Military Funded Politicians Issue Ominous Warning About US Defense
A new crucial report on the strength of the US military was written by politicians who all have ties to the military industrial complex – bringing motive into question.
A panel of 12 former national security officials and experts were assigned approximately one year ago to develop a report investigating the current strength of the United States military. The team was entitled the National Defense Strategy Commission (NDSC), and their findings became public several days ago. From the Executive Summary:
The security and wellbeing [sic] of the United States are at greater risk than at any time in decades. America’s military superiority—the hard-power backbone of its global influence and national security—has eroded to a dangerous degree. Rivals and adversaries are challenging the United States on many fronts and in many domains. America’s ability to defend its allies, its partners, and its own vital interests is increasingly in doubt.
The summary continues, “If the nation does not act promptly to remedy these circumstances, the consequences will be grave and lasting,” before delivering an ominous piece of analysis. “The U.S. military could suffer unacceptably high casualties and loss of major capital assets in its next conflict. It might struggle to win, or perhaps lose, a war against China or Russia.”
“Additionally, it would be unwise and irresponsible not to expect adversaries to attempt debilitating kinetic, cyber, or other types of attacks against Americans at home while they seek to defeat our military abroad. U.S. military superiority is no longer assured and the implications for American interests and American security are severe,” the authors dictate.
Who Is Responsible For The Commission Report?
Mac Thornberry (R-TX) is the Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee and received approximately $265,000 from Defense Political Action Committees (PACs) during the 2017-2018 cycle. Raytheon Co, BAE Systems, General Atomics, Northrop Gruman, and MacAndrews & Forbes were among his biggest donors according to Open Secrets.
Adam Smith (D-WA) is the ranking member of the House Armed Services Committee and has been a member since 1997. Throughout his career, Smith has been a heavy recipient of money from the defense industry receiving $584,300 (Defense Aerospace), $307,000 (Defense Electronics), $248,750 (Misc Defense). Smith is a Conservative-Liberal and one of the most conservative Democratic House members in Congress. He is also known to be one of the more hawkish members of the Democratic Party.
Prior to his death, Senator John McCain (R-AZ) was the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Armed Services and was known for his hawkish approach to foreign conflict. Jack Reed (D-RI) is the ranking member of the Senate Committee on Armed Services and has received over $600,000 in contributions from the defense industry throughout his political career which began in 1989.
Jon Kyl (R-AZ) replaced McCain in the Senate. Kyl previously served in the U.S. Senate and received $336,600 from the defense industry PACs throughout his career. Kyl served as a member of the NDSC and contributed heavily to the report.
Current US Military Spending
The current estimate for U.S. military spending is $892 billion. When taking into account the most recent spending bill which covers from October 1, 2018 – September 30, 2019. The Balance breaks down the spending:
There are four components. First is the $616.9 billion base budget for the Department of Defense. Second is $69 billion in overseas contingency operations for DoD to fight the Islamic State group. Third is the total of other agencies that protect our nation. These expenses are $181.3 billion. They include the Department of Veterans Affairs ($83.1 billion), the State Department ($28.3 billion), Homeland Security ($46 billion), FBI and Cybersecurity in the Department of Justice ($8.8 billion) and the National Nuclear Security Administration in the Department of Energy ($21.9 billion). The last component is $18.7 billion in OCO funds for the State Department and Homeland Security to fight ISIS.
The commission is correct in referencing current cybersecurity concerns, yet those issues will not see resolution due to an increase in military ‘hard power.’ If the NDSC report is accurate, they curiously failed to mention an alarming question.
How is the United States military wasting hundreds of billions of dollars and still at risk of losing a conventional military conflict against China and Russia? While current geopolitical conditions make a war with either unlikely, it brings into question the agenda of those on the commission.