Despite all sorts of “reboots”, humanistic and pacifistic statements, more than a dozen military conflicts continue to rage on the planet, about thirty more remain frozen, and the defense spending of states is inexorably growing. According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), world military spending in 2010 amounted to 1,63 trillion dollars, an increase of 2009%, or 1,3 billion, compared to 20,6 year. Compared to 2000, the year growth exceeded 50%!
Why then is a world gripped by a global economic crisis and shaken by numerous natural cataclysms, during which, it would seem, not at all to the battles, continues to fight and arm? A very eloquent answer to this question even during the Vietnam War gave 15 to large American economists, writing literally the following: “It is impossible to imagine that for the economy there was any substitute for war. There is no method of maintaining control over employment, production and consumption, which would be comparable with it in terms of efficiency. War was and remains the most important condition for the stability of modern society. The military sector is the only important sector of the global economy where full and mandatory government control is possible. War and only it can solve the problem of stocks. ”
More important than the world
At one time, US President Ronald Reagan said: "There are more important things than the world." Despite all the cynicism, this phrase is quite possible to put an epigraph to stories development of earthly civilization.
Over the past five and a half thousand years, mankind has managed to unleash more than 14 500 wars. That is, an average of two or three wars per year. They took about 3 a billion 540 of millions of human lives, but people can not stop. Throughout history, the initiators of the conflict sought and seek to hide their economic causes, masking them with various "glaring" occasions and beautiful slogans. But essentially they do not change. The basis of any social order and economic structure is property, and, as the practice of the historical process shows, this property has always been and remains not without interest only to its owner. “The art of warfare is the art of acquiring slaves,” writes Aristotle (384 — 322 BC). Thomas Hobbes (1588 — 1679) expanded the list: “People driven by greed are abused to become the masters of other people, their land, their wives, children, and cattle.” With the increasing complexity of economic and economic life, political economy institutions, equipment and technology, the range of issues of this problematic has inexorably expanded. The tendency remains unchanged. “Whatever externally“ noble ”goals were not proclaimed when war was unleashed by some states against others, in any social system of war, wars were and are being waged because of property: be it slaves, territories, colonies, sources of raw materials, markets, spheres of influence”, states doctor of military sciences, professor Alexander Korabelnikov.
The victorious war gives the victorious country the property of the vanquished - the necessary external resources for their own economic development, stimulates the internal growth of the productive forces and the consumer market, helps to eliminate the competitor (s), opens new commercial and economic horizons. Due to all this, it takes the state to a qualitatively new level, providing it not only with more advantageous and stable positions in domestic and foreign policy, but also providing it with certain instruments of domination on a regional or global scale. However, such acquisitions are akin to playing roulette - the more you win, the more you want. At the same time, as at the gaming table, fortune is changeable, and some winners are invariably replaced by others.
The economic background of such metamorphoses is quite vividly seen in the example of two world wars and the subsequent world structure, the global construction of which is on the threshold of new transformations.
Germany: from economic expansion to power methods
To begin with, the future initiator and the main driving force of both the First and Second World War, Germany, carried out its successful and in many ways triumphal (primarily from an economic point of view) unification and subsequent development thanks to the Austro-Prussian (1866 g. ) and the Franco-Prussian (1870 — 1871) wars.
Thus, for example, under the Frankfurt Peace Treaty, the former French empire ceded Germany Alsace and Lorraine, which were concentrated in 20% of all mining and metallurgical reserves of France (1 million 597 thousand inhabitants, or 4,3% of its population). Five billion francs of indemnity became the most important help for the young German economy, which, after creating a single centralized state, began to gain unusually high turnover. The consolidation of iron ore from Alsace and Lorraine with coal from the Rhineland made it possible to create a powerful fuel and metallurgical base for German industry, and the French billions became its basic source of investment. Only for 1871 — 1873 was created 328 of new joint-stock companies with a total capital of more than 2,7 billion marks. To this it should be added that the German industrial enterprises of the 70 of the XIX century arose on the basis of the latest technology and technology of that time. German engineering has become one of the world leaders. This allowed the beginning of the 20th century to significantly increase the competitiveness of German goods (the volume of German foreign trade increased by about three times in the period from 1870 to 1913, the cost of finished products exceeded 70% of German exports, German electrical products won 50% of the world market), increase wages and improve the living standards of the population.
At the end of the XNUMXth century, Germany overtook France in industrial production, and at the beginning of the XNUMXth century England was left behind. The sharp increase in industrial production in Germany seriously undermined the position of the "workshop of the world" (at that time it was not China, but Great Britain). The situation was aggravated by the construction by Germany of a huge civil and military fleet. Using the support of the state, the largest German shipping companies come out on top in the world in the total tonnage of vessels with a displacement of more than five thousand tons. It was a direct challenge to the "mistress of the seas" (all the same Great Britain). It was already about the basics of English economic and political power.
The young German superpower, in turn, required more and more raw materials and food, in which it was in dire need. So, despite all efforts, the cost of import of Germany due to the import of raw materials and foodstuffs before the First World War exceeded the value of exports by more than 600 million marks. Relatively small German colonies could not cover the raw material shortage. These structural economic problems and contradictions, along with other factors, eventually led to an attempt to resolve them by force and a global armed conflict.
World Wars and US Economic Power
Its result, among other things, was the emergence of new trends and new conflicts. First, the United States and Japan increased their national wealth for the war — by 40% and 25%, respectively. The United States, at the expense of selling military and civilian products, concentrated around half of the world's gold reserves. In addition, after the formal entry of the United States into the war, they provided the Allies (primarily England and France) loans worth 8,8 billion. The total amount of military debt, including loans provided by the United States in 1919 — 1921, amounted to more than 11 billion dollars. These processes laid the foundation for the growth of American economic and military influence in the world.
Secondly, the artificial interruption of German economic and technological development, the territorial beating of the country and especially the huge amount of reparations (269 billion gold marks - the equivalent of approximately 100 thousand tons of gold, later this amount was reduced twice) largely contributed to the global financial crisis 1929 —1933's (John Maynard Keynes, who later stood at the origins of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, then spoke out against collecting such an inconceivable amount and warned that It may lead to global recession) and coming to power National Socialist. The latter tried to solve the above problems again by military means. They began a large-scale militarization of the economy under the slogans of revising the Versailles Treaty, which made it possible in the shortest possible time to revive and revive the country's economic system (to increase production, eradicate unemployment, etc.). Considerable financial and technological assistance in this they have provided representatives of the American business community.
At home, representatives of these circles were active members of the so-called Council on Foreign Relations. In the depths of this half-closed structure, already at the end of the thirties, work began on a strategy to establish American hegemony in the post-war world. The fact that the new armed conflict is not far off, then few people doubted.
28 January 1941, then US Secretary of State Cordel Gull received the first official program of US activities as a world leader at the end of the war. Its central idea was the notion of a “great space” (Grand Area), which was explained as the entire post-war world, regarded as the object of American governance. The document contained sufficiently detailed recommendations on how to deal with allies during the war and what initial actions should be taken after it ended. The document was presented to Roosevelt and made such a deep impression on him that he combined the Department of Strategic Planning Department and the informal group of advisers - the authors of the program into one powerful planning authority for the future US strategy.
The group continued to work and, by the year of 1944, issued a recommendation in which it declared the main objective of the post-war policy of the United States to “ensure the largest possible living space for America.
The document concluded with a meaningful attitude: “at a minimum, the United States should actively participate in domestic affairs, both of the main industrial states and of the countries that own the raw materials. We must assume that if one or more of these countries do not cooperate in the new world economic system, they should know that they will not develop fast enough. Developing not fast enough, they will not be able to ensure the procurement of necessary equipment from America and therefore will remain in a state of depression ... Aspects of political and military security will depend directly on this political dilemma. ” The results of the implementation of these strategic installations are known.
After the end of the war, the United States, which already concentrated two thirds of the world's gold reserves, made the dollar, in fact, the only world reserve currency, created the basic instruments of debt enslavement and subsequent political and economic dictate - the IMF and the World Bank, the NATO military unit, the US military bases housed in all corners of the globe (they are now present on the territory of 32 countries of the world).
Since then, little has changed.
To understand this, it was enough to listen to a keynote speech on fiscal issues that President Barack Obama inspiredly delivered on April 13 on 2011. As Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the country under the Constitution, he declared: “I will never agree to cuts undermining our ability to protect our national territory or the interests of America throughout the world.”
In a number of official documents, these interests are concretized. Thus, the US National Security Strategy for the Next Century, published in 1999, emphasizes that economic factors, in particular the welfare of the nation, belong to the category of vital interests for the attainment of which the government is ready to use all available opportunities, including the armed forces.
The same principles are repeated almost word for word in the US National Security Strategy in the Age of Globalization, published in December 2000, and other subsequent documents. It is quite clearly and openly said that the war was and will be an instrument of state policy aimed at achieving economic results and solving economic problems.
Libya: the war for oil and water?
At the same time, over the years, the United States and the leaders of the NATO states are less and less concerned about finding any reasons to cover up the true economic and political economic goals of the military conflicts they unleash.
So, for example, if the official version of the outbreak of the Panamanian war (to neutralize the threat of US loss of control over the Panama Canal) in 1986, was the name of the President of the country, General M. Noriega to the international drug mafia, and the presence of S. Hussein weapons mass destruction, the 29 March, 2011, in his speech about the causes of the war in Libya, Obama no longer bothers himself with such "trifles". He simply says: "We have no evidence of mass killings of the opposition by Gaddafi (in other Arab countries - allies of the United States, they are just there, but no one is bombing them - VB), but he could have done it." "I did not wait for evidence of massacres and mass graves." From this it follows that practically any unreal, but a potential factor, any hypothetical threat can serve as a pretext for war. International law, therefore, is increasingly becoming a selectively recognized and freely interpretable rudiment of interstate relations. Economy above all!
Here's what Pepe Escobar writes about this in particular (author of Globalistan: How Globalized World is Dissolving into Liquid War - “Globalistan: how the globalized world dissolves into liquid war,” Obama does Globalistan - “Obama creates Globalistan” and others) in his article entitled “There is no better business than war”, published in the Hong Kong edition of Asia Times: “Few in the West know that Libya, as well as Egypt, are located on the Nubian aquifer, that is, on the ocean of extremely valuable fresh water. Therefore, it turns out that this is visible, then invisible war is a vital war for water. Control of this aquifer is invaluable - that is why it is necessary to “save” valuable natural resources from “savages and barbarians”.
Pepe Escobar continues: “This aquifer, located at great depths and extending 4000 kilometers in the desert, became the basis for the project of the“ great artificial river ”that Gaddafi built for 25 billion dollars without borrowing a single cent from the IMF and the World bank (what a bad example for developing countries). Now this river provides water to Tripoli, Benghazi and the entire Libyan coast. Scientists estimate that the amount of this water is comparable to the volume of water in the Nile in 200 years.
Now compare this with the so-called three sisters - the French companies Veolia (formerly Vivendi), Suez Ondeo (formerly Generale des Eaux) and Saur, who control more than 40% of the global water market. ” Escobar is not a rhetorical question: are the pipelines of this “artificial river” bombed as a result of the air strikes? After all, such a scenario is quite likely: if they are bombed, France will get extremely lucrative contracts for their "restoration". And at the same time it will be the last step towards the privatization of all this water - today it is free.
Qatar, relying on the support of NATO "bombers", the first of the Arab countries to recognize the Libyan "rebels" as the only legitimate authority in the country, did it the very next day after it concluded a deal to sell oil.
The list of those who will receive prizes from this war, if it ends as the main initiators plan, will not be limited to these examples.
PLA and the economic interests of China
In this case, it is not a banal redivision of the Libyan market. The picture is much wider. Oil, gas, increasing production and, accordingly, cheapening of raw materials for the “leading economies” that could not get out of the crisis, construction, weapon and other contracts, water, demonstration of a cautionary lesson to all countries conducting the “independent” line.
The PRC, which claims to push “the Western masters of the world” in perspective, if so to speak, “with understanding” refers to this development of events — by conducting a large-scale accelerated modernization of the People’s Liberation Army of China (PLA).
“2,3 million Chinese soldiers will soon receive not only more money, but also modern, including offensive, third-generation weapons. They will also be faced with promising tasks to ensure the protection of the interests of the second largest economy and global trade power in different regions of the world. The previous concept of the people's war and militia, which provided for the defense of China against aggression and ensuring the security of its territory, inland waters and territorial waters, no longer meets modern requirements, ”Die Welt wrote in an article entitled“ Global Ambitions of the Chinese Army ”. And the Chinese really have something to protect.
According to the Heritage Foundation, at the end of 2010, the volume of Chinese industrial and financial participation in the Arab world was about 37 billion dollars, in Africa - 43, in Western Asia (including Iran) - 45, in East Asia - 36, in the Pacific region - 61 and in Europe - 34 billion dollars.
Have resources? Para bellum!
The problem of lack of resources, and above all energy, is obvious to a number of countries right now, at any time, can lead to the emergence of another military conflict, and in the near future even cause the outbreak of a new world war.
These are the findings of a study of the British bank HSBC. Analyzing them, an economic expert and one of the leading British economic observers Jeremy Warner in his column in The Daily Telegraph also notes that the states whose industries will suffocate from lack of resources will be forced to divide their scarce stock with methods that are still considered unacceptable - for example, by the military. That is, no longer disguised by any screens and fig leaves of formal occasions. As we see, preparatory work in this direction is already underway. Words from Krylov's fable “You are guilty only because I want to eat” becoming more relevant.
And the situation with resources is aggravated much faster than many people think.
Recently, the French senator from the Union for the Popular Movement party, Jacques Blanc, published a report, which refers to the possible threat of interruptions in the supply of certain metals, minerals and vulnerability in this regard to Europe. In recent years, the list of necessary supplies has expanded significantly: to date, Europe’s dependence on foreign suppliers has spread to four dozen positions. Some of these materials are of double strategic importance: they are necessary for the electronics industry and are used in the military-industrial complex; others are indispensable in the production of electric cars and hybrid cars. “In most cases there is no replacement for them,” says Blanc. He is convinced: "It is imperative to guarantee uninterrupted raw materials supply urgently." And how can they be guaranteed? A 100% guarantee can only be in one case - when you control them yourself. Resource holders and developing countries understand this. Hence the growth of their military spending, which sometimes even outpaces the growth of national economies.
For example, according to SIPRI, the most surprising is the significant increase in military spending in South America, most of which have a lot of accumulated socio-economic difficulties and there is no real military threat. However, in 2010, the states of South America spent 63,3 billion dollars on the defense industry, which is three billion dollars more than a year earlier. Most of the military growth was provided by Brazil - 2,4 billion dollars. Military spending last in 2010 year increased compared with 2009 year by 9,3%.
Angola, Nigeria, Morocco and Algeria increased military spending on 19,2, 14,6, 6,6 and 5,7 percent, respectively. 26% increased its expenditure on defense Mongolia. The corresponding costs of other countries that own resources have also increased.
In order not to be torn to pieces
Russia is one of such states. Throughout its history, our country, by the will of fate, was trapped between the aggressive West (“Drang nach Osten” - “Rush to the East”, judging by the expansion of NATO, has not been canceled for at least 770 years) and “wild steppe”. To survive in these conditions, between the hammer and the anvil, it was possible, only straining all forces. Hence the specific nature of the domestic economy - mobilization, centralized, with a large public sector and the military-industrial complex. This problem is particularly relevant today. If China is the “workshop of the world”, then Russia can surely be called its pantry. This is what Aurelio Peccei, founder of the Club of Rome and the Economic Committee of the North Atlantic Institute (NATO think-tank on global economic issues), wrote about this: “In September 1967, I had the opportunity to tour Siberia. This allowed me to see firsthand and to obtain actual evidence of the abundance in this region of untouched reserves of clean water, forests, mineral ores and space — the most extensive sparsely populated fertile lands ... ”
The need to divide these riches, which our country, according to a number of foreign politicians, “experts” and other public people, “owns unfairly,” has been said more than once.
In his recent speech, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev emphasized: “We cannot leave our country without sufficient development of the Armed Forces and law enforcement agencies. They just tear us apart. ”
Yes, given the global trends and our domestic problems, the threat of being torn to pieces does exist.
According to the Ministry of Defense of Russia, the domestic industry today is not able to produce some samples of military products that would meet modern requirements.
In 2009 — 2010, the total amount of state support for defense enterprises amounted to about 220 billion rubles, but this, unfortunately, did not radically improve the overall negative situation in the industry.
The Resolution of the XII Congress of the All-Russian Union of Defense Industry Workers (7 on April 2011) specifically states:
“The situation in enterprises and in trade union organizations remains difficult. Many enterprises and organizations of industry continue to operate extremely unstable, the number of unprofitable enterprises is growing. The number of unprofitable enterprises by the end of 2010 in relation to 2006 increased and amounted to: for conventional weapons - 36,2%; for ammunition and special chemistry - 52,0% ".
“The number of workers in industry continues to fall. During the reporting period, it decreased by 23,2%, which in general amounted to more than 90 thousand people. The outflow of specialists continues, personnel problems arise. The average age of workers is increasing, which in some groups, especially in scientific organizations, is more than 50 years ”.
“The effects of the late provision of works and services on the state defense order, the constant rise in prices for fuel and energy resources, materials, components have a negative impact on the activities of enterprises. The loading of many industries remains extremely low. ”
The congress participants considered it necessary to appeal to the president of the country. The document, in particular, says: “Decisions made by the authorities do not allow to fundamentally reverse the situation, which is worsening and may in the near future lead to the irretrievable loss of many industries and the possibility of serial production, the elimination of tens of thousands of jobs and, as a result, bankrupt enterprises ".
At present, 1383 organizations located in 64 constituent entities of the Russian Federation are included in the consolidated register of defense organizations. Many of these objects of the domestic economy are unique, and their development is important not only in terms of national security, but also in terms of a breakthrough into the next technological order. In order to adequately confront the challenges of the 21st century, and above all the attempts of the main world players to solve their economic problems by military means, Russia needs to take higher care of its defense bloc.
The words of Alexander III that Russia has only two ally: its army and navy, and today sound as relevant as in past centuries.
History testifies: it is human nature to solve economic problems by armed means
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