When Industry Values Profits Over Human Life – Midwestern Doctor

by A Midwestern Doctor

Story at-a-glance

  • Predatory industries tend to adopt a consistent playbook for making as much money as possible, and frequently cause immense human suffering while doing so
  • One of the cruelest industries is the military-industrial complex, an industry which requires human death to thrive, and which has many parallels with the pharmaceutical industry
  • Since Biden has become president, he has gone to great lengths to prioritize the needs of these predatory industries, which has included causing some of the most catastrophic conflicts in modern history to transpire
  • The effects of the current War in Israel will likely ripple out far into the future, so the final part of this article will also review what precipitated that war and how those predatory industries played a role in it

Humanity has both a good and an evil side, and in my eyes, war is the clearest embodiment of its evil. Unfortunately, war is typically out of sight and out of mind, so there is a general apathy towards the subject until it arrives at someone’s front door.


Since World War II, we’ve lived in a rather unusual era — until recently, large scale wars had disappeared (excluding the Korean War). Per my understanding, this “peace” was a result of the international community realizing that the weapons of war had become too destructive and would likely lead to too many unintended consequences.

In turn, a variety of frameworks were put into place after World War II to prevent large scale wars (e.g., the United Nations serving as a place for national conflicts to be addressed and a variety of wide-reaching economic incentives now exist to avoid major wars).

Sadly, in the smaller wars that still happen (and typically remain out of sight and out of mind), the evils that have plagued humanity since the dawn of history are on full display. At the heart of it, I believe there are two central issues.

The first is that humans have an animalistic nature, and in certain circumstances it comes out and causes certain individuals to do horrific things that are almost impossible for individuals raised in peaceful times to even conceive of.

The second is that the desire for money and power often trumps any consideration of who is harmed in the pursuit of those desires.

Power and Perspective

One of the unfortunate things many have observed throughout history is that typically when people assume a position of power (e.g., within the government or a business) they tend to treat those they have power over quite badly.

This observation, in turn, gave birth to the idea that the most important thing for a government was for there to be many things is place that restrained the government’s power, as without those restraints, it was almost inevitable the government would turn against its people.

One of the most common explanations I’ve seen provided to illustrate this phenomenon is that the people in power are sociopaths, and thus have no issue with hurting large numbers of people for their own benefit. In turn, since human hierarchies always reward those who are the most cut-throat and willing to hurt others to achieve their aims, this causes the sociopathic members of society to inevitably occupy its positions of power.

While this is true, I’ve also noticed many cases where someone who is not overtly sociopathic enacts something horrific because it seems like “they have to do it.” For instance, shortly after Senator Feinstein died (likely from a vaccine injury), this was shared by one of the world’s top arms inspectors:

In the above example, you can tell Feinstein knew what she was doing was wrong, but felt she had no choice but to go along with it. This is not unlike what we saw during COVID-19, where many of our leaders knew the lockdowns, suppression of early treatments and the vaccinations weren’t the right thing to do, but they nonetheless felt that they had to and went along with it.

So while sociopathy is a huge problem, Feinstein’s example illustrates what I believe to be the greater issue — indifference.

A variety of studies have suggested that (most) human beings have a limited ability to be present to the lives of others which seems to cap out at approximately 150 people. For this reason, a variety of human institutions operate very differently depending on how many people are within them.

For example, in smaller societies like a village (where everyone knows everyone else) democracies work quite well, while in larger ones (where its no longer possible for everyone to be present to everyone else) abstract frameworks inevitably come into being that take the place of human connection and integration.

Note: I believe some individuals have the ability to be present to a much broader view of what is happening around them and how people are affected by their actions. Historically, these people have been known to be the best leaders.

Unfortunately, in our current times, these qualities are rarely seen in our leaders as the political process does no longer selects for it and the spiritual practices that cultivate the ability to bear witness to the suffering of many are no longer widely encouraged within our society.

One of the most common consequences of this is that when people rise to power, the people they serve switch from being human being to abstract concepts. In turn, policies are chosen which favor the collective rather than the individual and a collective mentality or “mass formation” (which can be quite sociopathic) often takes over that leadership.

Likewise, I’ve seen numerous institutions I’ve worked in switch from their mission (e.g., serving the public) to simply protecting the institution (e.g., by covering up the institution’s misdeeds). For example, consider this story from one of the many veterans who was severely injured by disastrous anthrax vaccine:

Whenever I’ve had the rare chance to be around someone in power, I’ve found they actually cared about those around them and often seemed to want to be a good person who did the right thing. However, due to their inability to be present to a large number of people, they, like Feinstein allowed themselves to become divorced from the human cost of their actions.

In effect, it’s a different form of sociopathy — with a true sociopath they never cared about anyone else and not much changes once they rise to power, however with a typical human being, they become a sociopath once their mind gets overwhelmed with their responsibilities.

Because of this, the people they “serve” become objects, and once someone is an object, it becomes possible to justify doing very bad things to them and not having any remorse over it (e.g., much of the world has recently seen how members of Hamas hold this perspective towards the Israelis).

Likewise, in many of the institutions I’ve worked in, I’ve repeatedly seen people we were supposed to serve (e.g., a difficult patient) come to be viewed as an object rather than a human being and be treated quite poorly — especially if they threatened the wellbeing of the institution.

This “sociopathy” is most easily observed within corporations, as due to their structure, they disconnect the responsible parties from the consequences of their actions while simultaneously pressuring many of them to do whatever they can to make money. Consider this quote from Peter Rost, a former Pfizer executive who spoke out against the pharmaceutical industry:

“It is scary how many similarities there are between this industry and the mob. The mob makes obscene amounts of money, as does this industry. The side effects of organized crime are killings and deaths, and the side effects are the same in this industry.

The mob bribes politicians and others, and so does the drug industry … The difference is, all these people in the drug industry look upon themselves – well, I’d say 99 percent, anyway – look upon themselves as law-abiding citizens, not as citizens who would ever rob a bank …

However, when they get together as a group and manage these corporations, something seems to happen … to otherwise good citizens when they are part of a corporation. It’s almost like when you have war atrocities; people do things they don’t think they’re capable of. When you’re in a group, people can do things they otherwise wouldn’t, because the group can validate what you’re doing as okay.”

Likewise, I have corresponded with another pharmaceutical executive who shared that the majority of people the executive worked with aren’t bad people, but simultaneously frequently chose to close their hearts and minds to the uncomfortable consequences of their products (e.g., vaccine toxicity) if those ideas threatened the corporation’s revenue or stock value.

That executive shared their belief that the primary problem is that the existing corporate structure shields its members who do bad things from any liability for their actions and that the only effective deterrent to the sociopathic behavior of corporate leaders was criminal penalties for their conduct — a viewpoint I strongly agree with.

The Value of Money

One of the central debates that has repeated in society after society is if money is ultimately a good thing or a bad thing. In turn, many of the arguments for and against money mirror those about the current corporate structure.

The classic argument supporting money is that it lubricates economies and makes a lot of things happen very quickly that are necessary for the society to thrive. For example:

  • Money motivates people to work and run everything.
  • Money motivates the shapers of society to take on the risks of enacting the projects which develop society.
  • Money allows the marketplace to decide the fair value of a good or service.
  • Money motivates the marketplace to produce goods and services efficiently so they can be sold at affordable prices.
  • Money allows people to quickly and easily exchange goods and services.

Each of those is critically important, and were none of them present, much of what we take for granted in modern society could have never emerged, as tapering off the lifeblood of an economy effectively kills it (e.g., consider how many problems have arisen from COVID-19 partially shutting down the global supply chain).

Conversely, money is often considered to be the root of all evil because it motivates people to do very bad things for money (which they often don’t even need). From my own introspection, I believe the central problems with money are:

• It disconnects us from the human cost of the economic exchange we participate in. For example, some of the cheaper versions of many products sold in the stores are often produced through human exploitation (e.g., shrimp is well-known for being produced with brutal slave labor), so by purchasing exploitative products to save money, you are ultimately responsible for slave labor needed to produce the item.

As I discussed in the previous section, this disconnection has profound consequences within the existing the corporate structure.

• Money inherently has no intrinsic value; rather its worth is simply the product of a collectively faith society places in it, which in turn creates a variety of problems. For example, my faith believes that anchoring your existence to something which doesn’t exist has significant spiritual consequences.

Likewise since money doesn’t exist, it can change very quickly — be it who has it (people can rapidly gain immense amounts of wealth without having done anything to actually earn it) or how much it is worth (something commonly seen during periods of hyperinflation).

Note: Rudolph Steiner was a famous mystic who had a variety of remarkable insights about the world and to this day, there are still many followers of his work (e.g., Waldorf Schools came from Steiner). One of Steiner’s beliefs was that we needed to change how we related to money and that we were spiritually responsible for our investments if someone else (e.g., a bank we deposited money with) used that money to hurt others.

I believe in this and have come across other spiritual teachers (who had never heard of Steiner) that likewise reached the same conclusion.

Profits Over Human Lives

I grew up reading alternative literature, which was largely due to a (now-deceased) relative who shared with me that they had been around black-ops conducted overseas and had had the misfortune of being present when a village was executed in cold blood by mercenaries because investors wanted the land. Beyond being profoundly concerned about the state of the world, all of this led me to wonder, at the end of the day, “What was actually true?”

Since that exploration began in my childhood, I’ve heard more stories than I can count of highly effective technologies that meet the essential needs of human beings (e.g., transportation, food production, water production, education or medicine) being buried to protect business interests.

This led me to formulate the hypothesis that anytime a party wants to “take over society,” they will move to monopolize each life-essential resource, as in addition to it being highly lucrative, it makes it impossible for the population which depends upon that resource to rebel against the system which provides it.

For instance, a classic example of this principle is that each time a communist regime takes power, one of its first moves is to eliminate the independent farmers so that food can only be obtained from the state. Sometimes the process of doing this requires carnage on a massive scale, best shown by Stalin’s Holodomor in Ukraine (and to a lesser extent by Mao’s Great Leap Forward).

The two areas of suppressed life-essential technologies I have always been the most drawn to are Energy and Medicine. This was one of the key things that motivated me to become a doctor because I felt that path would give me a way to see firsthand if all the “conspiracy theories” I had read about suppressed medical innovations were true (since I could try them out and see if they worked).

Note: At this point, I feel some of those forgotten medical technologies are incredible, many others are junk, and many more were effective in earlier eras where the body’s vitality had not been decimated by our modern environment, but now only are marginally effective.

Likewise, in the alternative energy sector, there are many “revolutionary” technologies I think were likely a hoax, but simultaneously, there are also many existing ones which I know work and could quickly solve many of the issues we face today — but of course have never seen the light of day (and were discussed further here).

Carving Out Markets

When I looked at everything that had happened in these sectors, I started to see the same playbook was being followed again and again:

  • Make sure a continual demand for the product was created and its market was made as large as possible.
  • Make sure that whatever was sold could never fully address the needs of the market (thereby making it possibly to raise the prices through a scarcity model and sell the product indefinitely).
  • Have the largest mark-ups possible for the product.
  • Do whatever was necessary to keep any competitor off the market so the lucrative monopoly could be maintained.

When you look at the above principles, they don’t seem all that revolutionary — all I’ve really done is restate introductory business principles. However, if you take a step back, consider what these mean if they are treated as axioms to follow in business and the one enacting them simultaneously becomes disconnected from the human costs of their actions. Put differently, any large industry will go to extreme lengths to protect its bottom line.

For example, in medicine, this justifies keeping a cure for a debilitating disease off the market, charging exorbitant rates for medications patients cannot go without, and not giving a second thought to pushing poisons on the market which greatly harm others (especially since money can be made from treating their side-effects).

More importantly, because so much money can be made from earning a government sanctioned medical monopoly, a lot of money is spent bribing the government to make that happen, and numerous well-established mechanisms now exist to effectively facilitate that bribery.

Note: Since the disaster we saw unfold throughout COVID-19 was a result of this unchecked corruption reaching the point it had metastasized within the federal government, it was a subject of a recent article. Most of the points raised there are equally applicable to the corruption within the military-industrial complex.

The Military-Industrial Complex

Because of my childhood, I feel very strongly about war, and I’ve done a lot of work to try and oppose it. The tragic thing about war is that unless someone has seen it firsthand, people cannot grasp just how horrific war is and exactly what emerges from people within war zones.

Unfortunately, after Vietnam (which destroyed the public’s trust in the government), the U.S. Military realized that as long as they could censor all the carnage and provide a positive spin on each war with the national propaganda apparatus, most civilians would not care what happened. Consider for a moment this timeless quote from George Orwell:

“All the war-propaganda, all the screaming and lies and hatred, comes invariably from people who are not fighting.

One of the major challenges of the modern era is that, rather than just those in charge being disconnected, everyone is in a state of malaise and is severely disconnected from many of the things which used to connect us to life and everything else around us. Because of this malaise, it is often extremely difficult to motivate people to engage with a challenging topic that does not directly affect them, regardless of its significance or the indirect costs they bear.

This in essence, describes the struggle I found when trying to raise people’s awareness about whatever the current costly war was that we had no good reason to be involved in.

In college, I realized that becoming a doctor offered a perfect solution to this issue. This is because the predatory forces that exploit human suffering for profit in medicine are the same ones doing the same that in numerous other fields. However, what is unique about medicine is that people can directly see how this predatory behavior harms them and are thus motivated to do something about it, thereby providing a way to break through our spiritual malaise.

My theory, in turn, was that in a worst-case scenario, I get to make a big difference in a few individuals’ lives (my patients). However, in the best-case scenario (assuming the medical system had previously abused those people), once they became red-pilled on the medical-industrial complex and regained their ability to function, they would then be motivated to start looking at how their experiences were also occurring in other areas and start doing something about them too.

Recurring Arms Sales

Throughout my lifetime, it’s been hard to not notice how many wars America has been involved in and how much of the money that should have been spent on helping our people is instead spent on blowing up people in far away lands. At this point, I believe the primary motivations for America’s behavior are:

  • Intimidating the rest of the world into being subservient to the United States.
  • Because so much money is in the defense industry, it will always try to push for (unjustified) wars to pad its bottom line — something not that different from what we saw during COVID-19 when the country was turned upside down to fund the pandemic-industrial complex.
  • Developing new weapons that can compete in the modern battlefield requires regularly testing them in live conditions — something which can only happen in war zones where no asks questions about what is being done. This is analogous to how the COVID-19 emergency was used to waive a lot of the basic protocols designed to protect test subjects from being unethically experimented upon.
  • To keep the factories running so that if a major war ever breaks out where the United States needs to be able to defend itself, those factories (and the industry behind them) are operational. This is similar to situation with the annual flu vaccination — the vaccine does not prevent the flu, but it keeps the vaccine production apparatus operational so that if needed, it can be converted to producing a vaccine for a novel and dangerous microbe.

Since selling weapons is one of America’s primary industries, it stands to reason that unethical tactics might be implemented to force people to spend more money than they had on arms. In turn, I’ve noticed a few common themes throughout my lifetime:

• A robust propaganda apparatus exists to sell wars, so once the government decides a war is going to happen, all the airwaves start promoting a very similar message to get that war to happen. Much of what I understand about medical propaganda came from first learning how wars were sold to the public and then recognizing how the exact same methods were being used to push the current product.

Note: The most blatant example most of us have seen of this industry (public relations) in action was how the COVID-19 vaccines were sold to the world.

• Situations are often created that inevitably give rise to future wars. For example, if a belligerent and hostile group is given weapons and funding, they will start a conflict which often requires also arming the other side. Similarly, conflicts are often “resolved” in such a way that a new conflict will inevitably break out in the future. Typically these occur in the third world and thus for most Americans are out of sight and out of mind.

• Like the pharmaceutical industry, the military-industrial complex has been structured so that its business model is so interwoven with the economy and political system that it is very difficult to say no to them.

For example, when a defense contractor wants Congress to approve funding for a new product (which is often hard to justify), a common tactic is to have the final product be produced from parts that were assembled in numerous different Congressional districts and thus pressures each district’s representative to approve purchasing it.

Likewise many well established pathways exist to bribe officials to purchase those armaments (many of which are virtually identical to the ones used to push pharmaceuticals onto America).

Keep these points in mind as you read the rest of the article as many of them can be seen with the recent conflict in Israel (e.g., US weaponry has ended up in Hamas’s hands).

Biden’s Secretary of Defense

When Trump was president, he did something no one since Carter had done. He started no new wars and, furthermore, worked to pull America out of longstanding existing conflicts. Once Biden was declared president, I became very worried he would do the exact opposite and I watched with bated breath to see who Biden nominated for Secretary of Defense.

Once Biden nominated Lloyd Austin on December 8th, I looked into his background and felt a profound degree of sadness that is difficult to put into words. Briefly:

• Austin has proven himself to be one of the worst Secretaries of Defense in history (e.g., consider our recent unprecedented recruitment crisis and Austin’s illegal vaccine mandate upon the military). Yet, there has been no criticism of him for any of his conduct by the press. Was he approved strictly based on fulfilling diversity rather than ability?

• Austin left the military in 2016 to be a board member for one of our largest defense contractors, Raytheon (along with a few other companies). Predatory corporations “bribe” officials to support the industry’s interests by promising lucrative board positions (e.g., the FDA commissioner who helped get Pfizer’s vaccine to market is now on Pfizer’s board).

This means Austin was almost certainly abusing his command (he was a four-star general) to give Raytheon defense contracts and that Biden appointing him to run the entire military was something that was at least in part due to the defense contractors pushing for a “business friendly” Secretary of Defense.

Note: Since the military-industrial complex has a strong influence over the national media (e.g., as a well established pipeline exists for it to sell their wars), this may also explain why the media has not aired any critical coverage of Austin.

All of this meant that once Austin became Secretary of Defense, Raytheon was going to sell a lot of arms, which meant reasons were going to need to be found to kill a lot of people and make up for the business that was lost during Trump’s presidency.

Soon after I realized this, a colleague asked me for advice on what to invest in. I said, if it were me, I’d invest in Raytheon, but there is so much bad karma for investing in death (consider the example I shared above of the village being executed once investment capital was raised to fund the mercenaries who did it), I refused to make the investment.

My friend didn’t believe me, so I made a bet on the spot that the stock would do well. Let’s for a moment consider how Raytheon’s stock has done since the election:

raytheon stock

Note: I originally published an article about Lloyd Austin in April 2023 which included the above image of Raytheon’s stock price. Two months later in June, Raytheon reorganized and changed its century old name to RTX, so I am providing the graph I took prior to that change.

In short, Biden has been a blessing for the defense contractors and many industry analysts expect a much larger market for their wares in the years to come. Like the war in Ukraine, this new war in Israel has also spiked the stocks of many defense contractors (which for those interested is summarized within this article).

Note: The other area of investing which I have seen directly cause human suffering exists within the commodity markets as when commodity traders bid up the price of food staples to make money, it often causes people in the third world who can no longer afford that food to starve to death.

Biden’s Wars

In 2014, the existing government in Ukraine was toppled through a violent series of protests and replaced with a strongly anti-Russian government. Many people at the time suspected the Obama administration (and thus Vice President Biden) was responsible for these events, which Trump recently confirmed.

I felt, given Ukraine’s vital strategic importance to Russia (it has always been their buffer state as Ukraine has the traditional land route for invading Russia), it was terrible foreign policy to interfere in this relationship as Russia, nuclear power, would eventually retaliate.

Once the new government came to power, it began aggressively targeting the ethnic Russians, and before long, the military attacked the border regions with significant Russian populations. At the time, I was in Europe and met Russian refugees who had been assaulted for their ethnicity and then sent out of Ukraine by their parents who did not want their children “to take up the Kalashnikov” once war broke out.

Shortly after, armed conflict broke out, and despite Russia repeatedly engaging the United Nations to find a way to end it, nothing was done and the conflict remained relatively ignored.

Note: The primary reason why the United Nations was created was so that the international community could address disagreements between nations through dialog and thereby prevent their need to go to war. In recent years, the UN has failed abjectly in this role and its focus has instead shifted to advancing a variety of globalist policies.

Once Biden became president, the conflict in Ukraine rapidly escalated, and before long, something provoked Russia into invading the country. Many theories have been proposed to explain what that provocation was.

Since governments always lie when it comes to war, there is no way to know what the provocation was, only that the provocation was sufficient to have Russia decide it needed to enter what it knew would be an extremely costly war. Many things could be said about the Ukraine conflict, but I will only emphasize a few points:

• It has had a horrendous toll on Ukraine that will likely take the county years to recover from. There has been a horrendous loss of life for the Ukrainians (at least 100,000 on each side of the conflict have died), much of Ukraine’s infrastructure has been destroyed, the stress the war caused will cause a large spike in fatal heart attacks for years to come, many have permanently lost their homes since Russia citizens are now occupying them, and the economy will be a mess for a long time.

• The U.S. (and the U.K.) have had numerous opportunities to prevent the war and to allow peace deals that would end the war but appears to have prevented every one of them from happening.

There has also been a breakdown of the U.S. command structure in this war, many within the government are disgusted with how the White House leadership is handling the war, and it is unclear who actually knows what American troops (who have deployed without Congressional authorization) are actually doing.

• The U.S. has made a lot of money selling weapons to Ukraine.

• Like pushing a deadly (or disabling) and ineffective vaccine on the entire population, the risk of a nuclear conflict with Russia outweighs any conceivable benefit of a war with them. It illustrates that the system has been so corrupt the usual common sense that prevents these catastrophic decisions from being made has just gone out the window.

Lord of War

Lord of War is an excellent movie that again illustrates how those in positions of power lose the ability to relate to the human costs of their actions once too many are affected by what they do (not unlike how many at Pfizer and Moderna green-lighted something that was abundantly clear would hurt a lot of people).

The movie stars Nicholas Cage who simultaneously playing the role of a mass-murdering arms dealer and a kind family man with a great deal of empathy for those in his immediate circle. His character was based on Victor Bout, a Russian arms dealer colloquially known as the Merchant of Death. To illustrate the human costs of one of Bout’s many “business” deals:

He was the main supplier of arms and ammunition … to that terrible conflict in West Africa [Sierra Leone], which saw the murder, rape, maiming and mutilation of over 1.2 million human beings.”

It took a lot of work, but the United States eventually arrested Bout for brokering an arms deal to Columbian rebels with weapons that they intended to use on US forces, and in 2010, he was sentenced to 25 years in prison for this.

Once Biden was president, Brittney Griner (a basketball player well known for advancing diversity in her sport) was arrested and sentenced in Russia for illegally bringing hash oil (a form of concentrated marijuana) into the country. After some deliberation, Biden decided she was worth exchanging for Viktor Bout.

I would now like to share my favorite scene from Lord of War (if you haven’t watched the movie and plan to, this somewhat spoils it). This iconic scene conveys many of the core themes of this article, and I hope that you can find the time to watch it.

Not too long ago, my friend met someone through his peer group he thought was a bit intense but otherwise was a very ordinary individual he’d have a beer with. Midway through the conversation, my friend asked him what he did for work, and he said nonchalantly:

“Oh you know that movie* about the arms dealers? I’m like the big guy in it. The US government needs people to move arms for them, so its fingerprints aren’t on them, and we’ve gotten over 100 million dollars of merchandise over to Ukraine. *He was referring to a different movie than Lord of War.”

What my friend was so appalled about with this (as was I when I heard the story) was that the guy had no guilt whatsoever about his actions (think for a moment about how many deaths his sales were directly responsible for), but simultaneously genuinely cared about the people around him.

When I shared this story with a colleague, he stated that it represented the “banality of evil,” a term coined after the Holocaust to describe Nazis who committed horrific crimes but had neither malice, fanaticism, or sociopathy. Instead, they did not even think about their actions and were simply motivated by a desire to follow orders and fit in.

Since the initial conversation, my friend has periodically run into this arms dealer, and in the most recent encounter, informed without a shred of guilt that business is still booming in Ukraine.

Tensions in Taiwan

Since I have friends in Taiwan, I was concerned about the recent Chinese military buildup there and Warren Buffet’s decision to divest himself from Taiwan’s semiconductor industry. When I asked a Chinese friend who was well connected to the Chinese financial markets if there were any chance Taiwan would be attacked, he said:

“There is absolutely no way that will happen right now. Biden is a *********** and is just using this to have a way to make Taiwan buy a bunch of our armaments.”

As “luck” would have it, when China’s exercises around Taiwan started, we had one of the largest leaks of classified US military documents in history (and still no explanation as to how they were made available to the leaker who should not have been authorized to access them). The media oddly chose to publicize the leaks and repeatedly (in different ways) cite one thing that had been unearthed about Taiwan:

“The classified documents seen by the Washington Post reveal that Taiwan’s military leaders doubt their air defenses can “accurately detect missile launches” and that only about half of the island’s aircraft are capable of effectively engaging the enemy.”

Just in case you are wondering, that is a lot of sales.

Cultural Assumptions

If you study the history of U.S. foreign policy, it has been characterized by numerous catastrophic blunders in other countries, most of which resulted from America not understanding how the country’s culture operated and instead expecting they would “think the way we did.”

When the British empire controlled the world, it had a long-standing policy that people could not be appointed to a senior post in a foreign country (e.g., becoming an ambassador) unless they had first lived there for ten years — a policy which existed so that those in charge of the territory would understand how the country operated and would not make misguided decisions there born out of cultural ignorance.

Since the early days of America, the political leadership faced a significant dilemma — in order to expand, land needed to be taken from the Native Americans, but often when colonists spent time with the Native Americans, they stopped wanting to be conquerers and instead adopted their way of life. For example, this was from a letter Benjamin Franklin wrote to his friend:

“When white persons of either sex have been taken prisoner young by the Indians, and lived awhile among them, tho’ ransomed by their Friends, and treated with all imaginable tenderness to prevail with them to stay among the English, yet in a short time they become disgusted with our manner of life, and the care and pains that are necessary to support it, and take the first opportunity of escaping again into the Woods, from whence there is no reclaiming them.”

Note: That letter came from a book which effectively argued that the cultural values of Native Americans sparked the enlightenment movement in Europe and the values which gave birth to America’s revolution and constitution.

The American leadership was thus terrified of its citizen’s choosing to adopt native’s culture’s value and to avoid that scenario chose to instead appoint people to oversee foreign territories who did not have experience living within those cultures.

As a result, our foreign policy has always been characterized by the responsible parties assuming everyone should think the same way we do, and them being unwilling to listen to voices suggesting otherwise (e.g., this has been a common takeaway I’ve seen from Senate hearings over the decades on some foreign policy fiasco).

Likewise, often when I hear experts (e.g., academics) discuss events in other countries, I am always struck by the fact by their (often inaccurate) pronouncements about what will transpire in a foreign country are consistently based upon the assumption people in that country will think and act the same way we do here.

This is not that different from what you see in other areas of our intellectual sphere — for instance during COVID-19, despite evidence repeatedly emerging which challenged the widely held assumptions about the pandemic (e.g., that the vaccines would prevent COVID-19 transmission), most of the intellectual class refused to let go of the beliefs that framed their conception of reality and the policies they zealously argued for.

Israel and Palestine

One of the longest conflicts in modern history is the Israeli-Palestinian one. My own belief is that it has remained an unsolvable quagmire for three key reasons:

• Many people want it to remain in an adversarial situation. For example, Yitzhak Rabin, a prime minister of Israel brought his country to being very close to making peace with Palestine — until he was assassinated by a right-wing extremist Israeli in 1995.

• The situation is immensely complex, and depending on which pieces of information you take into consideration, it is very easy to construct a narrative which supports either side and opposes the other.

In turn, it is very rare for me to encounter people who hold strong opinions on the conflict who are not perceiving it through a biased filter, and because of the strong feelings that exist on the subject, it is quite rare that those invested in the Israel Palestine issue will be willing to consider the possibility their position is based on a variety of assumptions which may not, in fact, be accurate.

• Very few people outside of the area understand the cultural values at play on each side.

In my eyes, some of the most important things to understand from the Israeli perspective are as follows:

• Jewish culture encourages vigorous debate and in Israel, strong opinions exist on each side over what should happen with Palestine, with the liberal end of the population favoring a two-state solution (which gives the Palestinians their own state), while a conservative faction believes that the two state solution represents an extreme danger to Israel and Palestinian statehood must be restrained in order to protect Israeli (e.g., not provided with the autonomy that a single state gives) in order to protect Israeli lives.

Note: Far more right-wing factions that also exist in Israel that believes the Jewish people alone have a divine right to the land and has opposed any peaceful compromise on the situation (hence why Rabin was assassinated). In my opinion, the repeated actions by this group (and their sustained presence in Israeli society) has been one of the primary reasons why peace has not been possible.

• Since Israel was founded immediately after the Holocaust, the nation has an immense fear of its people being killed again and simultaneously places an immense value on the lives of each of its citizens. Because of this, Israel will often go to extreme lengths to protect them.

One of the most well known examples occurred in 1976, when an Israeli passenger aircraft was hijacked by a Palestinians and landed in Uganda where the hijackers demanded Palestinian prisoners be released in return for the lives of the hostages.

After realizing the situation could not be resolved diplomatically, Israel sent in commandos to rescue the hostages, who succeeded in their mission and killed all the hijackers along with dozens of Ugandan soldiers.

Note: The only exception I know of to Israeli vehemently prioritizing the lives of its citizens was the government pushing Pfizer’s vaccine on Israel’s people even after it became clear it was harming or killing large numbers of people and public protest broke out against the vaccination program. Interestingly, in the videos of both IDF soldiers and hostages, I noticed that many of them had clearly asymmetrical faces — a common vaccine injury symptom.

• Conversely, from the Palestinian side, mixed views towards Israel also exist. Some have felt that Israel should not exist, to the point many are willing to give both their lives and their children’s lives in the hope it will destroy the Israelis. On the other end of the spectrum, many have felt that their best path forward is to work in harmony with the Israel and reap the economic prosperity this collaboration offers.

One of the things which is difficult to appreciate about this dynamic is that in many parts of the Middle East and Asia, a much lower value is placed on human life (which has led to numerous slaughters of large numbers of people) and that a grudge or feud can be held onto for generations by a family.

Within the Muslim culture, there is always a push and pull between the moderate Muslims (those who want to practice their faith and live in harmony with other faiths) and the extremists (who believe everyone must submit to a hardline form of Islam).

One of the lesser known aspects of this dynamic is that in many Arab nations, the greatest victims of the Islamic fundamentalists are the moderate Muslims who do not want to adopt an extremist ideology, and in many Arab countries, the number one challenge their government’s face is keeping the extremist elements of their culture in check (e.g., I had a long talk about this with a former member of Parliament from one of those nations).

One of the most common things which breeds fundamentalism and wars has been poor living conditions, so one approach to tackling extremism has been to create economic prosperity in areas prone to it. Trump’s recent peace deals in the Middle East were essentially predicated upon offering Arab nations economic incentives in return for them agreeing to clamp down on state-sponsored terrorism and cooperate with Israel.

Previously, this approach was not viable because so much money could made by extracting the Middle East’s oil that no real motivation existed to either create more harmonious living conditions in those countries (as the oil could easily be extracted regardless of the current domestic situation) or to seek out sources of wealth that were more cooperative in nature.

However, now that the global economy is beginning to change, the Arab states have realized that they need that cooperative relationship for their continued survival and thus are willing to do things that were previously unthinkable like establishing formal ties with Israel.

Two of the groups most opposed to this new paradigm are Iran (whose government is controlled by hardline Islamists and actively supports terrorist activity around the world) and the current Palestinian leadership. In 2006, Hamas, a hardline Islamic group won control of Gaza through local elections and violently displaced the more moderate leadership which sought to have some type of a diplomatic compromise with Israel.

Since that time, Hamas has essentially marketed itself by routinely attacking Israel and showing off their terrorist capabilities, which in turn:

  • Gets money and support from Iran (one of their primary sponsors).
  • Recruits Palestinians to join Hamas.
  • Maintains their popularity with the Palestinian people by having a common enemy to unite everyone behind.
  • Allows Hamas to eliminate any group which threatens their control of Gaza (e.g., the moderates who want a peace deal with Israel risk their lives if they speak out against Hamas).

During the time Hamas has been in power, Israel has essentially been stuck in a dysfunctional relationship with them.

Anytime a peace proposal is put forward, it is rejected by Hamas because the idea that Israel can continue to exist is unacceptable to them, and each time Hamas attacks Israel (e.g., with rockets) Israel in turn retaliates with a limited military strike Palestinians in the area are warned about beforehand so a message is sent and the current spate of rockets does not continue.

Note: Hamas has gradually shifted their position is to have a ceasefire in return for a returning to the 1967 borders.

In my eyes, it is quite odd this dynamic has persisted as long as it has, and I presently can provide three explanations for it:

1. Many parties want a sustained conflict to exist so that continual opportunities exist for both arms testing (e.g., I am sure part of the reason why Iran supports Hamas is so they have a laboratory to refine their technology), and arms sales (e.g., Raytheon helps manufacture the Iron Dome system Israel uses to intercept Hamas’s rockets and an Israeli company is presently developing a system to do the same with lasers).

Note: One of the more recent changes in the defense industry (which for example can be seen at their trade shows) has been the “start-up culture” of tech entering it. As a result, many small companies are now trying to come up with new innovations that larger defense contractors will want to buy and thereby make a lot of money for the members of the start-up who get bought out.

2. Each retaliation provides a window for Israel to evict Palestinians and place settlers on land previously occupied by the Palestinians.

Note: Israel has had a longstanding practice of evicting Palestinians from their land in the West Bank and establishing settlements in those areas. This is one of the primary reasons why the Palestinians hold such strong animosity towards the Israelis and furthermore, the Israelis themselves have been very divided over doing this (to the point settlers sometimes come into conflict with Israel’s own military).

The settlements (which are tacitly supported by Israel’s government) have also been extremely controversial in the international community and a frequent consideration in Israel-Palestine peace proposals — nonetheless, as time has moved forward, nothing is done and more and more Palestinian land is taken over by the settlers.

3. Israel has no good solution to the present dynamic. Gaza (the part of Palestine where the most hardline Islamists live) is full of booby traps, explosives, and tunnels. This makes it almost extremely costly to invade Gaza, especially given Israel’s reluctance to risk the lives of its soldiers (due to the value they place on them).

Conversely, Hamas plants their weaponry and operations centers within civilian facilities, so fully eliminating the threat Hamas poses through airstrikes is not viable either, as the amount of collateral damage which would be necessary to neutralize Hamas would not be accepted by either the international community or much of Israel’s population.

Instead Israel can only apply the external levers of control it has (e.g., rationing or cutting off the supplies to Gaza and controlling who enters or leaves it) which reduces (but does not eliminate) Hamas’s ability to damage Israel and conversely, like the limited airstrikes, also greatly harms all the Palestinians.

A recent event that places all of this into context occurred in 2006, when Hamas dug a tunnel into Israel and used it to kidnap the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit. Israel’s army (the IDF) spent years trying to plan out a rescue, but eventually concluded that even if his location could be determined, any operation to rescue him would likely cost the lives of many Israeli soldiers and Shalit would most likely be executed before they reached him.

As a result, five years later, Israel eventually agreed to exchanged 1027 prisoners (including 280 who had been sentenced to life in prison for planning and perpetrating various attacks against Israeli targets). Furthermore, these individuals were collectively responsible for the killing of 569 Israelis and many Israelis suspect some of them were involved in the recent attacks on Israel.

Why Did the Attacks Happen?

I have seen a lot of proposed explanations for why the current conflict happened. Presently I believe the most likely reason it was initiated is because Hamas and Iran do not like the direction the Middle East is moving in (more modernization and economic ties with Israel due to the 2020 Abraham Accords).

Hamas in turn likely committed their recent attack in order to derail Israel’s pending agreement with Saudi Arabia as Israel having a forceful response to the bombing would in turn make it very difficult for Saudi Arabia’s leadership to publicly support a nation which was presently killing Muslims.

Furthermore, it can also be argued that America’s recent decision to reduce funding to Ukraine was seen as a sign of weakness by Hamas and thus created the perception this was the optimal time to attack Israel (as a significant portion of Israel’s strength comes from the USA).

Note: Much of the Arab world has been distrustful of the Palestinians (hence why for decades many of them have not been allowed to relocate to a neighboring country) but simultaneously sympathized with their plight and vocally condemned Israel’s treatment of them. However, they’ve gradually lost patience with the Palestinians being unable to get a more sane government and hence are moving on from the old paradigm of continual conflict with Israel that Hamas still clings to.

This then raises a new question. Where did Hamas acquire the resources to attack Israel? Many who have looked at the situation have noticed the US is at least partly at fault. For example:

• One of the largest blunders of the Biden administration was our withdrawal from Afghanistan which gave the Taliban a large amount of US weaponry. This could have either been a monumental screw-up or something that was done to clandestinely pass weapons to the Taliban (presumably either so the arms could be used to start further conflicts or as part of the deal that was made with the Taliban for our withdrawal).

• Because of the Ukraine War, large number of weapons are being sent to Ukraine. Many of these are getting diverted to Iran which in turn is sending them to Palestine. This diversion is either due to corrupt Ukrainian officials selling them (rather than using them for the war effort) or because Russian soldiers are capturing the munitions and then giving them to Iran.

Exactly what is happening here is less clear because it is very possible some of the allegations of Ukraine supplying weaponry to the Palestinians is (as much as I hate to use this term) Russian disinformation designed to weaken Western support for Ukraine.

• Iran is a major supporter of Hamas (e.g., Israel estimates they provide 100 million dollars in funding each year to Hamas). A month ago, the Biden administration as part a deal to have 5 prisoners be released from Iran, unfroze 6 billion dollars Iran had held in South Korean accounts.

This move was controversial — for example on 9/11/23, Trump stated “that money will be used for terrorism all over the Middle East” and “to pay for hostages will lead to kidnapping, ransom and blackmail against Americans across the globe” — especially given that what Trump stated was essentially what ended up happening not long after.

• The Biden administration gave Gaza $75 million of humanitarian assistance in early October, shortly before Hamas launched their attack on Israel. Interestingly, at the time the money was given had intelligence to suggest Hamas was planning to strike Israel in the near future, and Republicans had opposed it being released (leading to the state Department back-dooring the funds going to Gaza).

Since Hamas controls Gaza, this inevitably results in a lot of US aid being diverted to supporting Hamas (similarly, the Biden administration has so far given 730 million dollars to a UN group in Gaza that is known for its funds being diverted to Hamas).

Note: Each of these contributions, especially the final one, argue that the USA is trying to fund both sides of a conflict so it can profit off the wars its funds inevitably create. Alternatively, these decisions also may simply highlight the longstanding issue in American foreign policy of implementing very bad policies as a result of the State Department not understanding how the other cultures would respond to our actions.

Similarly, I believe it’s very possible despite these warnings that everyone was indeed taken by surprise by Hamas’s attacks (rather than being complicit in them).

This is because a longstanding precedent had been established (Hamas launches rockets and occasionally kidnaps someone with a tunnel to exchange for prisoners), so no one could conceive that Hamas was instead planning a full scale invasion and respond accordingly (hence why the people at the party didn’t flee when rockets were launched).

In hindsight Hamas making this move seems very obvious, but I cannot understate how hard it is for people to recognize that a longstanding precedent may change (which for instance is also why so many people blindly trusted the COVID vaccines despite those injections having numerous red flags, as they just assumed those shots would be like all the other vaccines they had not had severe reactions to).

From having looked at this for a while, at this point I believe the following are true:

• American weapons from Ukraine and Afghanistan are being used by Hamas, although it is difficult to quantify the extent to which this is an issue as many sides are invested in supporting differing narratives over what is happening. The most detailed summary I have seen of which weapons are in Gaza can be found within this report by Newsweek.

• The money given to Iran may have incentivized or accelerated the attack happening, but it most likely would have happened regardless due to the existential threat both Hamas and Iran face from Israel making peace with Saudi Arabia. Furthermore, the funds appear to have been refrozen (thereby preventing Iran from accessing them), so it is unlikely they directly financed the attacks.

• Iran was most likely complicit in what occurred (as it is unlike Hamas had the logistical capability or knowledge to launch something as coordinated as what happened).

At this point in appears the international community (and the media) has decided to repeatedly emphasize there is “no clear evidence tying Iran to the attacks,” which I (and others) believe is being done to prevent Israel for retaliating against Iran and potentially starting a larger conflict in the Middle East.

• Since Iran is allied with Russia, each country is supporting the other and both are likely incentivized to create a major conflict in Israel as that will divert support from the war in Ukraine (and as mentioned before, to reduce public support for military support of Ukraine by associating it with causing the current conflict in Israel).

Why Did Israel Let the Attacks to Happen?

The other major question around these recent events is why Hamas was able to attack Israel, given how tightly Israel monitors Gaza’s borders (which Hamas had to cross to attack Israel) and that Egypt warned Israel about a pending attack from Gaza three days before it happened.

This has understandably lead many to believe that factions in Israel allowed the attack to happen so that they could have an excuse to attack Palestine. I personally think this is unlikely given the immense value everyone in Israel places on the lives of its citizens.

The alternative explanation (which everyone I know who is knowledgeable in this area believes) is that Israel’s intelligence apparatus monumentally screwed up.

Many in turn have noticed how much these events resemble those of the Yom Kippur War (which happened exactly 50 years earlier) where Israel, due to being overconfident from its past military victories, ignored numerous warnings about a pending attack from Egypt and Syria, which lead to Israel initially being overrun before Israel turned the tides and won the war (ultimately losing approximately 2800 soldiers).

In short, a monumental Israeli intelligence failure was responsible for that war, and once the war was over, the Israeli public immediately demanded for those responsible to beheld accountable and resign (which they then did).

Note: One of the biggest reasons I believe these attacks took everyone by surprise was because there was initially a lot of mixed messaging from governments around the world and the mainstream media on the attacks — but after a few days had passed, it seemed like a consensus was reached that Israel should be allowed to retaliate and all the standard pro-war propaganda I’ve seen with countless previous wars began being aired. Nonetheless, it is still hard for me to believe many of the warning signs were missed by Mossad.

What Comes Next?

Presently there are a few things which make the current situation extremely likely to escalate. First, the deaths of over 1000 Israelis from Hamas’s attack (the current count is 1300 and it will likely rise to approximately 1500) is a very big deal to the Israelis.

Israel’s “reason for existing” is largely to protect the Jewish people from another Holocaust and one of the soundbites that has emerged since the attack is that this was the largest loss of Jewish life in a day since the Holocaust. Furthermore, the (alleged) brutality of many of those murders has made the Israeli public even more upset about them.

Note: In addition to the high value Israel places on the lives of each of its citizens, since Israel has slightly under 10 million citizens, those deaths are proportional to approximately 50,000 Americans being killed in one day.

Second, because of this (and the memory of Yom Kippur War), Israel’s public and government has essentially united behind doing whatever is necessary to obliterate Hamas — something previously opposed by many left-wing members of the country.

Third, because of how much the Israeli leadership screwed up by allowing this attack to happen, the only way they can possibly save their careers is if they have to have something to show at the end of all of this like the complete destruction of Hamas.

Fourth, the current leader of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu is a right-wing politician and war hawk many believe does not want a mutual existence with the Palestinians.

He hence has achieved significant political opposition from the more left-wing members of the public and Israel’s government against his right-wing policies (e.g., multiple protests with over 100,000 people were conducted against Netanyahu this year) — but due to the present emergency, that opposition is now largely gone.

Note: Netanyahu’s brother led the raid in 1976 to rescue the Israeli hostages in Uganda (and was killed during it), while his father was strongly opposed to any type of co-existence with the Palestinians.

Finally, in the same way Hamas miscalculated how much their actions would upset the Israelis, they also made a mistake by taking too many hostages.

The Israelis appear to have concluded that it is not possible to save all of them (either through negotiations or rescue operations), and have chosen to instead collectively threaten the entire area in the hope Hamas folds and relinquishes the hostages — whereas had a fewer number been captured, it is likely Israel would have negotiated for their release.

Note: One of the unusual aspects of this war is the fact much of it is likely to be broadcast on social media and likely to force the world to directly confront the horrors of war. For instance, the Israeli government is requesting for relatives of the captured Israelis to delete their social media applications so they do not see what happens to the captives and is posted on their accounts.

For all the above reasons, Israel is likely to decimate Gaza and Hamas and has publicly stated their intention to do so (which is very unusual).

In turn, Israel has already begun heavy bombing of Gaza, is mobilizing for a massive ground invasion, and has told many of the Palestinians that they need to evacuate North Gaza immediately (which is likely to be logistically impossible for many of them to do — particularly since no neighboring state wants to accept them as refugees) so that they can carpet bomb the area and make it safer for the troops who ultimately invade.

Note: This article had to be written approximately a week before you read it and it is likely the situation will significantly evolve after that time elapses.

Presently, my best guess is that Israel is first planning to seal off the entire Gaza strip, use bombing runs and the cutting off of supplies to weaken the area and corral everyone there into one half of the Gaza strip (the Southern half). Once this is done, Israel will then send its army in to rescue any hostages that can be rescued, remove all of Hamas’s infrastructure and weapons from the Northern half (e.g., the tunnels they can’t otherwise access) along with any Hamas personnel who remained.

Finally, Israel will move everyone in the Southern half to the Northern half (most likely with checkpoints designed to catch anyone from Hamas trying to move themselves or weapons north), and repeat the same process in Southern Gaza, before allowing the Palestinians (without Hamas) to resume control of all of Gaza.

Since Hamas hides behind human shields and has made Gaza almost impossible to send strike forces into, this strategy offers a potential way to neutralize Hamas without a massive loss of life on either side (Israeli soldiers or Palestinian civilians).

Nonetheless, it is still likely to run into a large number of obstacles, cause a significant number of casualties (not to mention destroy Palestine’s infrastructure) and has a lot of potential flashpoints that could easily turn into a much larger war.

Lighting a Match

In my eyes, the two most disastrous actions of the Biden administration were its decisions to mandate a dangerous (and ineffective) vaccine upon the American public and its decision to provoke a war in Ukraine — both decisions I believe were ultimately motivated by greed and which as the days go by we are seeing more and more of the consequences of.

A huge problem with wars is that they are inherently chaotic and things can easily spiral out of control (put differently, no battlefield is entirely predictable) — which is why America should not under any circumstances have provoked a war with a nuclear power like Russia.

One of the most well known examples of things spiraling out of control happened during World War I and was the result of the fact many countries in Europe had formed alliances with each other for if they were attacked by another nation.

So, when Archduke Ferdinand was assassinated and his country declared war on Serbia (which was deemed responsible for the assassination), Russia came to Serbia’s defense and before long other countries were drawn into the conflict, which in turn birthed a devastating World War.

This mirrors the current situation where a complex web of alliances exists in the Middle East as many of them are under either Iran or Russia’s sphere of influence (and furthermore, Hamas’s leadership has put out a call for all Muslims to engage in a global Jihad against Israel and anything associated with it).

Israel appears to be well aware of this and during its mobilization has made a point to solidify their borders with Lebanon (which is the most likely place for the war to first spread).

Note: Parallels can also be drawn between the current situation and World War II. In the case of the former, World War II was largely the result of the harsh terms of surrender forced onto Germany after the first World War, which were never addressed and created the resentment that allowed Hitler to later rise to power.

Similarly, when Israel was created, it was done by the global superpowers against the will of the Palestinians living there, and since nothing was ever done to address what was done to them, this problem has worsened and almost a century later, given rise to the current situation.

When I reflect upon the events of the last few years, I have never felt that we have been closer to a third world war starting than we are now, and at this point, I can only pray that the current events can end with the minimal amount of bloodshed possible and for the Middle East to somehow return back to the path of peace it was on prior to these events.

Unfortunately, I fear that for the defense contractors, the primary concern is instead to replace the market that is being lost in Ukraine as support for that war dries up in America. To quote a senior analyst at Wells-Fargo’s investment institute:

“It seems like we’re entering a different phase globally with respect to geopolitics,” he added, with conflicts appearing more likely compared with recent decades. “As countries need to replenish their weapons, we do think defense companies will do very well.”

Sadly, rather than this being viewed as an indictment of Biden’s presidency, it will likely instead simply be seen as being excellent for the economy.


In my eyes, the fate of our species is the product of two interrelated trends, the continual advancement of technology and the continual advancement of human consciousness.

Because our technology has advanced so much to the point much of what can be done now was inconceivable only a few decades before. One one hand, the capacity for humans to cause destruction has rapidly increased, especially since in many cases (e.g., with the mRNA vaccines) we often don’t even understand just how destructive those technologies can be.

While on the other, the approaches we’ve had to many longstanding societal problems have significantly improved (e.g., the development of public sanitation has arguably saved more lives than any other practice in history).

Note: Vaccines are often erroneously credited for the benefits that were created by public sanitation.

Conversely, since human consciousness is also evolving, our willingness to harm others (or anything else around us) is dramatically decreasing while our awareness of what our actions can do is rapidly improving. However, we still have a way to go, and many flaws that have been with us since antiquity still reside within the human heart.

The question I always ask in turn is which trend will win — the increasing desire to do good, or the increasing capacity for evil? As we reflect on the events of the past few years, it should be clear that due to the continued advancement of technology (e.g., AI in warfare), the stakes are much higher now.

It is thus my sincere hope that COVID-19 and the devastating wars we have seen over the last few years will serve as a wake up call that we need to stop prioritizing profits over human lives and be conscious of exactly what the technologies we are now using are capable of.


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