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Table of Contents
War Analyses 1845-1886
Criminalizing War 1912-1923
Early Christian View
Economic Basis of Wars
Examples of False
The U. S. Empire
World Wars List
|"During all the history of man there have been strivings to find methods for assuring peace. . . . From time immemorial, nations have marked the end of their wars by the signature of treaties of ‘perpetual peace' and solemnly promised its continuance. We are, however, at this point interested not in promises, but in methods for preserving peace." (P 169).
The book cites examples from the ancient world:
In that ancient era, "the first workable scheme for the preservation of peace was the Pax Romana." (P 169)
"The Pax Romana is proverbial and the model of various later systems which have not always admitted the resemblance. . . . With the triumph of the Roman Empire at the beginning of the Christian era came a period of peace which lasted for more than three centuries. That is to say, there was peace within the empire, although there was constant fighting on its borders. " (P 170)
"There were thousands of other writings and millions of preachers of peace and good will. And always the greatest of all contributions to the building of moral and spiritual foundation of peace began with the Sermon on the Mount. These teachings of Christ have thundered down over these 1900 years." (P 169)
“From the Middle Ages [on], there was a wealth of plans for averting war and keeping the peace. Allowing for the differing conditions, they are strikingly like the plans of our own day [e.g., the 1920's - 1940's]. There are plans for a League of Nations. There are plans for federations. We find supergovernment and an international force to impose its rulings, collective security, mutual assistance, sanctions against an aggressor—even the radical idea of applying undiluted Christian morality to international affairs.” (P 172)
“. . . the [Medieval] Church took the first steps toward regulation and restraint of warfare. A notable instance of this was the 'Peace of God'—a tenth-century attempt to do away with private warfare. This was an early effort to compel [governmental entities] to submit their conflicts to the judgement of tribunals.” (P 171).
"The [medieval "Peace of God"] scheme [anti-war policy] was not successful partly because the nobles were unwilling to forego the use of arms or to accept the decisions of the tribunals. The Peace of God was later (in the eleventh century) supplemented by the Truce of God, designed to regulate what could not be suppressed. It prescribed that there should be no private warfare during certain seasons and on certain days." (P 171).
"The seasons included the time from Advent to Epiphany and from Septuagesima to one week after Pentecost. Throughout the rest of the year hostilities were forbidden from sunset on Wednesday until Monday morning and on all saints' days. By the end of the eleventh century private warfare was forbidden on all but some eighty days in the year. Sometimes the national sovereign supported the decrees of the Church, which thus became law of the land." (P 171)
Some international "laws" "could be imposed by a clearly recognized authority, as when Pope Alexander VI [1492-1503] drew a line on the map and divided the overseas world between the great colonizing powers, Spain and Portugal. The penalties were of a spiritual character, culminating in the dread sanction of excommunication. The influence of the Church was effective in averting warfare and contributed materially to the growth of higher standards of international conduct." (P 172).
"Gerohus of Regensburg, about the time of the Third Crusade (1190) advanced a plan for abolishing war. Gerohus saw the problem in simple terms. In his view, it would suffice for the Pope to forbid all war—an early version of the [1920's] outlawry of war. He proposed that once this was done, all conflicts between princes [governments] should be referred to Rome for decision—here we have compulsory arbitration. And finally, any prince rejecting the arbitral award should be excommunicated and deposed—sanctions with a vengeance." (Pp 172-173)
"A plan for a League of Nations appeared in the fourteenth century. In a document entitled On the Recovery of the Holy Land, Pierre Dubois of Normandy (c. 1300's), an adviser of [French King] Philip [III (1270-1285)], advocated a federation of Christian sovereign states. There was to be a Council of Nations to arbitrate all quarrels." (P 173).
"Dante [Alighieri (1265-1321)], in his De Monarchia, tried his hand at designing a brave new world. . . . he did put forward the idea that human happiness must come from the reign of Law. He did not advocate the supremacy of one state over another, but the supremacy of law over all, so that national passions might be held in check—in other words, international law for arbitration of disputes [in essence] a world state guided by a Supreme Court of Justice." (P 173).
[French King] "Henry of Navarre (1553-1589-1610) and his adviser, the Duc de Sully, produced a more detailed and specific plan, the Great Design." (P 173). "Europe was to be redivided among fifteen Powers in such equal portions as would prevent any future uneven balance of power—a drastic and original method.
"Having redrawn the frontiers of Europe, Henry set up—on paper—his League of Nations. The fifteen Powers were to be represented in a Great Council, whose members were to be subject to re-election every three years. The expenses of the Council were to be paid by proportional contribution from the member states. It would be the duty of the great Council to settle disputes of all sorts among the states and to deal with current affairs.
"Thus far, Henry kept closely to the lines of the future League of Nations. But he further proposed an international army and navy to enforce the decisions of the great Council. . . .
". . . .the Great Design was to do away with war among the fifteen member states . . . And it was prescribed that the Council should undertake reforms which would from time to time be necessary. This was a wise and farsighted regulation by which Henry of Navarrre proposed the peaceful revision of treaties."
"Henry's plan was never put into operation, although Sully tells us it was on the eve of being tried ‘when it pleased God to call him too soon for the happiness of the world.' But it has been a mine of precedent and ideas for every subsequent plan for international government. It is the first balanced plan of federal partnership among sovereign states, with machinery for the peaceful settlement of international disputes and an international force to apply sanctions" (P 174).
"Emeric Crucé produced his Nouveau Cynée some twenty years after the Grand Design of Henry of Navarre. He went further in two particulars. He advocated that membership in the League of states should be open to non-Christian as well as Christian states—which thus opened the door to world federation. He further proposed that war should be done away with by the adoption of a comprehensive system of arbitration." (P 175).
Charles Irénée Castel, Abbé in Saint-Pierre's Project for Settling Perpetual Peace in Europe (1713), had a plan that "shows the inspiration of Henry of Navarre. Saint-Pierre proposed: a League of Sovereign states in a permanent Congress of Representatives; a code of Articles of Commerce; arbitration of disputes by a permanent Senate; combined military sanctions against a rebellious state; reduction of peacetime armies in all states to 6,000 men; weights, measures, and coinage to be standardized throughout Europe; creation of a similar self-contained Asiatic League." (P 176)
"Jean Jacques Rousseau's Judgment on a Plan for Perpetual Peace (1761) sought to improve on Saint-Pierre's plan by guaranteeing the existing status quo and rendering it subject to modification by arbitration only. He provided for the drafting of a Code of International Law and its amendment by unanimous vote of the Diet or Congress of Representatives." (P 176).
"William Penn [1644-1718] advanced in his Essay Towards the Present and Future Peace of Europe (1693) a scheme for the future organizing of the world which he hoped would create tremendous benefits. By stopping war, he hoped to avoid bloodshed, save money, strengthen Christianity's reputation, increase trade and commerce—and make it possible for princes to marry for love, not power. A permanent International Tribunal was to be set up by the sovereigns of Europe, consisting of ninety representatives, chosen by a system of proportional representation, meeting every year to discuss and settle all international differences not settled by diplomatic means. Decisions were to be made by ballot, with a minimum majority of three quarters of the votes. He recognized the need for sanctions . . . against an offender." (P 175). So "he prescribed common action involving the use of sanctions of more violent order than those of the League of Nations." (P 176).
"Jeremy Bentham, in Fragment of an Essay on International Law (1786-89), devised a plan to avert future wars comprising four fundamentals: reduction of armaments; "Permanent Court of Judicature" with powers of arbitration backed by sanctions of force; codification of international law; emancipation of all colonies." (P 176).
The philospher Immanuel Kant's "Kant's Zum Ewign Frieden (Perpetual Peace) (1795) contained an examination of reforms to be undertaken while war still existed." (P 176). The goal was "to create a public opinion favorable to the abolition of war, and [he made] suggestions for final organization of perpetual peace. . . . He foreshadowed . . . a ‘federation of free republics,' meaning by ‘republic' any form of government embodying the liberty and equality of its subjects. Federation would involve a surrender of a portion of power in return for participation in a wider, richer, more abundant life. His practical measures concentrated on . . . the gradual abolition of standing armies. . . . Kant's enduring contribution to the problem was that he lifted the discussion of war and peace above the level of politics and exalted it into a question of ethics and social conscience." (P 177)
". . . there were other plans and proposals for maintaining peace. But these references will at least indicate the antiquity of peace yearnings." (P 177).
"The Protestant churches have been no less vigorous in teaching the moral foundations of peace." (P 172) "In a brief study of this sort we cannot hope even to outline the important role of the Papacy in the struggle for peace. A separate volume could be profitably devoted to this . . . ." (P 171).
As recently as the Napoleonic Era, Tsar Alexander I around 1806 proposed an international treaty to "never to begin a war again before having exhausted all means to have the quarrel settled by a third party," and a league to "form a new code of law for the nations." Three nations, Austria, Prussia, and Russia, in 1815, did sign a treaty, the "Holy Alliance," wherein they agreed that they would
"in the administration of their respective states and in their political relations with every other government, take for their sole guide the precepts of that Holy Religion, namely the precepts of Justice, Christian Charity and Peace,
In the 19th century, in 1897, the Prime Minister of Great Britain, Lord Salisbury (1830-1903), deplored the arms race (production of "instruments of death"), foresaw a "terrible effort of [nation's] mutual destruction which will be fatal for Christian civilization," and said the only hope would be to "be welded in some international constitution."—London Times, 10 Nov 1897.
Two years later, Ivan Bloch, in his six-volume work, The Future of War (1899), compiled and published facts showing that wars would no longer be short, with oft-decisive one-day battles, limited to the military as in the past, but would involve the total society, constitute "total war," and tend to become vastly protracted, with large numbers of casualties. His prediction were soon verified in World Wars 1914-1918 and 1939-1945.
In 1908, an Englishman, Norman Angell, in The Grand Illusion (1908) argued that both victor and vanquished lose by war.
Earlier, William Jay (1769-1853), son of John Jay (1745-1829), a long-time U.S. diplomat and even Chief Justice, U.S. Supreme Court, had published War and Peace: The Evils of the First With A Plan for Securing the Last (England, 1842), recommending an international arbitration process. That writing helped lead to the Treaty of Paris (1856) saying that nations, before going to war, should obtain third party advisory. [William Jay (Yale, 1807) had been a founder, 1816, of the American Bible Society.]
In the 21st century, some clergymen continued peace activism, e.g.,
"The French philosophes of the Enlightenment began to see war not as one of these things which happen but as one of those things which must be forbidden. ('War, like murder, will one day number among those extraordinary atrocities which revolt and shame nature, and drape oppobrium over the countries and centuries whose annals they sully,' the Marquis de Condorcet wrote, while Diderot and d'Alembert's Encyclopédie assured readers that the body politic is only healthy--that is to say, in its natural state--when it is at peace.')" Quoted from "Slaughterhouse," by Adam Gopnick, in The New Yorker, pp 82-85, at 82 (12 February 2007), reviewing the book The First Total War: Napoleon's Europe and the Birth of Warfare As We Know It, by Prof. David A. Bell (Houghton Mifflin, 2006).
In South America after becoming free from Spanish rule, Simon Bolivar (1783-1830) worked for “a league of Hispanic-American states [which] came to fruition in 1826. He had long advocated treaties of alliances between the American republics. . . . By 1824 such treaties had been signed and ratified by Colombia, Peru, Mexico, Central America, and the united provinces of Rio de la Plata. In 1826 a general American congress convened in Panama. . . . . Colombia, Peru, Central America, and Mexico . . . signed a treaty of alliance and invited all other nations to adhere to it. A common army and navy were planned, and a biannual assembly representing the federated states was projected. All controversies among the states were to be solved by arbitration. . . . the congress of Panama laid the cornerstone for future hemispheric solidarity and understanding. The Organization of the American States and the United Nations can look to Bolivar as one of the first statesmen in the world sincerely interested in advocating and implementing international cooperation.”—G. S. M., “Bolivar, Simon,” Encyclopædia Britannica, Vol 3, pp 840-874 (Treaties of Alliance §, p 873) (1963)
|“Don't talk to me about atrocities; all war is an atrocity.”—Field Marshall Lord Horatio H. Kitchener (1850-1916), British Minister of War, to PM David Lloyd George, quoted in Soldier from the War Returning. And, “atrocities follow war as the jackal follows the wounded beast.”—Prof. John W. Dower, War Without Mercy: Race & Power in the Pacific War (New York: Pantheon Books, 1986), Chapter 1, p 12. See also "Carson Soldiers Say Iraq Horrors Led to Crimes" (Associated Press, 27 July 2009). The torture continues, says Jeremy Scahill, "Little Known Military Thug Squad Still Brutalizing Prisoners at Gitmo Under Obama" (15 May 2009).
Wherefore: “War should be made a crime, and those who instigate it should be punished as criminals”—Charles Evans Hughes (Republican Presidential Nominee, 1912; U.S. Chief Justice, 1930-1941). In the 1923 Kellogg-Briand Treaty (re which U.S. Secretary of State Frank B. Kellogg received a Nobel Peace Prize), aggressive war was in fact made a crime. For background, see, e.g., David Swanson, When the World Outlawed War (2011). Review by Bruce E. Levine, AlterNet: “David Swanson’s recently released book, When the World Outlawed War, tells the story of how the highly energized peace movement in the 1920s, supported by an overwhelming majority of U.S. citizens from every level of society, was able to push politicians into something quite remarkable—the Kellogg-Briand Pact and the renunciation of war as an instrument of national policy. The 1920s 'War Outlawry' movement in the United States was so popular that most politicians could not afford to oppose it.”
“War . . . should only be declared by the authority of the people, whose toils and treasures are to support its burdens, instead of the government which is to reap its fruits.”—James Madison (1751-1836).
Although “[a] standing army is . . . an . . . assurance of domestic tranquillity, [it is] a dangerous temptation to foreign adventure [wars].”—Founding Father Elbridge Gerry, U.S. Vice-President (1813-1814), at the 1787 Constitutional Convention (while advocating limiting the Army to a mere 300 troops in peacetime, from a population of some four million. That ratio, 90 times more population now, would mean a military not exceeding 27,000!!).
“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 not clothed.”—Dwight D. Eisenhower.
“War is the greatest plague that can afflict humanity; it destroys religions, it destroys states, it destroys families. Any scourge is preferable to it.”—Martin Luther.
“The church that preaches the gospel in all of its fullness, except as it applies to the great social ills of the day, is failing to preach the gospel.”—Martin Luther.
“War will exist until that distant day when the conscientious objector enjoys the same reputation and prestige that the warrior does today.”—John F. Kennedy. And see Gordan Zahn, In Solitary Witness and The Refusal, a book and DVD concerning Franz Jagerstatter, a conscientious objector who refused to enter Hitler's German Army and was executed 9 August 1943, being beatified as a martyr in October 2007. The movie on DVD is available from The Center for Christian Nonviolence.
“War: first, one hopes to win; then one expects the enemy to lose; then, one is satisfied that he too is suffering; in the end, one is surprised that everyone has lost.”—Karl Kraus (1874-1936).
“Our position is that whatever grievances a nation may have, however objectionable it finds the status quo, aggressive warfare is an illegal means for settling those grievances or for altering those conditions.”—Supreme Court Justice Robert Jackson, the American prosecutor at the Nuremberg trials, in his opening statement to the tribunal (1946).
“To initiate a war of aggression, therefore, is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.”—Justice Robert Jackson, supra, cited by Scott Ritter, “Let history judge” (02/27/06). See also http://www.warcrimeswatch.org/.
“We must make clear to the Germans that the wrong for which their fallen leaders are on trial is not that they lost the war, but that they started it.”—Justice Robert Jackson (12 August 1945).
It is illegal for one country to invade another country: As the Nuremberg Tribunal concluded after the 1939-1945 World War: “War is essentially an evil thing . . . To initiate a war of aggression, therefore, is not only an international crime, it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.” (Details by Linda McQuaig, 29 October 2006).
"Individuals have international duties which transcend the national obligations of obedience . . . therefore [individual citizens] have the duty to violate domestic laws to prevent crimes against peace and humanity from occurring."--Nuremberg War Crime Tribunal, 1950. See also Nuremberg Prosecutor Telford Taylor's book, The Anatomy of the Nuremberg Trials, and his papers at Columbia Law School.
“[America] goes not abroad, in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own. She will commend the general cause by the countenance of her voice, and the benignant sympathy of her example. She well knows that by once enlisting under other banners than her own, were they even the banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself beyond the power of extrication, in all the wars of interest and intrigue, of individual avarice, envy, and ambition, which assume the colors and usurp the standard of freedom.”—John Quincy Adams (1767-1848), 6th US President. Source: Speech before the House of Representatives, 4 July 1821, cited in William Bonner and Pierre Lemieux (Editors), The Idea of America (Les Belles Lettres, 2003), p. 237.
“A time will come when a politician who has willfully made war and promoted international dissension will be as sure of the dock [criminal trial] and much surer of the noose [capital punishment] than a private homicide. It is not reasonable that those who gamble with men's lives should not stake their own.”—Herbert George (H. G.) Wells (1866-1946).
Before the 1914 World War, Ivan Bloch (1836-1902) wrote The Future of War (1899 reprinted 2000), six volumes that included an expose of the huge costs of war with tendency to social upheaval. It helped lead to pre-1914 peace efforts. See background by Barbara W. Tuchman, The Proud Tower: A Portrait of the World Before the War: 1890-1914 (New York: Macmillan Co, 1962), pp 236-241.
After the 1914-1918 World War, to ban future aggressive wars, they were made illegal (as had been proposed in the Medieval Era). See the "Briand Announcement of Outlawry of War" (1927). “Aristide Briand, Foreign Minister of France, publicly announced a proposal for the 'outlawry of war.' Briand developed this proposal after conversations with Professor James T. Shotwell of Columbia University in March 1927.” The Treaty was soon thereafter adopted, and formed basis for the prosecutions after the 1939-1945 World War.
For more background, see the Kellogg-Briand Pact: A Bibliography Compiled by the Avalon Project.
For more by Prof. James T. Shotwell, see his book At the Paris Peace Conference (New York: MacMillan Co, 1937).
For background on the World Court aka International Court of Justice, see, e.g., Howard N. Meyer, The World Court in Action: Judging among the Nations (Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield, 2002) and Review by Andrew Johnstone.
“Individuals have international duties which transcend the national obligations of obedience; therefore [individual citizens] have the duty to violate domestic laws to prevent crimes against peace and humanity from occurring.”—Nuremberg War Crimes Tribunal, 1950.
“Some explanations of a crime are not explanations: they're part of the crime.”—Olavo de Cavarlho.
“And so long as they were at war, their power was preserved, but when they had attained empire they fell, for of the arts of peace they knew nothing, and had never engaged in any employment higher than war.”—Aristotle, Politics.
“It would be some time before I fully realized that the United States sees little need for diplomacy. Power is enough. Only the weak rely on diplomacy . . . The Roman Empire had no need for diplomacy. Nor does the United States.”—Boutros Boutros-Ghali.
“To plunder, to slaughter, to steal, these things they misname empire; and where they make a desert, they call it peace.”—Tacitus.
“Many [other nations] don't like us."
“Whyever not?" . . .
“For some reason the slaughter of thousands of people tends to stick in the memory."
—Terry Pratchett, JINGO.
"The institutions founded 'to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war' have failed. Since the end of world war 2, some thirty million people have been killed in armed conflict. Most of them were civilians."—George Monbiot, The Age of Consent.
In unanimously adopting statements opposing all war and affirming peacemaking efforts, they said: “Rather than continuing support of a just-war theory, a more compassionate church would oppose all war and teach peacemaking skills for all levels of government and interpersonal conflict resolution.”—National Coalition of American Nuns (August 2007).
For background on historic Christian views, see Roland H. Bainton, Christian Attitudes toward War and Peace (New York: Abingdon Press, 1960). (Review, 19 Theology Today (#1) 133-137 (April 1962) Note deterioration from original purity to the modern seemingly 'anything goes' attitude.) See also John J. Neumaier, Ph.D., "Obstacles to the abolition of war" (3 July 2006).
|See also writings of General Ulysses S. Grant and of two Senators, e.g., Charles Sumner, LL.D. (1811-1874):
The other Senator is Thomas Corwin (1794-1865) of Ohio, speaking on the Mexican War, in the U.S. Senate, 11 February 1847, entitled, “Unjust National Acquisitions.”
General Ulysses S. Grant admitted the U.S. aggression in Personal Memoirs (New York: C.L. Webster & Co, 1885-1886), Vol. I, Chapter II, pp 53-56, et seq. As a Congressman, future President Abraham Lincoln had done likewise.
|Examples of the massive devastation of Medieval warfare in Mongolia - Mideast are given in the article Invaders by Jan Frazier, in The New Yorker, pp 48-55 (25 April 2005).
One method of peace-maintenance was attempted by many royal families, especially the Hapsburgs: interlocking marriages with other royal families. The Hapsburgs were particularly keen on this approach. For details, see Dorothy Gies McGuigan, The Hapsburgs (Garden City: Doubleday & Co, 1966). For centuries, the Hapsburgs were sufficiently successful, to be enabled to go about without bodyguards, pp 246 and 327. At the peak, during the reign of Charles V, Hapsburgs served simultaneously as Kings, Queens, Regents, or Emperors, in Austria, Bohemia, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, and Sweden.
For “The Development of Europe's Modern States 1648-2001,” oft by war, click here.
For an example of the blind obedience demanded by governments of troops, see the statement by Kaiser Wilhelm II “to a company of young recruits: 'If your Emperor commands you to do so you must fire on your father and mother,'” quoted by Barbara W. Tuchman, The Proud Tower: A Portrait of the World Before the War: 1890-1914 (New York: Macmillan Co, 1962), p 240.
|Pope Benedict XV reigned during the 1914-1918 World War.
For well-reasoned analyses of causes of the 1914-1918 World War, see, e.g.,
An earlier analysis had said, "The decades of imperialism have been prolific in wars . . . Every one of the steps of expansion in Africa, Asia, and the Pacific has been accompanied by bloodshed . . . The pax Britannica, always an impudent falsehood, has become of recent years a grotesque monster of hypocrisy," says John A. Hobson (1858-1940), Imperialism (London: Nisbet & Co, Ltd.; New York: James Pott & Co, 1902), Part II, Chapter I, paragraph II.I.35, p 132 [Book Excerpt].
And "war would be impossible if the individuals [the 'cannon fodder'] who waged it did not . . . cooperate by fighting against other [people]," says Prof. Michael P. Ghiglieri, Ph.D., Dark Side of Man (Reading, MA.: Perseus Books, 1999), p 184.
The article "Impeach Bush, Nation of Islam chief demands" has a 25 February 2007 speech "urging the black community to avoid military service at all costs." "Mr Farrakhan urged his almost exclusively black audience to resist the calls of US military recruiters, who he said targeted young people lacking education and opportunity. 'I'm here to tell you, brothers and sisters, [enlisting] that's the worst decision you can ever make.'"
For examples on how the "cannon fodder" is treated, see Herman Wouk, The Caine Mutiny: A Novel of World War II (Garden City: Doubleday & Co, Inc., 1951). The material on "the deposed captain [Queeg] was contrived from a study of psychoneurotic case histories. . . . The author [Wouk] served under two captains of the regular Navy in three years aboard destroyer-minesweepers. . . . The general [common] obscenity and blasphemy of shipboard talk have gone almost wholly unrecorded [as] largely monotonous . . . mere verbal punctuation of a sort . . . . " Examples include officers as "harsh, ill-tempered, nasty, oppressive, and often showed bad judgment," p 409. "They're as cunning as acrobats at treading that fine line between being a bastard and being a lunatic," p 269.
"You assist an evil system most effectively by obeying its orders and decrees.
An evil system never deserves such allegiance.
Allegiance to it means partaking of the evil.
A good person will resist an evil system with his or her whole soul."
"The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact, non-Westerners never do."—Samuel P. Huntington.
"I suspected I was just part of a racket at the time. Now I am sure of it. Like all members of the military profession I never had an original thought until I left the service. My mental faculties remained in suspended animation while I obeyed the orders of the higher-ups. This is typical with everyone in the military service."—Major General Smedley Butler.
Danish analyst Dr. Georg Brandes (1842-1927), The World at War (New York: The Macmillan Co., 1917), p 170, said: “The sound sense of the masses and their intuitive conception of right have never been anything but a democratic legend. For the masses believe, as a rule, every lie that is cleverly presented to them.”—Later cited with approval by Historian Clinton H. Grattan (1902-1980), Why We Fought (New York: Vanguard Press, 1929, 1957), 71, adding, “. . . propagandists counted heavily on the naiveté of the civil populations of all countries and of the American public in particular. It can hardly be said that their [propagandists'] confidence [in public gullibility] was misplaced.” As British leader Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965) said concerning ability to deceive voters: “The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.” [For more on public gullibility, click here. See also Herman Goering's famous quote].
Like wars generally, the 1914-1918 war had economic underpinnings. "Follow the money." “The [First] World War is on all fours with [typical of, like, the same as] every other war in having an economic foundation. Every reputable historian . . . no matter how great his proccupation with the diplomacy of its precipitation, regards the diplomacy, the propaganda, the alleged aims and objects for fighting, as mere secondary structures reared on the foundation of money and trade [economics]. The flag follows trade, the politicians follow the flag, the propagandists follow the politicians, and the people follow the propagandists.”—Grattan, p 127. (And see "Secrets of World War I" (Video, Part 1 of 5)).
“Economics provides the dynamics of history. . . . [But politicians invent other reasons for starting war pursuant to] the capacity of mankind to rationalize its conduct in ways more flattering to its self-esteem than a frank [honest] admission that dollars and goods [lusts] rule. Economics [lust] provides the ground to walk on, while the rationalizations [politician lies] give the excuse for walking.”—Grattan, p 127.
The “cannon fodder” seem to instinctively know this. "Many ordinary white southerners opposed United States entry into the Great War. They thought that the war was being fought for economic interest not their own, and they struggled against being forced to serve in it," says Prof. Jeanette Keith, "The Politics of Southern Draft Resistance, 1917-1918: Class, Race, and Conscription in the Rural South," 87 Journal of Am History (#4) 1335-1361 at 1338 (March 2001). "The result was widespread evasion, desertion, and (in places) armed resistance." "Consider the standard book on the World War I draft, John Whiteclay Chambers II's To Raise an Army . . . . Chambers acknowledges that the draft was unpopular with the American people. He estimates that between 2.4 and 3.6 million men avoided service by refusing to register," p 1336. And "Chambers notes that 337,649 men 'deserted' . . . about 12 percent of the 2.8 million men drafted thus 'deserted,'" p 1336. See also Prof. Keith's book Rich Man's War, Poor Man's Fight (Univ of North Carolina Press, 2004).
And note this additional data on the instinctive reaction of the "cannon fodder," from the 1939-1945 World War:
And see the article by Azmi Bishara, "When the skies rain death: The culture of the fighter plane is the culture of annihilation" (Al-Ahram, Issue No.06, 3 - 9 August 2006). See also data on "killology," by Vicki Haddock, "The Science Of Creating Killers: Human reluctance to take a life can be reversed through training in the method known as killology" (San Francisco Chronicle, 13 August 2006).
“Almost 600,000 of America's 1 million active and reserve soldiers enlisted as teens. The military lures these physiologically immature kids with a PR machine that would make Joe Camel proud. . . . But the prefrontal cortex, 'important for controlling impulses, is among the last brain regions to mature' . . . and doesn’t reach 'adult dimensions until the early 20s.' Teenagers’ brains simply lack the impulse control that can prevent a lifetime of regret, psychological and physical disability, and preventable deaths—their own, their fellow soldiers’ and those of civilians. . . . Chiefs of warfare reach out to children precisely because they are innocent, malleable, impressionable,” says Terry J. Allen, “America's Child Soldier Problem" (15 May 2007).
Propaganda example: “We don't seek empires. We're not imperialistic. We never have been. I can't imagine why you'd even ask the question,” said U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld when questioned by an al-Jazeera correspondent 29 April 2003.
Current activism by www.leavemychildalone.org effectuates this view. It aids parents to 'opt-out' of military recruiters contacting their child / children.
To 'opt-out' is especially crucial when the war itself is illegal, e.g., an unlawful preventive war of aggression. Every participant from the aggressor nation in such a war is in essence a war criminal. See, e.g., Prof. Gabriel Kolko, Richard A. Falk, and Robert Jay Lifton (eds), Crimes of War: A Legal, Political-Documentary, and Psychological Inquiry into the Responsibility of Leaders, Citizens, and Soldiers for Criminal Acts in Wars (New York: Random House, 1971).
David Wilson, “The secret war” (The Guardian, 27 March 2007) (on “the estimated 14,000 rapes committed by American soldiers in England, France and Germany between 1942 and 1945.” “We know that conflict creates conditions in which soldiers commit rape and murder. Why should American GIs in the 1940s be an exception?” Note “that young men—soldiers—who are given power over others, and have a structure surrounding them that closes ranks at the first sign of criticism, a structure which is, in turn, enclosed within a popular and political culture where members of the public want to invest in their father's or their brother's or their husband's decision to become a soldier and go to war with nobility and sacrifice are, in fact, the preconditions for abuse, torture and totalitarianism.” See details by Prof. J. Robert Lilly, N. Ky. Univ., Taken by Force: Rape and American GIs in Europe in WWII (France, 2003; and Palgrave Macmillan, August 2007)
Compare with Anthony Marchant, The Mark of Cain (5 April 2007) ("about British soldiers torturing and humiliating Iraqi prisoners in Basra in 2003" and on "the dilemmas [troops] face as the war forces them to choose between loyalty to their regiment and their own morals. Marchant said: 'It's a rites-of-passage film about these two 18-year-olds who go on this journey. What's interesting about soldiering is this thing called moral courage. If you're asked to become involved with something you think is wrong, when the rest of the group is doing it and you don't do it, you can be ostracised by your section and your life becomes at risk in a very real way.")
And see also Biderman and Zimmerman, The Manipulation of Human Behavior (John Wiley, 1961) aka "The Torture Bible" (based on government-sponsored research in the 1950's).
|In the 1914-1918 World War, Germany rapidly conquered Belgium, then much of France, all the way to Paris, in the first month (August) of the war. Conquests, advances, more conquests, more advances (Liege, Brussels, Lorraine, Ardennes, Charleroi, Mons, etc.), had rapidly followed in succession.
Would you have learned this—the series of German victories—from the Allied media [propagandists]?!
No, of course not. In this pre-television era, politician-inspired news reports to the public were the opposite of fact!
“The fighting had been presented to the British public—as to the French—as a series of German defeats [emphasis added] in which the enemy unaccountably moved from Belgium to France and appeared each day on the map at places farther forward!”—Barbara Tuchman, The Guns of August (New York: Dell Paperback, 1962), Chap. 20, p. 432.
"The battle of the Somme did not end on that first day . Throughout July, August, September, and October , the British army threw its young soldiers across no-man's-land to be mown down by machine guns. Again and again the newspapers hailed a victory, but the telegrams told another story," says Ken Follett, Fall of Giants (New York: Dutton Group, 2010), Chap. 20, p. 589
“How are nations ruled and led into war? Politicians lie to journalists and then believe those lies when they see them in print.” —Austrian journalist Karl Kraus, explaining the causes of the 1914-1918 World War, cited at “The Best War Ever.”
Re the 1914-1918 World War: “Another underlying cause of the war was the poisoning of public opinion by the newspaper press in all of the great countries. . . . Too often newspapers in all lands were inclined to inflame nationalistic feelings, misrepresent the situation in foreign countries, and suppress factors in favor of peace. In the diplomatic correspondence of the forty years before the war there were innumerable cases in which governments were eager to establish better relations and secure friendly arrangements, but were hampered by the jingoistic [warlike] attitude of the newspapers.”—Historian Sidney Bradshaw Fay, The Origins of the World War (The Macmillan Co, 1928), p 47.
“Next the statesmen [politicians] will invent cheap lies, putting the blame upon the nation that is attacked, and every man will be glad of those conscience-soothing falsities, and will diligently study them, and refuse to examine any refutations of them; and thus he will by and by convince himself that the war is just, and will thank God for the better sleep he enjoys after this process of grotesque self-deception.”—Mark Twain, The Mysterious Stranger (1916).
Reference Arthur Ponsonby, Falsehood in Wartime (New York: Dutton, 1928), and William A. Cook, Tracking Deception: Bush Mid-East Policy (Dandelion Books, 2005).
See also Prof. Philip Jenkins, The Great and Holy War: How World War I Became a Religious Crusade (HarperOne, 29 April 2014) (Review)
Ask yourself: Can you trust propagandists not to deceive?! not to present the viewpoint of their nation's politicians? [Admittedly, exceptions happen, like lightning strikes!].
|Politicians are not scholars. They are “good ole boys” who prefer drinking, schmoozing, BS-ing to honest scholarly research into actual “cause and effect” truths. For example, note the World War I German submarine campaign, to which the U.S. President pretended to have moral objections. As historians note, the real truth is the cause, the British blockade of Germany.
For politicians, information content is a mere 10%!! Non-verbal communication is 60%! with vocal tonality, pitch, and pauses 30%. Then of that tiny amount of "content" to which they give heed, recall is a mere 25%. Reference: Stanley Zareff, "Literally Speaking," 14 Worth (#1) 46-48 (January 2005).
"A factor of immense importance in deflecting attention [away] from British violations of neutral rights was the German submarine campaign. The campaign was the German reply to the British blockade. In so far as America acquiesced in the blockade, she made the submarine war inevitable. Since it [that submarine campaign] was treated [by U.S. politicians] as a fact in itself without reference to its genesis [cause], the American [politician] Government took up a rigid position of disapproval of the campaign. The American attitude toward the end product [result] of a British policy [cause] led us to war with Germany.”—Grattan, p 172. “That this reasoning is correct is affirmed by such different figures as
When a German submarine torpedoed a British ammunition-carrier, the Lusitania, carrying “six million rounds of ammunition, besides explosives” with passenger travel illegal “in violation of a statute . . . that no passenger shall travel upon a railroad train or sail upon a vessel that carries dangerous explosives” (Grattan, p 295) with the President told this “in person by Secretary of State Bryan”; and loaded with “5,400 cases of ammunition; rest of cargo chiefly contraband” (Grattan, p 300), it “had [anti-submarine] guns on board . . . instructions to destroy German submarines by ramming or gunfire . . . had Canadian troops on board . . . carried munitions” (Grattan, p 309). (The ammunition was "stored in unrefrigerated cargo holds that were dubiously marked cheese, butter and oysters," says Samuel Greenhill, "Secret of the Lusitania: Arms find challenges Allied claims it was solely a passenger ship" (Daily Mail (UK) 26 December 2008).
|Why are politicians thus? In addition to their willingness to lie, they also act on “whims, fancy, and sudden childish notions.” Awareness is at ignorant level, typically “does not know about” key factors. They listen with “little attention,” react with “remarkable irrelevancy” to reality due to “ignorance.” There is “a special failure of communication in dealing with heads of state.” “It is a feature of government that the more important the problem, the further [up the political structure] it tends to be removed from handling from anyone well acquainted with the subject.”—Barbara W. Tuchman, Stilwell and the American Experience in China (New York: Macmillan Co, 1970), pp 241, 404, 405, 464, respectively.
For politicians, content is a mere 10%!! Non-verbal communication is 60%! with vocal tonality, pitch, and pauses 30%. Recall is a mere 25%. Reference: Stanley Zareff, “Literally Speaking,” 14 Worth (#1) 46-48 (January 2005). This low level of mental performance and memory does not meet the requirements of passing exams even in grade school! Children are required to do far better than paying attention to facts merely 10%, recalling merely 25%! the below "F" (failure) level, indeed, indicative of mental retardation.
This data is long known. For example, “The trade of governing has always been monopolized by the most ignorant and the most rascally individuals of mankind.”—Thomas Paine (1737-1809).
“We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to office,” says Aesop, c. 550 B.C. And, “none but unprincipled and beastly men in society assume the mastery over their fellows, as it is among bulls, bears, and cocks,” says ancient historian Polybius (205 B.C. - 125 B.C.), lib. 4.
Another ancient source says likewise: leaders are typically the “basest of men,” says Daniel 4:17. Ancient King Nebuchadnezzar was the best world leader, the “head of gold,” Daniel 2:32 and 38. Politicians and rulers thereafter would be “inferior” to Nebuchadnezzar, says Daniel 2:39-43. Nebuchadnezzar was mentally ill for seven years, with lycanthropic symptoms, living and eating grass like an animal, hair long as feathers, fingernails and toenails like birds' claws, Daniel 2:32-33. This went on for some seven years, Daniel 2:34-36, until his “understanding” and “reason returned.” Politicians after him would be even worse, “inferior,” Daniel 2:39. Bottom line: The scum rises to the top, Jeremiah 17:9; Daniel 4:17 in context of, e.g., Luke 4:5-6, Matthew 4:8 and Hosea 8:4.
Modern political leaders are disproportionately smokers. The significance of this fact used to be known, that smokers are disproportionately mentally ill and damaged. After decades of observations of such leaders, Tolstoy had warned against having smokers as leaders: “The brain becomes numbed by the nicotine.” What Tolstoy called “conscience” thus expires, as impulse control is impaired (abulia, anomie, psychopathy). Tolstoy cited an example, a smoker who began assaulting an aged woman with a knife, wounding her badly. He then shrank from killing her, but after smoking two cigars, dazing his brain, he then completed the knife-murder.—Count Leo Tolstoy (1828-1910), Why Do People Intoxicate Themselves? (10 June 1890), p 10 [Excerpt].
Note pertinent medical / analytical findings on politicians' widespread mental abnormality:
This problem is compounded by the media, which censors such data, prevents, obstructs public awareness. The media has a record of a long-term widespread preference, like Editor-Publisher Julius Streicher, to print disinformation. Click here for a pertinent analysis, "The Crushing of Fallujah" by Prof. James Petras (Counterpunch, 19 November 2004).
See also "The Incredible Blight of TV Punditry" by Norman Solomon (5 August 2005), and his book War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death (Wiley, 2005).
This problem is further compounded by clergymen pretending to be Christian, who regularly support war, for ANY cause. Examples:
'Here, in this war, there was no conflict between one faith and another, but a murderous death-struggle between many nations holding the same faith, preaching the same Gospel, and claiming the same God as their protector. Let us seek some better truth than that hypocrisy! . . . " (p 441)
'You are our brothers: we have no hatred against you. We do not want to kill you. Why should you kill us? We are all of us the slaves of blood-thirsty castes who use our flesh for their ambitions. Do not shoot, us, brothers, but join hands against the common tyranny which enslaves our peoples.'They [Russian troops] went forward with outstretched hands. . . . German soldiers gaped, wide-eyed at this new gospel [unpreached by their "Christian" clergy!], as it seemed, and said, 'They speak words of truth. Why should we kill each other?' The German War Lords ordered a forward movement [an attack], threatened their own men with death if they fraternized with Russians . . . But as [German General] Ludendorff has confessed, and as we now know from other evidence, many German soldiers were 'infected' with Bolshevism and lost their fighting spirit." (p 442)
For first hand statements by war participants and victims, see, e.g.,
For historiography, see Prof. Dwight E. Lee (Clark University), ed., The Outbreak of the First World War: Who Was Responsible? (Boston: D. C. Heath and Co., 1963).
"The soldier does not wish to appear a coward, disloyal, or un-American. The situation has been so defined that he can see himself as patriotic, courageous, and manly only through compliance."--Prof. Stanley Milgram.
15 May 2009: International Conscientious Objectors Day.
Real horrors of war are left unstated, understated, glossed over, and/or not reported until afterwards. Examples:
For a simulation of the 1914-1918 World War, click here. For a video overview (the first filmed war), see the beginning DVD's in the series The Century of Warfare (History Channel, 1993).
“When a mother gives birth to her child, she checks all fingers and toes to see if they're all there.” “And we [mothers] expect them [fingers and toes] to be there when they leave [die] here [not blasted away].”—Andrea Hackett (17 Feb 2007).
For background information, see
"Dr Anthony Storr notes that the majority of [people], given a can of petrol [gasoline] and told to pour it over a child of three and ignite it, will tend to disobey the order. Yet put the same decent men [people] in aircraft a few hundred feet above a town, and they will often be ready without compunction to inflict death or appalling pain on masses of men, women, and children. Distance has a disinhibiting effect. Moreover, as Dr Storr further points out, distance need not be physical; it may simply be psychological," says Bernard Wasserstein, D.Phil., D.Litt., Britain and the Jews of Europe, 1939-1945, 2d ed. (London: Leicester Univ Press, 1999), pp 320-321, citing Anthony Storr, Human Aggression (London, 1970), p 152. See also Storr's Human Destructiveness: The Roots of Genocide and Human Cruelty, 2d ed. (January 1991).
For information on the 1920's British war vs. Iraq, see
For background on smoker Churchill's impaired psychiatric condition, see, e.g., Anthony Storr, Churchill's Black Dog, Kafka's Mice, and Other Phenomena of the Human Mind (Grove Press, January 1989).
For background on the U.S. Empire, see, e.g.,
Context: “As the Soviet Union disappeared, the Zionist regime will also vanish and humanity will be liberated.”
The Distortion: “Yet we [Americans, etc.] are [falsely] led to believe that Iran's president threatened to 'wipe Israel off the map,' despite never having uttered the words 'map,' 'wipe out' or even [the word] 'Israel.'”
The distortion disregards Iran's anti-war policy: “We are not a threat whatsoever to the world, and the world knows it. We will never start a war. We have no intention of going to war with any state.”) See also "Why is Gordon Brown Repeating a Mistranslation?" (23 July 2008) ("Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad [Ph.D.] never called for Israel 'to be wiped off the map'. This has been confirmed by many Iranian language experts. That the mainstream media have repeated and echoed the original mistranslation from 2005 attests to their bias and hidden [pro-war] agenda.")
An example of the militarism attitude is from Prussia (the catalyst for modern Germany).
“. . . what is Prussia? The Prussian monarchy is the creation of war. Its history, its traditions, its ideals are simply those of war. It is the sole European kingdom which has been built up, province by province, on the battlefield, cemented stone by stone in blood. Its kings have been soldiers: sometimes generals, sometimes . . . drill-sergeants, but ever soldiers. The whole state organization from top to bottom is military. Its people are a drilled nation of soldiers on furlough: its sovereign [Kaiser Wilhelm I] is simply commander-in-chief; its aristocracy are simply officers of the staff; its capital is a camp [armed city]. Nowhere in Europe—not even in Russia—has the military tradition and ideal been sustained in so unbroken a chain.
". . . the United States, for generations, has sustained two parallel but opposed states of mind about military atrocities and human rights: one of U.S. benevolence, generally held by the public, and the other of ends-justify-the-means brutality sponsored by counterinsurgency specialists. Normally the specialists carry out their actions in remote locations with little notice in the national press. That allows the public to sustain its faith in a just America, while hard-nosed security and economic interests are still protected in secret."--Robert Parry, investigative reporter and author. (See also Stephen Kinzer's analysis, infra.)
“To include all that is designated as atheism, it is necessary to distinguish between theoretical atheism and practical atheism. Theoretical atheism, is the denial, in principle, that there is a god. . . . Practical atheism, on the contrary, is not limited to the intelligentsia, but represents the working [life-style] philosophy of large numbers of men [people]. Practical atheism is the denial, in practice [life-style], that there is a god [with laws]. For such a philosophy, the question of the existence of God [His laws] is irrelevant to the meaning of life and the decisions of human existence,” says “Atheism," Encyclopedia Britannica, Vol. 2 (1963), p 667. Said another way: "The greatest source of atheism in the world today is Christians, who acknowledge Jesus with their lips but deny Him by their lifestyles. That is what an unbelieving world simply finds unbelievable."
“Practical atheism does not deny God, but life is lived as if there is no God. There is complete indifference to His claims, and often there is outspoken and defiant wickedness (Psalm 14:1). This form of atheism is widely prevalent,” says David Horton, Ed., The Portable Seminary (Bloomington MN: Bethany House, 2006), § Atheism, p 410. “Hebrew has no equivalent word for athieism. In the Old Testament the form of atheism that one encounters is practical atheism—human conduct carried out without consideration of God (Psalm 10:4; 14:1; 53:1; cf. Isaiah 31:1; Jeremiah 2:13, 17-18; 5:12; 18:13-15).” p 409.
In short: “They profess to know God, but by their deeds they deny Him. . . .” Titus 1:15.
The opposite position is that the person “will not need to be forced by law to [right living] but will himself come running in a hurry . . . constrained within himself . . . [such] people will then come of themselves [internalized, inner-motivated, to right living] without your using compulsion,” says Martin Luther, Th.D., in Luther's Preface to the Small Catechism (1529).
This must be emphasized, repeated: Said another way: "The greatest source of atheism in the world today is Christians, who acknowledge Jesus with their lips but deny Him by their lifestyles. That is what an unbelieving world simply finds unbelievable.”
Such pro-war “Christians” and politicians are in reality “practical atheists,” denying relevance of God's laws in human existence, everyday life-style (e.g., God's anti-war principles and commandments). See 2 Corinthians 11:13-15 for background on such "Christians."
See also concerning "just war" theory, the analysis by Prof. John Howard Yoder, Th.D. (1927-1997), When War is Unjust: Being Honest in Just-War Thinking (Augsburg 1984) (summary from The Christian Century, 13 March 1991, pp. 295-298, and citing politicians telling contradictory versions simultaneously so as to appease different groups, thus refuting the various criteria supposedly enabling analyses re "just wars").
As troops are put in “mortal sin” situations, rape, murder, torture and other atrocities (sins) are foreseeable results. See for example,
|“The debate here isn't only how to protect the country. It's how to protect our values.” “If cruelty [torture] is no longer declared unlawful, but instead is applied as a matter of policy, it alters the fundamental relationship of man to government. It destroys the whole notion of individual rights. The Constitution recognizes that man has an inherent right, not bestowed by the state or laws, to personal dignity, including the right to be free of cruelty. It applies to all human beings, not just in America--even those designated as 'unlawful enemy combatants.' If you make this exception the whole Constitution crumbles.”—Alberto J. Mora, former Navy General Counsel, in The New Yorker, "The Memo" (27 February 2006).
“How we burned [thought] in the prison camps later thinking: What would things have been like if every police operative, when he went out at night to make an arrest, had been uncertain whether he would return alive? If during periods of mass arrests people had not simply sat there in their lairs [houses, apartments], paling with terror at every bang of the downstairs door and at every step on the staircase, but had understood they had nothing to lose and had boldly set up in the downstairs hall an ambush of half a dozen people with axes, hammers, pokers, or whatever was at hand? The organs [police] would very quickly have suffered a shortage of officers and, not withstanding all of Stalin's thirst, the cursed machine [arrest system] would have ground to a halt.”—Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago (New York: Harper & Row, 1973), Chapter 1, pp 3-18, especially p 13 (book on soviet-era concentration camps).
“It bothers me that the executive branch is taking the amazing position that just on the president's say-so, any American citizen can be picked up, not just in Afghanistan, but at O'Hare Airport or on the streets of any city in this country, and locked up without access to a lawyer or court just because the government says he's connected somehow with the Taliban or Al Qaeda. That's not the American way. It's not the constitutional way.”—Laurence Tribe, Carl M. Loeb University Professor and Professor of Constitutional Law, Harvard University, in Interview on ABC's Nightline.
“The power of the Executive to cast a man into prison without formulating any charge known to the law, and particularly to deny him the judgment of his peers, is in the highest degree odious and is the foundation of all totalitarian government whether Nazi or Communist.”—Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965), Prime Minister of England (21 November 1943).
What Happened to Spain?: A Warning
|Spain took upon itself to be the policeman of the world. What happened to Spain? It had had all those treasure ships of gold and silver from the New World, riches without limit! Answer: Spain regularly had to send “urgent appeals to. . . send [ever more] gold and silver which would then be spent on absurd European wars which never seemed to end,” says Fernando Diaz-Plaja, History of Spain, in the series Concise History of Great Nations, General Editor: Otto Zierer (New York: Leon Amiel Pub, 1977), p 33.
“The gold and silver provided by the Americas was all consumed by the never-ending wars . . . Since the money was urgently needed before the ships arrived with their precious cargo, the [government] had to borrow from . . . bankers in order to finance armies, munitions and warships; then, when the galleons arrived, repayment had to be made at high rates of interest. On 47many occasions, the agents of . . . banks simply took possession of the convoys as they arrived in Seville. In this way, countless shipments of treasure passed though Spain without leaving a trace, whereas this wealth could well have been used for [other, useful, purposes],” pp 46-47.
Spain was bankrupt by 1547 (a mere half century after the riches began pouring in after Columbus, 1492!! And re-bankrupt in 1597!!)
In short, the government was
“Empires do not last, and their ends are usually unpleasant,” says Prof. Johnson, supra.
War and funding historically are interconnected. Bonds, inflation, debased currency, hyperinflation, national debt, increased taxes, increased or centralized banking controls, all have been linked to wars.
Preventive Wars: Not A Record of Success:
But Rather: Often Unexpected Results
|1. The Confederacy in South Carolina in 1861, started a "preventive war" to prevent the incoming Lincoln Administration from halting the expansion of slavery. Result: The Lincoln Government not only halted slavery from expanding, it stopped it altogether! This was the opposite result from what the war-starters had had in mind!
2. France began a "preventive war" in 1870 to prevent injury to the French Emperor's prestige, and to prevent the many disunited German independent entities from unifying and growing. Result: The various German states defeated France. The disunited states united under one state, Prussia! as an Empire! The unity meeting was held at Versailles, France (to make the point)! The now suddenly unified Germany grew. Germany built a Navy. Germany took part of France, annexed eastern France, Alsace-Lorraine! The French Emperor (Napoleon III) was overthrown, the French Emperor system itself was abolished, France became a Republic! (Napoleon had started that war. See details by Charles Sumner, Lecture (1870), pp 243, 266-267, 274-277. Napoleon got opposite results of what he intended!)
3. The 1914-1918 World War was started, to prevent
It was specifically to be a tiny localized war by Austria-Hungary to prevent the small Balkan nation of Serbia from threatening the existence of Austria-Hungary (Serbia was supposedly involved in assassination of the AH Archduke Ferdinand). The 1914-1918 World War was alleged by politicians to be the “war to end (prevent) all wars"! [“The way of peace they know not!"—Isaiah 59:8.]
Result: The war expanded, was not purely local! The first three monarchies and dynasties not only lost prestige, they were abolished entirely! One monarch (Russia's Nicholas II) was shot dead, the two others (Wilhelm II and Charles I) were run out, abdicated, fled!
All three nations that started the war to promote monarchy and dynasties, ceased being monarchies at all! Austria-Hungary ceased to be a "Great Power," under one monarch. Austria and Hungary became two distinct republics! (This was essentially a total win for Serbia!) Thinking of Austria-Hungary as a "Great Power" is now a joke! Germany and Russia are neither monarchies, nor "Great Powers." Britain no longer has an Empire! The U.S.A. is the only meaningful "Great Power" left! Wars have not been prevented, ended!
4. The 1939-1945 World War was begun in 1939 to prevent Western democracies from stopping the expansion of the dictatorships of Nazism, Communism, and Fascism in Europe, and of Japan throughout Asia, including ruling much of China. Result: All three dictatorships have ceased to exist! Italy lost its Fascist government, so did Germany. Japan lost its Emperor-government, became more like the without the events of 1898 U.S.! Japan does not rule Asia! lost all its acquisitions! China became independent, got rid of its anti-Communist government, became itself Communist, rules itself, and dwarfs Japan!
5. The Vietnam War began in the 1960's to prevent Vietnam from unifying as one country under long-time nationalist activists such as Ho Chi Minh, who'd written Vietnam's "Declaration of Independence" paralleling that of the U.S. Result: Vietnam was taken over by Ho Chi Minh's victorious nationalist supporters, and is now unified as one country. (See PBS series as depicted).
Not good odds — 5-0 ! 'Preventive war' does not necessarily have the effects hoped for! In fact, such wars can expand greatly from being purely local (can become a World War!), can boomerang, can expand, can bring results extremely different than planned or expected!
Will soon be 6-0 as the U.S. is losing the Iraq War, see Prof. Gabriel Kolko, "The US Will Lose War Regardless What it Does" (10 September 2007).
And re U.S. Empire wars, see the review on Prof. Chalmers Johnson's Nemesis entitled "Is the American Empire on the Brink of Collapse?" (24 March 2007).
False Reasons Re U.S. Wars
||War of 1812||Impressment of Northern sailors||Southern purpose, to damage North's shipping, economy
||War vs Mexico||Per pre-conceived plan of aggression, President Polk lied, said Mexico attacked U.S. on U.S. soil||U.S. troops had crossed into, invaded, Mexican territory (Lincoln raised this issue)
||Civil War 1861-5||Southern President Davis lied, alleged States' Rights||Slavery was the real reason, Southern clergy protracted it
||Spanish-American War, 1898||President McKinley lied, said Spain refused U.S. demands; his real motive was to develop the U.S. Empire, conquer Cuba, Philippines, etc.||Spain had agreed to all but immediate capitulation (and see Mark Twain's War Prayer and Battle Hymn of the Republic, protesting the U.S. aggression against Spain)||Phippine War, 1899-1902||McKinley-Roosevelt lied, pretended attacking the Philippine people (killing 200,000+),|| to force them into the U.S. Empire, not to teach them democracy! (which they already knew)
||World War I, 1917-1918||President Wilson lied, blamed German sinking of peaceful ship Lusitania||Lusitania was carrying tons of weaponry, explosives
||Vietnam War 1955-1974||Pres. Eisenhower started it, Pres. Johnson lied, said N. Vietnam shot at U.S. ships||No such incident occurred; French Pres. Charles De Gaulle called it a"detestable war, since it leads a great nation to ravage a small one"
||Operation Iraqi Liberation||President Bush alleged to promote 'freedom,' link to 9-11, and extreme danger of Iraqi Weapons of Mass Destruction to rationalize "pre-emptive" war||9-11 link is dubious; No WMD existed, nor were any found; intelligence services had forecast this result; real war reason was economic, for oil and pro-Israel; and with war crimes
|Re the U.S. aggression against the people of the Philippines, "Our men . . . have killed to exterminate men, women, children, prisoners and captives, active insurgents and suspected people from lads of 10 up. . . . Our soldiers have pumped salt water into men to "make them talk," and have taken prisoners people who held up their hands and peacefully surrendered, and an hour later. . . stood them on a bridge and shot them down one by one, to drop into the water below and float down, as examples to those who found their bullet-loaded corpses."--Philadelphia Ledger newspaper in 1901, from its Manila [Philippines] correspondent during the US war with Spain for the control of the Philippines.
"Listen to Senator Thurston, of Nebraska. He said, 'War with Spain would increase the business and earnings of every American railroad, it would increase the output of every American factory, it would stimulate every branch of industry and domestic commerce.' In other words, war was to be promoted as a commercial venture. They were outspoken in those days ; they said what they meant. In the time of the World War [1917-1918] the munitions makers and moneylenders were more subtle; they declared that we should go to war to make the world safe for democracy. It is refreshing to know that the warmakers of 1898 were frank about it. They wanted to take Spain's possessions away from her simply because they were strong enough to do it, and because 'it would stimulate every branch of industry and domestic commerce.' Senator Thurston was not alone in advocating war. There were Henry Cabot Lodge, Theodore Roosevelt and many other men of influence who were as war-mad as Thurston," says W. E. Woodward, A New American History (New York: Garden City Pub Co, 1936), Part IV, § 5, pp 687-688.
Note that "the United States . . . cannot withdraw from the consequences of having entered them [the Philippine Islands] in the beginning. . . . it is likely that without the events of 1898 [U.S. aggression] the United States and Japan might never have had the confrontation that led to Pearl Harbor. America's involvement in Asia grows instead of shrinks, in labyrinthine ways that appear to have no exits. These, too, have their origins in a time  when a war was splendid, when [Pres. Wm.] McKinley walked the floor in the White House, and was [he said] told personally by God that he should annex the Philippines." Source: Ralph K. Andrist, "On the making of splendid little wars, and of how God spoke to William McKinley about taking an empire in the Orient without fully explaining the consequences," in The Nineties (New York: American Heritage, 1967) pp 117-119, at 119. See also "The Road to War - JAPAN" (Video).
To learn the cost of Operation Iraqi Liberation in your community, click here.
Note that “In American folklore the myth of 'the most peace-loving nation in the world' still exists. But the fact is that American history is not only concurrent with the annals of American arms, but is as firmly woven into it as a strand of hemp in a rope,” says Robert Leckie, The Wars of America (New York: Harper & Row, 1968), pp 11-12. And “the birth of . . . the . . . colonies in the New World was simultaneous with the birth of modern warfare.” “That there is an aggressive, expansionist, militaristic side to the American character can hardly be denied,” Foreword, p xii. And, “understand . . . our own nation as perhaps the fightingest society since the advent of modern warfare,” Preface, p xvi.
U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, in this article, “Annan says Iraq war was illegal” (15 September 2004), says “it was not in conformity with the U.N. Charter from our point of view, from the charter point of view, it was illegal.” This was repeating what he had said 10 March 2003. A Dutch inquiry later confirmed his analysis, see Afua Hirsch, "Iraq invasion violated international law, Dutch inquiry finds" (The Guardian, UK, 13 January 2010).
"Bishop Botean states that any direct participation and support of this war against the people of Iraq is objectively grave evil, a matter of mortal sin. Beyond a reasonable doubt this war is morally incompatible with the Person and Way of Jesus Christ. With moral certainty I say to you it does not meet even the minimal standards of the Catholic just war theory." Bishop John Michael Botean is author of Rejection of the War Against the People of Iraq (7 March 2003).
There were no WMDs in Iraq. None of the three teams (by Ritter, Blix, and Kay) found anything that could have justified the fabrication for war in Iraq. Scott Ritter, former chief of UNSCOM inspection team for years in Iraq, said that the US Government KNEW for unequivocally and for certain by 1996 that Iraq had no WMD. He explained that with their professional experience on the ground, and their search and destroy teams that had destroyed more than 95% of all materials known to exist by 1993 or 1994, and that the remaining 5% was inert and of no value — in his words — because those components had limited shelf life, by 2002 there were no WMDs in Iraq. The WMD story was a fraud, a scam, a PRETEXT for pre-emptive war and global domination, as the aggressors had envisioned and pre-planned back in the early 1990s.
Pres. George Bush admits an oil motive in the US - Iraq War. He says a motive is to prevent oil fields from falling into hands of terrorists. Source: “Bush gives new reason for Iraq war,” by Jennifer Loven, Associated Press, New York Times and Boston Globe (1 September 2005). (See context above).
In the book, Overthrow: America's Century of Regime Change from Hawaii to Iraq (Times Books: 2006), Stephen Kinzer tracks the U.S. having overthrown many different governments, for Big Business reasons, while pretending different reasons to the public. See review and list of countries attacked by the US: Hawaii, Cuba, the Philippines, Puerto Rico, Chile, Honduras, Iran, Guatemala, South Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq, Panama. (See also Robert Parry's analysis, supra.) This books' information parallels data from U.S. State Department whistleblower William Blum, Killing Hope: U.S. Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II (Monroe, Maine: Common Courage Press, 1995).
For additional background, see also
|Dates||The War's Title(s) / Name(s)||Old World Combatants||New World Involvement||Comments
||1. 1492-1890's||Indian Wars||Western Europe||Explorers/Colonists vs N. and S. American Indians||Holocaust vs 100 - 150 Million Indians
||2. 1689-1697||King William's War / War of the League of Augsburg||England, Holland vs France, Spain||New England, New York, Canada||To reduce French power
||3. 1702-1711||Queen Anne's War / War of Spanish Succession||England, Holland, Austria vs France, Spain||Florida, New England||To have different Spanish King
||4. 1739-1748||King George's War / War of Austrian Succession||England, Holland, Austria, vs France, Spain, Prussia||West Indies, New England, Canada||To control Austria's ruler
||5. 1756-1763||Seven Years War / French and Indian War||England vs France, Spain||US colonies, Ohio country, Canada||To create British Empire in Ohio, Africa, India, etc. [See "The War That Made America" (PBS, 2005)]
||6. 1776-1783||American Revolution||England, France||U.S. Colonies, Canada||To obtain U.S. independence for the elite
||7. 1802-03||Haitian Independence||France||Haiti||To obtain independence (Napoleon's 'Vietnam'! per Haitians' using guerrilla tactics) (French defeat led to the Lousiana Purchase)
||8. 1812-1814||War of 1812||England||U.S., Canada||"impressment, slavery"
||9. 1840's-1850's||China War (aka Opium War)||England vs China, Japan, other nations||U.S. aiding/abetting England||To force opium into China, bully Japan to alter its foreign policy, etc. [Details.]
||10. 1898||Spanish-American War||Spain and colonies, e.g., Phillippines, Cuba||U.S.||U.S. aggression to expand its own Empire under McKinley-Roosevelt (see also Mark Twain's War Prayer)
||11. 1899-1902||Phillipine-American War||Philippines||U.S.||To assault Philippine people (200,000+ killed), to force them into the U.S. Empire
||12. 1914-1918||World War I||Germany, Austria, Ottoman Empire (Turkey), etc. vs Serbia, France, Russia, England, etc.||U.S.||To save Europe's monarchies (killed 16 million)
||13. 1939-1945||World War II||Germany vs Poland, France, England, Russia, U.S., etc.||U.S.||To end aggression (see "Christian" support of Hitler)
||14. 1948 -||Conflict over Israel||Arab States vs Israel, involving U.S.S.R., Britain, France, etc.||U.S. & U.N.||To establish, continue Israel
||15. 1950-1955||Korean Conflict||U.N. vs Korea, China||U.S.||To defend South Korea (But see Prof. Cumings The Origins of the Korean War (Modern Library, 2010) and Review)
||16. 1955-1974||Vietnam War||South Vietnam v North Vietnam||U.S.||To prevent Vietnamese unification
||17. Mid 1983||Falklands War||Britain||Argentina||Re Falklands Islands
||18. 1990-1991||War with Iraq||Iraq v Kuwait, U.N.||U.S.||To save Kuwait
||19. Oct 2002||20. March 2003 — |
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