Financial Terrorism? Economic Warfare!
According to a paper written by Kevin D. Freeman, a consultant hired by the Pentagon, “financial terrorism” was partly responsible for the economic collapse that has been happening for a few years now. (The report was originally issued in June 2009 but is now getting significant media coverage.)
Yeah, “financial terrorism.” He really said that. He also mentioned that “outside forces” may have brought about the collapse, including foreign nations and/or rogues.
Let’s think about this for a moment. The guy was hired by the Pentagon—not the Treasury or Congress or some other institution that actually has a role in overseeing the economy, but the Pentagon—the institution responsible for managing military conflicts. The military-motivated institution hired an outside contractor to write a paper about amorphous enemies engaged in “financial terrorism.”
That may explain why the author would use the words terrorism and warfare, invoking the trauma of mass murder to introduce this unsubstantiated conspiracy theory. People don’t think as critically when they’re working with terms that are laden with associations, especially that magic word terrorism. This paper, “Economic Warfare: Risks and Responses,” seems like little more than a weak attempt to set a fearful pretext for the discussion and to perhaps justify a military action.
If not, why would the Pentagon bother? The military has its hands full with two active occupations and scores of bases to manage. The budget is a wreck. Why hire a consultant to write a 111-page paper about something that’s under the purview of other parts of the government? The Pentagon doesn’t usually get involved unless it’s looking for authority to take some kind of action.
The thing is, we know what caused the financial collapse: unbridled greed. Greed run amok. Investors screwing investors and everyone else at the same time. That’s what happened, the core reason why so many people are mired in poverty right now. And a lot of those people want justice. They want the perpetrators of the fraud to be exposed and punished.
Now the Pentagon wants us to believe that “financial terrorism” is responsible, that we should stand behind some initiative to blame and attack foreigners. Maybe they think it will kill two birds with one stone, satisfying the bloodlust of the citizenry against the financial criminals and simultaneously fortifying the cause of the “war on terror.”
If some new tragedy befalls our country, and this idea of “financial terrorism” is used to explain it, we must not fall for it. We must recognize this for the propaganda that it is.