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HISTORICAL: A Major General’s Rebellion


Today’s video is about a man who spent most of his life in war and violence. In his later years, he struggled with the purpose of it all. Before I tell you about this man, I want to start with something we all can agree is needed. The spirit of good behavior is vital no matter what point of life we are in. Mary Shew has written a book to help give our youngest a good direction. Mary Ruth Shew spent months exploring the possibility of writing a book that could add value to a child’s life, and that would also be of benefit to the educational system. The results of her inquiries are the completion of the children’s book, “Values from A to Z” found at Barnes & Nobles, iTunes, & Amazon. Mary uses the alphabet by assigning names alphabetically for each of the children depicted in illustrations done by William Vance Nichols as a way to instill good study habits, and behavior by giving examples of both good and bad behavior and the consequences of each.

Smedley Darlington Butler knew these consequences all too well. The Business Plot is the name given to allegations made by retired Marine Corps Major General Smedley Butler before a Congressional Committee that wealthy businessmen were plotting a coup d'état to overthrow President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Since Smedley was a 16 Medal War Hero, the businessmen asked Butler to succeed Roosevelt.

No one was ever prosecuted; however, most historians believe some sort of conspiracy did take place. Here is an excerpt taken from the first chapter of his script “War Is A Racket”. Here, he is speaking of how FDR and his globalist alliances led us into WII. [1]

Of course, for this loss, there would be a compensating profit -- fortunes would be made. Millions and billions of dollars would be piled up. By a few. Munitions makers. Bankers. Ship builders. Manufacturers. Meat packers. Speculators. They would fare well.

Yes, they are getting ready for another war. Why shouldn't they? It pays high dividends. But what does it profit the men who are killed? What does it profit their mothers and sisters, their wives and their sweethearts? What does it profit their children?

What does it profit anyone except the very few to whom war means huge profits?

Yes, and what does it profit the nation? Take our own case. Until 1898 we didn't own a bit of territory outside the mainland of North America. At that time our national debt was a little more than $1 Billion. Then we became "internationally minded." We forgot, or shunted aside, the advice of the Father of our country. We forgot George Washington's warning about "entangling alliances." We went to war. We acquired outside territory. At the end of the World War period, as a direct result of our fiddling in international affairs, our national debt had jumped to over $25 Billion. Our total favorable trade balance during the twenty-five-year period was about $24 Billion. Therefore, on a purely bookkeeping basis, we ran a little behind year for year, and that foreign trade might well have been ours without the wars.

It would have been far cheaper (not to say safer) for the average American who pays the bills to stay out of foreign entanglements. For a very few this racket, like bootlegging and other underworld rackets, brings fancy profits, but the cost of operations is always transferred to the people -- who do not profit. [2]

In the 1933 Business Plot controversy when Smedley told a congressional committee that a group of wealthy industrialists were planning a military coup to overthrow Franklin D. Roosevelt and have him take Roosevelt’s place, the individuals involved all denied the existence of a plot and the media ridiculed the allegations, but a final report by a special House of Representatives Committee confirmed his testimony.

Q2807 “Trillions of dollars at stake.” "Controlled by group of special interests." "Illusion of democracy." [Welcome to the Real World]

In 1935, Butler wrote this book “War Is a Racket”, where I just read a piece of the first chapter. In this book, he described and criticized the workings of the United States in its foreign actions and wars, such as those in which he had been involved, including the American corporations and other imperialist motivations behind them. After retiring from service, he became a popular advocate, speaking at meetings organized by veterans, pacifists, and church groups in the 1930s.

What made Smedley flip? How does one suddenly shift from becoming an all-time War Hero to being diabolically opposed to war? During World War I Butler, then a major, attempted to return his first medal of honor from the Veracruz, Mexico spy mission, explaining he had done nothing to deserve it. The medal was returned to him with orders to keep it and to wear it as well.

Butler is also known for single handedly cleaning up an entire corrupt police department and criminal rings throughout town in 1924 for the newly elected mayor of Philadelphia W. Freeland Kendrick. He established policies and guidelines of administration and developed a Philadelphia police uniform that resembled that of the Marine Corps. Other changes included military-style checkpoints into the city, bandit-chasing squads armed with sawed-off shotguns and armored police cars. The press began reporting on the good and the bad aspects of Butler's personal war on crime. After almost two years in office, Butler resigned under pressure, stating later that cleaning up Philadelphia was worse than any battle he was ever in.

Smedley Butler became widely known for his outspoken lectures against war profiteering, U.S. military adventurism, and what he viewed as nascent fascism in the United States.

In December 1933, Butler toured the country with James E. van Zandt to recruit members for the Veterans of Foreign Wars or the VFW. He described their effort as "trying to educate the soldiers out of the sucker class." In his speeches he denounced the Economy Act of 1933, called on veterans to organize politically to win their benefits, and condemned the FDR administration for its ties to big business. The VFW reprinted one of his speeches with the title "You Got to Get Mad" in its magazine “Foreign Service”. He said: "I believe in... taking Wall St. by the throat and shaking it up."

In addition to his speeches to pacifist groups, he served from 1935 to 1937 as a spokesman for the American League Against War and Fascism. His views on the subject as written in his expose “War Is A Racket” a trenchant condemnation of the profit motive behind warfare are summarized in the following passage from the November 1935 issue of “Common Sense”:

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.

In my research, I see Smedley struggling with his past and leaning into the socialist's ideology, but I do believe in all the suffering he saw, his heart was in the right place. Let’s not let the history repeat itself[3]


Video Sources:

Prescott Bush's 1933 fascist coup attempt in the US - Business Coup stopped by Smedley Butler

Peter Borenius Published on Nov 19, 2016

Major General Smedley Butler - The Warning ConstitutionReport Published on Jan 10, 2016





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