US Military Incapacity On Display
I served in the US Marines some 35+ years ago. My Son will ask me about it from time to time and I’ll regale him with tales of daring do with only the barest amount of embellishment. Well…. over 50% of what I tell him is factual. 🙂
I tell him those tales with great pride and speak powerfully of what I learned in the Corps and the necessity of stepping into the breach to protect America when threatened.
That was then, this is now.
The Obama administration continues to decimate the military. The present administrations actions necessitate an articulation of the facts on the ground and a reaction that new reality.
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Quoting from the NY Post:
Donald Trump wants US allies to ante up if they want to continue under the “cloak of American protection,” according to his first detailed comments on his foreign-policy platform.
“We’re not being reimbursed for the kind of tremendous service that we’re performing by protecting various countries,” the Republican front-runner was quoted as saying.
Trump said he would boycott oil from Saudi Arabia and other allies unless they provide troops or funds to fight ISIS.
“If Saudi Arabia was without the cloak of American protection . . . I don’t think it would be around, he told The New York Times.
Trumps articulation of these very real issues and the possibility that US allies are going to be either personally on the hook for more of their defense or that US military assets may be withdrawn is an issue that needs to be discussed now. I for one don’t want my Son or anyone else’s, in harm’s way when a real shooting way erupts.
Trumps clarity is refreshing. While his expressed concern is monetary, there are very real issues with US Military capabilities.
NewsMax reported that:
U.S. Army Chief of Staff General Mark Milley told a House Armed Services Committee hearing that if the Army were to fight a “great power war” with any one of four major potential foes, he had “grave concerns” about the readiness of his forces. Click Here
The General Continued:
“(The Army) is not at the levels that can execute satisfactorily … in terms of time, cost in terms of casualties or cost in terms of military objectives,” Milley said.
Our incapacity was on display in Syria when President Obama declared a chemical weapons “Red Line” that must not be crossed. President Assad ignored President Obama
After Obama was humiliated, Secretary Kerry threw down his own “Red Line” with the caveat that he didn’t expect compliance. The Guardian reported Kerry as saying:
“The US secretary of state has said that President Bashar al-Assad has one week to hand over his entire stock of chemical weapons to avoid a military attack. But John Kerry added that he had no expectation that the Syrian leader would comply.”
If there’s no expectation of compliance and no sanctions for non-compliance why say anything. Kerry has long been a card carrying member of the “Chattering Class.” That’s fine when you’re selling ketchup, but when the United States Secretary of State makes nonsensical threats with no intention of acting on those threats he places American lives at risk. We wish he would remain mindful of this fact.
After President Obama and Secretary Kerry were pointedly ignored, Kerry’s State Department tried to laugh it off. The US President and US Secretary of State were just making small talk.
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Yahoo news reports that the Secretary characterized his and the Presidents arguments as rhetorical: Click Here
The State Department was forced to clarify the remarks, calling them “rhetorical” and making clear its desire to strike could be tempered by a Syrian offer. Kerry’s point, according to spokeswoman Jen Psaki, “was that this brutal dictator with a history of playing fast and loose with the facts cannot be trusted to turn over chemical weapons.”
While US Red Lines are ignored, Bloomberg reports that Russian Red Lines in the region are feared. As they assisted their ally, President Assad, the Russians issued the following warning to other Arab States: Click Here
Russia warned Arab leaders against crossing a “red line” in trying to oust Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and said it wasn’t the job of the United Nations to dictate who stays in power and who goes.
The United States Military has capacity and capability issues that are on display for the world to see. Until we get those issues resolved to our satisfaction permitting us to Defend America First I would hope that this lame duck administration and its State Department would be more circumspect in making threats we don’t intend to act on. Even Secretary Kerry must now realize that rhetorical arguments are lost on dictators. When we place our incapacity on display for the entire world to see we endanger everyone relying on us.