To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier Paperback – April, 2003
Wiley Architecture, Construction, & Design Sale
Save up to 40% on select architecture, construction, and design guides during August. Learn more.
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Top Customer Reviews
This book is a real gem, a classic, that should be in any library desiring to focus on national security. It is a very readable collection of short essays, ending with a concise collection of photographs that show the horror of war--on one page in particular, a pile of artillery shells labeled "Cause" and below is a photo of a massive pile of bodies, labeled "Effect."
Of particular interest to anyone concerned about the current national security situation, both its expensive mis-adventures abroad and its intrusive violation of many Constitutional rights at home, is the author's history, not only as a the most decorated Marine at the time, with campaign experience all over the world, but as a spokesperson, in retirement, for placing constitutional American principles over imperialist American practice.
The following quotations from the book are intended to summarize it:
"I helped make Mexico, especially Tampico, safe for American oil intersts in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefits of Wall Street. The record of racketeering is long. I helped purify Nicaragua for the international banking house of Brown Brothers in 1909-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for American sugar interests in 1916. In China I helped to see to it that Standard Oil went its way unmolested." [p. 10]
"War is a racket. ...It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives." [p. 23]
"The general public shoulders the bill [for war]. This bill renders a horrible accounting. Newly placed gravestones. Mangled bodies.Read more ›
Imagine my suprise now, after having learned that our brave and tough idol had confessed to being the best "enforcer" for big business there ever was! He then became a whistle blower of the highest order. Brave and honest men and women who attain some kind of fame on the world stage do not get to live too long in this world. Their outspokeness is extinguished as soon as people start listening. In General Butler's case there was a glitch in the system. He rose to the heights in rank because of his courage, heart, and tenacity during times of WAR. They had no choice but to elevate him. He earned his unobstructed view of how the world works with blood, sweat, and tears. When he realized that he was just being used... All hell broke loose. His passionate essay in this book should be read by everyone living in this great country. He tells it the way it was and the way it still is.
It's going to be a while before someone else from so high-up steps "out of line" and talks. Can you imagine this happening nowadays? Not gonna happen. It seems that Generals are now chosen for political reasons.
So read this book about the brave General who showed even more courage as a Civilian.
Butler's central thesis is that regardless of the popular rhetoric that often accompanies warfare, it is waged almost exclusively for profit. He advances this argument in three decisive examples.
EXAMPLE 1: CORPORATE MILITARY PROFITS RESULTING FORM WAR
In an early version of "follow the money", Butler provides pre- and post-World War I data on some of America's leading corporations to demonstrate the surge in profits that they experienced from the war, often totaling several hundred percent. While some companies, such as Dupont, arguably produced goods that contributed directly to America's military victory in 1918, others such as saddle manufacturers did not. Even when these companies failed to contribute directly to the war effort, they still managed to lobby the government to retrain or expand their contracts. Its as though powerful, well connected oil services company today were to contract with the government to supply oil to the military during a foreign campaign and then deliberately overcharge it.Read more ›
The first sentences of Butler's book, written in 1935 and mainly referring to World War I remain true today, "War is a racket. It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious." Butler then rips into war profiteers who never shouldered a rifle yet made millions in blood money. Throughout his writing Butler posits that the single focus of war is to make money for the few by trading in the blood of the many. To know that in 2004 these words accurately and eerily describe the majority of the men and women now in control of the United States of America is shameful and disgraceful.
In Chapter Two "Who Makes the Profits" Butler analyzes who made money during the Wars he was involved with. He analyzes how they made their money and how much they made.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Smedley D. Butler, (Maj.Gen. USMC – Retired – Deceased) was twice awarded the CMOH. His actions taken during the First World War were unquestionably brave, and this makes for a... Read morePublished 10 days ago by Gerry
Everyone interested in Polotics should read this book particularly the young people of the world to see what war is realy about. I think everyone should read this book.Published 23 days ago by Amazon Customer
Everyone should read this book, especially warmongers like Hillary Clinton and her neoconsPublished 23 days ago by Happy Poet
In this vehement and all-important pamphlet Brigadier General Smedley Darlington Butler unveils the real winners behind the war machine: the owners of the corporations producing... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Luc REYNAERT
Apparently, some things are timeless in the "military-industrial racket".
General Smedley Butler, the most decorated American soldier probably ever, points out in this... Read more
simple and straightforward. too bad it's well past the time when his ideas could be implemented.Published 3 months ago by Robert S. Damus
I have read this book and this was for a gift. I do not have to make another review.Published 3 months ago by Rafael