Posts Tagged ‘RolesandMissions’

Reasonable Defense: A Sustainable Approach to Securing the Nation

(printable PDF version) (summary) (appendix of tables and charts) by Carl Conetta, Project on Defense Alternatives Briefing Report, 14 November 2012. Provides a detailed strategic argument for the re-balancing of investments in the instruments of national power and offers a new force posture and Pentagon budget appropriate to strategic conditions.  Main report includes 9 tables.  Appendix has 18 additional tables and charts addressing personnel, force structure, and budgets.

Strategic Adjustment to Sustain the Force: A survey of current proposals

Charles Knight. Project on Defense Alternatives Briefing Memo #51, 25 October 2011.


…modest changes to U.S. military strategy and global posture implemented over the next ten years can reliably offer deficit-reducing savings from the Pentagon budget ranging from $73 billion a year to $118 billion a year.

To achieve the savings only requires the application of different means to attaining strategic goals. That is precisely what any good strategy does when conditions change.

A Unified Security Budget for the United States FY2012

Task Force on A Unified Security Budget Institute for Policy Studies, July 2011.


Robert Gates’ disappointing legacy

Melvin Goodman. Baltimore Sun, 29 June 2011.


In his recent lectures, Mr. Gates warned against any freeze in defense spending, leaving Mr. Panetta to deal with weapons systems and military missions that the United States can no longer afford. As the former director of the Office of Management and Budget, Mr. Panetta presumably understands that the United States, with less than 25 percent of the world’s economic output and more than 50 percent of the world’s military expenditures, will have to curtail certain weapons and missions. The defense budget has grown more than 50 percent in the past 10 years and now exceeds the pace of spending of the Cold War era, including the wars in Korea and Vietnam as well as the peacetime buildup of President Ronald Reagan.

A reexamination of current troop deployments must include the tens of thousands of troops in Europe and Asia more than six decades after the end of World War II; hundreds of bases and facilities the world over; and the excessive willingness to project power in areas such as Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, where vital national interests are not at stake.

The world’s best policeman

Jeff Jacoby. Boston Globe, 22 June 2011.


…with great power come great responsibilities, and sometimes one of those responsibilities is to destroy monsters: to take down tyrants who victimize the innocent and flout the rules of civilization. If neighborhoods and cities need policing, it stands to reason the world does too. And just as local criminals thrive when cops look the other way, so do criminals on the world stage.

Our world needs a policeman. And whether most Americans like it or not, only their indispensable nation is fit for the job.

Editor’s Comment:

When three-quarters of Americans reject a role of global policeman for the U.S. perhaps they understand something fundamental about policing that Jeff Jacoby doesn’t. A police force without oversight by a judiciary and a guiding body of law is surely a formula for tyranny.

Jacoby would never endorse tyranny, but the avocation to be global policemen by White House occupants who are elected by and responsible to only 10% of the world’s people is a decision to be a vigilante on the global stage. Consider that Americans would be up in arms if China or Russia took it upon themselves to be global vigilantes.

For the leaders of the U.S. to so gladly to take up this role only serves to delay the day when we have capable international judicial and policing institutions. If our leaders attempt to think even a few years into the future it should be clear to them that the practice of vigilantism does not serve American interests.

[A version of this comment was published as a letter to the editor in the Boston Globe, 28 June 2011.]

Overseas Base Closure List

Carlton Meyer., June 2011.


Here is a list of outdated U.S. military bases overseas that can be promptly closed to save billions of dollars each year…

Close Outdated U.S. Military Bases in Japan – Futenma & Atsugi

Pull Aircraft and Airmen Out of Osan – now in a kill zone

Cut Army Fat in Korea – 8th Army and Daegu

Vacate Two Army Bases in Germany – as once planned

Close Torii Station – a U.S. Army base on Okinawa?

Vacate RAF Lakenheath – the Russians aren’t coming

Close Gitmo, the Entire Base – it has no purpose

Close Chinhae Tomorrow – it commands nothing

[There is more argumentation about each of these at the source.]