The National-Security State Racket

by | Mar 5, 2021


Some people are criticizing President Biden for the recent US air strikes in Syria as well as his refusal to sanction Saudi dictator Mohammed bin Salman, the man who US officials have concluded orchestrated the murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi.

Yes, it’s possible that Biden made those decisions. But there is another possibility, one much more likely, one that unfortunately all too many Americans are loath to consider: that it was the US national-security establishment, particularly the Pentagon and the CIA, who made those decisions and that Biden simply deferred to their judgment.

That’s what many people simply cannot bring themselves to consider: that it is the national-security establishment, namely the Pentagon, the CIA, the NSA, and, to a certain extent, the FBI, that is actually running the federal government, especially in foreign affairs. The other three branches, while permitted to have the veneer of power, are expected to defer to critical judgments made by the Pentagon, the CIA, and the NSA.

And defer they do. When was the last time that Congress significantly reduced the budget for the national-security establishment? You’ll never see it. That’s because the national-security establishment controls Congress. No member of Congress, especially the military and CIA veterans, would dare to take them on. If he did, he would be toast because the Pentagon would immediately retaliate by threatening to close down military projects or bases in his district. The Pentagon’s and CIA’s assets in the mainstream press would immediately take the offensive and accuse the congressman of being “ineffective.” He would be out in the next election.

The Supreme Court has long deferred to the overwhelming power of the national-security branch of the federal government. The Pentagon’s and CIA’s torture and prison center in Cuba, where people have been denied the right to a speedy trial for more than a decade, is an ongoing testament of that deference to authority. So is the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the Pentagon’s and CIA’s power to assassinate people, notwithstanding the express prohibitions on assassination in the Fifth Amendment. Indeed, America’s official secrets act wasn’t a law enacted by Congress; it was a judicial doctrine that the Supreme Court crafted out of whole cloth in deference to a demand by the military.

Trump vs. Biden

With the national-security establishment’s decision that President Kennedy’s policies posed a grave threat to national security and, therefore, that he needed to be removed from office, no president has dared to take these people on. In the run-up to the 2016 presidential election, it appeared that Donald Trump was going to do so. But for some unknown reason, once he entered into office, he crumbled, surrounding himself with military generals and civilian warmongers. He also surrendered to the CIA’s demands to keep its 50-year-old JFK assassination records secret, on grounds of “national security.”

But there is no doubt that Trump was different. He didn’t show the same deference to the authority of the national-security establishment that other presidents since Kennedy have. That was why the deep state went after him from the very beginning, especially with its nonsensical investigation into whether Trump was a Russian agent who was betraying America, just as they said Kennedy was doing with his policies. Perhaps with time, we will learn the full extent of the deep state’s efforts to ensure Joe Biden’s defeat of Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election.

Now they have Biden, which is their notion of an ideal president, one who will defer to the omnipotent power of the Pentagon, the CIA, and the NSA. Did Biden really select military-industrial complex man Lloyd J. Austen III as Secretary of Defense? It’s much more likely that the Pentagon, not wanting to jack with a civilian overseer, chose Austin and that Biden simply deferred to its wishes.

Unheeded warnings

President Eisenhower warned about this type of governmental structure in his Farewell Address in 1961. He pointed out that it constituted a grave threat to the democratic processes and rights and liberties of the American people. That was more than 50 years ago. Since then, the Pentagon, the CIA, the NSA, and the FBI, along with their army of contractors and subcontractors feeding at the public trough, have only grown progressively more powerful and rich.

John Kennedy took these people on directly. Kennedy was not a dumb man. He knew precisely the nature of the power structure he was up against. That was why he played an instrumental role in bringing the movie Seven Days in May into production — to serve as a warning to the American people, the same type of warning that Ike issued to Americans in his Farewell Address.

The problem is that Americans have never paid heed to those warnings. They just don’t want to acknowledge that they had any validity. Indeed, many Americans still do not want to confront the fact that this brutal structure within their governmental apparatus ended up turning its omnipotent power inward against a president whose policies they deemed constituted a grave threat to national security.

Milking the rackets

For some 45 years, the national-security establishment milked the “war on communism” for all that it was worth, constantly engendering deep fear with the American people so that they would continue to vest the Pentagon, the CIA, the NSA, and the FBI with ever-increasing power, influence, and money.

It was nothing more than one great big racket, one that continually, year after year, enriched the pockets and expanded the power of those in the military-intelligence establishment.

When Kennedy decided to bring an end to the Cold War racket, he had to be dealt with. And a message needed to be sent to the American people: “We are here, we are in charge, never take us on, and just get used to it.”

When the Cold War ended, their racket quickly morphed into the “war on terrorism.” All the fears about communism that these people engendered in the American people were simply switched to terrorism — or Islam. At first the fear revolved around the notion that foreign terrorists were coming to get us. Now it’s morphed into the notion that domestic terrorists are coming to get us.

They have now come full circle, restoring Russia and China as official enemies who are supposedly coming to get us, just like they supposedly were during the 45 years of the Cold War racket. It’s now a fear-mongering perfect storm — terrorists, Muslims, Russia, and China and, for good measure, Syria, North Korea, ISIS, the Taliban, al-Qaeda, drug dealers, illegal immigrants, and an unsafe world.

An upending of values and morals

Ever since its inception, the deep state has upended America’s morals and values. How many foreign regimes, including democratically elected ones, have these people destroyed in the name of national security? How many brutal military and right-wing dictatorships have they installed into power, trained, supported, and aligned with? How many people, including a democratically elected US president, have they assassinated over the years based on national security?

The obsessive quest to inflict extreme punishment on people like Julian Assange and Edward Snowden says it all. Here are people who have done nothing more than disclose the truth about the national-security establishment’s evil and immoral actions. Yet, it is people like Assange and Snowden who are considered to be the evil, immoral ones. What better evidence of an upending of America’s morals and values than that?

If our American ancestors had been told that the Constitutional Convention was bringing into existence a national-security state type of governmental structure, they never would have approved the deal. The only reason they approved the deal was because they were assured that the Constitution was bringing into existence a limited-government republic.

The national-security state is a root cause of many woes under which America is suffering. To get our nation back on the right road, it is necessary that we dismantle, not reform, the national-security establishment and restore our founding governmental system of a limited-government republic to our land.

Reprinted with permission from Future of Freedom Foundation.


  • Jacob G. Hornberger

    Jacob George Hornberger is an American attorney, author, and politician who was a Libertarian candidate for president in 2000 and 2020. He is the founder and president of the Future of Freedom Foundation.

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