How the Narcotic of Defense Spending Undermines a Sensible Grand Strategy

A new post by Chuck Spinney on his Blaster blog.

Here’s a sample to get you started:

The MICC’s grand-strategic chickens are coming home to roost big time. While war is bad, the Russo-Ukrainian War has the champagne corks quietly popping in the Pentagon, on K Street, in the defense industry, and throughout the halls of Congress. Taxpayers are going to be paying for their party for a long time.

It is no accident that the United States is on the cusp of the Second Cold War.

Future historians may well view the last 30 years as a case study in the institutional survival of the American Military – Industrial – Congressional Complex (MICC), together with its supporting blob now saturating the media, think tanks, academia, and the intelligence community. Perhaps, these future historians will come also to view the Global War on Terror (GWOT) as the bridging operation that greased the transition to Cold War II by keeping defense budgets at Cold War levels after Cold War I ended. Also, 9-11 may have re-acclimated the American people to the climate of fear now needed to sustain Cold War II for the remainder of the 21st Century.

3 thoughts on “How the Narcotic of Defense Spending Undermines a Sensible Grand Strategy

  1. Thanks for flagging this. Also see Patrick Buchanan’s recital of simple truths about the war in Ukraine, obscured by US propaganda. Russia has allowed NATO to expand close to its borders. Putin drew a red line before Ukraine. The West defied it. Putin invaded to enforce it. Just as the US has done in our past to protect our sphere of influence in the Western Hemisphere.

  2. Most of the commentary in US media is the usual triumphant noise that opens our wars, as with the invasions of Iraq & Afghanistan and revolution in Libya (spoiler: they didn’t end well for us). I suggest reading more useful guides, like the opening of Thucydides’ The Peloponnesian War.

    “What made the war inevitable was the growth of Athenian power and the fear which this caused in Sparta.”

    A history of WW1’s start is also relevant. But imo the best context comes from “Unlimited Warfare” by 2 PLA colonels. It describes what we’re waging against our rivals: Libya, Iran, Iraq, Russia, & next – China. It’s one of the key texts about modern war.

    Here is a summary of “Unlimited Warfare.” Qiao Liang (乔良) was a colonel when this was published in 1999. He is now a Major General, perhaps right now explaining to China’s leaders how the Ukraine war will affect China.

    In 2015 Major General Qiao Liang (乔良) gave a speech explaining how America’s grand strategy not just affects but targets China. If China’s leaders didn’t understand in 2015, I’ll bet they do now. Their reaction might be the top result of this war, as they realize that peaceful coexistence is not possible with the US.

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