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War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier by Smedley D. Butler
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“I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism. I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests 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 benefit of Wall Street. I helped purify Nicaragua for the International Banking House of Brown Brothers in 1902-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for the American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras right for the American fruit companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went on its way unmolested. Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents.”
Smedley D. Butler, War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier
“WAR is a racket. It always has been.
It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one
international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the
losses in lives.”
Smedley Butler, War Is a Racket
“To summarize: Three steps must be taken to smash the war racket. 1. We must take the profit out of war. 2. We must permit the youth of the land who would bear arms to decide whether or not there should be war. 3. We must limit our military forces to home defense purposes.”
Smedley D. Butler, War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier
“There are only two reasons why you should ever be asked to give your youngsters. One is defense of our homes. The other is the defense of our Bill of Rights and particularly the right to worship God as we see fit. Every other reason advanced for the murder of young men is a racket, pure and simple.”
Smedley D. Butler, War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier
“Beautiful ideals were painted for our boys who were sent out to die. The was the "war to end wars." This was the "war to make the world safe for democracy." No one told them that dollars and cents were the real reason. No one mentioned to them, as they marched away, that their going and their dying would mean huge war profits. No one told these American soldiers that they might be shot down by bullets made by their own brothers here. No one told them that the ships on which they were going to cross might be torpedoed by submarines built with United State patents. They were just told it was to be a "glorious adventure".

Thus, having stuffed patriotism down their throats, it was decided to make them help pay for the war, too. So, we gave them the large salary of $30 a month!

All that they had to do for this munificent sum was to leave their dear ones behind, give up their jobs, lie in swampy trenches, eat canned willy (when they could get it) and kill and kill and kill...and be killed”
Smedley D. Butler, War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier
“In a 1931 speech, Butler recounted a story about Italian Prime Minister Benito Mussolini, how he had run over a child with his car, and said, as he moved on, “It was only one life. What is one life in the affairs of the State.”
Smedley D. Butler, War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier
“Beautiful ideals were painted for our boys who were sent out to die. This was the “war to end wars.” This was the “war to make the world safe for democracy.” No one told them that dollars and cents were the real reason. No one mentioned to them, as they marched away, that their going and their dying would mean huge war profits. No one told these American soldiers that they might be shot down by bullets made by their own brothers here. No one told them that the ships on which they were going to cross might be torpedoed by submarines built with United States patents. They were just told it was to be a “glorious adventure.”
Smedley D. Butler, War Is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier
“In the World War, we used propaganda to make the boys accept conscription. They were made to feel ashamed if they didn't join the army.”
Smedley D. Butler, War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier
“AL INFIERNO CON LA GUERRA”
Smedley D. Butler, War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier
“Yes, we have had disarmament conferences and limitations of arms conferences. They don't
mean a thing. One has just failed; the results of another have been nullified. We send our professional soldiers and our sailors and our politicians and our diplomats to these
conferences. And what happens?

The professional soldiers and sailors don't want to disarm. No admiral wants to be without a
ship. No general wants to be without a command. Both mean men without jobs. They are not for disarmament. They cannot be for limitations of arms. And at all these conferences, lurking in the background but all-powerful, just the same, are the sinister agents of those who profit by war. They see to it that these conferences do not disarm or seriously limit armaments.”
Smedley D. Butler, War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier
“The only way to smash this racket is to conscript capital and industry and labor before the nations manhood can be conscripted.”
Smedley D. Butler, War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier
“Victory or defeat will be determined by the skill and ingenuity of our scientists. If we put them to work making poison gas and more and more fiendish mechanical and explosive instruments of destruction, they will have no time for the constructive job of creating greater prosperity for all peoples.”
Smedley D. Butler, War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America's Most Decorated Soldier