Prophets of War (Book Review)

Lockheed Martin and the Making of the Military-Industrial-Complex by William Hartung

In the 70s, the company had to ask the government to a bailout comparable to the ones recently given to keep Wall Street afloat in recent years, they also faced charges of bribery and were seeing a decline in military spending post Vietnam. Reagan came to the rescue by engaging in the arms race with Russia.

Throughout its history the company has also helped create arms export subsidies to inspire other countries to buy weapons and go to war. Sometimes costs to the US go beyond merely granting loans to other countries, but promising “offsets,”- ‘different ways of steering the money back to the country buying the weapons products. For instance, Lockheed Martin might offer to set up a plant in the purchasing government’s country- to provide their citizens with work in building these weapons.

While Lockheed Martin has generally always made a lot of money from weapons sales- in the 1990’s they merged with other companies and suddenly had a wider reach. This reach included “everything from involvement in interrogation [such as in GTMO] and the police training to profiting from the new post-9/11 wave of domestic surveillance activities.”

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midwestern librarian, writer, activist. subscribe —

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