by Philip Greenspan
(Swans - August 28, 2006) It's surreal! It makes no sense! Why, why, why do overwhelming masses in most countries not just willingly but enthusiastically put their lives, limbs, and well-being on the line when their political leaders embark upon war? In whose interests are those leaders responding? Certainly not those misguided volunteers but the countries' elites, who call the shots behind the scene, and whose interests are adverse to the poor souls who sacrifice on their behalf!
Everybody, when their country goes to war, is presumed to be a loyal patriotic citizen of similar mind irrespective of race, religion, sex, wealth, etc. except for some extremist radical subversives who in tolerant democracies are granted the freedom to spew their illicit thoughts. Prominent members of the elite, by providing ample quantities of goods and services are deemed, like those on the front lines, to be contributing for the ultimate victory. Their sordid activities, such as their willingness to trade with the enemy and make money on both sides during the war, are effectively suppressed.
During World War II major American corporations were serving both the Allies and the Axis. Amongst the list were Standard Oil of New Jersey (today's Exxon); Ford; General Motors; Aluminum Company of America; Chase National Bank (today's JPMorgan Chase & Co.); IBM; and behind those corporate names were the venerable executives and directors, who devise and carry out the corporate policies. Many of those corporate executives and directors took on important government wartime jobs as patriotic "dollar-a-year" men. Their companies, unbeknownst to the public, kept them on the payroll. And why not; in their conflict of interest positions they awarded their old companies some very fat government contracts.
Some of the most prominent double-dealing individuals were Henry Ford; William Randolph Hearst; and Andrew Mellon, the Secretary of the Treasury in Herbert Hoover's administration. And there were Averell Harriman and Prescott Bush, dealing with the Nazis through their private banking firms. During WWII Averell was a personal emissary of FDR and an ambassador to the Soviet Union, and was subsequently elected governor of New York. Prescott became a US senator from Connecticut and is the daddy and granddaddy of the 41st and 43rd presidents of the US of A.
Over 407,000 American boys were killed and over 671,000 were wounded so those prestigious companies could fatten their bottom lines. Irrespective of whether a country wins or loses a war, it's a win-win situation for the country's elite and a lose-lose situation for the masses. Why, I repeat, do those poor ignorant innocent fools go out to kill some other country's poor ignorant innocent fools? Had those born on one side of an arbitrary boundary line been born on the other side of another boundary line they would be reacting in a completely opposite manner. What insanity!
Meanwhile, those traitorous extremists attempt to give the gullible citizens a different perspective from what they are fed by the elite-controlled media, but their messages and voices are covered up or drowned out. Should they somehow become effective spokesmen with a sizeable following they will promptly be silenced by conviction and imprisonment as was done to Eugene Debs during World War I -- a tactic intended to frighten others from carrying on their work.
Who are the real enemies of those poor misguided fighting men? Are they the misguided guys they will be shooting at? Or their elite countrymen who sent them into the slaughter? If they survive will the elite deny them the ample benefits they deserve? Today's winners, already counting up their profits in a losing war with thousands of casualties, are Lockheed-Martin, Halliburton, the Carlyle Group, and others. Do a little googling on those corporate names and who do you find cashing in on their investments? You will recognize many familiar political names. A few from the extensive list are: VP Dick Cheney; former presidential cabinet members Colin Powell, Frank Carlucci, James Baker, and Caspar Weinberger (who recently died), billionaire George Soros, and many prominent foreign elite members.
In the U.S. and most Western countries those elites are the super rich individuals and corporations -- the upper most members of the upper class. Class? CLASS! A ticklish word whose utterance might lead to a taboo subject! The antagonisms that exist between the classes never get an airing in school or in the media. James Loewen, an author of school textbooks, states that social class is one of the prohibitive no-nos that must not be explored if the textbook is to be sold to a school system. The poor misguided potential patriots might learn how those venerable elite countrymen take advantage of them in war and in peace as well.
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