One of the memorable slogans from the Reagan administration was "peace through strength." Reagan believed a strong defense was a safeguard against enemy attacks and the best hope of victory should America go to war.
President Barack Obama’s vision for modernizing the U.S. military is little more than an exercise in “back to the future.”
President Obama just ordered massive cutbacks in defense spending, eventually to total some $500 billion. There is plenty of fat in a Pentagon budget that grew after 9/11, but such slashing goes way too far.
Listening to Barack Obama laying out what he calls his new defense strategy, my first reaction was, "Here we go again." Having basically written off the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, Mr. Obama is falling prey to a temptation several of his predecessors found irresistible in peacetime: Cut defense expenditures. Shrink the military. And hope the rest of the world will neither notice nor take advantage of our weakness.
President Obama is calling for dramatic defense cuts that could threaten our national survival while obstructing structural reforms to our entitlement programs that are essential for our national financial survival. It just doesn't get much worse than this.
When the Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan closed shop on Sept. 30, it reported its "sobering but conservative" estimate that U.S. taxpayers had lost between $31 billion and $60 billion in waste and fraud of the $206 billion Uncle Sam has spent on contracts and grants in Iraq and Afghanistan. Of course, that's not all. According to the commission's final report, "a similar amount could be lost due to unsustainable projects and programs."
The debt limit deal that tasked a new “Super Committee” with finding major savings is about to hit its first important deadline, with the committee required to report a proposal by next week. The chance of the committee agreeing to a plan that produces the requisite $1.2 trillion in savings is becoming increasingly slim, which will lead to an across-the-board cut to federal spending.
On this Veteran's Day, 2011, our thoughts should turn once again toward our military, who find themselves busier than they have been in recent memory. Despite the tempo of current operations, our president appears determined to govern a peacetime force by way of withdrawal and drawback.
Cuts in military spending already have the support of most Democrats, but a rising number of deficit hawks in the Republican Party are willing to trim Department of Defense (DoD) spending as well.