The Economics Of Federal Defense Policy Essay — страница 2

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Organization (NATO). In the words of General Colin Powell,” The Red Army is no more.” (1) In fact, the economy in the post-Soviet nations is so terrible that the soldiers are selling their weapons for food. Malnutrition is incredibly prevalent. According to the CIA and the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), if Russia was to be taken over by a dictator, it would take ten years for them to reconstitute a military threat to the west. The facts are clear. The United States is surrounded by friendly nations on either side as well as two gigantic oceans. Most of the nations that are strong enough to be considered a threat are now considered friendly nations. The possibility of any potential enemies coming close to competing with the defense tactics and forces of the United States

is virtually impossible. These statistics are also evident to the politicians in Washington. The Bush Administration and the Joint Chiefs of Staff in 1992 invented the new term for the enemy in order to avoid a dramatic change to the country’s economics. They created the “threat of the unknown.” (2). The military changed its focus to that of maintaining peace and harmony abroad. Sending troops to Bosnia and Somalia are two prime examples of the military’s effort to provide humanitarian relief. In a meeting with the House Armed Services Committee, General Colin Powell brought forth a list of the military events that had occurred over the past five years. Events included items such as “Just Cause,” the capture of Manuel Noriega in Panama; Desert Storm in the Persian

Gulf; “Operation GTMO,” which sent seventeen hundred troops to Cuba in order to care for Haitian refugees; drug operations in Latin America; “Provide Hope,” which delivered supplies to the former Soviet Union; rescue and relief missions in Somalia and Zaire; and “Firey Vigil,” which intimidated coup plotters in the Philippines. It is obvious to see to even the average human being that the two hundred fifty billion dollars that the United States spends on military defense could be spent better and more efficiently at home. (C) This graph demonstrates how exactly the government spends our money. A staggering forty-seven percent of the budget is allocated for military expenses with fifty-four percent spent on defense alone. As shown, only six percent of the military

budget is spent providing and caring for the men and women who fought for our country in the Vietnam, Korean, and Gulf wars. In fact, Les Aspin, the Defense Secretary under Clinton, believes that people like Saddam Hussein of Iraq and Kim II Sung of North Korea are fueling the defense budget. The remarkable fact is that their militaries couldn’t withstand an attack from the United States ever. The reason why they pose such a threat is because of the potential nuclear warfare. The only nuclear bomb ever dropped was in August of 1945. The United States sees these men as mad-men with the nuclear power to destroy the world. However, I wonder what good will come of the United States’ two hundred fifty billion dollar army when the entire world has been destroyed by the push of a

button. Aspin also realized that it was entirely possible for the United States to fight two regional wars simultaneously against Iraq and North Korea, while sustaining the capacity for a Panama-like intervention in this hemisphere, a Kurdish-level relief operation, reserve forces for the possibility of an extension on one of the regional wars, and a foundation of strategic nuclear forces, continental forces, new weapons research and development, base troops in Europe, and top-level operations and training. This seems excessive and unrealistic due to the lack of this scenario actually taking place. It seems that it would be far more beneficial to utilize this extra money in other areas of need: reducing the deficit, caring for the elderly, etc. The ultimate goal for any

progressive politician would be to convert the economy from a war-time economy to a civilian-based economy. It is very important for our future presidents to figure how to reallocate the defense funds to something productive for the twenty-first century. Although, politicians who might strive to do so may have problems being reelected. In the process of slashing the defense budget, many jobs will be destroyed. The people of this country would have to patient with a politician who attempted to change the status quo. Often, people expect immediate change. This kind of change cannot be accomplished within the four year presidential term. It would take cooperation from the House, the Senate, and the President for a longer period of time than four years. It would be a long and