“Providing for the Common Defense”
I wanted to crop more out but I needed the first paragraph for context...and I just think the last paragraph is just perfection. PERFECTION.
Live Blog: A Defense Dud
Posted February 24th, 2009 at 10.07pm in Protect America.
“Providing for the Common Defense” is a fundamental obligation of government. Obama’s challenge is to pay for what the Pentagon needs in the face spiraling national debt and the growing explosion of entitlement spending (numbers that dwarf the defense budget and all the spending for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan combined). The speech suggests he has no clue how to do that—because all he did was repeat empty promises that he made on the campaign trail.
Obama also promised to “reform our defense budget so that we’re not paying for Cold War-era weapons systems we don’t use.” This was an empty campaign promise made over and over again—and never challenged by the press. Virtually every Cold War system in the inventory was used during the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and during the operations after. Planes launched from Cold War aircraft carriers and Cold War submarines firing cruise missiles helped topple Saddam. Cold War B-52 bombers supported tribesmen fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan. Tanks built during the Cold War helped the “surge” save Iraq. As for new systems, they have all been put in production after the Cold War ended and justified by post-Cold War security challenges. Missile defenses are needed to guard against ballistic missiles from Iran and North Korea. Modern aircraft like the F-22 are required to penetrate modern air defenses. Ships and submarines are needed to project American power around the world. If the administration makes deep cuts in procurement it is not because our troops don’t need new equipment, it is simply because the White House wants to cut defense spending.