War is a racket. It always has been. It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives. A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the people. Only a small "inside" group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many. Out of war a few people make huge fortunes. In World War I, a mere handful garnered the profits of the conflict. At least 21,000 new millionaires and billionaires were made in the United States. That many admitted their huge blood gains on their income tax returns. How many other war millionaires falsified their tax returns no one knows. How many of these war millionaires and billionaires shouldered a rifle? How many of them dug a trench? How many of them knew what it meant to go hungry in a rat-infested dug-out? How many of them spent sleepless, frightened nights, ducking shells and shrapnel and machine gun bullets? How many of them parried a bayonet thrust of an enemy? How many of them were wounded or killed in battle?
Please click on my headline to read the complete testimony of Major General Smedley D. Butler, USMC, Retired