Military Experts Say
US Unprepared To Fight Another Major War
By James Donahue
Over the years military
sources made it clear to this writer that the United States has always stood ready to defend itself against foreign aggression
by following one simple rule: we always had a large enough army to fight as many as three wars at the same time.
That is no loner true.
Since George W. Bush came to power, and even before that, we were in the process of dismantling the size of our armed forces.
While military budgets have skyrocketed, the money was spent in the development of new sophisticated weaponry designed for
a high-tech push-button war instead of training and maintaining ground forces.
We watched in dismay
as military bases all over the nation were closed and civilians who worked on those bases lost their jobs. In 1973, after
the Vietnam fiasco, we discontinued the draft and shifted to an all-volunteer military.
That served us well until Bush invaded Afghanistan and Iraq and triggered what appears to be an endless conflict
in that region of the world
The Iraq war has drained our military in both material and manpower.
In a recent survey of some 3,400 military officers, 88 percent said they believes the demands of the Iraq
war have “stretched the U.S. military
When the Pentagon began
calling on the reserves and National Guard to fill gaps on the battlefield, and then extending stays of active combat for
regular soldiers, it was clear that (a.) the military was no longer prepared to fight numerous and long wars at the same time,
and (b.) our elected leadership was reluctant to reopen the draft in a pre-election year.
Thus we find ourselves
locked in another unpopular war that we cannot win or withdraw from gracefully, and we lack the political willingness at this
time to take the needed steps to start rebuilding our military.
The officers also noted
that because of the U.S. involvement in Iraq,
they believe China and Iran
are emerging as strategic victors as world powers. The report says Iran
gained from the war because it removed Iraq
as a “strategic counterweight” in the region.
The survey portrayed
Iran, the Taiwan Strait, Syria
and North Korea as four major hot spots where the U.S. may be required to fight a major combat operation. In the survey the officers
judged America’s preparedness for
such battles as generally lower than 50 percent.
It appears that if there
was ever a time that the United States
was especially vulnerable to foreign attack, it is now, with a large number of our fighting men and women stationed on foreign
soil. Even our own military leaders are warning that we lack the manpower and equipment to carry on a third conflict. That
is a frightening scenario.
Surprisingly, 56 percent
of the officers said the military was not broken by the war and 64 percent said they thought morale was “somewhat high”
or “very high.”