Originally published on September 21, 2014, at NationofChange.org
In a blatant conflict of interest, defense contractors and foreign governments are hiring pundits and think tanks to advocate for their agendas without media outlets disclosing their fiscal ties. Following a strategy developed by former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, think tanks funded by military contractors and foreign governments use commentators to influence policy or to generate exorbitant profits. Failure to disclose these financial connections reveals a glaring lack of journalistic integrity on the part of major media corporations.
During last year’s debates to attack Syria, former National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley made the rounds appearing on CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC. In a Washington Post op-ed, Hadley openly advocated for war against Syria. Yet none of these news organizations disclosed the fact that Hadley has also served on the board of Raytheon since 2009.
Raytheon produces the Tomahawk cruise missiles utilized during military campaigns. Regardless of whether the U.S. decided to go to war with Syria, Raytheon’s profits and Hadley’s 11,477 shares traded at all-time highs during the debate. A director and member of the Executive Committee of the Atlantic Council, Hadley is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR).