I have friends in the military who opine about how much there is wasted - especially when it comes to outsourced services in foreign wars. The military could be much leaner, but if it were up to me I'd be giving those people a nice fat pay raise and bringing them home. A typical enlisted soldier makes <$30/yr despite having a college education (the norm among our military). They get some combat pay bonus, but most will tell you that it isn't the pay, but the benefits and patriotism that keeps people in the military.
Being safe is much more about a mindset and determination and that starts at the top with threat recognition and prioritization. This is where our current leaders completely miss the boat.