The military-industrial complex, against which President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned in his famous farewell address, has bipartisan support in the United States Congress and Senate. The amount of money involved is enormous. The world spends roughly two trillion dollars each year on armaments, and a very large share of this, more than 800 billion dollars, is spent by the United States. A vast river of money flows from the huge arms manufacturing corporations into the campaign funds and pockets of politicians, and into the pockets of those who control the mass media. The politicians then vote for obscenely enormous military budgets, to meet various self-created dangers and enemies, and the mass media support the politicians. This circular flow of money has been called “The Devil's Dynamo.”
The United States was once an isolationist nation, whose citizens and government wished to keep aloof from the wars and quarrels of Europe. However, at the end of World War II, the large industrial countries of the world, except for the United States, lay in ruins, but industries in the U.S. were still intact. Thus the United States was, in spite of itself, thrown onto the world stage.
After the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991, hesitancy was replaced by triumphalism, and the “Project for a New American Century”, proclaimed that the United States was the world's only superpower. The U.S. ruled the world, and could do as it liked.
Paul Wolfowitz, the Undersecretary of Defence for Policy, produced his infamous “Wolfowitz Doctrine” paper.
Here is a quotations from the first draft of the document:
Our first objective is to prevent the re-emergence of a new rival, either on the territory of the former Soviet Union or elsewhere, that poses a threat on the order of that posed formerly by the Soviet Union. This is a dominant consideration underlying the new regional defense strategy and requires that we endeavor to prevent any hostile power from dominating a region whose resources would, under consolidated control, be sufficient to generate global power.
The United States is the world's largest exporter of armaments
The arms exported by the United States often go to countries such as Saudi Arabia, where they contribute to the continuation of wars, for example against Yemen, and enormous human suffering. Arms exported by the U.S. find their way to Africa, where they deepen and prolong conflicts.
Ukraine: NATO's proxy war with Russia
The current war between Russia and Ukraine is really a proxy war between Russia and the United States. One cannot excuse Putin's criminal invasion of Ukraine. However, it was not unprovoked. Russia fears the eastward expansion of NATO, and was promised that this would never take place, “not one inch”, a promise that was almost immediately broken. There are plans to make Ukraine a NATO member, confirming Russia's worst fears. Furthermore, the United States is sending many billions of dollars’ worth of sophisticated weapons to Ukraine. And finally, attempts to reach a diplomatically negotiated peace settlement have been blocked by the United States, because Washington strategists want to weaken Russia.
Secrecy versus democracy
If the people of a country do not know what their government is doing, how can they vote to correct the misconduct of their government? Almost by definition, secrecy and democracy are incompatible. What shall we then think of the efforts of the United States to extradite Julian Assange and prosecute him, when all that he did was to expose secrets through honest journalism? What shall we think of the vast secret surveillance network exposed by Edward Snowden? Most governmental secrets are military secrets.