Of Men and Materiel: The Crisis in Defense Spending by Gary Schmitt PDF

Nonfiction 2

By Gary Schmitt

So much americans think that our army has been bolstered within the aftermath of the September eleven terrorist assaults; regrettably, that isn't the case. The middle energy of yankee army forces has endured to erode. of fellows and Materiel: The quandary in army assets, explores an issue that has been construction quietly for years: the army has been expending with no increasing or perhaps changing what has been spent. this present day, our forces are stretched painfully skinny by way of the grinding velocity of operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, and in other places world wide. now we have spent billions of greenbacks at the operational charges of those wars, yet little or no has been to be had to fill up the military's gear or elevate the dimensions of the military and the Marine Corps. the end result has been a 'hollow buildup.' The nearer one seems at this challenge, the larger the lines and power difficulties seem: Contributing authors Frederick W. Kagan, Loren Thompson, Robert paintings, and Francis G. Hoffman research the kingdom of every department of the army, underscoring a number shortfalls in strength power, constitution, and gear. an easy fact emerges from every one of those essays: an army that has much less will do much less. this can be a harmful state of affairs for a state with expansive international coverage objectives and worldwide protection commitments. the yankee army may be the best combating strength in heritage, however it can't get away the truth that numbers topic. this isn't the 1st time the USA has been faced through monstrous gaps among its strategic ends and its army capability, however the stakes during this conflict have by no means been greater.

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38 The 5 Percent Solution The collapse of the Soviet Union inevitably gave rise to calls to cut America’s Cold War force structure. And throughout the 1990s, that is precisely what happened. But these cuts were based on the misleading premise that the active-duty forces of the early 1990s were the same forces America would have gone to war with against the Soviet Union and its allies. In reality, America’s active-duty 26 OF MEN AND MATERIEL forces were stationed around the world to buy time until the United States and its allies could marshal the additional hundreds of thousands of reserve forces needed to conduct the actual war.

Despite its high price tag—some $160 billion according to recent Government Accountability Office (GAO) estimates—the FCS is worth pursuing. It is not clear, however, that it should continue to receive the degree of funding priority it has had to date. While developing deployable systems that integrate information technology is a desirable goal, it is less pressing than building a force capable of handling visible missions for which the Army is now unprepared, such as dealing with Iran. There is no threat in existence today whose defeat would require the FCS, but there is a threat whose defeat requires a larger Army.

British and French forces remained in Germany for a considerable time after World War I to enforce the Versailles Treaty. And British forces remained in various garrisons throughout the Middle East for decades to stabilize the results of the peace settlements that broke up the Ottoman Empire. Long-term deployments do not necessarily lead to successful peace settlements, but successful peace settlements seem frequently to require long-term deployments. There are certainly some conflicts one could imagine in the future that would not lead to such a requirement.

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