Behind the U.S. media-political clamor for a new Cold War with Russia is a massive investment by the Military-Industrial Complex in “think tanks” and other propaganda outlets, writes Jonathan Marshall.
Think tanks like the Lexington Institute are prime movers behind the domestic propaganda campaign to revive the Cold War against the diminished Russian state and justify weapons programs like the F-35.
As Lee Fang observed recently in The Intercept, “The escalating anti-Russian rhetoric in the U.S. presidential campaign comes in the midst of a major push by military contractors to position Moscow as a potent enemy that must be countered with a drastic increase in military spending by NATO countries.”
Thus the Lockheed-funded Aerospace Industries Association warns that the Obama administration is failing to spend enough on “aircraft, ship and ground combat systems” to adequately address “Russian aggression on NATO’s doorstep.” The Lockheed- and Pentagon-funded Center for European Policy Analysis issues a stream of alarmist reports about Russian military threats to Eastern Europe.
And the highly influential Atlantic Council — funded by Lockheed-Martin, Raytheon, the U.S. Navy, Army, Air Force, Marines, and even the Ukrainian World Congress — promotes articles like “Why Peace is Impossible with Putin” and declares that NATO must “commit to greater military spending” to deal with “a revanchist Russia.”
Phi Beta Iota: The dishonesty of all concerned is troubling. The Pentagon wastes between 45% (weapons acquisition) and 75% (Afghanistan) of every tax-payer dollar. The “budget share” approach to service expenditures is unprofessional and deeply harmful to the public interest. The US Air Force and US Navy are letting companies like Lockheed Martin (F-35) and Northrup Grumman (USS Gerald Ford) cheat the public with impunity. The infantry of the US Army and US Marine Corps comprise 4% of the force, take 80% of the casualties, and receive 1% of the total Pentagon budget. This is outrageous. We are long over-due for a responsible Grand Strategy, an appreciation of Global Reality, and a complete rebalancing of the instruments of national power.