Pentagon plans to shrink US Army to pre-WWII level

Discussion in 'News / Current Events' started by Revmitchell, Feb 25, 2014.

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  1. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell
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    Washington (AFP) - The Pentagon plans to scale back the US Army by more than an eighth to its lowest level since before World War II, signaling a shift after more than a decade of ground wars.

    Saying it was time to "reset" for a new era, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel recommended shrinking American forces from 520,000 active duty troops to between 440,000 and 450,000.

    In a speech outlining the proposed defense budget, he said Monday that after Iraq and Afghanistan, US military leaders no longer plan to "conduct long and large stability operations."

    If approved by Congress, the Pentagon move would reduce the army to its lowest manning levels since 1940, before the American military dramatically expanded after entering World War II.


    http://news.yahoo.com/pentagon-prop...-183915098.html;_ylt=AwrTWf1X8gtTyCsAGVTQtDMD
     
  2. Squire Robertsson

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    The question is do we need a force capable of fighting two large scale wars at the same time?
     
  3. Revmitchell

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    Such a question is in error in two ways:


    1. It assumes that this is the only circumstances in which we would ever need this many troops.


    2. It fails to understand what it means to have a force that is capable of deterrence.


    To make such a decision based on such a question shows an epic amount of naivete.


    "Peace through strength"
     
    #3 Revmitchell, Feb 25, 2014
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  4. Revmitchell

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    This move only continues to show that Obama is an extremist who wants to tear down the strengths of this country. We will certainly be less less safe.
     
  5. church mouse guy

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    Like Clinton, Obama wants a hollow army. Islam is on the march worldwide and Obama is in retreat. Part of the problem is that no one wants to be cannon fodder for the Democrats, who never intend to win wars.
     
  6. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    For a good part of US history there was no large standing army. Armies were called up when needed.

    Large standing armies are tremendously expensive. I am in favour of a scale back.

    An army can be called up quickly if needed.
     
    #6 NaasPreacher (C4K), Feb 25, 2014
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  7. Aaron

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    But not trained to fight.
     
  8. Revmitchell

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    Armies cannot be called quickly in our day and age. Also we are going to lose good men who have training and experience. What naivete that says it can be done quickly. Very dangerous naivete at that.
     
  9. SolaSaint

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    Do you all believe God has used America for good in the world over the past century in dealing with the evils of the world? I mean think about it, if it wasn't for the US military over the past 100 years, what would the world look like? Sure we spend an enormous amount of money to fund our military but I feel it is worth it.

    I think Obama and his cronies would love to reduce our great military down to nothing and raise up a civilian police force able to control the American population.
     
  10. Don

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    Called up quickly? In what fashion--by volunteer or by draft?

    If by volunteer, then you place high regard on the average person to willingly place themselves in danger.

    If by draft, then you place undue regard on a military that is forced to place themselves in danger.
     
  11. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    The question why it is in the US interest to be protector and defender of the entire world?

    Should we keep a massive army on a 'just in case' basis?

    We have a draft plan in place. What is the need for a large standing army?

    With modern weapons and technology do we really need a huge number of 'boots on the ground?' It's also hard to see how a roughly 10% reduction is a hallowing out of the army.
     
    #11 NaasPreacher (C4K), Feb 25, 2014
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  12. church mouse guy

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    They jumped up and down on your post with boots, didn't they, C4K? I think that you have to look at history. We had a hollow army between WW I and WW II. Italy, Germany, and Japan were encouraged by European and American weakness and unwillingness. Clinton always says that he reduced the number of federal employees but he was not talking about the bureaucrats in Washington DC, but the number of men in the military forces. When Clinton left office, Nine Eleven happened.

    So now we are in an international war with Islam and Europe is too broke to pay their share. As long as we are going to have to guarantee oil deliveries to Europe, how can we afford to reduce our military, C4K?

    Also, we are faced with a Chinese build-up along with their refusal to leave Tibet, which they have cruelly crushed since 1951 not to mention a nuclear North Korea and probably a nuclear Iran. Just the other day, Obama drew another line in the sand with Ukraine and he is still fuming over doing something in Syria. Do you think that Russia for even a moment considers the US a threat to their designs on Ukraine? Of course, not--they know that we are nearly a paper tiger, tied down in a mountain war in Afghanistan and in a weak position in the Middle East with the loss of Iraq and Libya and the chaos of Egypt and Syria. Everything that was nailed down is coming loose.

    The US is full of Muslim Brotherhood fronts and the Muslim Brotherhood is a neo-Nazi party.

    The Pax Americana depends upon military strength.

    Finally, it does not help that we appeased Islam by putting the anti-Semitic Chuck Hagel in as Secretary of Defense. He is no help in an emergency.
     
    #12 church mouse guy, Feb 25, 2014
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  13. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    It is because of the technology precisely that we need to keep the Army's strength up. Otherwise, a shooting war that requires us to be involved means we have to wait for "train up" of soldiers who know how to operate the equipment. The modern soldier is not just a helmet, rifle and backpack. He is a walking computer. 13 weeks of basic doesn't teach you how to operate the equipment.
    Since levels would be lower than they were before WWII, and history tells us how we took it in the teeth during that first year and came very close to defeat, then it is obvious to me history was, shall we say, not one of your strong points? Or was it spun for you so that you don't really know that history?
     
  14. InTheLight

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    I second what church mouse guy and TND said. This is typical Democrat strategy--reduce spending on the military, reduce our readiness, but hold the line or increase spending on social programs.
     
  15. Don

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    TND sufficiently answered your last question. The alternative is replacing troops with drones -- which still require a large support force.

    CMG sufficiently answered your second and third questions. What are the threats we face world-wide, not just the "publicity-fueled" one known as "terrorism"?

    And the answer is "deterrence." We can expect terroristic attacks because no one is silly enough to actually try to attack our country in terms of fantasies like "Red Dawn."

    So the answer to your first question is what's left dangling; and it has to derive from what our goal(s) as a nation are -- which, frankly, under the current administration, are unclear to me. At one time, I thought it was to promote democratic ideals, and to help those that couldn't help themselves, and thus encourage free trade and capitalism. But as CMG pointed out regarding Syria and Ukraine, I'm obviously in error.
     
  16. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    So if a 450,000 man ground force is not big enough, how big would be? I assume since your knowledge of history so far out shines mine that you can teach me something about how big of a ground force is big enough in 2014. We are at about 500,000 now - should that be 750,000 to be safe? A million?

    I am not sure how we are supposed to 'fight Islam' with ground troops. It is a new type of enemy, even if ti is acknowledged that Islam is an enemy, with new strategies needed to fight the war. Where are we supposed to put the boots on ground?
     
    #16 NaasPreacher (C4K), Feb 25, 2014
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  17. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    The answer is no. At the new levels the US could still defeat any nation on earth, while at the same time aiding allies in other areas.
     
  18. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    Though I disagree with a few points here, I think your post has real merit. Thanks for presenting facts and views without resorting to personalising a response.

    You point out the difficulties US foreign policy over the last 40 years has brought about. There is no real direction and many of the situations you mention are not going to be any more serious as a result of a 10% reduction in ground forces. The whole situation needs a fundamental rethink and I don't see real ideas coming from either side of the aisle.
     
  19. Bro. Curtis

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  20. JonC

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    I doubt that we will need a draft. The military turns away more qualified (by regulation) men and women than they accept. For more than a decade the military has set the bar to enlist much higher than is required. Recruiters realize that the easiest time to recruit for a military service is at the onset of a conflict and when recruitment is low or approaching critical, services lower the standard to regulatory guidelines.

    This is my concern. Training takes time, we do not have the military that we had when no large standing Army was standard. Technology has greatly increased our effectiveness, but it has also increased the skill sets needed and training required. Initial Entry Training does not equip (and cannot equip) servicemembers to simply jump into a position and function within a unit. Instead, it supplements the training that is received at a unit. Gone are the days when guys just pick up a gun and rush off to war.
     
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