Business of perpetual war.

If we are to have a perpetual war, it must be a war against injustice and deprivation at home and abroad. We need to get our own house in order, rather than demolish and rebuild other nations that did not invite us there. And as far as the so-called terrorism problem is concerned, maybe we should stay out of other folks’ backyards and it will go away.

How many of these war millionaires shouldered a rifle ? How many of them dug a trench ? How many of them knew what it meant to go hungry in a rat-infested dug-out ? How many of them spent sleepless, frightened nights, ducking shells and shrapnel and machine gun bullets ? How many of them parried a bayonet thrust of an enemy? How many of them were wounded or killed in battle?

The people of Afghanistan and Iraq are worse off now than they were before U.S. military invasion. Both countries are considered more authoritarian, more corrupt, and more repressive than they were before.
U.S. companies still dominate the arms market by a large margin, with six among the top 10 arms sellers. In the top 100 arms-producing companies, 39 are based in the United States, and U.S. companies accounted for more than 58% of total arms sales among the top 100. U.S. company arms sales in the top 10 alone made up 35% of total arms sales among the top 100. By contrast, Western European companies, which make up the rest of the top 10 arms producers, accounted for just 28% of the total top 100 arms sales.
In the World War I a mere handful garnered the profits of the conflict. At least 21,000 new millionaires and billionaires were made in the United States during the World War. That many admitted their huge blood gains in their income tax returns. How many other war millionaires falsified their tax returns no one knows.

Many companies and individuals – including politicians – stand to profit greatly from perpetual war.

Every hour, taxpayers in the United States are paying $312,500 for cost of military action against ISIS.

Every hour, taxpayers in the United States are paying $10.17 million for cost of war in Afghanistan.

Every hour, taxpayers in the United States are paying $365,297 for cost of war in Iraq.

Every hour, taxpayers in the United States are paying $10.54 million for total cost of wars since 2001.

Every hour, taxpayers in the United States are paying $8.43 million for Homeland Security Since 9/11.

Every hour, taxpayers in the United States are paying $58 million for the Department of Defense

The full costs of war cannot simply be measured in dollars. It is impossible to place a monetary value on the tremendous loss of life both military and civilian caused by perpetual war.

Since 2003, U.S. military deaths in Afghanistan total 2,356. UK military deaths total 453, and there have been 677 coalition military deaths from other countries.

Since 2003, U.S. military deaths in Iraq total 4,489. UK military deaths total 179, and there have been 140 coalition military deaths from other countries.

There have been 136,495 – 154,378 documented civilian deaths that resulted from military intervention in Iraq since 2003.

In Iraq, 1,487 contractor employees have died. 348 journalists have been killed. 448 academics have died.

To view information on 6,840 U.S. service members who have perished in Afghanistan and Iraq, please see Faces of the Fallen.

Deaths don’t only occur in combat. An unusually high percentage of young veterans have died since returning home, many as a result of drug overdose, suicide, and vehicle crashes, reports Costs of War. The suicide rate doubled in the Army during the first decade of the wars among both the deployed and the non-deployed.

Here are the top 10 war-profiteering.

1. Lockheed Martin (U.S.)

Arm sales 2013: $35.5 billion, profit $3 billion

Lockheed Martin is the nation’s top defense contractor, the brains behind such high-tech military hardware as the F-16 jet fighter and a variety of land and sea missiles. In 2001, the company landed the biggest defense contract in history when it was named the main contractor for the Joint Strike Fighter.

Considering that access is the name of the game when securing such lucrative contracts, it’s no surprise that Lockheed splits its campaign money equally between Democrats and Republicans. All told, NASA and the Defense Department account for roughly 80 percent of the company’s annual sales.

2. Boeing (U.S.)

Arm sales 2013: $30.7 billion, profit $4.6 billion

Boeing is the world’s top manufacturer of commercial airplanes, including well-known aircraft such as the 787 and the 747. The company is also a leading military supplier, making fighter-bombers, transport planes and the Apache helicopter.

Along with rival Lockheed Martin, the company regularly lobbies Congress to win military contracts and increase defense spending. Boeing is a major supporter of free trade, especially in Asia, where it has focused on selling more planes. The company also lobbies on environmental rules and transportation regulations, among other issues. Boeing is also a large recipient of government loan-guarantees, primarily coming from the Export-Import Bank of the United States.

3. BAE Systems (U.S./United Kingdom)

Arm sales 2013: $26.8 billion, profit $275 million

Profile for 2014 Election Cycle

CONTRIBUTIONS: $1,360,369 (ranks 210 of 16,793)

LOBBYING: $3,920,000 (2014), $4,635,000 (2013) (ranks 124 of 4,065 in 2014)

Contributions to candidates: $931,389 (for a list of recipients, click here)
Contributions to Leadership PACs: $301,750
Contributions to parties: $120,980
Contributions to 527 committees: $5,500
Contributions to outside spending groups: $3,250

4. Raytheon (U.S.)

Arm sales 2013: $29.9 billion, profit $2 billion

Raytheon is a major American defense contractor that specializes in defense and homeland security technology. As the world’s largest producer of guided missiles, Raytheon specializes in manufacturing defense systems and defense electronics.

A member of the defense electronic industry, Raytheon is most active lobbying on defense, homeland security and federal budget appropriation issues. Until 2008, individuals and political action committees associated with Raytheon had favored Republicans in campaign contribution giving, but after Democrats won both chambers of Congress and the White House, the defense firm favors Democrats, giving 55 percent of campaign contributions to Democrats and 45 percent to Republicans in 2008. Considering that access is needed when securing large government defense contract, it’s of little surprise that Raytheon spends millions of dollars each year lobbying the federal government. Raytheon is the primary manufacturer of Tomahawk cruise missiles, dozens of which have been used by U.S. and British military forces in strikes against targets in Libya during 2011

5. Northrop Grumman (U.S.)

Arm sales 2013: $20.2 billion, profit $2 billion

Northrop Grumman is the fourth largest defense contractor and the world’s largest builder of naval vessels as of 2010. As a member of the miscellaneous defense industry, Northrop Grumman specializes in aerospace systems, electronic systems, information systems, ship building and technical services.

Northrop Grumman focuses much of its efforts securing government defense contracts and earmarks. During the 2008 election cycle, people and political action committees associated with Northrop Grumman contributed more than $2 million to federal candidates and committees, favoring Democrats slightly.

6. General Dynamics (U.S.)

Arm sales 2013: $18.7 billion, profit $2.4 billion

General Dynamics is one of the nation’s top defense contractors, assembling virtually every type of military machinery engaged in modern combat. The company builds warships, nuclear submarines, tanks and combat jets, not to mention the command and control systems that link all of these technologies together. The company has lobbied hard to encourage lawmakers to step up appropriations for the Navy, one of the company’s biggest clients.

It has fought attempts to shrink the nation’s fleet of submarines and warships, thereby helping block Defense Department attempts to shift that money to other facets of the nation’s land and air defenses.

7. Airbus Group (France/Netherlands)

Arm sales 2013: $15.7 billion, profit $2 billion

Profile for 2014 Election Cycle

CONTRIBUTIONS:  $365,752 (ranks 855 of 16,793)

LOBBYING: $3,288,178 (2014), $3,749,750 (2013) (ranks 156 of 4,065 in 2014)

Contributions to candidates: $259,322 (for a list of recipients, click here)
Contributions to Leadership PACs: $83,500
Contributions to parties: $22,930
Contributions to 527 committees: $0
Contributions to outside spending groups: $0

8. United Technologies (U.S.)

Arm sales 2013: $11.9 billion, profit $5.7 billion

United Technologies might be the lowest ranking of the U.S. companies in this list, but don’t let that fool you.

company with the label “heavy hitter”, which means it is “one of the 140 biggest overall donors to federal elections since the 1990 election cycle, as compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics.”

Profile for 2014 Election Cycle

CONTRIBUTIONS: $2,105,245 (ranks 124 of 16,793)

LOBBYING: $15,738,000 (2014), $13,900,373 (2013) (ranks 13 of 4,065 in 2014)

Contributions to candidates: $1,769,400 (for a list of recipients, click here)
Contributions to Leadership PACs: $199,250
Contributions to parties: $124,470
Contributions to 527 committees: $10,625
Contributions to outside spending groups: $1,500

9. Finmeccanica S.p.A. (Italy)

Arm sales 2013: $10.6 billion, profit $100 million

Not only is this company a top war profiteer, it is a huge U.S. political campaign contributor

Profile for 2014 Election Cycle

CONTRIBUTIONS: $446,850 (ranks 696 of 16,793)

LOBBYING: $1,754,000 (2014), $1,965,500 (2013) (ranks 303 of 4,065 in 2014)

Contributions to candidates: $342,550 (for a list of recipients, click here)
Contributions to Leadership PACs: $18,100
Contributions to parties: $86,200
Contributions to 527 committees: $0
Contributions to outside spending groups: $0

10. Thales Group (Paris)

Arm sales 2013: $10.4 billion, profit: $800 million

Profile for 2014 Election Cycle

CONTRIBUTIONS: $0

LOBBYING: $520,000 (2014), $460,000 (2013) (ranks 614 of 4,065 in 2014)

REVOLVING DOOR: 9 out of 10 Thales Group lobbyists in 2013-2014 have previously held government jobs.

Despite warnings of its existence and imminent expansion, the military-industrial complex (or military-industrial-congressional complex) remains in operation today. It is an iron triangle that comprises the policy and monetary relationships which exist between legislators, national armed forces, and the arms industry that supports them. These relationships include political contributions, political approval for military spending, lobbying to support bureaucracies, and oversight of the industry.
Irontriangle