Tuesday, August 19, 2008


By Ivan G. Goldman

Have any of our corporate media outlets bothered to ask just why it’s so important to place an anti-missile system in Poland and the Czech Republic? Of course not. They’re too busy checking to see who is or isn’t wearing an American flag lapel pin. But plenty hangs on the answer to this unasked question.

Ever since the Reagan administration the government has been slicing billions upon billions out of the defense budget to develop Star Wars missiles. Though the program has always rested on shaky scientific ground, it survived Daddy Bush, Clinton, and Little Bush administrations plus all those Democratic- and Republican-led congresses. But after the military industrial complex finally put together some dwarf models, it looked around to discover there was no more Cold War.

No problem. All we have to do is start a new one. Why not ignite one with the rotting rump of the old Soviet Empire - gangster Russia? Because Bush-Cheney managed to triple the price of petroleum, they’ve made oil-rich Russia wealthy enough to stand in as a credible threat.

Bush-Cheney tell us repeatedly that the ten anti-missiles to be deployed in Poland are aimed at “rogue states,” not Russia. When Putin invaded Georgia, (Georgia initiated hostilities by sending troops into its two breakaway provinces) he was angry at the West for quite a number of insults, but chief among them was the plan to place Star Wars in Poland, with radar installations in the Czech Republic.

Anyway, as soon as Putin sent tanks rolling into Georgia, first somebody had to explain to Prince George about the existence of this other Georgia. Then the newly informed Little Prince retaliated by getting Poland’s quick okay, after years of resistance, to accept the system. Another question our media never asked: If the missiles are aimed at rogue states not to include Russia, how could their deployment be a tit-for-tat tactic to punish Russia?

More questions: Does this incremental Star Wars shield work? Does it make us safer? It's not designed to stop ABM’s, by the way, only shorter-range missiles. Poland never thought it would be made safer by this Strangelovian system, which is why it refused to accept the thing on its soil all this time. It requires only a few pennies to beef up offensive capability in relation to the dollars it takes to develop defensive missile capabilities. In simple terms, it’s much cheaper to develop a gun that shoots bullets than a gun that shoots bullets designed to stop bullets.

Bin Laden is a maniac in a cave with no air force. Putin commands thousands of nukes that Russia was once eager to destroy. But that was before Bush unilaterally pulled out of the anti-ballistic missile treaty (another barely noticed event that had huge repercussions)

What's going on is a classic enactment of precisely what Eisenhower warned against in his 1960 farewell speech, when he coined the term “military-industrial complex.” When this complex gets big and powerful enough, it drives U.S. policy away from its true interests. Now it's feeding on itself to grow even bigger. And feeding on us.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

When Obama's pastor made anti-white remarks it was all over the media; when Palin's "God Bless Our Pipeline and Help Us Win the War" church had the founder of Jews for Jesus spewing anti-semetic garbage, it never evens gets a mention. Oh, well, when she entertains foreign dignataries she can speak in tongues-they will probably understand as much as her rhetoric. So scary, people are taken in by her.