Tuesday, July 25, 2006

A Lesson in "War Capitalism"

This is not a news - everyone knows this:
The middle-east is once again up in turmoil; Israel has launched an attack on Lebanaon/Hezbollah... in a way, a repeat of 1981..

One news item was interesting:
A missile fired by Hezabollah was found to be of Iranian origin!!!
...and that proves the complicity and war-sponsorship by Iran and Syria to Lebanon/ Hezabollah.

But who sponsors Israel' war???

Frida Berrigan is a Senior Research Associate with the Arms Trade Resource Center at the World Policy Institute, explains on Democracy Now.

Excerpts:

"Well,... you’re talking about 20% of the Israeli military budget...

... We’re looking at incredible increases in U.S. military aid and weapons sales to Israel. Military aid stands at about $3 billion a year. That’s about $500 for every Israeli citizen that the United States provides on an annual basis. And then, weapons sales, most recently, since the Bush administration came into power, we’re looking at $6.3 billion worth of weaponry sold to Israel.

...just on the 14th (July), the United States decided to sell $120 million worth of jet fuel to the Israeli military. The little notice that announced the sale from the Defense Security Cooperation Agency said, "This fuel will be used to promote peace and security in the region." And then, meanwhile, you have jets strafing villages, bombing civilians, taking out bridges, destroying water treatment plants.

...Almost all of the weapons used by Israel are from the United States. There might be a couple French fighter planes that they’re using, but its F-16s made in Fort Worth, Texas; its Apache helicopters; its Sparrow and Sidewinder missiles; it’s all from the United States. So you have this real disconnect between an overemphasis on the supply by Iran and Syria of Hezbollah's weapons and no discussion of the fact that all of the Israeli arsenal is from the United States, and that that is in contravention to U.S. law to the Arms Export Control Act, which says that U.S.-origin weapons are only to be used for self-defense and for internal security.

...Israel's relationship with the United States is unique in a number of ways. And one of those ways is that essentially the United States provides 20% of the Israeli military budget on an annual basis, and then about 70% of that money that is given from the United States, from U.S. taxpayers, to Israel is then spent on weapons from Lockheed Martin and Boeing and Raytheon."


This is good example of "War Capitalism"

Steps:
1. Take money from the citizens as taxes
2. Give it to a country as defense aid
3. Get the country to buy weapons using that aid
4. The money reaches from the citizen to the corporates
... Everyone is happy!!

Sound (and sleek) business model!!!

The more intelligent ones can also make a fortune in such a War Without End

Here is a Guide to Investor Survival in "War Without End" that was published before the Iraq invasion/ liberation (to be neutral, let's call it "disaster")... The basic logic of how to make profits from war (and deaths and misery) remains the same...

Postscript:
...in the meanwhile (lest someone thinks that this is a bad thing to do), the "civilized world"/ "international community" etc., will show concern, give news-briefings, pass resolutions, etc., about the rise of international terrorism, and proliferation of weapons across the "terrorist" groups/ states...

5 comments:

gaddeswarup said...

Earlier there were some pretenses of right and wrong; with Bush Jr. these seem to be gone. Now Condy Rice seems to be in charge of the peace process in the middle east. Though she is much better educated than others in the Bush group, her grasp of realities seems a bit shaky:
http://fafblog.blogspot.com/2005/12/fafblog-interviews-condoleezza-rice.html
I understand India has the largest percentage of Bush supporters ( according to some polls 50-50 compared to approx. 30-70 in many other countries.) I wonder why.

Madhukar said...

Prof,
agree with your comment about the fading "pretenses",

the fafblog interview with Rice, however,is a satire - not real... though the issues are real

The Pew research findings about the Indian support for Bush is somewhat the urban sample. Have a look at:
http://www.flonnet.com/fl2313/stories/20060714002509700.htm

gaddeswarup said...

Thanks for the correction. I wondered whether it was a satire but seeing the way Bush and others speak it seemed possible. sorry.
swarup

Supratim said...

I really fail to see how you or anyone else can equate Iranian/Syrian arms supply to Hezbollah, a terrorist outfit as equivalent of US arms delivery to Israel, a sovereign country. A few points to consider here:

1. By the above logic, supply of RDX by the ISI to Lashkar is equivalent to India buying arms from Russia
2. I don't know the credentials of the person who you are quoting, but he is clearly biased, since Israel is using US arms in self defence. It was attacked first. You can argue all you want about the quantum of force Israel used in self defence, but it was self-defence all right. If our politicians had the same courage, we would not be losing so many innocent people to bombs every month.
3. How is it material what % of Israel's arms comes from the US? The US has been a supporter of Israel since it was established in 1948, and Israel repays that by buying only American. I am sure the French would have no scruples to sell them arms either, since they have sold arms to possibly every regime on earth, but Israel prefers US. So, how is that your or our problem?

BTW, you are yet to respond to my real estate post.

Supratim

Supratim said...

Prof Swarup,

The key reason, I believe, that so many Indians like Bush is because he is willing to stand up and fight US' real and perceived enemies. Which is in sharp contradistinction to our cowardly and votegrubbing leaders who would rather beg for fundamentalist muslim votes, rather than protect innocent civilians, both hindu and muslim.

Post 9/11, the US went to Afghanistan to find out and fight their enemy. Post Mumbai blasts, our leaders have crawled into a hole, hoping that no one asks them what they have done to protect the country.

This is why so many Indians like Bush, because at least he stands up for his country.

Supratim