US Profits From
By Gideon Polya
19 November, 2004
sincerely hopes that there will be no further "jihadist" attacks
on America for two major reasons: (1) for obvious humanitarian reasons
- any avoidable innocent death is a tragedy; and (2) there would clearly
be a subsequent huge killing of people in the Muslim world by US forces
as seen in the post-9/11 carnage in Afghanistan and Iraq.
The total "excess
mortality" in Iraq (post-2003 invasion) has so far been about 0.3
million (estimate based on scientific data in The Lancet, on-line, 29
October, 2004) and in Afghanistan (post-2001 invasion) it has been 1.2
million (a conservative estimate based on UN data).
are consonant with conservative estimates (from UNICEF data) of under-5
infant mortalities in post-invasion Iraq and Afghanistan of 0.2 and
0.9 million, respectively. US post-9/11 "in combat" deaths
in Iraq and Afghanistan have been about 1000.
The tragic deaths of 3000 innocent Westerners on 9/11 was thus subsequently
translated into 1.5 million post-invasion Muslim deaths (500 Muslim
deaths /US civilian death, 1500 Muslim deaths /US combat death) and
(conservatively) 1.1 million Muslim under-5 infant deaths ( 370 Muslim
infant deaths/US civilian death, 1100 Muslim infant deaths/US combat
The post-9/11 "extra"
profits to the US War Economy (i.e. to the directors, shareholders and
employees of the US military-industrial complex) total some US$400 billion
- the sum of extra US military budget funding of $250 billion since
9/11 and additional funding for the Afghanistan and Iraq Wars of about
The current annual US military budget of $400 billion is half that of
the World ($800 billion), noting that US arms sales contribute significantly
to non-US global military expenditure. Accordingly, the "extra"
funding of the US industrial -military complex since 9/11 may be of
the order of $500 billion.
This immense profit has come with a human price of about US$0.3 million
per post-invasion "excess death" or about US$0.5 million per
post-invasion under-5 infant death in Iraq and Afghanistan.
attack on America on 9/11 has been so disastrous for ordinary Afghans
and Iraqis, so immensely profitable for the US military-industrial complex
and so crucial for the subsequent US military occupation of large swathes
of the world that one is driven to the extremely plausible hypothesis
that key elements in the US administration and military-industrial complex
have facilitated "jihadist" violence.
There is considerable, non-disputed evidence in the public domain for
massive support and facilitation of Afghan and Saudi "jihadists"
by the US before 9/11. The "intelligence failures" that permitted
9/11 must be viewed critically in the context of such massive prior
facilitation of "jihadists" and the immense subsequent benefits
to the US military-industrial complex, US oil interests and US global
Indeed there is a long history of "singular events" and "intelligence
failures" variously preceding US war involvements e.g. the Maine
explosion (Spanish-American War), the Lusitania sinking (World War 1
entry), Pearl Harbor (World War 2 entry), the Chicago soybean futures
killing (Korean War), the un-real Gulf of Tonkin Incident (Vietnam War
expansion), alleged threats to US citizens (Panama and Grenada Invasions),
US "greenlighting" of the Kuwait invasion (Gulf War) and false
claims of weapons of mass destruction and Iraq-jihadist links (Iraq
of violence in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories reveals
(albeit on a smaller scale) de facto territorial expansion and strategic
and military expenditure benefits to particular Israeli and US interests
from the continuing violent "jihadist" resistance. Peace with
justice is possible virtually tomorrow in the Holy Land - however possible
"interim solutions" of immediate, immense benefit to all parties
will not even be entertained because it would compromise the immensely
profitable US "war game" and US War Economy.
Thus one "interim
solution" for the Holy Land could involve the following key elements
- 2 formally independent states within defined borders; return to the
1967 borders and removal of all settlements but with special joint arrangements
for Jerusalem; Palestinian disarmament and "total airport-level
security" provided everywhere by Israel alone (as in 1967); internationally-guaranteed
civil and human rights for all; reconciliation and abolition of racism
and incitement; and unhindered access to essentially all parts of an
extremely secure, peaceful and prosperous Holy Land for all of its inhabitants.
The demands of the
US military-industrial complex, the US "war economy" and the
new Anglo-Celtic colonialism of US-UK "democratic imperialism"
(or more accurately, "democratic Nazism") all ensure (together
with incited fanaticism) that peace with justice will not happen readily
in the the Holy Land, Iraq or Afghanistan.
The Booker Prize-winning Indian writer Arundhati Roy in accepting the
Sydney Peace Prize (15 October 2004, Sydney, Australia) succinctly stated
that the US used to make weapons to fight wars but now manufactures
wars to sell weapons.
Of course the problem of First World complicity in Third World mass
mortality is not confined to the Middle East or Central Asia. "Excess
mortality" in a country for a given period is the difference between
ACTUAL deaths and the deaths EXPECTED for a peaceful, decently-run country
with the same demographics. "Excess mortality" (avoidable
mortality) calculations based on UN data have been performed for all
countries in the world for the period from 1950 to the present. The
results are appalling.
Total post-1950 "excess mortality" (avoidable mortality) has
been 1.3 billion for the World, 1 billion for the First World-violated
Third World and 0.5 billion for the Muslim World - a Muslim Holocaust
indeed and about 100 times greater than the World War 2 Jewish Holocaust
(6 million victims) and the "forgotten" World War 2 Bengal
Famine that killed 4 million Hindus and Muslims in British-ruled India.
"Excess mortality" is very low for European countries but
very high in Third World countries and correlates with exposure to First
World-imposed militarization and war. Thus the total post-1950 "excess
mortality" has been 32 million for Indo-China, 24 million for Israel's
immediate neighbours, 16.2 million for Afghanistan and 5.2 million for
The US now dominates a world in which some 20 million people die avoidably
each year from deprivation and malnourishment-exacerbated causes, with
a substantial proportion of the victims being children. Whether an Iraqi
child is shot or dies from avoidable and treatable disease due to destruction
of infrastructure, the economy and services, the end result is the same
and the culpability the same.
Further, the ruler is responsible for the ruled. Thus the per capita
medical expenditure in 2004 has been about $40 in Iraq as compared to
about $1000 in the occupier country Australia. According to UNICEF (2004),
in 2002 the under-5 infant mortality was 1,000 in Australia, 108,000
in Iraq and 283,000 in conquered Afghanistan (up from 277,000 in 2001)
- noting that these countries have populations of about 20, 24 and 22
The US-led Coalition leaders should be arraigned for War Crimes for
2 reasons: (1) the illegal invasion of a remote and non-threatening
country and (2) immense civilian mass mortality in an occupied country.
Indeed formal complaints concerning US and Coalition War Crimes in Iraq
have been lodged by myself and others with the International Criminal
The World can only
sensibly respond peacefully to horrendous US Coalition War Crimes in
Iraq by exposure, condemnation, legal actions, boycotts, sanctions and
bans applied to Coalition countries - and by making "ethical purchases"
from and "ethical investments" in non-involved countries such
as China, India, France, and Germany.
You cannot find
a solution until you have defined the problem. Informing the World of
the horrendous human consequences of US militarism is crucial. Silence
kills. Silence is complicity. Please inform everyone.
Dr Gideon Polya, 29 Dwyer Street, Macleod, Melbourne, Victoria, 3085,
Day & night telephone: +61 3 9459 3649
[Credentials: Dr Gideon Polya published some 130 works in a 4 decade
scientific career, most recently a huge pharmacological reference text
"Biochemical Targets of Plant Bioactive Compounds" (Taylor
& Francis, New York & London, 2003), and is currently writing
a book on global mortality (numerous articles on this matter can be
found by a simple Google search for "Gideon Polya")].