12:38 GMT +323 October 2016
    U.S Air Force aircraft at Sheik Isa, Bahrain, file photo.

    US Military Outclasses Russia's in Only One Area…Corruption

    © Photo: Wikipedia/TSgt. Paul J. Page
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    In spite of prevailing clichés about corruption in Russia being out of control, the scale of the scourge is of an incomparably larger scale in the United States, according to independent journalist Einar Schlereth. In the journalist's view, nowhere is this more obvious than in the case of the US military industrial complex.

    In his article, published in popular Austrian news blog Neopresse, Schlereth suggested that if in Russia, corruption and bribery generally have a 'bottom-up' nature, in the US, it is a phenomenon which is inherent to the highest levels of political power.

    Schlereth begins his analysis by recalling a recent article by respected American historian F. William Engdahl, in which Engdahl suggested that in many areas, Russian military capabilities have proven to be 'at least equal' to those of the US, despite having a tenth of the Pentagon's budget.

    Some estimates, the Schlereth notes, "suggest that the United States is less corrupt than Russia." But in reality, the journalist suggests, Washington is just able to hide its own corruption better than the Russians. The fundamental difference, the journalist suggests, is that "in the US, corruption is more concentrated at the top, whereas in Russia, it comes from below."

    Furthermore, "with regard to corruption in expenditures for the military," the journalist argues, "the scale of corruption in the US is simply gigantic, and certainly far worse than it is in Russia." A May 2014 headline by official US DOD organ Stars and Stripes is telling, Schlereth says, with its suggestion that 'Decades later, military still unable to account for its spending'.

    "Nearly three decades after US taxpayers gasped over $640 toilet seats and other Cold War military waste, the Department of Defense remains the last federal department still unable to conduct a financial audit despite laws passed in the 1990s that require the accounting," Stars and Stripes then commented.

    "In other words," Schlereth notes, "the US military has turned into a black hole, into which billions of taxpayer dollars have disappeared, without any clear evidence on how, when, and to whom the money went."

    "The fact is that the US government now subcontracts almost everything out to private companies (who collectively spend billions lobbying Congress and funding political campaigns), and this is particularly true when it comes to the Pentagon." 

    Many of these companies, the journalist warned, have concentrated so much power that they have access to the White House, able to influence the president on how much military aid to give country x, or when and when not to go to war. And the Supreme Court's recent decision, via Citizens United, allowing unlimited campaign contributions from corporations and organizations, "has only greased the process further along."

    "Russia's system of military spending," Schlereth suggests, "is the diametric opposite of America's. While the United States has privatized their military industry, in Russia it is in state hands. All profits from arms sales go to the Russian government, not to the makers or the multinationals. The arms manufacturers are [effectively] part of the government."

    "Just like in the US, there are is no financial accounting of their operations, but there are financial reports reviewed each year by the defense minister and, moreover, by the president and the prime minister –i.e. by people who are responsible to the electorate, and not only to the aristocracy of large shareholders."

    "In the US," Schlereth notes, "there is no financial accounting. Instead (as per aristocratic preference) dollars flow to American politicians' election campaigns." Effectively, the journalist suggests, "war profits are private and the buying of politicians becomes just another business expense."

    Ultimately, Schlereth says, "Russia receives much more for its military rubles –that's for sure. And as the White House increasingly attempts to strangle Russia, not only economically but militarily as well, this overlooked component of America's huge corruption comes more and more into the spotlight, unlike the financial operations behind it."

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    special interests, lobbying, corruption, US military, United States, Russia
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    • Ivan Zadorozhny
      The US is certainly as corrupt as Russia, to say the least.
    • dvdgrg09
      A few days before the 911 attacks, US defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld stated that the Pentagon could not account for several trillion dollars' worth of spending -- 3 or 4 trillion. An investigation into the Pentagon accounts was halted by the attacks.
    • anne00marie
      I remember reading an article on Vineyard of the Saker, where since 9/11 the US tax payer has spent $225,000 per second on the War effort. Where does the money go?

      93% goes back to the Pentagon to finance and sponsor congress men and women and what is left over to fund the weapon defence industry, to produce weapons that do not work.

      6% is spent on diplomacy, which means colour revolutions and regime change, followed by rebuilding the nations left devastated by civil war.

      The final 1% is spent on the veterans and serving military personnel, for their mental and physical health care.

      Then have a look at who sponsors people like Clinton and how much she receives from her non-tax paying friends and foreign buddies. I wonder what $25 million can provide?

      www.clintonfoundation.org/contributors How much does Bill Gates and Microsoft pay in tax and would a $25,000,000 gift to his buddy Old Ma Clinton be a tax bonus?
    • anne00mariein reply todvdgrg09(Show commentHide comment)
      dvdgrg09, Was there billions of gold in the basement corridors of the Twin Towers? I wonder what happened to it?
    • dvdgrg09in reply toanne00marie(Show commentHide comment)
      anne00marie, I don't know, and don't know.
    • Mother Gorilla
      And there economists have been taught for years that corruption if any was endemic only in socialist systems or public sectors in Western economies, now we get the remainder that the Pentagon fish has been rotting from the top even as there should have been no more need for an inflated defense budget -- in post-Soviet times...
    • lgwUSMC
      Russia keep up the resistance. It is about to bust loose here too.
    • in reply toMark Gewiss(Show commentHide comment)
      Mark Gewiss, Absolutely but this should continue weekly!
    • Trump 2016
      And spin. We just had a shpielberg tell us the Russian planes were unreliable and not upto the Syrian conditions on the ground. For 14 months they have been watching 5 mile long convoys into Turkey, now the devils are spinning its their air strikes. In fact the Aleppo power station bombing means Obama and US top brass can all be hanged for war crimes.
    • rmpblue
      That there is corruption in the US is beyond doubt but to compare Russian corruption to that in the US is absolutely laughable in one especially notable regard.

      Saying that Russian military related companies are accountable to the government is extremely laughable and ironic. It is Putin's inner circle that is made up of his former cronies and 'comrades' in the KGB and St. Petersburg who were at one time average or near in wealth but now who are largely millionaires and billionaires! Virtually every major 'contract' in the Russian nation that has national relevancy is awarded to one of Putin's close 'friends' or a relative of the same. On top of that it is a FACT that most major Russian entities with 'state' relevancy have been stolen from the private sector and handed over to Putin's corrupt inner circle.

      Corruption? There is absolutely nothing 'free' or 'un-corrupt' about a nation where the police can be bribed on the streets, the judiciary on every level is a tool of the state, the Russian Parliament (both upper and lower houses) are tools Putin. Not a single major case is pursued or achieved unless Putin agrees to it and the same goes for laws in the government. They are virtually rubber stamps for Putin's whims and idiosyncrasies . . .

      I've spent time working through some of the Russian red tape on various levels and it is corrupt through and through. Then there is the Russian space industry and military overall. How have those repeated Rogozin explanations, excuses and 'house-cleanings' been going for the last near decade? The olympic monies to the tune of BILLIONS lost and stolen by corruption are but one more example among a sea of like ones!

      What a lark the above article is. What is really comical is the daily US put downs that Russian media has to resort to in order to try to make Russia and Putin seem relevant and important. Kind of like a jealous little 'red-headed' step daughter inferiority complex going on. Pathetic indeed, but typical of propaganda in the same manner as was the old USSR or Nazi blather . . . Whatever it takes to implant the desired nationalism in the masses as a means of control . . .
    • rmpbluein reply toMark Gewiss(Show commentHide comment)
      Mark Gewiss, LOL!
    • Truth Hunter
      This article reflects a growing trend for the U.S. Armed Forces starting in Post U.S. Civil War, that is the U.S. Government continued building war instruments etc. even though the Civil War of 1861-1865 was over.
      I remember when our department of the ship I was stationed on was evaluating their Department budget, they calculated that the department needs would be less that year and as a result the following years budget would be smaller. So they went out and bought a huge amount of Beer, that's right, beer to the amount needed to keep the Department budget at its current level, I could not believe my eyes that all available space on the ship was filled with beer !
      And the corruption has not ceased, no matter how "modern" our armed forces presently are.
    • allperils
      All empires go that path. Wars, waste, hubris, folly.
    • cast235
      What they don't tell you. Truth is no one has tested the U.S military against any real foe. Yet is the best in the world, the most powerful. But never really tested. Iraq? Against 50's and 60's French rebuilt gear and French military sold gear.
      They tried for years to topple and conquer Iran. Gassed Iran.. U.N Ban, doesn't mention it... Still after serving his purpose... Saddam a MAD man . They killed him and most of his family.
      Oh, Amnesty never raised an issue. Or face no funds.
      I rely on real intel given by prestigious orgs. they mostly AMERICANS...
      They report yearly to U.S congress part.
      how our military doing....

      Sir , we can fight any 3 countries in the world with and exception..

      Do any country can match us or defeat us?

      yes sir... RUSSIA!!... IF you see the videos, you see their heads moving up and down and a silence that can raise their spinal cords.
      I seen it ... And you could hear flies. The rest is all Bull Horn propaganda.
    • Mark Gewissin reply toTruth Hunter(Show commentHide comment)
      Truth Hunter, Yup!
    • ivanwa88
      Missing 2.3 trillion and strike on auditors in Pentagon when correlated to recent disclosures on complicity of America in terrorist events in Syria and in Europe totally adds up OMG.
      They cant stop! American nukes need to be forcibly destroyed. levering with world wide sanctions. Before its to late. Act UN before the world is destroyed.
    • Corruption is open and rampant in the US Military, Law Enforcement and government. Just look at US online auction and social media web sites. US service members, their families and fence partners, are selling brand name uniforms, night vision, aiming lasers and much more. All US Tax payer paid goods, makes for a good side-line living. Even more is done is less public ways.
    • Andreas
      > And as the White House increasingly attempts to strangle Russia

      Barack Obama does not want to strangle anybody.

      How do you conceive the world beyond Barack Obama ?
    • Tony Rossiniin reply tormpblue(Show commentHide comment)
      Stupid American wanker that can't accept the failings of his own country's pathetic systems
      The US state Department is a nest of criminal vipers.
      The Fiat (not) Federal (and no) Reserve(s) dollar is dying, several million Americans can not find a job, many who do have jobs work part time for low wages with no benefits, more illegals are now going back to Mexico than new ones sneaking in because they can live better in Mexico. The bridges are falling down, interstate roads are in disrepair, children are graduating high school who can not read, comprehend, count change, the cops are running around robbing, raping and murdering innocent people, the federal government is encouraging this and supplying war toys to cops who should be walking the streets with night sticks, US political minions are sending the US military all over the world to illegally invade and murder sovereign nations and their peoples.
    • Blackie
      What happened to the two and half trillion plus that went missing around9-11 from the Pentagon. Ask Dick Cheney.
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