Generals over the White House

The Impact of the Military-Industrial Complex

Book Cover: Generals over the White House
ISBN: 978-0895670427
Pages: 59

“Our view of the military differs fundamentally from the anti-militarism of the liberal and progressive elements in capitalist society. They fail to recognize that the structure of capitalist society, that is, the relationship between the basic classes, determines the politics of the capitalist state, no matter which policy the governing group may pursue. This policy is inevitably imperialist and today inexorably serves the military-industrial complex, which, willy-nilly, is propelled in the direction of imperialist war.”



The material that follows was written under the growing impact of a surge in the "new militarism." This was given tremendous impetus by the promulgation of the so-called Carter Doctrine on January 21, 1980. Beyond the shadow of a doubt, this new doctrine constituted a qualitative change in U.S. foreign policy. It brought on a hysterical and jingoistic war psychosis orchestrated by the Pentagon, the White House, the State Department, and the capitalist media. The pretexts for this were the seizure of the U.S. Embassy personnel by Iranian students and the Soviet Union's military assistance to the Afghan revolutionary government.


The new militarism has been in the making for several years. It differs from the old militarism only in form. As against the crude, vulgar, and offensive outpourings of the type of Generals Patton and Curtis LeMay, the new militarism has broadened its base by virtue of its more sophisticated, more deceptive approaches. It handles itself with urbanity and goes out of its way to cultivate its long-standing ties with the universities, the press, and other public institutions of the capitalist establishment.

Whereas the old militarists like LeMay would crudely announce their intention to bomb Viet Nam into the Stone Age, or "nuke 'em," the new militarism has directed itself to the alleged "appalling weakness of the U.S. geopolitical position" vis-à-vis the so-called "growing strength and aggressiveness of the Soviet Union." They have worked at enlisting more and more of the bourgeois academe into their own intellectual stable. Such organs as the Washington Quarterly, put out by the Center for Strategic and International Studies, cater to the intellectual elite and attempt to draw in and widen a constituency for the military.

The new militarism has its counterpart in the civilian population in the growth of the new right. The latter is a loose, conglomerate coalition of all the old reactionary and right-wing groupings under new names and masquerading more recently under single-issue-oriented labels such as Right to Life and so on.

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