Several times a week, US officials threaten military action against North Korea. Even on days when they don’t media reports of tensions with North Korea continue the narrative that a huge war could erupt at any moment.
All these rumors of war are a big windfall for the Pentagon’s number one arms supplier, Lockheed Martin, as they are reporting that the surge in talk about North Korea’s missiles is leading to a surge in interest in their missile defense systems.
On the one hand, the reliability of any missile defense system is questionable under even optimal conditions, as evidenced by US failures. On the other hand, those Lockheed systems are very expensive, and have a really good profit margin on them.
Lockheed’s fortunes are already soaring on the basis of planned US military spending increases, and the Trump Administration’s pushes for more NATO spending have them hoping for more foreign sales. The North Korea tensions, at least from their perspective, are just another juicy plum, with billions of dollars more in foreign exports potentially getting lined up every time the administration talks up this war.
This is potentially a problem for those in the administration pushing for diplomacy with North Korea, as President Trump is clearly enamored with stock performance as his ultimate measure of economic progress, and all this war hysteria is driving Lockheed’s stock to new highs that might be endangered by peace.