Arms Dumping in the United States of Raytheon

December 29th, 2023 - by Dennis Broe / LA Progressive

Modern warfare: Raytheon’s artillery has a range of 60 miles.

Arms Dumping and the Biden Neocons
Dennis Broe / LA Progressive

(December 27, 2023) — First of all they’re not just the Biden Neocons, they are the uniparty of Dems and Republicans who have minor quibbles but one major agreement and that is their unequivocal support for the American military and more important behind that American arms manufacturers. This is the Unites States of Raytheon (whose former board member is now the Secretary of Defense) and General Dynamics.

The question is why the about face of the American corporate media now questioning the Ukrainian war and make no mistake about it, they are questioning it. The New York Times recently ran two stories which finally hint it the debacle, as Zola named the French collapse against Germany in 1870.

The first began to confront the ‘shanghaiing’ of Ukrainians off the street and sent to the new “Eastern Front” to be mowed down by the Russians at a moment when anyone on the internet can watch people being snatched at bus stops and pulled into this ‘democratic’ army while the Russians report finding on the aftermath of the battlefield the corpses of women and young and old men.

The Eastern Front recalls the old Hogan’s Heroes joke about where the German prison commander Coronel Klink always threatened to send Sergeant Schultz if he was too lenient with the prisoners. And the Ukrainians are right to be afraid. These are killing fields where, almost unarmed and badly trained, they will be mowed down.

Lindsey Graham let the cat out of the bag when he proudly proclaimed that the US would fight Russia to the last Ukrainian and American defense officials such as Army Chief of Staff Mark Milley recently worried that the Ukrainians were becoming “casualty averse,” that is, did not want to be slaughtered on the battlefield, while Hilary Clinton prattles on about Ukraine, with its opposition media silenced, as model of “democracy.”

The other story without telling the whole story was equally condemning of Ukrainian propaganda. Recently, Zelensky has been touting, against the onslaught of Russian drones that are increasingly blacking out larger portions of the country and that will continue all winter, a new ‘winter offensive’ by the Ukrainian army across the Dnieper River where territory has been reclaimed after the failed spring and summer “offensives.”

Ukrainian troops are caught up in a “suiide mission.” (NY Times photo.)

The Times story instead described men being sent to their death on a “suicide mission,” having to make their way through corpses of Ukrainian soldiers as they cross the river. As to the vast amount of territory reclaimed, the story recounts how a group of soldiers spent their time on the ‘offensive’ holed up in the basement of a home until it was clear to come out. It turns out then that the territory they reclaimed was one basement.

But why the shift? The Times wholeheartedly backed the war, becoming the main propagandizer and cheerleader for it in its first year and a half. Has ‘the paper of record’ suddenly become a peacenik publication? Hardly, in the same two-week stretch, the paper ran two stories that worried about the military preparedness of Germany and Japan, openly promoting rearming the axis.

It’s clear that what Germany is being urged to do in rearming is, as Trump suggested, contribute more of its budget to US arms manufacturers. This at a time when the economy of Europe’s economic trendsetter is tanking, as because of the likely blowing up by the US or its allies of the Russian two Nordstream pipelines, energy is now so expensive that businesses are leaving Germany, fleeing to the east where there are still ties to cheap Russian oil and natural gas or to the US where more drilling than ever is going on.

Beyond that though it is clear that the Times shift of position on Ukraine is instead a shift to a possible bigger empty hole of weapons that could become a full-blown war in the Middle East which is now in danger of drawing Yemen, Lebanon, Irak, Syria and eventually Iran into Israel’s Genocidal Massacre in Gaza. The point is that in this era of ‘forever wars,’ one more just than the next as The Times would have it, the US only leaves one forever war when there is another, potentially larger conflict, just down the road.

We saw this most recently in Afghanistan where the US after 20 years of futility retreated but only with the promise of the Ukraine war on the horizon. These wars have resulted in defeats but winning or losing the war is not the point. A significant part of the point is the gaping hole that is filled with US weapons, making a small portion of the US military-media-elite, who are “winning” despite the outcome, rich.

Journalist Max Blumenthal, taking a tour around the suburbs of Washington, where after 9/11 there were more new millionaires because of the burgeoning “anti-terrorism industry” than any other portion of the country, came away seeing that these elegant homes were one war away from losing their mortgage. And, of course, this contrasts sharply with ordinary Americans (nearly 60 percent in the last survey), living in tiny homes or in their cars who are one emergency away from being homeless.

“Forever Wars” means more dough for the global arms industry.

The Times isn’t so much against the Ukraine war as it is licking its lips at the breathless proposition of a much larger regional war in the Middle East where the results, instead of a ruined country, might be a collaring of that region’s oil, a thwarting of China’s Belt and Road project in that area, and a gigantic windfall for the US weapons industry in a country where the defense budget is not only the largest in the world but also bigger, according to Brown University, than the nine next countries combined.

To have the nation engaged in war after war with no respite, several preconditions are necessary. First, in terms of media presentation is presentism where history begins on the day of the horrific event which justifies the war, be that 9/11 wiping out all prior knowledge of the US and European colonial history in the Middle East or October 7 cancelling out the 75-year-history of Israel’s systematic destruction of the Palestinians.

Washington is always hunting for the next :”New Hitler:”

Then there is the villain: Saddam Hussein was Hitler, Putin is Hitler, Hamas is Hitler. Finally, there is the “reasonableness” of the West in not wanting to engage but in being drawn into conflict because it is a victim (when in most cases, as in Ukraine, it is the aggressor wanting to plant nuclear weapons on the Russian border) or favoring limited military conflict (the phony humanitarian pause instead of a ceasefire in Gaza as US weapons continue to massacre Gazan women and children.)

And with US battleships now encircling the Persian Gulf, how long before a rocket, errant or not, hits one and we are all asked to “Remember The Maine,” the battle cry that launched the US imperial drive against the remnants of the Spanish empire in the Americas.

The Times isn’t for peace, it’s for a better, more enduring and more profitable war. The paper of record and “all the news that’s fit to print” has become a shameful promoter of weapons, war, and all the military propaganda that fits.

Dennis Broe is a journalist and media critic. He broadcasts on the Pacifica Network and on Art District Radio in Paris and writes for Culture Matters and Crime Time in Britain.

The opinions expressed here are solely the author’s and do not reflect the opinions or beliefs of the LA Progressive.

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