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Plan To Shrink Army To Pre-World War II Level Should Be Greeted With Applause

February 24, 2014

This news should be greeted by people on both sides of the aisle with smiles.  It will not, of course, but it should.  After all, it is a start at perhaps taking a more serious look at the military budget.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will propose a reduction in the size of the U.S. Army to its smallest size since before World War.  This plan has the endorsement of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.  That’s because the Pentagon’s proposed five-year spending plan faces enormous problems with the spending caps set under sequestration.  The military budget calls for spending $115 billion more than the law currently allows. (Do we still need military bands?)

Fiscal hawks can claim a victory with the news today, and those opposed to military largesse and foreign intervention can find something to approve of as well.

“You have to always keep your institution prepared, but you can’t carry a large land-war Defense Department when there is no large land war,” a senior Pentagon official was quoted as saying when asked about the proposal.

I always get a chuckle when conservatives talk about the need to cut government spending, and when I mention what cuts might be made in military spending they become frosty or even angry.  We need to remind conservatives that military spending is government spending, and military spending for too long–far too long–has created excessive budgets that can no longer be tolerated or rationalized.

When military hawks cry about this proposal they will need to be informed that even if this proposal is enacted defense spending supporting the shrunken force will still remain above Cold War levels.

When considering the bloated military budget one needs to recognize that congress just flatly refuses to close unneeded military bases and each branch of the military states they have 20% more real estate than they need or use!  But congress pretends these are not facts that need to be dealt with.  Or could save federal dollars!

All members of congress should be required to read the words of President Eisenhower concerning military spending. Or is Ike now considered a RINO by the new breed of Republicans?

One Comment
  1. Tom permalink
    February 26, 2014 5:46 PM

    Today the Russians, as you noted, moved 150,000 troops to the border region with Ukraine. I would suggest that history will see this as a big mistake. When great empires retreat, new forces move in to fill the power vacuum. Those who wish to harm America couldn’t be happier.

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