Mar 11, 2014

9/11 and the Military Industrial Complex

While many naively believe that the US government (or any government, for that matter) has the interest of the citizenry in mind, the policies which inevitably come to fruition reveal quite a different story.  Although so-called representatives of the people are enthroned in their respective positions by voters, government officials are always loyal to special interest groups which pave the way to their current and future success.  To understand why this is so, one must first look at the incentive system in place, and come to grips with the implications that follow.

The State has the ability to create monopolies within the economy, and can be directed to this effect by forces outside of public control or scrutiny.  One only has to examine the revolving door between large corporations and the regulatory bodies to understand that policy can be driven by powerful interests looking to plunder, rather than out of an altruistic desire to protect or further the interests of the citizenry.  The regulators in this crony environment have a very clear incentive to pursue the interests of the industry which they are regulating- specifically the companies they worked for or dream of working for- and are in no way responsible to the public interest.  The same holds true for elected positions, as they pander to the corporations and special interest groups which gave them large amounts of money to become elected (or re-elected).  Proponents of policies and regulations never willingly reveal their ties to the powerful interests which guide policy decisions, for this would reveal the true motive embedded in policy making.  Such honesty would mean, of course, that much of the agenda would never come to fruition!

Another form of dishonesty comes from the citizenry itself, namely the lack of interest in scrutinizing the theories propagated by government which pertain to the cause of important events, as well as considering the crucial cui bono of government "solutions" to deal with the crisis.  Alas, the notion that the US government would be engaged in a "cover-up" regarding 9/11 is a serious challenge for those who are taught to believe that this organization has their best interests at heart.  It is one thing for someone to understand and concede that cronyism is inherent in government, and that those who represent a powerful companies could influence government to help protect their position in the marketplace.  It is quite another for someone to accept that the government would actually go so far as to murder it's own citizens to pursue such ends. 

To begin to delve into this possibility, we can examine this article from ABC news, which describes a military plan called Operation Northwoods.  This was an operation created in the 1960's, which-if pursued- would have involved a false flag event1 to legitimize a military invasion for the purpose of overthrowing Fidel Castro in Cuba.  From the article:

"In the early 1960s, America's top military leaders reportedly drafted plans to kill innocent people and commit acts of terrorism in U.S. cities to create public support for a war against Cuba.

Code named Operation Northwoods, the plans reportedly included the possible assassination of Cuban émigrés, sinking boats of Cuban refugees on the high seas, hijacking planes, blowing up a U.S. ship, and even orchestrating violent terrorism in U.S. cities.

The plans were developed as ways to trick the American public and the international community into supporting a war to oust Cuba's then new leader, communist Fidel Castro."

Author of the book Body of Secrets James Bamford says in the ABC article about Northwoods:

"The whole point of a democracy is to have leaders responding to the public will, and here this is the complete reverse, the military trying to trick the American people into a war that they want but that nobody else wants."

Indeed, in his farewell address2, President Eisenhower presented a stark warning about the danger which the Military/Industrial Complex (MIC)posed to the nation.  He first described how "an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience."

"Our military organization today bears little relation to that known by any of my predecessors in peacetime, or indeed by the fighting men of World War II or Korea.  Until the latest of our world conflicts, the United States had no armaments industry. American makers of plowshares could, with time and as required, make swords as well. But now we can no longer risk emergency improvisation of national defense; we have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions. Added to this, three and a half million men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment. We annually spend on military security more than the net income of all United States corporations.  This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence -- economic, political, even spiritual -- is felt in every city, every State house, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society." (italics added)

Eisenhower then warns that the US government must defend against the potential abuse of power that this reality poses:

"In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the militaryindustrial (sic) complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.  We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together."

While one must admire Eisenhower for his honesty and insights regarding the existence of the MIC, his presumption of its legitimacy and lack of foresight regarding the ability of the US government to contain it is disdainful.3  Surely Eisenhower wasn't so steeped in militarism that he forgot Lord Acton's famous quip that "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely".  Indeed, the MIC revealed its malicious Northwoods plan just a few short years after Eisenhower's remarks!  However, Bamford shows that Eisenhower's faith in the US government to stifle the hunger of the MIC to initiate conflict was correct, at least in the case of Operation Northwoods:

"There really was a worry at the time about the military going off crazy and they did, but they never succeeded, but it wasn't for lack of trying."

Eisenhower's warning came when the MIC was merely a toddler, and the Northwoods plan followed rather quickly.  JFK's rejection of this plan understandably caused tension between himself and the military establishment- who apparently were willing to consider murder of US citizens in order to achieve their goal of overthrowing the Cuban government.  Now that the MIC has grown into a well established influence on government as well as a fundamental player in the economic environment in the US, it is much more likely to conceive that something like an Operation Northwoods would be pursued rather than quashed.4

In the case of 9/11, the Project for a New American Century published a policy paper in September 2000 entitled Rebuilding America's Defenses which supported "...the belief that America should seek to preserve and extend its position of global leadership by maintaining the preeminence of U.S. military forces."  In the paper the authors lament that "the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event––like a new Pearl Harbor."  Indeed, 9/11 was just such an event.

The events of 9/11 were, undoubtedly, the most important and influential moments in directing the contemporary state of affairs in the US.  For, this is the watershed from which all of the horrors and injustices of modern US civil society- free speech "zones", police militarization, government intrusions into privacy, and TSA fondling- were either created or exacerbated to absurd proportions.  These programs by the US government have, indeed, become the "new normal", and life in the US has been so fundamentally altered that the the old phrase, "it's a free country" is laughable in the extreme.

The post-9/11 environment has been fruitful for the MIC, and equally abhorrent for the people unfortunate enough to reside in the modern US.  Contrasting the adventures the MIC pursued during the "Cold War" years, an open war (such as the "War on Terrorism") yields a far greater sum of power and influence, as well as wealth. With over a decade worth of war debt, the burden that will be shouldered by the mulcted taxpayer- who now has a severely limited capacity to protest, lest he be called an "extremist" and caged- is monumental.  Justice demands an end to warmongering abroad, as well as oppression at home.  As Randolph Bourne pointed out in 1918, "war is the health of the State", and in the same light, peace is the health of free people.  If peace is desired, it can only come by dismantling the State, and thus its wicked cicerone- the Military Industrial Complex.


1.   A "false flag" event is when a government attacks its own territory or interests and places the blame on another government or organization to initiate a cause to go to war.

2.  Military-Industrial Complex Speech, Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961

3.  One must also wonder if he is consciously referring to Benjamin Franklin's statement that "They who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." when Eisenhower states that "liberty and security may prosper together".

4.  Consider what Bill Hicks said about becoming the new President:

"A handful, a very small elite, run and own these corporations, which include the mainstream media. I have this feeling that whoever is elected president, like Clinton was, no matter what you promise on the campaign trail – blah, blah, blah – when you win, you go into this smokey room with the twelve industrialist capitalist scum-fucks who got you in there.  And you're in this smoky room, and this little film screen comes down … and a big guy with a cigar goes, 'Roll the film.' And it's a shot of the Kennedy assassination from an angle you've never seen before … that looks suspiciously off the grassy knoll. And then the screen goes up and the lights come up, and they go to the new president, 'Any questions?'"

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