Politicians depend on people with money to back them during elections, these things go hand in hand, essentially oligarchies. Wealth means power to leverage and influence things in one's favor, which is why this has happened.
:> these people don't care how the nation, the culture or the local population is going to be affected if there will be conflict or not. In a way the very founders of the US were such wealthy oligarchs rebelling against the crown, because it was profitable. Myth tells of ideals, the reality however was land, money, power and slaves. Thats why most of them risked their lives, the big payoff at the end. (exceptions exist)
Merchants have no country and soon neither will the GDP producer slaves. The environment? See Planet of the Humans. The bottom line is what matters. Profit.