“Our military doesn’t defend our American people. Our military is the strong-arm muscle of corporations. That’s the only reason we have any involvement at all in the Middle East is because they want to get the oil, they want in Afghanistan the mineral wealth, the lithium, and all of that stuff.”
Jesse Ventura – navy underwater demolition expert, pro wrestler, actor, author, former Governor of Minnesota, and visiting fellow at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government – is a well-known political iconoclast. He ran for governor as a member of the Reform Party. A fiscal conservative, he supported gay rights, famously called Dick Cheney a “coward” and a “chickenhawk,” and sued the TSA for what he considers illegal patdowns. His take on politics is never predictable or bland.
Kevin Kelly: Before we delve into your latest book, the upcoming election, and politics, I wanted to get your take on the tragedy that we see unfolding in Libya.
Jesse Ventura: I think we should shut down our embassies, stop all foreign aid, and get the hell out of there. Let me go back to the 1980’s when Ronald Reagan was President, and of course he’s the icon of the Republican Party. If you recall our marine barracks in Lebanon was attacked and over 200 marines were killed. Did Ronald Reagan go to war? No, he got the hell out of there. I mean if these people don’t want us there, why are we there? Again I stand with Ron Paul. I think all foreign aid should be eliminated. I mean, how can we give up foreign aid to any other country when we’re broke, and so far in debt?
Kelly: Do you agree with Ron Paul that we should not only withdraw from Libya, but we should withdraw this empire that we have overseas? We have over 900 military bases and we’re currently stationed in over 150 countries.
Ventura: Absolutely. Actually, if we back up a little, you know why we are there don’t you?
Kelly: Why is that, Governor?
Ventura: We’re not there to protect the United States people’s interests; we’re there to protect multi-international corporations.
Kelly: Really? Would you mind expounding upon that Governor?
Ventura: Have you ever read the works of Major General Smedley Butler?
Ventura: He wrote a book called “War is a Racket.” General Butler talked about at the turn of the last century; we’re talking one hundred years ago roughly. He said I didn’t fight for the American people I fought for the United Fruit Corporation. Whenever they would go into Central or South America, if they didn’t get cooperation they would send in the marines to get it. It’s been going on for a century or more. Our military doesn’t defend our American people. Our military is the strong-arm muscle of corporations. That’s the only reason we have any involvement at all in the Middle East is because they want to get the oil, they want in Afghanistan the mineral wealth, the lithium, and all of that stuff.
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- Jesse Ventura suggests US may be behind Middle East violence (conservativeread.com)
- US: Jesse Ventura – ‘We want to bring democracy to world and don’t have it in US’ (ionglobaltrends.com)
- Video of Jesse Ventura Live on CNN, Making Excellent Points About Politics And War (disquietreservations.blogspot.com)
- Jesse Ventura for President 2016? (lewrockwell.com)