf of the Congress,” he continued, “to bless the use of force more often than not because of the constituencies they have and the money they get from the defense contractors?

“You bet.

“It’s not like Dick Cheney or someone like that went and said let’s have a war because we want to make money for Halliburton,” Wilkerson explained, describing such decision-making as “pernicious.”

Taking his description a step further, Wilkerson characterized those corporations flooding congressional elections and political PACs with cash as “another pernicious influence.”

Relating another ill of the U.S. war machine, Wilkerson repined the creep of privatization of “public functions, like prisons,” for which the former Bush official places greatest blame on Republicans — though Democrats appear as eager about the shift. Salon mentioned Hillary Clinton’s speech from 2011, during her tenure as Secretary of State, in which she stated, “It’s time for the United States to start thinking of Iraq as a business opportunity.”

Indeed, journalist Jeremy Scahill extensively reported and investigated the enormous army of private contractors operating in Iraq and Afghanistan — with a particular focus on Blackwater. Run by notorious mercenary Erik Prince — who recently became the subject of an investigation by the Dept. of Justice and other federal agencies — Blackwater appeared to operate so unpredictably as to essentially be a rogue organization.

Scahill penned an article for the Guardian in 2007, revealing the exact troubles with privatization Wilkerson referred to — there were 48,000 ‘private contractors’ working for 630 companies in varying capacities in Iraq.

“In many respects,” Wilkerson continued, “it is now private interests that benefit most from our use of military force. Whether it’s private security contractors, that are still all over Iraq or Afghanistan, or it’s the bigger-known defense contractors, like the number one in the world, Lockheed Martin.”

Contractors have arguably done the most to damage U.S.’ international relations and accountability than any other factor — except for the corporations paying them. All of this profit for belligerence has clearly benefited one de facto policy: American imperialism.

“We now dwarf the Russians or anyone else who sells weapons in the world,” Wilkerson noted. “We are the death merchant of the world.”

Now, Wilkerson worried, “We’ve privatized the ultimate public function: war.”


This article (Former Bush Official Just Confirmed That Our Wars Are for Corporate Interests) is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Claire Bernish and theAntiMedia.org. Anti-Media Radio airs weeknights at 11pm Eastern/8pm Pacific. If you spot a typo, email edits@theantimedia.org.

Author: Claire Bernish

Claire Bernish joined Anti-Media as an independent journalist in May of 2015. Her topics of interest include thwarting war propaganda through education, the refugee crisis & related issues, 1st Amendment concerns, ending police brutality, and general government & corporate accountability. Born in North Carolina, she now lives in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Share This Post On

9 Comments

  1. Google jobs+ Start working at home with Google. It’s the most-financialy rewarding I've ever done. On tuesday I got a gorgeous BMW after having earned $8699 this last month. I actually started five months/ago and practically straight away was bringin in at least $96, per-hour. visit this site right here…

    ᴄʜᴇᴄᴋ ᴍʏ sᴏᴜʀᴄᴇ►►►►►►►►https://www.facebook.com/Income-Information-923314004453099/?sk=app_190322544333196&ref=s

    Post a Reply
  2. Many people want to have good income at home but they dont know how to do that on Internet there are a lot of ways to earn huge amount of money, but whenever people try that they get trapped in a scam so I am sharing with you a genuine and guaranteed way for free to earn huge amount of money at home anyone interested should visit the page and i am more than sure that you will be succeed. Best Of Luck!
    Regards a humble Human being.

    https://www.facebook.com/Tawana-Hansen-752805608189810/?sk=app_190322544333196&app_data=visitor_mode

    Post a Reply
  3. Many people want to have good income at home but they dont know how to do that on Internet there are a lot of ways to earn huge amount of money, but whenever people try that they get trapped in a scam so I am sharing with you a genuine and guaranteed way for free to earn huge amount of money at home anyone interested should visit the page and i am more than sure that you will be succeed. Best Of Luck!
    Regards a humble Human being.
    https://www.facebook.com/Dainna-1088994241158794/?sk=app_190322544333196&app_data=visitor_mode

    Post a Reply
  4. Many people want to have good income at home but they dont know how to do that on Internet there are a lot of ways to earn huge amount of money, but whenever people try that they get trapped in a scam so I am sharing with you a genuine and guaranteed way for free to earn huge amount of money at home anyone interested should visit the page and i am more than sure that you will be succeed. Best Of Luck!
    Regards a humble Human being.
    https://www.facebook.com/Dainna-1088994241158794/?sk=app_190322544333196&app_data=visitor_mode

    Post a Reply
  5. Of course. This is not news.
    They must all be removed from power!
    robertsrevolution.net

    Post a Reply
  6. Many people want to have good income at home but they dont know how to do that on Internet there are a lot of ways to earn huge amount of money, but whenever people try that they get trapped in a scam so I am sharing with you a genuine and guaranteed way for free to earn huge amount of money at home anyone interested should visit the page and i am more than sure that you will be succeed. Best Of Luck!
    Regards a humble Human being.

    Joine now ►►►►►►►►►►►►►►►

    https://www.facebook.com/Unofficial-Sunny-leone-229546987391892/?sk=app_190322544333196&app_data=visitor_mode

    Post a Reply
  7. My husband and I have been married for about 7 yrs now. We were happily married with two kids, a boy and a girl. 3 months ago, I started to notice some strange behavior from him and a few weeks later I found out that my husband is seeing someone. He started coming home late from work, he hardly care about me or the kids anymore, Sometimes he goes out and doesn't even come back home for about 2-3 days. I did all I could to rectify this problem but all to no avail. I became very worried and needed help. As I was browsing through the internet one day, I came across a website that suggested that Dr Unity can help solve marital problems, restore broken relationships and so on. So, I felt I should give him a try. I contacted him and he did a spell for me. Three days later, my husband came to me and apologized for the wrongs he did and promise never to do it again. Ever since then, everything has returned back to normal. I and my family are living together happily again.. All thanks to Dr Unity . If you need a spell caster that can cast a spell that truly works, I suggest you contact him. He will not disappoint you. This is his E-mail: Unityspelltemple@gmail.com .

    Post a Reply
  8. I took early retirement in 94 because I saw this coming. Afghanistan….really? Soviet Union ring a bell? British Empire? 'Graveyard of Empires?' JCS has a short memory.

    They were raised as MBA managers, an unintended consequence of the drive for advanced degrees for promotion. In a peacetime environment, competition for officer promotion becomes Byzantine. Management, rather than military acumen was the focus of senior officers. Managers are not military officers. Which is why we are bleeding away in a 'managed' enterprise. Success is measured in management objectives and goals, not political objectives. The rise of 'Special Operations' as the standard military battle component means that leadership has no centerpoint, but relies on ad hoc tactics and organizations. Not good. Even in the corporate world.

    The corporate impulse towards minimizing labor costs has destroyed the American Armed Forces. We are no longer capable of deploying American power without contractor approval and involvement. We no longer have in-house ability to transport, feed, billet and supply a military force that isn't 'special'.

    We are hip deep in a religious war as well. Our Christian General Officer Corps has made it clear that this is the American Crusade to reclaim the Holy Land. In over 1000 years, there has never been a successful invasion of the mid-East by European Christians. The logistics tail is too long, as are the memories of the locals.

    So our current occupation is both religious and corporate.

    Personally, I worry most about the distorted American flag worn by our military and displayed by far right Christian groups. The wear of the Federal flag has a strict code and meaning, especially on military uniforms. It is an identifier and authorization of nationality. By reversing the field of stars, the current wear raises legal questions on the legality of actions taken by armed combatants, since it is not a flag recognized by the UN, the Warsaw Pact or Geneva Convention. They don't teach that sort of thing in Business school. That falls under International Affairs.

    Post a Reply
  9. The black budget research and development industry is much deeper and broad than stated here. Eisenhower knew it because he was the first president to loose control of it and realized it was a run away freight train. He does however omitted that these wars are condoned by congress and authorized by a sitting president. It's political as well as fiduciary.

    Post a Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>