When one includes all military related spending including veterans benefits we are currently at $1.5 trillion a year – and that excludes the hidden monies for” intel”.
Under Clinton we had 265,000 American troops in 135 countries, as Army divisions dropped from 18 to 10, and our Air Force had 20 fighter wings (active and reserve). The Navy had 324 ships with the Clinton Administrations blueprint calling for a further drop to 305, and today we have 286 ships, but its Battle fleet tonnage is greater than that of the next 13 largest navies combined. It has the world’s largest carrier fleet, with 11 in service, one under construction (two planned), and one in reserve, as it claims to need 11 aircraft carriers (having only 10 until the Gerald R. Ford is ready for service), but Defense Secretary Robert Gates has questioned this 11 carrier need, and there is pressure to cancel the Navy’s next-generation ballistic-missile submarine.
The Air Force is facing renewed doubts about its futuristic long-range bomber. And the Army is worried that it will have to shrink the size of its active-duty force even further; the number of soldiers is already planned to drop from 569,000 to 520,000 over the next five years.
The Obama/Gang of 6 suggested $80 billion annual defense budget cut over 10 years is trivial given GW Bush raising the defense budget by 379 billion dollars per year to fight two tiny countries we plan to be out of soon. Gates proposed more than $800 over 10 years and keeping GW Bush levels rather than Clinton levels means $3.79 trillion dollars more in 10 years. The defense budget will consume $6.9 trillion dollars over the next 10 years if no changes are made.
But Obama can’t take a sharp pencil to the above, and instead must chase the aged and sick in Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security. Democrats that follow Obama must be defeated in 2012.