Tags: war | nation | economy

Nothing Rallies a Nation Like a War Does

Wednesday, 08 Feb 2012 09:24 AM

By Ashish Advani

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History is littered with wars that have been started primarily to distract the masses.

Several wars have led to reviving an economy that has gathered to support the war effort.

Look at World War I and II. In both cases, the U.S. industry effort was converted to produce weapons and support material to help in winning the war.

In each instance, the nation forgot all about the woes that plagued them and rallied behind the war effort as a united force.

Nothing rallies a nation like a war does.

In the case of the United States, we did start a war against a faceless enemy called “terrorism.” And the nation rallied behind the cause. They willingly gave up their freedom and liberties (Patriot Act, Homeland Security, TSA – where should I stop) to help protect the nation.

The problem with the war strategy – You have to win the war to share the spoils.

In the case of Iraq, I am not sure we actually won. Yes, the troops are out of Iraq. Yes, we killed Osama Bin Laden. But the spoils of the war (oil) haven’t come to the victors. And that has led to an even bigger collapse in the United States.

I see a similar strategy being employed in Argentina now. Since 1833, Argentina has contested the Falkland Islands with Britain. And several skirmishes and wars have been fought over the islands. The last one in 1982 had the Argentineans pushed out again.

As the economic crisis in Argentina has reached a crescendo again, Argentine President Cristina Kirchner has decided to raise the rhetoric to fever pitch.

She has called for a meeting to make a grand announcement in which I expect she will push the two nations to the brink of war. The masses in Argentina agree to soccer and ownership of the Malvinas (local name for Falkland Islands) without argument. Since this movement to war, the protests against the nearly 30 percent inflation and other economic evils in the country have died down and everyone is watching.

What is the cause of the dispute? Both want the island for its growing oil drilling activities.

Back home, we have the rhetoric against Iran growing. The president has intensified the embargo against Iran. Since the last war didn’t bring any gains, and the Afghan war will never bring any (the country is broke, its main supply to the world is opium). I guess we have to start another war. And if that isn’t enough, the United States is sending a larger fleet to the South China Seas in what could be the start of a Cold War with China.

Sounds familiar?

Meanwhile India just announced their first estimate for fiscal year 2012 GDP at nearly 7 percent. So we have 7 percent growth in India and more than 8.5 percent in China. And in Europe we fret over Greece’s debt problems while the United States is looking to go to war again.

I strongly urge a carefully planned investment portfolio which brings you returns in double digits if not higher due to economic growth.

The war with China and/or Iran will be long, drawn out and with no real winners in the end.

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