“War Is a Racket”


Maj. Gen. Smedley D. Butler – TRANSCEND Media Service

War Is a Racket is a speech and a 1935 short book, by Smedley D. Butler, a retired US Marine Corps Major General and two-time Medal of Honor recipient. Based on his extensive military experience, Butler discusses how business interests commercially benefit, profiteering from warfare. He made a nationwide U.S. tour in the early 1930s giving this speech.

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Major General Smedley Darlington Butler, nicknamed “Old Gimlet Eye” (30 Jul 1881 – 21 Jun 1940) was a senior US Marine Corps officer who fought in both the Mexican Revolution and World War I. Butler was, at the time of his death, the most decorated Marine in U.S. history. Wikipedia

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This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 24 Feb 2020.

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2 Responses to ““War Is a Racket””

  1. Great and couragious witnessing of how war is backed up by a profittering minority. This was the only characteristc of war discussed, which made the talk a bit boring. War is also stupid, destructive, immoral, inhuman, and biologically very strange: we are the only species to kill members of our own species in large numbers and so often. It goes against any principle of biology. This is one reason why we will soon become extinct. The other reason for soon becoming extinct is the unsustainable distruction of the environment, even that for the economic advantage of a small minority. Interestingly human violence is a recent event (5 – 7,000 years ago) based only on cultural evolution, so it can be changed, if the publis was allowed to know that human nature is, instead, nonviolent (Leslie Sponsel, Douglas Fry, P. P. Giorgi).
    Coming soon on my web site (www.pierogiorgi.org) “The nonviolent revolution”.
    Prof. Piero P. Giorgi, University of Otago, National Centre for Peace.

  2. Robin Edward Poulton says:

    “Out of war, a few people make huge profits….” is this not the true cause of most modern wars? Is this not exactly why Cheney and Rumsfeld, arm sellers and war profiteers, persuaded poor dumb George W. Bush and foolish Colin Powell with his misplaced loyalties, (and of course the CIA’s British lap dog Tony Blair) to invade Iraq: leading to the deaths of 1 million children, generalized rape and pillage and the destruction of lives and lifestyles, the destruction of Syria, and 11 million refugees (including those who are refugees in their own Iraqi and Syrian landscapes). The US deficit has ballooned. Munitions manufacturers are happy. Weapon and rocket and tank factory workers are kept busy, making profits for Fat Cats. Bankers are happy. Capitalist profits in 2020 were soaked in the blood of the Middle East. Smedley Butler speaks about American capitalism of 100 years ago. Plus ça change, plus ça reste pareil.