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Who Profits from War?

Updated on March 16, 2011
The Cost of War
The Cost of War
The Price of War
The Price of War

The Gulf Wars

Obviously, it would depend on which war. However when we consider recent history and current affairs, we can tell who is profiting now.

The first Gulf War was from August 1990 to February 1991. At the beginning Halliburton shares were worth approximately $8, by the end they were worth approximately $11.

Dick Cheney was Secretary of Defense in 1991 when he created a contract vehicle for and gave contracts to Halliburton that resulted in millions of dollars of revenue.  After leaving the administration Cheney served as CEO of Halliburton from 1995 to 2000. Then he became Vice President and Halliburton was awarded hundreds of millions of dollars of non-competitive contracts as part of the Gulf War in 2003.

In 1995 Halliburton shares were had dropped back to approximately $8 by 2000 they had risen to approximately $20.

Prior to the second Gulf War in 2003 their shares had dropped to below $8.

Today they are worth $38.45.

Reaching a peak of $53 in 2008, shares rapidly dropped to $17 until February 2009.

February 2009, President Obama announces he will withdraw most SOLDIERS from Iraq. Shares start to go up.

This is just one example that shows that people can and do profit from war.

Even though the rest of the world is suffering from a depression, Halliburton has continued to thrive.

Overcharging U.S. for Oil.  the Halliburton Company, overcharged by roughly a dollar a gallon on gasoline trucked in from neighboring Kuwait. Its total skim: $61 million. And now Halliburton officials acknowledge that two of its managers have pocketed a total $6 million in kickbacks for subcontracts.

That somebody will profit from war is a fact of life and will never change. However when such companies can, or have representation by somebody who can, change the circumstances of a conflict, we must be wary that we are not enticed into conflicts for the wrong reasons.

As a footnote, it is during this same period, that it would appear Halliburton were cutting costs in the Gulf of Mexico and that was one part of the problem, leading to the Deepwater Horizon incident.


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    • alancaster149 profile image

      Alan R Lancaster 6 years ago from Forest Gate, London E7, U K (ex-pat Yorkshire)

      Much of modern civilian technology in communications is a by-product of earlier military technology, such as mobile phones, computers and airport guidance systems. In that respect we all benefit from war or warfare. It is a shame we have military advances to thank for making our lives easier, and the blunt end of warfaring results in someone losing out, but by and large a lot of military technology is defence oriented, or to ease the lot of military personnel. Attack technology benefits few but hardware salesmen and guidance technology engineers.