While the Ukraine crisis has put another straw on the already struggling world economy, many people from the lobbying groups, military industrial corporations, and Capitol Hill in Washington are celebrating with champagne, said a former official of the US Department of Defense. US stock market data show that from February 24 to March 28, the stock price of Lockheed Martin jumped more than 13 percent, that of Northrop Grumman up 13.4 percent, and that of General Dynamics up over 10 percent. The “coincidence” of the breakout of the Russia-Ukraine crisis and the shooting up of stock prices of American military-industrial companies is telling the world, loud and clear, who is profiteering from the war.
Philip George Zimbardo, a retired professor from Stanford University, wrote in his The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil that someone has to prepare and “cook” war, and there would be no war without these people. In America’s political circle, there is exactly such a military-industrial complex eager to “cook” war. It is a gigantic interest group comprising the military sector, military-industrial companies, some congress members, national defense research institutes, and think tanks, who are constantly pushing America’s foreign policy in the direction of war and are pursuing obscene profits by creating war and conflicts and agitating arms race.
Instigating the conflict between Russia and Ukraine and profiteering from it is what the American military-industrial complex has been planning and doing. It has been swaying America’s foreign policy through interest groups, always challenging Russia’s bottom line, peddling security anxiety by exaggerating military threats from Moscow, and touting the necessity for European countries to increase their defense spending by a large margin in order to intensify “military deterrence”.
A report from the US Department of Defense shows that since 2014, the US has promised to provide more than USD 2.7 billion worth of so-called “security aid” to Ukraine; it agreed to provide lethal weapons in 2017; last year’s “security aid” alone amounted to more than USD 1 billion according to recent data released by the US State Department.
In the eyes of American military-industrial complex, the Russia-Ukraine conflict is just a big fair or advertisement for its weapons. Several European countries, including Germany, Finland and Poland, have announced to increase their defense budget and placed monumental weapon orders with American manufacturers, to which the military-industrial complex is the biggest beneficiary.
In 1961, former US President Eisenhower warned American people about the harm done by the military-industrial complex to their country. Well, more than 60 years have passed and it is still manipulating America’s political, diplomatic and military policies without scruple. Open Secrets, an American website, revealed that America’s military-industrial corporations spent USD 2.5 billion on lobbying in the past 20 years to influence the nation’s defense policy. From 2014 to 2019, former US Secretary of Defense James Mattis, along with over 1,000 senior officials and procurement officers of the US Department of Defense, joined military-industrial companies, using their connections to lure more businesses.
An Arms sales report recently issued by Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) shows that from 2017 to 2021, global arms sales volume decreased by 4.6 percent compared with the 2012-2016 period, but America’s weapon export increased by 14 percent and its global percentage rose from 32 percent to 39 percent. It’s safe to say that where there is war, there are American weapons; as long as there is war, exorbitant profits will keep flowing into the pocket of American military-industrial companies.
The US has always prided itself on being the beacon of democracy, yet the stark contrast between its meager spending on battling the pandemic at home and the pocket-lining, champagne-celebrated arms deals of its military-industrial companies, and its horrifying record of starting war and conflicts everywhere around the world have long belied its self-claimed democracy and human rights so much that there is nothing much left to the terms. Hijacked by its military-industrial complex and other interest groups, the US is like a money-eroded chariot of hegemony, bringing to the world as well as its own people nothing but turmoil and damage.
into English and edited by the China Military Online. The information, ideas or opinions appearing in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of eng.chinamil.com.cn.