Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. -- Dwight D. Eisenhower's speechwriter, 1953.
Despite a recession that knocked down global arms sales last year, the United States expanded its role as the world’s leading weapons supplier, increasing its share to more than two-thirds of all foreign armaments deals, according to a new Congressional study.
The United States signed weapons agreements valued at $37.8 billion in 2008, or 68.4 percent of all business in the global arms bazaar, up significantly from American sales of $25.4 billion the year before.
As the Times reports, most of these instruments of death and ruin went to the "developing world;" that is, American war profiteers pocketed tens of billions of dollars by running guns to some of the most volatile and vulnerable places on earth, to regimes who laid out their meager resources on weapons rather than the welfare of their people. (Of course, in this they were just following the example of the most "developed" nation of all, the United States.):
The United States was the leader not only in arms sales worldwide, but also to the subset of nations in the developing world, signing $29.6 billion in weapons agreements with these nations, or 70.1 percent of all such deals.
Who was the distant runner-up in war-formenting profiteering around the globe? Was it the evil commies in China? The rascally Russians? Not at all: it was the neo-fascist, oligarchic regime of staunch American ally, media mogul Silvio Berlusconi, "with $3.7 billion in worldwide weapons agreements in 2008."
Talk, as they say, is cheap; and any nation that talks of "peace" and leads the world, year after year, in profiteering from weapons of war and death is a nation drunk on the runoff from its own bulllshit.