In an editorial yesterday the Washington Post noted that to balance our budget we can’t cut military spending, cause well, we might need to fight a lot more wars.
Even with significant trims in those areas, however, reaching Mr. Obama’s goal would probably require cuts in the size of the Army and Marines beyond the reduction of more than 40,000 troops already proposed by Mr. Gates. Defense analyst Michael O’Hanlon of the Brookings Institution thinks it could require the elimination of more command structures and another round of base closures. What will then happen if the United States is forced into more conflicts like those of the past decade—if it must intervene to prevent Iran’s acquisition of a nuclear weapon or respond to aggression by North Korea, for example?
Mr. Gates, who is expected to leave office this year, said that big defense cuts “would be disastrous in the world environment we see today.” While some reductions in defense are inevitable, that is a warning that the administration and Congress cannot afford to disregard.
Now keep in mind the United States spends about as much on our military as the rest of the world combined. Six times that of China. But beltway “wisdom” says we have to balance our budget with, well budget cuts. Now what would be one way the Post editorial staff suggest we do that:
Defense savings beyond those already achieved by Mr. Gates are certainly possible and even needed — though by and large they lie in areas that Congress has been unwilling to touch. As we pointed out in a recent editorial, military health care now costs as much as the war in Iraq, in part because military families — including working-age retirees — pay one-tenth as much for their health plans as do civilian federal workers.
Think about how rancid that is. The Post editorial board and their corporate overlords are the exact same people who used their massive influence not only to start multiple wars but to argue 24/7 against their end. Now of course the Post Editors and nobody they know fought in these wars. They sacrificed nothing. Not a single thing.
Instead their pro-war advocacy placed the burden on the backs of a tiny portion of the population—military service members and their loved ones—yet when it comes time to cut the military budget, these individuals are the ones that should “sacrifice” yet again by paying more for their health care. This would be funny if it wasn’t so darn sad.