As the sabers continue to rattle and the world gets more dangerous, nobody is happier than the multinational corporations connected to the military-industrial complex. As President Trump reduces restrictions on South Korea’s ability to acquire missiles, defense contractors stand to be the biggest winners from this deal.
“I am allowing Japan & South Korea to buy a substantially increased amount of highly sophisticated military equipment from the United States,” Trump announced via Twitter on Tuesday. Trump’s ‘carrot and stick’ style of diplomacy was on full display here, as this tweet came shortly after he announced that a “free trade” deal with South Korea would be terminated.
The White House officially announced that Trump “provided his conceptual approval for the purchase of many billions of dollars’ worth of military weapons and equipment from the United States by South Korea.” This will build upon the almost $5 billion in arms, no small number, that were acquired by South Korea from 2010-16.
“Seoul was previously restricted to a maximum warhead weight of 500 kilograms on its ballistic missiles, according to a bilateral agreement with the United States signed in 2001,” a Gulf News report said.
While the Korean crisis has the world on the brink, defense contractors are salivating at the opportunity to sell more of their arms as hostilities worsen on every front. Foreign policy analyst Jason Ditz of Antiwar.com feels that the entire situation may be a ruse to keep the war machine well-lubricated.
“Historically such arms buys have been mostly done to curry favor with the US, as recent administrations have made increasing such sales a top priority. US missile makers will benefit, and that will keep defense industry lobbyists happy,” Ditz said.
As usual, the war party wins and the rest of us lose.