Editor’s Note: The following report is excerpted from Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin, the premium online newsletter published by the founder of WND. Subscriptions are $99 a year or, for monthly trials, just $9.95 per month for credit card users, and provide instant access for the complete reports.
The United States’ military, which has acted as the world’s security team for decades, is destined to become a “hollow force” with fewer personnel and weapons systems, slowed modernization and reduced readiness under President Obama’s strategy, an analysis is predicting, according to a report from Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.
The analysis by a team of defense experts from the American Enterprise Institute said that the Obama administration is looking at potentially $900 billion in defense cuts over a decade to protect such social entitlement programs as Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and the health care reform law from serious deficit and debt reduction efforts now under consideration.
Ultimately, the defense budget could become the largest bill-payer for addressing the deficit, and that bodes ill, according to the “abstract numbers game” that accountants have reviewed.
The military forecast and the impact on U.S. readiness was outlined by Thomas Donnelly and Gary J. Schmitt in an AEI report entitled, “Warning: Hollow Force Ahead!”
“Those arguing for deep cuts in the defense budget will suggest that the majority of these conflicts were unavoidable,” Schmitt said in separate comments. “Yet, in doing so, they are ignoring the realities of history, statecraft and domestic politics.
“And cutting troops or buying fewer planes or ships is not going to change those dynamics,” he said. “However, what it will do is leave the men and women of the American military in a far more precarious position to carry out what we as a nation will almost surely be asking them to do.”
In their report, Donnelly and Schmitt point out that former Defense Secretary Robert Gates already had identified $400 billion in cuts. However, Obama signaled that “we’re going to do more” and cut another $400 billion.
They referred to Obama’s recent proposals to cut military spending by some $900 billion from defense and quoted the president as saying that this increase in cuts was “broadly consistent” with his intention to get the country’s finances under control. They added that there is a prospect that Congress even could cut defense “well beyond” Obama’s proposal.
“It is clear that there is a willingness within the administration and among some members of Congress to slash defense well beyond the president’s earlier mark of $400 billion,” the report said.
The result, they said, will be a “hollow force” characterized by fewer personnel and weapons systems, slowed military modernization, reduced readiness for operations and continued stress on the all-volunteer force.
“If realized, this modern day ‘hollow force’ will be less capable of securing America’s interests and preserving the international leadership role that rests upon military preeminence,” they said.
The AEI analysts said that it also is a myth that a withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan, for example, will help alleviate the military’s manpower problems and control military spending.
In fact, they believe that the demand for military personnel actually rise will as the geopolitical situation changes, given U.S. international commitments.
“President Obama has maintained every foreign policy commitment set by his predecessors and added to the military’s missions,” it said. “The president surged forces twice in Afghanistan, started a new operation in Libya, sent troops to Japan and Haiti for disaster relief operations and kept 1,200 National Guard troops at America’s southwest border.
“The future of American national security is being mortgaged to fight today’s wars and reduce the deficit by an insignificant amount,” the report’s analysts said. “As a result, America’s armed forces, which have been stretched thin for nearly a decade, will likely be asked in the years ahead to do the same or more with even less if defense spending is cut once again.”
Keep in touch with the most important breaking news stories about critical developments around the globe with Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin, the premium, online intelligence news source edited and published by the founder of WND.