News Release

“From Military-Industrial Complex to Permanent War State”

This week marks the the 50th anniversary of President Dwight Eisenhower’s farewell address, in which he warned of the rise of a “military-industrial complex.”

Porter just wrote the piece “From Military-Industrial Complex to Permanent War State,” which states: “Fifty years after Dwight D. Eisenhower’s January 17, 1961 speech on the ‘military-industrial complex,’ that threat has morphed into a far more powerful and sinister force than Eisenhower could have imagined. It has become a ‘Permanent War State,’ with the power to keep the United States at war continuously for the indefinite future.

“But despite their seeming invulnerability, the vested interests behind U.S. militarism have been seriously shaken twice in the past four decades by some combination of public revulsion against a major war, opposition to high military spending, serious concern about the budget deficit and a change in perception of the external threat. Today, the Permanent War State faces the first three of those dangers to its power simultaneously — and in a larger context of the worst economic crisis since the great depression.”

Porter is an investigative journalist and historian specializing in U.S. national security policy. His most recent book is Perils of Dominance: Imbalance of Power and the Road to War in Vietnam.

Video excerpt of Eisenhower’s farewell address

Full video

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For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167