War is Still a Racket
By Charles Sullivan
-- -- “Our whole history
shows we have never fought a defensive war.” : --USMC
General Smedley Butler
It is well documented that all governments lie. It is also well
known that they lie more when it comes to war. A government that
proposes to carry out war that will not end in our lifetimes
lies incessantly and we must stop giving it our allegiance. We
must refuse to give it our children. Let us evict the military
recruiters from our schools and the nation’s shopping malls.
Without fodder the cannons of militarism and empire cannot
Our soldiers have nothing to gain by going to war and everything
to lose. War is a rich man’s device that, if the truth were
known, ignores the will of the people who have no say in it.
Modern wars have no heroes but they inevitably produce
atrocities and countless innocent victims. There can be no moral
justification for civilized people of any nationality taking up
arms against one another, unless one nation is directly
assaulted by another. War is the tool of barbarians and tyrants
and they are provoked by cowards hiding in safe places.
The underlying reasons for war are always cloaked in darkness
and secrecy; otherwise, no sane person would fight them and we
would be forced to live in relative accord. Our Plutocratic
rulers, however, believe that war is more profitable than peace.
Defense contractors cannot make billions by waging peace.
Besides, what U.S. president would boast of being the “peace
time” president? There is no bravado in peace. Armed to the
teeth, the American hero, as exemplified by and glorified in
Hollywood, are invariably men of extreme violence.
While those who initiate war invariably cloak their intentions
in the language of patriotism, wars always have economic and
ideological causes. In America the causes of war have their
origins in corporate Plutocracy. Here, war is initiated at the
behest of a corporation or a group of corporations doing
business in a foreign country. The usual cause is that a foreign
government has imposed some kind of restriction upon one these
corporations. In the most virulent cases these countries will
not allow their natural capital to be plundered by corporate
marauders or privatized and exported. Some countries even insist
upon public ownership of their raw materials which makes them
the greatest menace to peace.
Nations that have not adopted capitalism as their religion
traditionally refuse to allow their resources or their people to
be exploited for profit. These nations nationalize their assets
and rather than invading and occupying other nations, they
provide free health care, unlimited education and other programs
of social and spiritual uplift to their citizens. These are the
dangers of socialism and communism that we were indoctrinated
against since birth; the greatest scourge of evil the world has
ever known. This is what they teach us in school and it is
ingrained in our psyche to the grave.
Using the tax base for the public good, to create a prosperous
peace time economy for all, of course, is positively un-American
and anti-capitalist. It is a dangerous ideology that must not be
allowed to spread, lest it result in eruptions of democracy,
prolonged outbursts of peace and the equitable distribution of
goods and wealth. If allowed to flourish, socialism would mean
the abolition of Plutocracy and the end of socioeconomic class
divisions. It would mean the emancipation of the working class
from their Plutocratic rulers.
The Plutocrats know in their hearts of stone that the people
lack the intelligence and wisdom to self govern. They know that
we require leaders who are our moral and intellectual superiors
who can teach us the value of free markets, fair trade,
conquest, private ownership and insatiable greed. Thank God, we
have them to look after us and to grind us into hamburger for
consumption by the global elite.
In a nutshell, that is what war is about as it pertains to the
American experiment. There are no noble causes to fight and die
for. War is about private ownership of everything and everyone;
the commodification of nature and people, subjugated to rule by
a corrupt global economic elite. War is the result of
humankind’s oldest and worst nemesis—greed and lust for power
over the lives of others.
War is comprised of roughly equal parts racism, fervent
nationalism, propaganda and lies, herd mentality, religion, and
the private ownership of materials and labor. War is the sum of
humankind’s worst attributes, bought and paid for in blood.
As terrible as war is, perhaps it exacts its greatest toll on
the combatants themselves—the soldiers. Acting in the belief
that they are spreading light into the darkness of the world
they are, in fact, doing exactly the opposite. They are stamping
out the light of understanding, rationality, and hope. The
soldier thus becomes the horrible thing they are vainly trying
to destroy. All of this is possible because they have blindly
followed men without hearts and conscience, men devoid of souls,
who have misled them into the burning depths of hell from which
there is no way out.
This is the sad reality we are witnessing in Iraq and the 135
nations where our armed forces are stationed, carrying out the
sociopathic agenda of global domination and empire. Those whose
minds are not truly their own are susceptible to control by the
psychopaths who would use them for evil, just as soldiers have
traditionally been the pawns of kings and emperors through the
The lies espoused by our so called leaders do not matter on the
battlefield. They do not matter when the bodies come home in
oversized cardboard boxes, hauled by fork lifts to airport curbs
and deposited at the feet of grief-stricken families like a
commodity. In a sense, that is what they are. This is war’s
assembly line, where the bodies are packaged and sent home like
a parcel, with the flag as a corporate logo printed on a box
with the stamp “Made in America”; where lives are converted into
cash for the global elite, a gift from the Plutocracy.
General Smedley Butler
was right when he said in 1933 that war
is a racket. It still is and always will be. War is the ultimate
contempt for life; the ultimate betrayal of human potential.
Charles Sullivan is a photographer, free lance writer and
social activist residing somewhere in the hinterland of West
Virginia. He welcomes your comments at
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