The WSJ weighs in
today on Obama's proposed gutting of America's military capabilities and they get it exactly right - this is history's pound foolishness. It's easy to see this as a budget issue and glaze over wot with all that green eye shade, but history transcends fiscal accounting periods and proceeds in tidal movements over decades. Obama's proposal is of a magnitude that it counts as one of history's "big ideas." Big, but neither a new or good idea.
Throughout history, great powers have voluntarily disarmed and the results have never been good. The reasons are always the same as well: 1) war is yucky, 2) we currently have no formidable adversaries, 3) we can spend the money on goodies for ourselves. Unfortunately, those that make the decisions are never around to reap the bitter fruits, it always falls upon later generations to to deal with, as the WSJ puts it, "history's next surprise." The entitlement state always wins out until there are battleships off your coasts and in your harbors.
Sure, we may enjoy free healthcare or lavish retirement benefits now, but what are we going to do thirty years from now when a Chinese carrier group sails into San Francisco Bay or, to slake their thirst for oil, China invades British Columbia (China population = 1.4 billion, Canada population = 34 million)? Or, what will we do when Iran parks several nuclear warheads in the jungles of Venezuela (more like five years from now)? Peaceniks, liberals and America-haters may scoff, but these are the scenarios that history bears out: humans are aggressive, power fills a vacuum, today's decisions set the stage for the world decades hence, and threats are ignored until they are right in front of your face.
The America-hating world will rejoice at our self-debasement but here, too, history offers scant comfort. The world is combustible and placid geographies can turn into killing fields in an instant. Europe was an abattoir for nearly all of the early half of the 20th century. After the US joined the fight and ensured ongoing security, the Europeans lived out the last half of the century in relative peace and prosperity (false, debt-fueled, entitlement-rich prosperity as it turns out). When the killing fields return to the heart of Europe and the US is militarily atrophied, how will the America-haters in Euroland feel just then? With Vladimir Putin III's army bearing down on the citizens of Berlin, after having raped and killed their way through Poland, just what will be the headline in Der Spiegel - "Thank God Obama Shrunk the US military by a Third!
Laugh all you want at my hypotheticals, but show me where in history man's benevolent nature has undergirded long stretches of peace and prosperity. When was the golden age of nations living side by side in peace, the world safe from aggression of arms?
Obama opponents joke that he would turn us into France. It's no joke. He is. Here comes our transformation to the martial prowess of France. All that's left is to have not enough work to go around, so that we have to share the work with others in a 35 hour work week...oh wait...
Enjoy America. This is Hope and Change. You asked for it, you got it.
UPDATE: Another, more learned, take here
. Just a quick point on this line: "Obama’s been trying to reassure Americans all this won’t endanger our national security or our strategic interests. Everyone in or out of uniform who’s free to speak knows better". You want proof? Just look at Odierno's face in this picture, it says it all.
Oh, and there is this:
Fortunately, some of the Republican presidential candidates have seen the danger coming. Mitt Romney has urged keeping the defense budget at 4 percent of GDP — it’s currently less than 3 percent — and wants to expand the Navy’s desperately endangered shipbuilding program.
Abortion flip-flops, RomneyCare, yadayada...who bloody cares? Now is the time to get the BIG things correct. So you do you still want to bitch and moan about how uninspiring Mitt Romney is?
UPDATE: While the subject is deadly serious, on a more wayward note, look at Panetta's face in that picture. What's with the ear-to-ear grin? Could he be unleashing the Clintonite Final Solution
to the Era of Obama? Well, Panetta is a Clintonite and this surely will get every current and former US serviceman to the polls in November. I'm starting to think there really is
something to my little conspiracy theory
. All that remains is for some Clintonite to push Obama into formally declaring all individually owned firearms illegal before the election...although, based on my latest issue of American Rifleman
, gun owners are already pretty fired up
to vote in 2012...