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For United States Rulers—Not Just for the Military Industrial Complex--Being AT War is Far More Important than Winning a War

by John Spritzler

December 2, 2023

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"The war is not meant to be won, it is meant to be continuous...The war is waged by the ruling group against its own subjects and its object is not the victory over either Eurasia or East Asia, but to keep the very structure of society intact.” --George Orwell in Nineteen Eighty-Four



George Orwell was right. Orwell’s insight applies to the militaristic foreign (and domestic with respect to the American Indians) policy of the United States from its inception. How does war, to use Orwell’s words, “keep the very structure of society intact”?


The answer to this question starts with observing that “the very structure” of the society created in North America by British and other European colonists was, in contrast to American Indian social structure, a structure of class inequality, in which some haves were wealthy and powerful; and these haves dominated and oppressed the much larger number of have-nots to enrich themselves. The have-nots were never happy campers, and resisted their domination and oppression by the haves in many different ways, to be examined below.


One of the most effective means by which the class of haves made (and still makes) the have-nots submit to it is by ensuring the existence of a bogeyman enemy (either finding a handy already-existing one or, if necessary, inventing one) so frightening to the have-nots that the haves, by pretending to protect the have-nots from the bogeyman enemy, can make the have-nots obey them despite the very real grievances the have-nots have against the haves.


As the title of this article emphasizes, it is the upper ruling class as a whole, not just the part of it that profits from war—the military industrial complex—that needs to keep the United States at war. As is well known, the Americans currently in charge of keeping the United States at war against an enemy are the neoconservatives.


One of the leading neoconservative think tanks is the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). It sponsors each year a "Zbigniew Brzezinski Annual Prize and Lecture." This website lists CSIS as "One of the top ten think tanks in the world," and says that it "often exerted direct influence on the White House with respect to foreign policy and defense issues" and that "notable CSIS-associated people include former US Secretary of State, Madeleine Albright, former Israeli President, Ehud Barak, current US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, former US Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger, former US Senator, Sam Nunn, Pritzker Organization CEO, Thomas J. Pritzker."

Who funds CSIS? Is it only funded by the obvious culprits, the arms manufacturers such as Lockheed Martin and Raytheon? No. It gets funding from a much wider spectrum of Big Money in the United States. According to CSIS's own website, its corporate funders are listed here, and its foundation funders are listed here (and it also has government funders, of course, listed here).

Some of the corporate funders include Bank of America, Chevron, Exxon Mobil, Facebook, JPMorgan Chase, Johnson & Johnson, McAfee, Merck, Microsoft, Oracle, Apple, Canon, General Electric, IBM, Procter & Gamble, Sun Life Financial, United Airlines, Verizon, American Airlines, Disney, Google, Kellogg's. 

Not exactly exclusively arms manufacturers, right?

What about CSIS's foundation donors? The list includes the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation of New York, and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and the World Wildlife Fund.

The point is that warmongering against bogeyman enemies is not something that ONLY arms manufacturers want; it is something that the billionaire class in general wants. This ruling billionaire class needs the U.S. to be at war against a bogeyman enemy in order to have any half-way credible argument to persuade the have-not Americans to put up with its obscene wealth,  power and privilege and, on top of that, treatment of the have-nots like dirt.

There is actually even a downside to winning a war: it means one no longer has the frightening bogeyman enemy to use to control one’s own have-nots. When Mikhail Gorbachev ended the Soviet Union he told American diplomats, "I will do something very terrible to you America--I am going to take away your enemy" [source: here and an equivalent one here]. Unless you understand the need that oppressive ruling classes have for a bogeyman enemy you wouldn't understand Gorbachev's remark. George Orwell, however, understood this point perfectly, which is why he wrote:

"The war is not meant to be won, it is meant to be continuous...The war is waged by the ruling group against its own subjects and its object is not the victory over either Eurasia or East Asia, but to keep the very structure of society intact.” --George Orwell in Nineteen Eighty-Four





Waging War Against the American Indian Bogeyman

When Europeans arrived on the shores of the North American continent, they arrived as a class society, with a few rich and powerful European haves (the ruling class) oppressing the great many European have-nots on the new American land. This point is hardly ever mentioned in the standard discourse, which speaks only of "the Europeans" as if there were no fundamental difference between the haves and have-nots. But there WAS a fundamental difference.

For one example of this factually wrong standard discourse, and my refutation of it, please see my article about the Mayflower Plymouth Colony here

Likewise, the standard discourse about our Founding Fathers is a complete cover-up of the truth about how they were the haves oppressing the have-nots back then. Read about this here.

As the Europeans began settling in North America they of course encountered American Indians who lived there.


What happened?

One thing that happened is that a substantial number of European have-nots opted to "go native." Ward Churchill wrote about this:

"Probably the earliest group of English to have simply melted into a native society were the inhabitants of Raleigh's 'lost colony' of Roanoak in 1590. A century later, there were literally thousands of 'white Indians'--mostly English and French, but Swedes, Scots, Irish, Dutch and others as well--who, displeased with aspects of their own cultures, had either married into, been adopted by, or petitioned for naturalization as member/citizens of indigenous nations. By then, the phenomenon had become pronounced enough that it had long-since precipitated a crisis among the Puritans of Plymouth Colony and figured in their waging of a war of extermination against the Pequots in 1637.

"The attraction of 'going native' remained so strong, and the willingness of indigenous peoples to accept Europeans into their societies so apparent, that it prevailed even among those captured in Indian/white warfare. During the 1770s, George Croghan and Guy Johnson, both acknowledged authorities on the native peoples of the mid-Atlantic region, estimated that the great bulk of the several hundred English prisoners of all ages and both genders taken by the Indians had been adopted by them rather than being put to death.

"The literature of the period is literally filled with observations. Virginia's Lieutenant Governor Francis Fauquier, for example, noted that whites 'recovered' from Indians had to be 'closely watched [lest] they will certainly return to the Barbarians.' Colonel Henry Bouquet, who headed a 1764 expedition to take charge of 'captives' returned under terms of a treaty with England by the Shawnees, Miamis and other peoples of the Ohio River Valley, issued orders that 'they are to be closely watched and well Secured [as] most of them, particularly those who have been a long time among the Indians, will take the first Opportunity to run away.' The Reverend William Smith, chaplain and chronicler of Bouquet's foray, noted that most younger whites seemed to view their 'liberators' as captors and 'parted from the savages with tears.'" [1]

One particularly good book about this is the exceedingly well- researched and well-written book, The Unredeemed Captive, by John Demos. This book describes how in 1704 Mohawks and French forces captured some English Puritans from Deerfield, MA. Over the years following this there were negotiations leading to the return of most of the prisoners. But Eunice, the daughter of a Puritan minister who had been captured and later released, refused to return, married a Mohawk man and made several trips from her Mohawk home in Canada to visit her Puritan relatives for weeks at at time in Deerfield. But Eunice always returned to her Mohawk society despite the strong efforts of her father to persuade her to stay. Read here about another similar story.

European colonist rulers, in contrast, viewed American Indians as sub-human (in regards to their rights if not their intelligence), and they waged an ethnic cleansing war  against them, a war that entailed at times the goal of physically exterminating (killing) the Indians and at other times the goal of destroying their civilizations, either by destroying their farming civilizations or by destroying their nomadic civilizations based on hunting buffalo, and enclosing them in tiny reservations where they would no longer be an obstacle to European domination of North America "from sea to shining sea." A good book about the latter goal of ethnic cleansing focused on the Great Plains Comanche Indians is Empire of the Summer Moon by S.C. Gwynne. The book tells the story of one of the Comanche great chiefs, Quanah Parker, the son of Cynthia Ann Parker who was a European captured by the Comanches as a nine year old girl assimilated into the tribe (who, when "rescued" kept trying to return to the Comanches). 

It is important to know that the particular European colonists who initiated the ethnic cleansing of American Indians, who created the famous "Manifest Destiny" notion that exclusively European domination of North America from "sea to shining sea" was God's will, and who encouraged and when necessary ordered European have-nots to carry out the violent ethnic cleansing, were also the oppressors of ordinary European colonists and of course of black people; they were the slave-owners whom most Southern whites at the time of the Civil War (the period when the ethnic cleansing of the Great Plains Indians was in full swing) hated (yes, HATED!) as a class that oppressed them as well as the slaves, as one can read about in detail here.

European ethnic cleansing violence naturally elicited, in return, Indian violence against European settlers encroaching on their land. The violence on both sides was absolutely brutal: killing and raping and torturing and scalping and so on. It was violence designed to make the enemy leave.

Naturally, when European have-nots were attacked by Indians they tended to rally around their rulers in defense against the Indians. The European rulers gained the obedience of the European have-nots this way. For the European rulers, the Indians made a perfect bogeyman enemy with which to control the European have-nots. Because of this usefulness of the Indians as a bogeymen enemy, the European rulers had a strong motive NOT to allow peace to break out between Europeans and Indians because that would have rendered the bogeyman enemy no longer frightening enough to drive the European have-nots into obedience to their European rulers.

This is why the European rulers avoided creating peaceful and mutually respectful relations with the American Indians. It did not suit their oppressive (oppressive of the European have-nots, that is) purpose to do so. European rulers were an upper class that valued personal self-interest--greed--and that created a religion to justify not only oppressing European have-nots and African blacks but also stealing land and wealth from American Indians and killing them to get it.​

If the have-nots had succeeded in removing the haves from power, they, along with the American Indians, would most likely have made North America something entirely different from the United States of America that it is today, something with a social structure very different from the class inequality structure that the haves kept intact by waging a war against a bogeyman enemy.

The haves of North America have been using bogeyman enemies to preserve the structure of society by being AT war ever since. This is their #1 top priority goal; more important than winning the war is being AT war.  If peace breaks out the haves know they are at high risk of losing control over their have-nots and being removed from power. If this ever happened, they would no longer be able to enjoy whatever material gains they might have hoped to gain by WINNING a war. Thus, it’s better for the haves to be AT war and not win it than to win a war and let peace break out.


The Spanish-American War April 21, 1898 – Dec 10, 1898 and the Philippine-American War February 1899 – 1902


“You furnish the pictures, and I’ll furnish the war.” — Attributed to William Randolph Hearst [2]


“The McKinley administration wanted war to divert attention from the existing economic situation, as the promised ‘good times,’ he claimed, had failed to materialize.” [3]


When U.S. rulers whipped up war hysteria against Spain it was a time when they were frightened of U.S. working class people becoming increasingly well organized and militant in standing up to the upper class.


The Populist Response to Industrial America, by Norman Pollack (Harvard University Press, 1962) reports on the revolutionary sentiments that were being expressed by rural America in the 1890s. Here is just a small sample:


The Farmers Alliance of Lincoln, Nebraska wrote, "The plutocracy of to-day is the logical result of the individual freedom which we have always considered the pride of our system...The tendency of the competitive system is to antagonize and disassociate men... The survival of the fittest is a satanic creed... A stage must be reached in which each will be for all and all for each. The welfare of the individual must be the object and end of all effort... Competition is only another name for war...[W]ithout a complete eradication of this system the people cannot for once hope for relief of a permanent character." Three years later, under its new name, Alliance-Independent, it wrote, "A reigning plutocracy with the masses enslaved, is the natural development and end of individualism....The only possible permanent democracy is the democracy of unselfish socialism."


The Topeka Advocate wrote, "Look at the multitudes who have been but recently thrown out of employment, and whose families have been destitute in consequence...It is cruel, it is inhuman, to attribute these conditions to laziness, drunkenness and incompetence. They are the natural product of a false and vicious system by which the few grow rich beyond all human need, and the many are doomed to eternal poverty and want...Remember that tramps are men, and that they are a natural product of our social system. There must be discovered some way to deal with them consistently with these facts. Can it be done without a revolution of our system? We think not."


The nearly revolutionary Populist Party nominated William Jennings Bryan for president in the election of 1896. Bryan lost with 6.5 million votes to McKinley’s 7.1 million but his showing was impressive by any standard, as his popular vote total exceeded that of any other presidential candidate in American history to that date—winner or loser. He polled nearly one million more votes than did the previous Democratic victor, Grover Cleveland. [4]


Labor Sets an Ultimatum


Here’s an encyclopedia account of the labor militancy that U.S. rulers feared:


In October 1884 the national Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions approved a resolution calling for a workday of eight hours. Given the failure to date of legislative methods, trade unions and other worker associations set an ultimatum: Either workers would get their eight-hour workday limit by 1 May 1866 or they would defend their demands with a general strike. The epicenter of the eight-hour day movement (also known as the "May Day" movement), which claimed 250,000 laborers nationwide by 1886, was Chicago. Most involved in organizing workers was the anarchist-influenced Working People's Association. Numerous eight-hour strikes broke out prior to the 1 May deadline, and thousands of workers in numerous trades won hour limits. Striking workers nationwide united behind the words of J. G. Blanchard's "Eight-Hour Song": "We're summoning our forces from / shipyard, shop, and mill; / Eight hours for work / eight hours for rest / Eight hours for what you will." Nonetheless, a great number of American workers were still working around 100 hours a week. What started out as a peaceful protest on 1 May became a pivotal moment in labor history.


On the 1 May deadline for a national general strike, thousands of workers in Chicago struck with mostly peaceful actions. As the protest continued over several days, tension between police and strikers intensified. On 3 May, when strikers attacked men who crossed a picket line at the McCormick Reaper Works, police opened fire and killed four demonstrators. That night hundreds of enraged protesters took to the streets, demonstrating at Haymarket Square. Just as the rally was concluding, a dynamite bomb exploded and killed a police officer. The police fired on the crowd, killing one protester and wounding others. Four of the eight demonstrators arrested for the bombing were hanged despite scant evidence against them. The Haymarket affair was a rallying cry for a new generation of activists. Lucy Parsons, on the death of her husband, Albert Parsons, called for direct action against the wealthy. Emma Goldman, a young Lithuanian immigrant and anarchist, cited Haymarket Square as her political birthplace. "If it weren't for what happened here in Chicago back in 1886, you'd be working 16 hours a day," writer Studs Terkel recalled telling a young antiunion couple a century later.


As the hysteria surrounding the Haymarket affair died down, demands for an eight-hour day resumed. In the Northwest, lumber workers of the Industrial Workers of the World enforced their eight-hour demands by simply walking off the job after eight hours of work. Advances toward an eight-hour day were nonetheless the exception to a larger trend: when the U.S. government began keeping track of workers' hours in 1890, it discovered that full-time workers in manufacturing spent an average of 100 hours per week on the job. The struggle continued.

On 12 May 1902 some 150,000 anthracite coal miners in Pennsylvania went on strike to demand better wages and shorter hours. Lasting five months, the strike required government intervention due to fears of a coal shortage. [5]

And there were railroad strikes


“Several strikes also punctuated the growing depression, including a number of violent uprisings in the coal regions of Ohio and Pennsylvania. But the infamous Pullman Strike of 1894 was most notable for its nationwide impact, as it all but shut down the nation’s railroad system in the middle of the depression.” [6]


There was the Pullman strike.


"It was through disruption of the United States mail that the federal government was given an opening for intervention into the boycott and strike. The government was uncomfortable with the labor actions in general, part of a growing apprehension about the laboring classes by those in the propertied class during a period of economic hardship. An injunction against the boycott was secured on the grounds of the violent nature of the strike and the threat to interstate commerce, citing the Sherman Anti-Trust Law of 1890, which ironically had been adopted to combat monopoly by big business.

"Going over the head of Illinois Governor John Peter Altgeld, thousands of U.S. Marshals and U.S. Army troops were deployed in what seemed an outsized response to the disturbance. In Chicago, mob activity increased with the military presence, with members from Pullman, but many more from other South Side neighborhoods. Back in Pullman, the Pullman Company strikers' plight had been overshadowed on the national stage by the boycott. Fighting between the military and workers at rail yards in the Chicago area left dozens dead and more wounded."


Waging a war against a foreign enemy was exactly what the ruling class needed to control the American have-nots with appeals for them to be patriotic and support their government in its fight for something far more important (supposedly) than any grievance American have-nots may have against their rulers. This was the message that war propaganda had to convey to the have-nots.


“The official narratives have presented conflict as a mighty clash between civilization and barbarism in the Philippines…”Why America Fights: Patriotism and War Propaganda from the Philippines to Iraq by Susan A. Brewer


“And of all our race He has marked the American people as his chosen nation to finally lead in the regeneration of the world. This is the divine mission of America, and it holds for us all the profit, all the glory, all the happiness possible to man. Senator Albert J. Beveridge, 1900”Why America Fights: Patriotism and War Propaganda from the Philippines to Iraq by Susan A. Brewer




World War I


In his The Great Class War about World War I, the historian Jacques R. Pauwels makes the case that, quoting the book description at the back of the book and online, with my emphasis: 


"For European statesmen, a large-scale war could give their countries new colonial territories, important to growing capitalist economies. For the wealthy and ruling classes, war served as an antidote to social revolution, encouraging workers to exchange socialism's focus on international solidarity for nationalism's intense militarism. And for the working classes themselves, war provided an outlet for years of systemic militarization -- quite simply, they were hardwired to pick up arms, and to do so eagerly.

"To Pauwels, the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in June 1914 -- traditionally upheld by historians as the spark that lit the powder keg -- was not a sufficient cause for war but rather a pretext seized upon by European powers to unleash the kind of war they had desired."

In the forward to his book, Pauwels writes about the broad sweep of the book starting with the French revolution of 1789:

"We will come to the realization that the Great War was wanted and unleashed by a European elite that was essentially a 'symbiosis' of the nobility, that is, the large landowners and the haute bourgeoisie or 'upper middle class,' the latter consisting above all of industrialists and bankers. The nobility--not only in France, but everywhere in the Europe of the ancien régime--was counterrevolutionary from the very moment when, in 1789, the 'great' revolution broke out in France. The bourgeoisie had been revolutionary in 1789, but it became counterrevolutionary after its traumatic experiences during the revolutions of 1848 and 1871. These new revolutions made the bourgeoisie understand that the rights and privileges it had acquired via the French Revolution were threatened by the aspirations of the lower classes in general and the working class in particular; from the perspective of the bourgeoisie these were henceforth the 'dangerous classes' (classes dangereuses), the 'vile multitude.' The working class loomed more and more menacing because it had discovered a potent emancipatory strategy in Marxist socialism. Moreover, it had developed forms of organization, especially workers' parties and trade unions, and had thus managed to obtain more and more political and social reforms, such as a widening of the electoral franchise. The fear of revolution and even of a seemingly irresistible democratization--the 'rise of the masses'--convinced the elite that Nietzche and the apostles of Social Darwinism were right: these intellectuals propounded that only war could eliminate the grave risks associated with democratization and above all the mortal danger of revolution." [pg. 17-18]


In other words, the ruling classes needed bogeyman enemies against whom to wage a war.


World War II


In the 1930s during the Great Depression the rulers of the United States, Germany and Japan all faced increasingly revolutionary working-class uprisings and feared actual revolutions. In order to control their own people, the rulers of these nations instigated World War II, so they could persuasively order their own people to stop waging the class war and instead join their rulers in waging war against other nations. I discuss this in detail in my book, The People As Enemy: the Leaders' Hidden Agenda in World War II, much of which is online here:

In the United States during the years prior to its entry into World War II, the American ruling class feared the increasingly revolutionary American working class, and had to figure out some way to forestall revolution. What was going on at this time is illustrated by the examples of sharp class conflict given below:


When a longshoremen's strike in 1934 led to a general strike in San Francisco of 130,000 workers, which spread to Oakland and then up the Pacific Coast, the Los Angeles Times wrote: "The situation in San Francisco is not correctly described by the phrase 'general strike.' What is actually in progress there is an insurrection, a Communist-inspired and led revolt against organized government. There is but one thing to be done B put down the revolt with any force necessary." FDR's National Recovery Administration chief, General Hugh S. Johnson, went to San Francisco and declared the general strike a "menace to the government" and a "civil war."[8]


In the same year 325,000 textile workers, many of them women, used "flying squadrons" to spread their strike throughout the South from mill to mill, often battling guards, entering the mills, unbelting machinery and fighting non-strikers. So alarmed was The New York Times that it warned, "The grave danger of the situation is that it will get completely out of the hands of the leaders...The growing mass character of the picketing operations is rapidly assuming the appearance of military efficiency and precision and is something entirely new in the history of American labor struggles. Observers...declared that if the mass drive continued to gain momentum at the speed at which it was moving today, it will be well nigh impossible to stop it without a similarly organized opposition with all the implications such an attempt would entail."[2] Declaring martial law, South Carolina= s governor said that a "state of insurrection" existed. When the strike spread to New England, Governor Green, of Rhode Island, declared that, "there is a Communist uprising and not a textile strike in Rhode Island," and then declared a state of insurrection. [3] Georgia Governor Eugene Talmadge declared martial law. National Guardsmen began mass arrests of flying squadrons and held them without charge in a concentration camp where Germans had been held during WWI..." By September 19 the death toll in the South had reached thirteen." [9]


Events like these (read about them in greater detail here) hit all parts of the nation, and this was just the warm up to the wave of sit-down strikes in 1936-7 during which 10,000 workers occupied GM's Flint, Michigan plant with help from thousands of workers who traveled hundreds of miles to join them. Following that strike, Chrysler faced 6,000 sit-downers with 50,000 picketers outside its plants and the New York Times felt obliged to warn business and government leaders, "It is generally feared that an attempt to evict the strikers with special deputies would lead to an inevitable large amount of bloodshed and the state of armed insurrection." [10]


Big business was even afraid that the electoral system, which was supposed to ensure that Americans would forsake mass direct action for reliance on tame and trusted politicians, was about to fail in this purpose. Louisiana's governor, Huey Long, had seven million followers who wanted a dramatic redistribution of wealth and viewed FDR as an obstacle. Most alarmingly, the Democratic Party in California was captured in 1934 by a radical mass movement which wanted the state to seize land and factories so that unemployed people could operate them in a moneyless network of production for need, not profit. Their leader, Upton Sinclair, a long-time socialist, swept away his opponents and won the Democratic Party primary, making him its candidate for Governor. He was only defeated in the gubernatorial election by an unprecedented smear campaign launched jointly by liberal and conservative California newspapers. But the handwriting was on the wall.


FDR tried to control the rebellion with New Deal promises. But it didn't work. His famous Wagner Act of 1935, for example, tried to pacify workers by making unions legal. The Act also locked unions into an elaborate system of government regulations designed to ensure that conservative labor leaders would be able to control their unruly rank-and-file. But workers developed the sit-down tactic in the next two years precisely to keep control in their own hands.


War is the Solution to the Threat of Revolution


Ruling elites have known for centuries that when revolution threatens at home desperate measures are required, and the most effective one is to go to war. For example, on the eve of the Russo-Japanese War in 1904 the Russian Czar's interior minister, Vyacheslav Plehve, declared, "What this country needs is a short victorious war to stem the tide of revolution." [11] This is the only way to understand the little-known truth about how FDR's advisors reacted to the news of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Secretary of War Stimson's diary entry at 2pm December 7, written after learning from the President about the attack on Pearl Harbor, reads: "Now the Japs have solved the whole thing by attacking us directly in Hawaii...My first feeling was of relief that the indecision was over and that a crisis had come in a way which would unite all our people."[12] Not shock, but relief. Relief that war would finally force American workers to unite with instead of rebel against America's rulers.


FDR waged the war in a manner designed to prolong it rather than to defeat the fascists quickly; and he attacked working class pro-democracy forces abroad that were fighting the fascists. From my same book about WWII:


FDR's strange Pacific strategy


In the Pacific, FDR had to choose between a strategy of fighting the Japanese in China in order to secure China as a staging area for an attack on Japan, or one of abandoning China to the Japanese occupying army and instead fighting the Japanese in bloody battles for islands like Iwo Jima and Guadalcanal to use them as a staging area instead. FDR's choice of strategy reveals his true war objectives, but at the time it simply perplexed his military advisors who thought the object of the war was to defeat fascism.


Not only was China closer to Japan and more suited as a staging area, but it would have been infinitely easier to defeat the Japanese army in China than on the isolated Pacific Islands. In China there was a full fledged peasant revolution in progress with Chinese Communist Party leadership. The Japanese army was made up of peasants who hated their viciously anti-peasant Samurai officers. Japanese peasant soldiers felt more sympathy for revolutionary Chinese peasants like themselves than they did for their officers or the Emperor whom they reviled. Many Japanese soldiers after being captured by the Chinese engaged in efforts to persuade their fellows to switch their loyalty. The Japanese government was well aware of this. As reported in the August 13, 2003 issue of The Japan Times, "The army's staff headquarters was considering pulling troops out [of China] around this time due to the decline in their will to fight." On the little isolated Pacific Islands occupied by the Japanese, however, there was no peasant revolution happening and the Japanese soldiers knew that they would be killed by their own officers if they didn't fight to the death against the Americans.


So what did FDR do? In China he backed Chiang Kai-shek, the chief enemy of the peasants. Chiang Kai-shek had an army of horribly mistreated conscripts which he used only to fight the Communists and never the Japanese. U.S. military leaders wanted to back the Communists, who had an army with extremely high morale and popular support that was fighting the Japanese very successfully. But FDR refused. He insisted on fighting the Japanese on islands like Iwo Jima where there would be no chance of international working class solidarity ideas infecting American troops and getting back to the home front, and where the bloodthirsty fighting would give American newspapers and Hollywood all they needed to whip up the flames of racism and nationalism, which (for those very few in the know) was a central purpose of the war. No matter that thousands of Americans would die unnecessarily in this way and that the war would be greatly extended in duration. (The excuse that FDR didn't want to help the peasants because he opposed communist dictatorships doesn't hold water, since FDR allied with and indeed publicly praised Stalin who was by this time well known to be a ruthless dictator. Stalin also backed Chiang Kai-shek and never helped the Chinese Communists for the same reasons that motivated FDR.)

FDR's strange European strategy


In Europe FDR did the same thing. An organization of 7,000 people secretly opposed to fascism and still in positions of some responsibility in Germany had made several assassination attempts on Hitler. A high-ranking German intelligence officer, Admiral Canaris, was part of this resistance. He "leaked vital intelligence to the British and Americans, including the German army's order of battle, an invaluable insight into the Wehrmacht's intentions." And he offered "the support of General Rommel for a bloodless conquest of the western front if the Anglo-Americans would give the slightest sign of a disposition for an armistice...The British reply: there was no alternative to unconditional surrender." [13]


Unconditional surrender was FDR's way of ensuring that Americans would perceive the war in Europe as a fight-to-the-death war against the entire German population, and that the war would drag out for a longer time than necessary. American military leaders were as baffled by FDR's unconditional surrender strategy as they were by his Pacific strategy. When Roosevelt made unconditional surrender Allied policy, the reaction of military leaders was universally negative because they knew it was disastrous from a military point of view. General Eisenhower thought it would do nothing but cost American lives, and said, "If you were given two choices, one to mount a scaffold, the other to charge twenty bayonets, you might as well charge twenty bayonets." Major General Ira C. Eaker, commander of the U.S. Eighth Air Force wrote: "Everybody I knew at the time when they heard this [unconditional surrender] said: 'How stupid can you be?' All the soldiers and the airmen who were fighting this war wanted the Germans to quit tomorrow. A child knew once you said this to the Germans, they were going to fight to the last man. There wasn't a man who was actually fighting in the war whom I ever met who didn't think this was about as stupid an operation as you could find." [14] (See here for more about this.)


In all of Europe the Allies' main concern was to prevent the popular Resistance movements of workers and peasants from coming to power. Americans arrested and disarmed the Italian resistance (Partisans) when they took Rome, and even made a radio broadcast for Nazi ears saying that they would not aid the resistance forces in the north of Italy, who were the only ones directly fighting the Nazis. The result, as expected, was that the Nazis used this information to attack and wipe out the Italian resistance force in the North.


In Greece the same story played out when, in 1944, the Greek Resistance organization, EAM, whose labor organization "controlled the entire [Greek] working class and helped lead strikes in the occupied territories throughout the war,"[15] announced a general strike for December 4th. On December 5, Churchill sent General Scobie these instructions:


"Do not hesitate to fire at any armed male in Athens who assails the British authority...It would be well of course if your commands were reinforced by the authority of some Greek Government...Do not however hesitate to act as if you were in a conquered city where a local rebellion is in progress." [16]


On December 13, Roosevelt wired Churchill that "I regard my role in this matter as that of a loyal friend and ally whose one desire is to be of any help possible in the circumstances." [17]


From the beginning of the war until 1944 Roosevelt officially backed the French Nazi collaborationist Vichy government led by Marshal Henri Petain, a government that worked hand-in-glove with the Nazis, enforcing the anti-Semitic laws, rounding up Jews for the Nazi death camps and executing members of the French Resistance as directed by the Nazis. Roosevelt's top advisors were far more afraid of the French people than they were of the Nazis or their puppet Vichy government. In May, 1943, Secretary of State Hull voiced the problem he had with supporting the Resistance leader, Charles De Gaulle: "The issue at stake is not only the success of our future military operations, but the very future of France itself. De Gaulle has permitted to come under his umbrella all the most radical elements in France." [15] Even as late as February 1944, [FDR's Chief of Staff Admiral] Leahy advocated leaving [Vichy's Marshall] Petain as head of France after D-Day."[18]


And in Yugoslavia the U.S. backed the Chetniks. The Chetniks were led by King Peter's strongman and Minister of War, General Draza Mihailovic. They were discredited as "Resistance" fighters for "supplying information on the Partisans [Communist Resistance fighters led by Josip Broz Tito] to the Germans" and because they "were preoccupied with fighting and containing Tito's growing power." [19] Tito's resistance fighters were the only ones who fought the Nazis, but the U.S. went out of its way to prevent them from getting arms.


The Cold War Against the Soviet Union


The American ruling class armed the Soviet Union during the "Cold War." This fact is spelled out in detail by Antony C. Sutton in his book, National Suicide: Military Aid to the Soviet Union, published by Arlington House, New Rochelle, New York, in March 1974 (third printing) and online here as a PDF, many extremely detailed excerpts from which, including Sutton’s rigorous source references, are presented here. * Further corroboration of the U.S. arming the Soviet Union is in “Our Kind of Enemy: American Capital's Love Affair with Soviet Communism” by Matthew Raphael Johnson, Radix: A Journal of the National Policy Institute, June 4 2015. Also making the same point for the present Ukraine-proxy-war time is “The Secret American Plan to Make Russia Great Again” by Dmitry Orlov for the Saker Blog.


Why did the American ruling class arm the Soviet Union when, supposedly, it was deadly afraid of the Soviet Union? Excellent question! The most compelling answer is that the American ruling class wanted a credible foreign enemy with which to control the American people. Such an enemy enabled the rich upper class rulers to pose as the protectors of the nation from the Evil Empire, and in this way make Americans tolerate unjust domination by this upper class, including allowing it to make huge profits from the weapons industry by bilking American tax-payers. (Soviet rulers likewise needed the American bogeyman enemy to control their own people.) Waging the Cold War as an Orwellian war of social control cost many ordinary people their lives and kept most people in great fear, but it was wonderful for the ruling elites.

Here are two articles about how the U.S. public during the Cold War was made to fear a "missile gap" (i.e., Soviet superiority to the U.S. in number of nuclear missiles) when in fact no such missile gap actually existed:

The Missile Gap Myth and Its Progeny 



Greg Thielmann

Public misperceptions in 1959 and 1960 that the Soviet Union had opened up a dangerous and growing lead over the United States in the deployment of intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) had fateful consequences beyond influencing an exceedingly close presidential election. What was then labeled “the missile gap” also helped establish patterns in the nuclear arms race that persisted throughout the Cold War and beyond. [continued at ]



CIA: US Overestimated Soviet Missiles 

By Laya Anasu, Contributing Writer

September 27, 2011

During the “Missile Gap” of the 1950s and 1960s, the United States drastically overestimated the number of Soviet missiles, according to 189 documents recently released by the CIA and discussed by former CIA agents and historians on Monday at the John F. Kennedy Library in Boston.

The declassified documents “showed the Soviets didn’t really have an advantage,” Chief of the CIA’s Historical Collections Division Bruce S. Barkan said. During the Missile Gap period, there was a growing perception in the U.S. that the Soviet Union had hundreds of intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs). [continued at ]

Preventing "Communist expansion" abroad was also the perfect pretext for the U.S. government to invade other nations and overthrow foreign governments whenever it suited the American ruling class. But for this pretext to be credible, the Soviet Union had to be a serious military power, which U.S. rulers guaranteed by doing what is described below.



Antony Sutton, cited above regarding the U.S. arming the Soviet Union, writes:


"Each year in the spring the North Vietnamese have attempted to conquer the South. In 1972, in their latest attempt, a full-scale invasion was launched with various kinds of heavy equipment they had not previously used. The tanks, guns and trucks came from the Soviet Union--and were produced in plants erected and equipped by American and European companies.

"The T-54 tank was used in force in early 1972. The T-54 has a modified Christie-type suspension. The GAZ trucks on the Ho Chi Minh trail came from the Ford-built Gorki plant. The ZIL trucks on the Ho Chi Minh trail came from the Brandt-built plant. Both plants were equipped with new American machinery while the Vietnamese War was in progress. The amphibious PT-76 tank is manufactured at Volgograd--in a factory built by eighty U.S. firms. This is called "peaceful trade" by the mystics in Washington.

"As the material presented in this book will show, the "arsenal for revolution" was built by Western firms and has been kept in operation with "peaceful trade." When all the rhetoric about "peaceful trade" is boiled out, it comes down to a single inescapable fact--the guns, the ammunition, the weapons, the transportation systems that killed Americans in Vietnam came from the American-subsidized economy of the Soviet Union. The trucks that carried these weapons down the Ho Chi Minh trail came from American-built plants. the ships that carried the supplies to Sihanoukville and Haiphong came from NATO allies and used propulsion systems that our state Department could have kept out of Soviet hands--indeed, the Export Control Act and the Battle Act, ignored by State, required exactly such action.* The only other route for these supplies was by rail across Siberia and China. But Soviet locomotives and railroad-operating equipment have also been traced to U.S. and European origins.

"Whichever way we cut the cake, there is only one logical and inescapable conclusion: The technical capability to wage the Korean and Vietnamese wars originated on both sides in Western, mainly American, technology, and the political illusion of "peaceful trade" was the carrier for this war-making technology.

"As U.S. casualties in Vietnam mounted, the lessons of history were clear for those with eyes to see--reduce trade with the USSR and all suppliers to North Vietnam, and so provide an incentive for the other side to decelerate the conflict. (This is not hindsight; the writer made this argument, in print, in the mid-1960s.) Both the Johnson and Nixon administration irrationally and illogically chose to expand trade--the carrier for the technology required to fuel the North Vietnamese side of the war--and so voted to continue the war.

"The more Hanoi stoked up the war, the more Soviet Russia received from the United States. American policy--wittingly or unwittingly--was guaranteed not only to maintain the Vietnamese War but to expand it, increase our losses, and compound the problem of preserving South Vietnam." [pg. 46-47, 1974 hardcover edition, as all further page numbers are from also. Note that the pagination of the above-linked PDF file of the book differs from the hardcover pagination. You can search the PDF file for my excerpted text to locate it in the PDF version, however.]


The above facts undermine the standard story we’ve been taught about the Vietnam war. The aim of the war cannot be understood as “to defeat the Communists.” The aim was not to win the war but rather to be AT war. But only very few people at the top of the American power hierarchy would know this—they simply were not told. The generals and most government officials would believe it was a real war, waged to be won. Of course, some generals knew it could not be won, but needed to be waged anyway because that’s what the President insisted upon; this is what the Pentagon Papers revealed to be the case.


It's possible that U.S. rulers expected that the Vietnam war would, just like the Korean war and WWII and WWI before it, unite Americans behind their rulers and make them accept their oppression by those same rulers. It’s possible U.S. rulers were shocked that, for some reason they never anticipated, Americans rose up against the Vietnam war. When this happened, the rulers could hardly announce, “OK, we’ll end the war, since we never aimed to win it in the first place.” So the war dragged on, leading to more anti-government rebellion in the U.S. than anybody could have predicted. But the purpose of the war was the same as the purpose of the earlier wars, to control the have-nots. It just didn’t work this time.


The War on Terror Following 9/11


The Soviet Union officially ended on December 25, 1991, leaving the United States—to its alarm!—(as Gorbachev remarked at this time, mentioned above) without a credible enemy. For several years the best enemies that the United States rulers could find were defeated too easily to play the role the Soviet Union had played. Saddam Hussein was defeated by George H.W. Bush quickly with only 80 American battle deaths, North Korea was seen to be a basket case, Grenada hardly counted as a seriously frightening bogeyman enemy. Something had to be done because American have-nots along with the have-nots of the world were rising up against the haves. The Anti-globalization movement had become world wide and huge, and also increasingly explicitly opposed to capitalism. The U.S. needed a new Cold War, but against whom?


U.S. rulers chose Islamic Fundamentalists for the job. This required inventing the enemy, a process that Dave Stratman describes in detail in his “Inventing the Enemy.” President Obama did his share of the heavy lifting as I describe in my “Drones Create Hatred of the U.S., Which Is Their Real Purpose.“


9/11 put the kibosh on the Anti-globalization movement and most anti-establishment efforts in the United States for several years. People were told, and naturally felt, that it was a time to “rally ‘round the flag,” not wage a struggle against one’s government that purported to be protecting its people from “the terrorists.”


War against Russia in Ukraine


U.S. actions prior to Russia’s Special Military Operation in Ukraine in February of 2022 were designed to make sure that Russia would be forced to do something that would give the U.S. a pretext to use Ukraine in a proxy war against Russia and thereby renew a Cold War against Russia.


My open letter to President Biden at the time makes clear the fact that the U.S. did exactly what it took to ensure that Russia would have to invade Ukraine in 2022. The fact that the U.S. did everything required to get into a proxy war with Russia and did everything required to ensure that there would be no peace agreement (such as the Minsk agreement) is hardly disputed by any serious observer of these events, even though virtually all such observers (such as Jeffrey Sachs in a video interview here)  believe (or pretend to believe) that these warmongering actions of the U.S. rulers were all just “terrible mistakes” and not intended to create a new Cold War with Russia.



For the U.S. ruling class, and not just the military industrial complex, world peace is absolutely the very LAST thing it wants. U.S. rulers FEAR world peace. U.S. rulers work overtime to ensure that world peace never breaks out. Why?

World peace would give the have-nots of the world, including in the United States, a green light to rise up against the haves (the billionaire ruling class that the Victoria Nulands and Antony Blinkens serve) and remove them from power. World peace would mean there is no frightening foreign bogeyman enemy for the ruling elite to pretend to be protecting their have-nots from. World peace would mean that U.S. rulers would no longer be able to successfully make the have-nots put aside their grievances against their rulers and instead unite with them in a patriotic war against “the real enemy.” It’s impossible to make the have-nots rally ‘round the flag if there’s no credible foreign enemy, if there’s world peace!






1. Ward Churchill, in Perversions of Justice: Indigenous Peoples and Angloamerican Law (one can google a text fragment to see it online)


2. Attributed to William Randolph Hearst in James Creelman, On the Great Highway: The Wanderings and Adventures of a Special Correspondent (Boston: Lothrop, 1901), 178 [  ]    American QuarterlyVol. 10, No. 2, Summer, 1958

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American Socialists and the Spanish-American War

Howard H. Quint

American Quarterly, Vol. 10, No. 2, Part 1 (Summer, 1958), pp. 131-141 (11 pages)• ]


3. The Filipino Genocide, by  Andrew Clem


4. paraphrased from


5. ]






WWII: red is the books ref #


8. Jeremy Brecher, Strike, South End Press, Boston, Massachusetts, 1997, p. 174., pp. 169-74


9. Ibid., pp. 190-92


10.  NYT, March 19, 1937, cited in Brecher, p. 227


11.  Lebow, R.N., Between Peace and War, 1981, Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press


12. Charles A. Beard, President Roosevelt and the Coming Of The War: 1941, New Haven, Yale University Press 1948, p. 419


13.  Thomas Fleming, The New Dealers' War: Franklin D. Roosevelt and The War Within World War II, Basic Books (Perseus Books Group), New York, 2001, pp. 373-4


14.  Ibid., pp. 175


15.  Gabriel Kolko, The Politics of War: The World and United States Foreign Policy, 1943-1945, Pantheon Books, New York, 1968, 1990.., p. 173


16.  Ibid., p. 188


17.  Ibid., p. 190


18.  Ibid., p. 68-9


19.  Ibid., p. 131




*Here is one example of such an excerpt:


"American Ball Bearings for Soviet Missiles"

"Ball bearings are an integral part of many weapons systems; there is no substitute. The entire ball bearing production capability of the Soviet Union is of Western origin--utilizing equipment from the United States, Sweden, Germany, and Italy. This transfer has been fully documented elsewhere (see Bibliography)....

"Soviet dependence on the West for ball bearings technology peaked after the years 1959-61, when the Soviets required a capability for mass production, rather than laboratory or batch production, of miniature precision ball bearings for weapons systems. The only company in the world that could supply the required machine for a key operation in processing the races for precision bearings (the Centalign-B) was the Bryant Chucking Grinder Company. Its miniature ball bearings in 1951 were either imported or made in small lots on Italian and other imported equipment.

"In 1960 there were sixty-six such Centalign machines in the United States. Twenty-five of these machines were operated by the Miniature Precision Bearing Company, Inc., the largest manufacturer of precision ball bearings, and 85 percent of Miniature Precision's output went to military applications. In 1960 the USSR entered an order with Bryant Chucking for forty-five similar machines. Bryant consulted the Department of Commerce. When the department indicated its willingness to grant a license, Bryant accepted the order."...

"The Department of Defense entered a strong objection to the export of the machines**.... The Inter-Departmental Advisory Committee on Export Control, which includes members from the Commerce and State departments as well as the CIA, overruled the Department of Defense opinion, and 'a decision was made to approve the granting of the license.' The Department of Defense made further protests, demanding proof that either the USSR or Western Europe was capable of producing such machines. No such proof was forthcoming." [pg. 91-3. This material is presented in Sutton's volume 3: Western Technology and Soviet Economic Development, 1945-65, with the following footnoted sources, quoted here:


31. This section is based on U.S. Senate, Committee on the Judiciary, Export of Ball Bearing Machines to Russia, Hearings, 87th Congress, 1st session (Washington, 1961). There are three parts to these Hearings; they provide a fascinating story of one Soviet attempt to acquire strategic equipment. See also the Soviet "machine tools Case of 1945"; a microfilm of discussions on this case has been deposited at the Hoover Institution. 

32. U.S. Senate, op cit n. 31, pp. 267-68

33. Ibid

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