February 24th, 2014
10:00 AM ET

Defense Department to cut Army to pre-WW II size

By Halimah Abdullah

The Department of Defense plans to scale down the nation's Army to its pre-World War II size and do away with an entire class of Air Force attack jets in an attempt to cut military spending, which mushroomed after the attacks of September 11, 2001, according to reports.

The plan, backed by Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, as first reported by The New York Times, positions the military to handle any enemy but will leave the armed forces with much fewer resources to take on lengthy missions abroad. The dwindled budget also reflects the current political climate, with a President who has pledged to pull back from extended and expensive wars abroad in an era of federal funding cutbacks.

The budget is to be presented Monday.

Hagel proposes cutting the Army to 440,000-450,000 troops, according to the Times. Army troop levels already were supposed to go down to 490,000, from their height of 570,000 after the 9/11 attacks.

The budget, does, however, protect funding for cyberwarfare and special operations, a reflection of the evolving way in which the U.S. has approached fighting overseas, using tactics that don't necessarily rely so heavily on land fighters. The proposal also preserves money for controversial and costly F-35 fighter planes.

The proposed cuts will probably draw sharp criticism from some members of Congress, especially those with large Army bases in their states and districts, or whose economies depend on building and servicing parts for the Air Force planes that will be eliminated.

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Filed under: Army • Pentagon
soundoff (1,714 Responses)
  1. Matt

    The army was HUGE during WWII, what are they whining about?

    February 24, 2014 at 11:29 am | Reply
    • Anna

      They said PRE-WWII.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:35 am | Reply
    • Dingo

      it really puts things into perspective when you consider that WWII was the first time we *retained* our military after all the battles were over. Revolution, civil war, WWI – we always released the bulk of the troops and put our equipment away. After WWII we did need to finish the occupation but, for the first time in our nation's history, we retained our standing army not for defense.. but rather for offense and foreign influence. there is good in there, for certain, but also some bad.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:44 am | Reply
  2. Never Say Anything (NSA)

    To get our budget deficit down, everything is on the table including military. Our deficit is a big security threat so that is as important as the military.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:28 am | Reply
  3. eoyguy

    About time. The US spends more on "defense" than the next 20 countries COMBINED! That includes China, Russia, UK, France, Germany, the list goes on. Perhaps if the military is a bit smaller some of the foolish escapades like Iraq won't happen in the future. Smaller doesn't have to mean less effective. Lean and mean instead of fat and lumbering. Get rid of the Marine Corps fixed wing aircraft fleet, heavy armor and scrap the whole amphibious assault aspect. There hasn't been a true amphibious assault in over 60 years. Just like mass paratroop drops are a thing of the past, amphibious operations were an oddity of the Pacific in WWII and were not the USMC's job up to that point anyhow. Make them more of an elite light force, let the Army and Navy handle the large land war scenarios. F-35 is another boondoggle. The US worries about a country like N. Korea getting one nuclear tipped missile, when at the flick of a switch we could turn the entire country to glass and not make a big dent in the nuclear stock pile. The military is not a make work project. But you know who fight this the most-every defense contractor out there. Or as Eisenhower called it, the military industrial complex. They have almost become like the big banks. Too big t fail, so they have undue influence on the government who continues to throw tax payer money at them, many times for things that aren't wanted, needed or even work correctly. We throw tax payers money at the auto companies to keep them in business and save those jobs and the right calls it socialism. We do the same thing with Boeing, Northrop, Lockheed, you name it, and its called patriotic and necessary for security and jobs.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:28 am | Reply
    • tg

      interesting statement, odiviously you are clueless as to what the Marine Corps mission statement actually entails. The National Security Act of 1947 ensured the Marine Corps existence due to both the Army and the Navy's repeated attempted to have them disbanded in their attempts to consolidated each branches roles. The Marine Corps usually is allocated about 5-7% of the defense budget with makes it one of the cost effective branches of the military that the US has. I would suggest that you read up on what the capabilites of a MAGTF is, as well as a MEU. you may actually have a better appreciation of what the Corps does for this country.

      February 24, 2014 at 1:37 pm | Reply
  4. Donald George MacDonald

    The majority of our world citizens and even, amazingly and ironically, our highest religious leaders, continue to believe that sending our finest youths to fight and kill is a necessary evil in our world already gone awry.

    Past and continuing world militarism provides the fear and self-justification that malleable citizens need in order for them to further endorse their leaders' expanding and modernizing military might. The expanding and escalating cycle thus feeds itself and prospers, like a self-perpetuating social and moral virus allowed to further drain our global health and wealth.

    The majority of our world citizens, led by leaders of nations, movements and religions, continue to forget that this social and moral virus is reversible, is curable and is not yet terminal.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:28 am | Reply
  5. Jerry Okamura

    You mean they want large cuts? Are they likely going to be allowed to make these cuts?

    February 24, 2014 at 11:26 am | Reply
    • cwfrizzell

      Odds are very good both the House and Senate will push back, although not both to the same extent.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:45 am | Reply
  6. Donald George MacDonald

    Our more evolved descendents will realize that we humans of the 21st century do not yet completely understand and control our primal, hereditary influences of anger, hate, violence, territorialism, and predation.

    Our more evolved descendents will realize that we humans of the 21st century are presently entering an especially dangerous period in our evolution.

    Our gradually growing intellect does allow us to develop the technology needed for our desired comfort and prosperity. Yet, they will also know that since our Second World War, leaders of nations and movements have also chosen to try to use the imposing technology to produce and sell and buy invisible bombers and smart missiles and quiet subs and fast tanks and many, many more weapons of our mass, self-destruction.

    Our more evolved descendents will realize that even though our heads appear large to us, we still possess the eyes of predators.

    Our more evolved descendents, looking back at us with sadness and scorn, will realize that our world citizens and leaders should have condemned, long before now, ALL hate and violence and barbaric wars against ANY fellow, equally perfect, feeling, living being.

    Our more evolved descendents, looking back at us with sadness and scorn, will realize our world citizens and leaders should have long ago condemned our continuing, conformist allegiance to hate and violence and barbaric wars.

    Our more evolved descendents will realize that our hate and violence and barbaric wars must be replaced with empathy and kindness and patience and communication and mutual respect and compassion and love.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:26 am | Reply
    • istenno

      that certainly is a hope, that we will have evolved descendents.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:43 am | Reply
    • Anna

      What a lot of rot. Our "evolved" descendants will realize better than you do that some people aren't interested in your love and understanding if it interferes with their expansion plans. Sounds like you like to write prose, but it doesn't really stand up to the reality test.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:48 am | Reply
    • southerngent

      Wow! Humans will never evolve to the point you suggest! Your entire post is filled with either ignorance of life or delusional visions from fictional novels.

      February 24, 2014 at 12:06 pm | Reply
  7. SteveInMN

    About.

    Time.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:26 am | Reply
  8. David Powell

    For war games they are going to have cars with cardboard cannons and "Tank" signs on them once again, what a total joke. And get rid of the A-10 just when Europe is getting squirrelly again, and after it saved so many of our guys in Iraq and Afghanistan? What a sell out.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:26 am | Reply
    • MarylandBill

      The Air Force has wanted to kill the A-10 for years. They have never really wanted to do ground support. They prefer multi-role fighters so they can at least pretend they are doing something else. That being said, the F-35 is expensive and not worth the extra cost. Better to start production of the F-22 again, produce a few hundred for the air-superiority role. Once air-superiority is established, we don't need stealth as much.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:32 am | Reply
      • Matt

        They did not want to kill the A-10. They want the Army to take it over. When the army said they would take them and have non-officers fly them, the Air Force decided they would not allow that.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:40 am |
  9. Hagel should be selling pencils

    Chuck Hagel is/was and will be a yes boy for Obama.....

    February 24, 2014 at 11:25 am | Reply
  10. bev

    You'd think that high-tech innovations in the defense industry that will save this country billions – while reducing the need to put troops on the battlefield, in harm's way – would be a hit with the right, but it doesn't seem to be. They seem to be angry that we aren't wasting those billions every year.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:25 am | Reply
  11. Jimmy

    Great! Maybe we can spend some of that money creating jobs to fix these car sized potholes!

    February 24, 2014 at 11:25 am | Reply
  12. kaneda

    We cut NASA and our arm forces, and we have more people on welfare.

    This country is getting lazy and corrupt government..

    February 24, 2014 at 11:24 am | Reply
    • bev

      More like – the wealth in this country continues to be concentrated among a very few. At the same time more accurate technological advances make it possible to not to have to use an obsolete military of 50-60 years ago – at a fraction of the cost. Why should we waste that money again?

      February 24, 2014 at 11:28 am | Reply
    • DeathsChoice

      Cut the Army, restrict weapons at home, foster a culture of lazy and unmotivated people who rely on the government for everything... sure sounds like a very well developed invasion plan....

      February 24, 2014 at 11:31 am | Reply
  13. anthony

    Lets cut the military so we can fund the illegals

    February 24, 2014 at 11:23 am | Reply
    • Martoon

      How better to weaken America and pay for Obamacare. Wake up Sheeple.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:26 am | Reply
  14. tet1953

    How do they expect to intervene in Syria, keep troops in Afghanistan, and defend Israel when it finally all blows up in the Middle East with all these cuts?

    February 24, 2014 at 11:23 am | Reply
    • Don

      They don't want to intervene in Syria. They KNOW that they will actually find the WMD of left Baghdad in convoys in 2003 prior to the war. What we don't know can kill us. Or someone anyway.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:25 am | Reply
  15. MrAl

    Finally!!!!!

    February 24, 2014 at 11:23 am | Reply
  16. jack

    Cut the military spending and increase the welfare ... That's how mindless people works.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:22 am | Reply
    • Kevin

      Our bloated military essentially IS a welfare program for weapons manufacturers.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:23 am | Reply
      • Jimmy

        Maybe this guys should look up how much is costs per soldier to keep overseas.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:28 am |
    • TadBad

      You want a military state instead? I don't think so. It doesn't get much more mindless than that.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:29 am | Reply
  17. Dave

    It’s about time. The military budget has been so bloated over the past 20 years that it will take years to bring it back down to acceptable standards. They should start with the military contractors. These guys have been raking it in hand over fists for years now at the taxpayers’ expense. They are definitely not needed at the level they are now. Put the money in US infrastructure, education and other domestic programs. A military even 60% of its current size can adequately protect America.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:22 am | Reply
  18. Mark_in_FL

    Keeping a base open just to keep jobs or keeping a type of aircraft just to keep jobs is OK for the same Republicans that fought infra-structure building to create jobs. Hypocrites to the core.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:22 am | Reply
    • cwfrizzell

      Invariably, push back comes from whomever is in power in a given district or state whose economy is dependent on a military base. This is not a party issue.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:41 am | Reply
    • Jonathan

      You're absolutely kidding yourself if you think there aren't hypocrites on both sides of the political spectrum. Everybody is simply out to protect their own interests. Politics is a disgusting game, and it's always hilarious to see someone like you who thinks your side is a beacon of all that is good and moral in this world.

      February 24, 2014 at 7:28 pm | Reply
  19. Kevin

    Can anyone even name the last time that a military attack occurred in the US? For a "defense" department, we have bases in a lot of places that aren't our country.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:21 am | Reply
    • Ralph

      Perhaps foreign bases are the reason no one can remember an attack on the US?

      February 24, 2014 at 11:29 am | Reply
      • Kevin

        ~

        See that tilde, up there? That tilde keeps the tigers away. Don't see any tigers around, do you? That means it's working.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:38 am |
    • cwfrizzell

      Sounds like the "Defense" is working.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:42 am | Reply
      • Kevin

        7

        That seven up there repels terrorists. Don't believe me? Look around. Don't see any terrorists, do you?

        February 24, 2014 at 11:48 am |
      • Jonathan

        Hey Kevin, that's is the most childish rebuttal I have ever seen. Maybe come up with some actual facts and statistics that support your standpoint rather than playing a children's game. Otherwise, leave now...the adults are talking.

        February 24, 2014 at 7:30 pm |
  20. Ben Edwards

    Oh thank goodness. The last thing this world needs is a bloated military. Money is much better spent on science.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:21 am | Reply
  21. steve

    I would be OK with it if the savings were used wisely. But they are not- it is being given away to people who don't want to work, Obamacare disaster, and on interest on our debt that we are not dealing with. At least money spent on the military is going to people that want to work to defend our country and build products for the military. Most military equipment is made in the USA.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:21 am | Reply
    • darknesscrown

      You mean lobbyists? That's where the money ends up going. The top 5% of earners in this country do less work and get more welfare than the bottom 95%...but at least they aren't standing around with their hands outstretched like wretches, right? Because that would be so pathetic. BTW, what do you think "Obamacare" actually is? The government provides no medical service to you at all. It simply requires everyone to have health insurance or pay a fine. The law requires health insurers to provide plans that most people can afford...which it does. It's not going anywhere. Good luck taking health insurance away from someone who's never had it now. If you have Medicare, are with the VA, or are insured through your employer or buy your own, Obamacare 100% does not affect you at all.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:26 am | Reply
    • Smart Than You Are

      Finally.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:26 am | Reply
    • LBB

      Horsefeathers it's "being spent on people who want to work". It's being used to line the pockets of defense contractors, who turn around and pay it to lobbyists, who turn around and bribe, excuse me BRING THEIR CONCERNS to Republican members of congress, who take the bribes I'M SORRY THE CAMPAIGN CONTRIBUTIONS FROM CONCERNED CITIZENS and vote the way the defense contractors want (i.e., increase the military budget regardless of need), and use a lot of lies cloaked in patriotism to put the whole scam over on easily duped people like you.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:31 am | Reply
      • Leon

        Democrats should also be included since they are on the receiving end as well, it isn't an issue where we can only point out republicans.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:52 am |
    • Larry in Austin

      Since you are saying it like it is, I'll add that defense manufacturers are hiring whites, while road crews are primarily Hispanics. A major area dividing Dems/Repubs.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:35 am | Reply
  22. Chucksmom

    It's about time!

    February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
  23. Robert

    Pointless, to cut military, all we are doing is weakening a country and opening ourselves up to more attacks because we will appear weaker. China has the largest Army in the world, and invest greatly into Cyber warfare. We are going to put ourselves further behind the power curve. In addition do you really think cyber is cheap. NO not by any means what so ever. Yeah less soldiers, but the equipment those remaining soldiers are operating ridiculously costly. Someone mention Space....Well go look up the cost of NASA satelites... Like I said pointless. There are tons of other things we can cut. Look how much we give in foreign aid or to the UN a year. Get real people, when the next war comes around or the next attack on US soil, everyone is going to be singing a different tune, and it will cost 2x as much to rebuild and train our defense. If we had the capability to just sit at home and win a war without sending troops and a carrier fleet in, we would have been doing that.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
    • Ryan

      Increased funding is actually going into cyber security/attack capabilities. Land forces are being reduced. We need a navy with drones that can refuel in midair that can enter denied airspace while the carriers are out of range the of the Deng 21 missiles – carrier killers, that the chinese have. We are investing in the right technologies, we don't need half a million soldiers for the wars of the future. If we do, then there is the selective service.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:26 am | Reply
    • MCP123

      Yes we will be so WEAK after these minor cuts... we only have a mere 5,000 nuclear warheads... and enough destructive force to level every major city in the world.

      Lets spend more money... so we can have more power to end life as we know it (which we can already do).

      February 24, 2014 at 11:30 am | Reply
    • Ryan

      How can you seriously claim that NASA satellites are a waste? We wouldn't have our existing military technology without NASA...space exploration has enhanced science technologies in other areas, medical, transportation, etc. The military doesn't invent everything by itself. We also need NASA satellites to monitor weather patterns, precipitation patterns, climate change...stuff that does have important ramifications, there are other things besides "China" going on in this world.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:32 am | Reply
    • Javish

      While China has the largest Army, it lacks the Logistics to move them. Let alone cross an Ocean undetected and stage a costly invasion of the largest armed civilian populace in the world.

      I think they should cut the US Army, Cut the F-35 fiasco and close all foreign bases and concentrate in what gets us more bang per buck. Carrier Groups and Marine Expeditionary Units. Merge the Air Force back into the Army and keep the strategic planes and the transports.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:33 am | Reply
    • jake

      ii totally agree with you

      February 24, 2014 at 11:33 am | Reply
    • VetSV

      All the great thinkers who are questioning here the cut in military budget and comparing it to China.. pause and look at the numbers we spend double the amount of $'s on defense compared to China.. and we have better high tech gadgets then anyone else in the world.. whats the point of wasting millions on Defense contractors for nothing when we dont need them.. we do not need to put our men and women in Harms way..440000 is still a pretty darn big number compared to any big army with so many warships. planes and advanced technology fighters (Drones and stealths etc).. get real use that money for Education and Infrastructure. US is crumbling from with in.. we need to invest and spend wisely.. Military contracts are the biggest unaccounted pork

      February 24, 2014 at 11:37 am | Reply
      • Ryan

        Exactly, well said.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:41 am |
      • Dingo

        not to mention that if we actually went to war with China, a huge chunk (can't put a ballpark number on it) of our purchased manufacturing capacity goes poof. we don't actually make all the components we need. yeah, we build the vehicles but if you were to cut off the supply of chips and other gadgets from China I wonder where we would be in terms of resupply. we'd be better off putting that money into rebuilding the manufacturing base to make sure we can actually resupply ourselves. that said, that's not gonna happen anyway.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:57 am |
    • Chris

      Everyone needs to realize that we live in a state of constant fear. We have to understand that attacks are inevitiable. Even if we doubled what we spend on national defense, it still wouldn't be fool proof. Today we spend three times the amount on national defense than the next closest nation. We can afford to cut spending in this sector and put into other uses such as education, healthcare and infrastructure. In the long term, this will allow us to cut down on this deficit we have dug ourselves in. ......P.S. I'm prior military, so i've seen the national defense we have and let me reasure you, the guys we have out there right now are getting the job done. You're all in good hands......P.s.s put a term limit on senators and congressmen!!!

      February 24, 2014 at 12:14 pm | Reply
  24. jack

    It's about time, but it didn't say how much money we would save for the budget. And don't save it for the overpriced f-35 that is no better than what we have, they are a waste of money. We don't need a big army and we don't need to be the world police force. We have fighter jets and drones that can accomplish most of what we would need to do.....

    February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
  25. sr_cactus

    And what happened to"walk softly but carry a big stick"?

    February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
    • Don

      Even with these cuts, the US will still be spending five times the amount China spends on defense.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:24 am | Reply
    • Rich De

      The size and spending on our military will still dwarf the rest of the world's but that's not good enough for you? Why don't we just conscript the first 300 million Americans? Will that be big enough for you?

      February 24, 2014 at 11:29 am | Reply
  26. JohnRJohnson

    The Soviet Union fell because it spent too little on its own infrastructure and too much on its military. It's economy simply collapsed under the weight of the military spending, which was totally non-productive. This is the Military Industrial Complex which Dwight D. Eisenhower warned the country about when he left office. It is time to get this Frankenstein Monster under control. It does NOT MEAN that we would become weak and vulnerable. It DOES MEAN that we would become smart and more targeted in our military development. In the meantime, we can avoid the pitfalls that brought down the Soviet Union and get this country back on the road to being a First World nation again. Because, right now, it ain't.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
  27. conoclast

    Omigod, now they're cutting on the Sacred Cow!! What next? Official recognition that the Climate Crisis is real?

    We NEED our military and our precious religious ignorance! How else would the world know we're Americans?

    February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
  28. Eddie

    Even with these cuts we still be number 1 in the world on military spending.

    We will still spend more than the combine amount from the nations rated 2 through 11 in military spending.

    We still have over 100,000 military personal stationed around the world more than any other nation.

    The defense budget needs to be trimmed if we are serious in reducing government spending as it accounts for 20% all government spending.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:19 am | Reply
    • cwfrizzell

      You might want to recheck your facts... http://www.cato.org/blog/misleading-images-defense-spending

      February 24, 2014 at 12:04 pm | Reply
  29. Jeff

    Ironic that just when our economy took a nosedive after 9/11, is when we exponentially increased military spending using money that we didn't have.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:19 am | Reply
    • Serious Truth

      Ironic. So if your country is under attack you cut defense? I hope you don't vote.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:30 am | Reply
    • LBB

      I think you misspelled "cynical". If any of the "hell no don't cut the DEE-FENSE BUDGET" clowns were to do a "follow the money" analysis of the Bush-era wars, they'd have an aneurism. That is, presuming that they have a blood supply to whatever passes for their brains in the first place.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:35 am | Reply
  30. George

    Boots on the ground in huge numbers does not look like a necessary factor, even in any future large scale war. Increased air and naval capability seems better suited.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:19 am | Reply
  31. darknesscrown

    Great news. Fantastic news. This should have started happening years ago. Take the savings and invest it in infrastructure, alternative energy, and improving the lives of citizens. A nation that accounts for 50% of the entire world's military spending to protect only about 6% of the world's population is either in a severe state of decline, or is insane.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:18 am | Reply
    • mcdennis

      You must be a product of some new math that I don't understand. Take the savings and spend it on something else. Think about what you just said. How is that saving anything or reducing spending? Whether you spend $100 on booze or food you still spent $100.

      The reason for the reduction in force is to actually spend less money overall not just spend less money on the military. We already learned that lesson years ago with the 'peace dividend' when the USSR collapsed. Not only did we spend every dime we 'saved' we overspent.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:31 am | Reply
      • LBB

        It's called spending the money on something the country needs, vs. turning it into ordnance that, if we're lucky, will sit in a warehouse and never get used. Want your kid to go to school? Want to drive on a road? Want your food to be safe to eat? That's what the government needs to be spending on.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:36 am |
  32. Matthew Kilburn

    Its remarkable to me the lack of thought process so apparent among those cheering and clapping their hands over this kind of a move. Yes, right now, the US is the world's policeman. So, when there is some ongoing conflict in some important part of the world that even mildly touches on our interests, or our values, or our allies, we get involved. Or at least, we used to.

    But do you really think the rest of the world is going to sit back and let chaos reign in the absence of a global US presence? Of course not. Instability is bad for business, and just about everything else. The result won't be allowing poor people in poor countries fight it out between themselves, the result will be other nations – of which China and Russia are the only ones really capable of doing so – establishing a larger foreign presence and imposing solutions that suit their own (usually, value-less) goals. Look at Syria.....the US stayed out of it, so Russia got into it and crafted a "solution" that gets rid of the chemical weapons, but leaves Assad in power. Assad, who is an ally of Iran and a benefactor for Hezzbollah. Assad, who slaughters thousands of his own people. Assad, who helps Russia by providing it with its only permanent naval base on the Mediterranean sea. Expect to see a lot more of that if the US is going to start sitting on its hands.

    Is that really going to be a good thing for America?

    February 24, 2014 at 11:18 am | Reply
    • LBB

      China doesn't want the kind of hegemony you're thinking of. The kind that they DO want, they're already busy establishing. They're just doing it in parts of the world that don't get mentioned on Fox News.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:38 am | Reply
      • Matthew Kilburn

        China doesn't necessarily want to be the next United States in terms of having a global military reach – China is not a country built on an ideology or a set of values (other than being "Chinese") that would give it much reason to do so. There is, as you might say, no Chinese equivalent to "peace, freedom, and the American way".

        But China is self-serving. And will, if not happily, at least willingly, act to protect its sources of energy, food, raw materials, etc. It won't get involved in an African nation because a dictator from one tribe is slaughtering his civilians of another tribe......but it would get involved if a country threatens to cut off, for example, the supply of oil.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:42 am |
  33. Devin ALden

    hmm i wanted to go into the army after high school. i really hope this does not effect my chances. i guess i should study more for my absvab.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:18 am | Reply
    • b

      Go NAVY, instead!

      February 24, 2014 at 11:31 am | Reply
    • LBB

      Learn the difference between "affect" and "effect", and maybe you won't have to go into the military at all.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:38 am | Reply
      • Anna

        I'll take a high school kid's word usage error over your ignorant presumption that all soldiers are stupid and the army is a last-resort career choice. In fact I give him higher points for intelligence than I give you.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:59 am |
  34. Trish

    Everything always looks good on paper. Unless you have been over there and see what they are dealing with you won't understand. You have to have boots on ground to deal with terrain like those soldiers have been dealing with unless you want to take out innocent civilians. Do we need to be the ones doing it...no, but since we currently are then taking away soldiers and equipement needed to complete the mission is ridiculous. History just continues to repeat itself. The US has done this after every major conflict then spent twice as much as we saved ramping back up when the next crisis hit.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:18 am | Reply
    • LBB

      Why do you assume that cuts have to come first and foremost out of "boots on the ground"? How about cleaning up the corrupt defense contracts that have reigned supreme for the past 14 years? Oh, because those are funding Republican candidates, and we can't mess with that, can we?

      February 24, 2014 at 11:39 am | Reply
  35. jack2

    and so continues Obamas weakening of America.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:18 am | Reply
    • bev

      How so?

      February 24, 2014 at 11:19 am | Reply
    • Nev

      Are you serious?????

      February 24, 2014 at 11:24 am | Reply
  36. mike

    And yet spending increases.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:17 am | Reply
    • darknesscrown

      Spending under Obama, as a percentage of GDP, has actually fallen under Obama. Bush and Reagan, however, spent money like it was going out of style.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
    • Kevin

      Budget Spending has decreased as a percentage of GDP for the last 5 years.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:31 am | Reply
  37. Terry B

    The military has been one of the largest contributors to the national debt since the 1960's when our 1st unethical war began (Vietnam). We love all of our veterans but we should no longer be the worlds policeman. We spend more on the military than the all of Europe and Canada combined. There is no excuse for such insane spending.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:17 am | Reply
    • Craig

      Exactly, where do these people get off voting for bush who got us into $3-4 Trillion debt then say we can't do anything smart to rid ourselves of this. Go to Iraq they might follow your bad ideas!

      February 24, 2014 at 12:05 pm | Reply
  38. Rich T.

    We'll always need to have some boots on the ground. But all we really need is to have enough is Xbox types to lob a cruise missile up the you know what for every camel in the Middle East.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:17 am | Reply
  39. Hadenuffyet

    Drones are the future , drones are now.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:17 am | Reply
  40. Yago

    YEAH RIGHT!!! So you told me the Military Industrial Complex will cut their Multi trillion dollar business??? I don't think so. Let the Propaganda and manipulations to run wild.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:17 am | Reply
  41. rob

    Maybe we should cut all of these politicians pay. Instead of down sizing our troops.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:17 am | Reply
    • JJ

      Do you really think that reducing the pay of politicians (making it easier to bribe them, and harder to convince good people to pursue a job in politics) will save me more tax money than reducing the size of our ginormous military? Could you produce some factually-based peer-reviewed numbers to prove that please? Sounds to me like you're a big government type of person.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:33 am | Reply
  42. civility1

    Excellent but long overdue. So much beaurocratic waste year after year. So many unnecessary overseas bases. While we are at it, why don't we consolidate the Marines and the Army, and the Navy and the Air Force, and standardize uniforms, ordinance, equipment, etc across the board. It would save sooooooo much money.... Hello?

    February 24, 2014 at 11:17 am | Reply
    • Scar

      Very bad idea. Each operates separately, because each has a different mission.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:34 am | Reply
    • b

      You point toward four organizations with different purposes. That would be like using the same type of screw driver for every type of screw.

      There are some areas of overlap, but it is not as simple as combine everything and save tons of money.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:35 am | Reply
      • civility1

        Its defense folks, DEFENse. All the military has to do is know how to kill people. What other mission? Yes, have one good screwdriver and make all the screws the same.... whyhave two different kinds of bullets for two different kinds of rifles in the Navy and the Air Force, hello? Why have aircraft different in the USAF than in the USNavy. Why have different uniforms, standards, meals, facilities, tests, paperwork, promotional protocol, pay ???? Its laughable.

        February 24, 2014 at 1:22 pm |
  43. Hap

    Sad to see the A-10s go I was in the first operational squadran back in 1978. That said the DoD has been trying to scale back for about 6 years now only to be told no by congress as if they know better. We're building tanks and putting them out in the desert because most of those jobs are in Ohio and the speaker doesn't want his state to take a hit. On and on it goes. What about a BRAC, well a former NFL offensive lineman in congress put the brakes on that because everyone know he's smarter than the Joint Chiefs. Speaking of a BRAC do we really need 700 bases overseas? Let the Penegon tell Congress what it needs, not the other way around. Oh and stop blaming the President, he does take his lead from the SECDEF, and Gates started this before he was even elected.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:16 am | Reply
  44. Larry Hass

    How much military strength do we need to Defend the USA and maybe help an ally over seas if they are invaded? That's what I thought – about half of what we currently have. Now, would someone mind calling our military back from the other side of the planet so they are in position to Defend us if needed.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:16 am | Reply
    • Wes

      We aren't supposed to have a standing army... we're supposed to have the militia of able bodied armed citizens. The Dick Act of 1902 allows for state militias to be funded w/o having a standing army. The problem is, this standing army stuff has gone on for a few generations and we don't know what it's like w/o. We fear not having an army. It's almost like our founding fathers knew that a standing army was expensive. But I am thankful for our veterans, but not for the politicians who rabble rouse and get us in all these conflicts.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:35 am | Reply
  45. JPM

    Well now we can concentrate on things that matter. Matter to liberals anyway. Bring more illegals into the country so the hard working folks can support them. Weaken the US military and maybe Obama can get his wish and we will be taken over by a Socialist country.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:16 am | Reply
    • johnbiggscr

      well thanks for the nonsense

      February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
    • Scar

      That is about true. Obama has done nothing but promote iilegals to cross the border, instead of securing it. Under ObamaCare, it makes ure that illegals still get free healthcare. Americans aren't as stupid as Obama thinks. Send them home. Don't give them green cards. Send Obama and his own family of illegals back to Kenya

      February 24, 2014 at 11:28 am | Reply
      • Leon

        Unfortunate every word of you response does indicate americans are stupid/ignorant ... well at least one of them.

        February 24, 2014 at 12:13 pm |
  46. Chris HOnry

    Give it to angry blacks instead, see if that makes them not so hateful.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:16 am | Reply
    • bev

      You really aren't helping yourself there..

      February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
    • ken solheim

      You are a racist moron!

      February 24, 2014 at 11:22 am | Reply
  47. bubba lou

    Bout damn time. How can they slash SNAP benefits in a time of more need without reducing the military budget and still sleep at night. After all, what do you call an American solder in the middle east? A terrorist!

    February 24, 2014 at 11:16 am | Reply
    • PeteD

      You sir are a POS. That soldier allows you to speak your hatred words. You should go and choke yourself and thank those who protect your rights.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:32 am | Reply
    • James

      I hope a solider kicks your teeth down your throat.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:43 am | Reply
  48. Sharon Waterman

    Why is it whenever we need cuts made recently do they want to cut the military? Maybe if we would stop spending so much on other countries and their troubles and loosing our men/women because of it we would have much more to spend on the important things here at home. If you want to cut something cut some of the wages on Capitol Hill or cut them from using private planes/cars/security. We could feed a whole lot of starving children with that.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:15 am | Reply
    • Chris HOnry

      Gee, hard to figure out- prolly cuz defense is the biggest share of non-mandatory spending?

      February 24, 2014 at 11:17 am | Reply
    • chobrut

      Military money is either (a) wasteful jobs spending, (b) white collar welfare for defense contractors, (c) wasteful war spending, or (d) wasteful pork for political gains in certain congressional districts.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
    • Soylent

      The DOD budget is 615 billion dollars. The budget for the entire Legislative branch of the US government is 4.6 billion dollars. If you eliminated 1% of the DOD budget, you would save more money than if you eliminated the entire Congress. Please don't wade into budgetary discussions if you have no understanding of the numbers involved.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:22 am | Reply
    • KH

      Because the military is larger than the next 20 countries combined

      February 24, 2014 at 11:39 am | Reply
  49. Beverly

    Foolish. Short-sighted. Ignorant bureaucratic politicking. So, what does this country take pride in if not a strong, intelligent military. Not a military state, but a military presence. Perhaps we should just call it America's milk toast military and let the bureaucrats have at it. At least the name will reflect their purpose. I am shocked that the Secretary of Defense is not standing up for the men and women under his command. He should be pushing to strengthen the ranks, provide top notch and ongoing training, reward strong character, honor, and integrity, and offer reasons to make the military a career choice. Instead, here's one more reason to lower the morale of our armed forces one more notch. At some point, there will be no more notches.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:14 am | Reply
    • bev

      Strong military no longer necessarily means big, wasteful, obsolete military. One high tech piece of equipment can replace hundreds of troops, at a fraction of the cost.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:16 am | Reply
    • Old West

      Good...

      February 24, 2014 at 11:16 am | Reply
    • Michelle

      Madamm,

      While your statments are true in so much as we SHOULD BE retaining and recruiting YOUNG military personnel, the very truth of the matter is, its the SYSTEM that is fundementally broken beyond repair. Instead of cutting older senior Generals (some in their 70's and who were trainined in the cold war era) and higher officials, who have had NO RECENT substantial training or on the field experiance, the military is opting to cut Captains, Majors and Lt. Col's WHO HAVE HAD RECENT training AND field experiance to fight in an era of terrorist mentality – not cold war era regeims.

      If you were a high ranking General pulling a salery of $150k plus, per year (WITH BONUSES), would you want to retire? I dont think so. The simple fact is, THERE IS NO MANDITORY RETIREMENT for ANYONE in the federal system. I work with some 70+ year olds and in mid-day, when I walk past their cubicles, some are fast asleep at their desk. Would you want to give that up, when you DO NOT HAVE TO and are making a huge salery to boot? At that age, most have reached a GS 13 or 14 level which averages over 100K per year. And, they can occupy this position until their 90 IF THEY CHOSE.

      This is the simply fact of the system that is horribly broken beyond repair. And the solution, cut the younger, better and more recently trained military personnel to help save my buddy's job! And, everyone wonders whats wrong? Really?

      February 24, 2014 at 11:32 am | Reply
  50. Greg

    Here's a thought if we want to cut military spending. Eliminate the Air Force, or as most other branches call them "prima-dona boy scouts". Transfer the heavy lift and large tactical aircraft to the Navy and Army and all is well. The Air Force sucks up a lot of military funding and provides far less usefulness per dollar spent than any other service. The Navy/Marines can provide quicker response and greater in theater logistical support. The large aircraft can/should be deployed to current Naval/Army facilities and integrated with the current units. I would expect the elimination of the Air Force to provide 10's of billions of savings each year while increasing overall effectiveness and efficiency.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:13 am | Reply
    • Eddy

      You have no idea what you're saying.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:15 am | Reply
    • Craig

      There you go, our duplication of effort and the wide-spread test cheating is the straw that breaks the Air Force which has to go. Go Navy, let the AF cheaters be plumbers, electricians and cowboys. The AF has embarrassed my military time.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
      • Eddy

        How did the AF embarrass you?

        February 24, 2014 at 11:26 am |
    • Ken

      What a complete moron....

      February 24, 2014 at 11:21 am | Reply
    • Military Person

      They tried givign the A-10 mission to the Army but it was too expensive. You leave out the main mission of the AF...CAS. It's a massive undertaking and would require the Army to bring on too many resources to accomplish. The Marines have a built in CAS with the Navy/Marine aircraft, but not on such a large scale.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:24 am | Reply
    • Jeff

      Greg- you're clueless

      February 24, 2014 at 11:25 am | Reply
    • calvin

      Wow, you have absolutely no clue. I have a feeling you have never served our country. There's a reason there's a Navy (for sea operations), an Army (for ground operations), and an Air Force (for ground-based air operations). The Navy is not designed or equipped for transport operations.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:29 am | Reply
      • Greg

        20 years Navy BTW.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:46 am |
      • Greg

        The more times I read this calvins post, the sillier it gets. The Navy not equipped for transport? Really, so the big gray ships cant carry anything anywhere? You think the Navy is only sea based? Who gets called when there is a need for special forces? Who carries out more air sorties and provides 24/7 CAS and search and rescue on station? Wow, calvin, if you want to talk clueless........

        February 24, 2014 at 12:20 pm |
    • Todd

      I’m going to agree with Eddy and also say before you make a comment, do some research before you open your mouth and show people how "smart" you really are. You want to eliminate an entire service that has demonstrated air superiority over its short 60+ year history. If you know anything it’s that air superiority is just one important factor to winning any conflict. While the Army and Navy have aircraft, the sole mission of those aircraft are to support the ground troops (Army) and to protect the fleet (Navy). I’d go on, but I’m sure this won’t be the last comment made against your uneducated post.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:29 am | Reply
    • Greg

      Going to go out on a limb and say there are some AF boys on here today.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:48 am | Reply
  51. tet1953

    lol McCain will blow a gasket over this.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:12 am | Reply
  52. Doug

    Makes total sense, cut our military at the same time as Putin is trying to rebuild the Soviet Union and China is growing its military capabilities.
    Only problem is should we learn to speak Russian or Chinese?

    February 24, 2014 at 11:12 am | Reply
    • afvet

      Eastern half to learn Russian, western half learns Chinese. Oh, and southwest learns Spanish.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:17 am | Reply
    • Code

      Chinese. Nobody wants to learn Russian. Nobody.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
    • Craig

      get a life other than spewing bs here!

      February 24, 2014 at 11:22 am | Reply
    • Casandra

      Yes, the Chinese are going to attack us when we owe them 100s of billions of dollars. The Russians couldn't defeat anyone in a war. This is NOT 1940 when wars can be won with Force. Heck, the US Military can't even defeat the Taliban.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:22 am | Reply
  53. Mikey

    In the mean time the Chinese, the real threat out there, not Al Querky, is ramping up the military muscle. Wrong.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:12 am | Reply
    • ga444

      "Defense Department to cut Army to pre-WW II size"

      So now the next time a major conventional war happens, the army that is at pre-WWII size can get slaughtered in an early WWII fashion. Good to know we have learned our lesson from the kasserine pass.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:41 am | Reply
  54. patrick

    Military spending is nothing but a massive ongoing stimulus package. The economies of many red states depend on this stimulus, as they have no other significant industry. Look to red states to find this cutting of waste tooth and nail.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:11 am | Reply
    • The Dead Critic

      Think Jimmy Carter......try again.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:13 am | Reply
      • patrick

        Carter or any other president has nothing to do with it. It is time to stop the gravy train for large defense contractors.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:19 am |
      • Kevin

        Yeah, all those military attacks on the Us when Carter was in office.......

        February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am |
    • richard

      And many blue states have no industry at all. In case you've been absent for the last two decades, many industries have left blue states and moved down south. Better weather, lower taxes and pro-business.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:18 am | Reply
      • Craig

        You southerners embarrass yourselves every day. Now STAND YOUR GROUND! It's like you have to be really dumb to live in the south. Absolutely!

        February 24, 2014 at 11:24 am |
      • patrick

        Um, no. The poorest states are conservative and most prosperous are liberal. It it well known that red states get more in federal money than they pay in taxes, and blue states get less. Red states run by leeching off blue states. That's why they would hate for the inflow of federal (i.e. blue state) money to stop.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:25 am |
    • Steve

      You are an ignorant fool Military spending employs 100's of thousands off people across the United States. Unemployment will rise and we will be in another recession. Just because you want a hand out from the government does not mean we take someone elses job for you to get that hand out. Frickin Liberal Retard.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:18 am | Reply
      • patrick

        It does employ many people… in government jobs. Military is government, and military job (or defense contractor job) is a government job. That is why I said that it is a stimulus package. As a conservative you should be supporting private industry jobs, not government jobs created through federal dollars.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:21 am |
      • Craig

        Steve, not all of us, like YOU have a brain injury from being a lifer and standing up for the military just because you know nothing else. i suspect you helped us lose in nam?

        February 24, 2014 at 11:26 am |
      • Soylent

        After World War 2, tens of thousands of people left the military and it was the biggest boom our economy has had since the industrial revolution. Those people go out and join companies that can make use of their expertise, or start businesses of their own. These are highly motivated, highly disciplined men and women. They're not going to be discharged and then go home and sit at home on the dole.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:27 am |
      • Steve

        Craig, guess you have never done anything in your life to be proud of. No I am not from the Vietnam era, but I do respect the men and women that fought there. I respect my service and I respect the service of all who have served. Guess you were one of the ones through crap at the troops. Proves to me the best part of you ran down the crack of your mom's butt.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:37 am |
      • Steve

        Craig, you might need some toilet paper to wipe that crap coming out of your mouth.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:41 am |
    • bev

      Agreed. But a stimulus package gone awry – a few within a limited industry benefit. Our veterans ALWAYS pay the price.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:22 am | Reply
      • Steve

        Patrick, I understand where your coming from, but when the DOD cancels contracts in reverberates back to the Mom and Pop store on the corner that might sell a zipper used in making clothing for the DOD. It has always been the DOD to take the hit on budgets. Why not cut from places where we all know money is being wasted. DHS, EPA, and the ACA. These 3 are the bigest waste of money there is.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:28 am |
    • PG

      The US has a total of 10 Aircraft Carriers in service and 3 being built. The rest of the world has 13 total. Russia has 1 in service, as does China. These carriers in my mind represent the real strength of the US military. The ability to project that sort of power and presence globally, while still protecting our coasts puts us head and shoulders above any other military power in the world. My opinion is do away with 1/2 the air force, 1/2 the army, close 1/2 the overseas bases, and leave the Navy, special forces and drone forces in tact. We are 15-20 years ahead of any other country technologically. I find it ridiculous that the military has always been a sacred cow protected by hawks against spending cuts of any kind. We should not be the world's police man, and much of our military spending comes from that. Focus on the problems to our south....

      February 24, 2014 at 11:24 am | Reply
      • Craig

        Very well said by someone who understands the truth!! And we should focus on OUR south, the embarrassing US south!

        February 24, 2014 at 11:28 am |
      • Steve

        technology may be great, but technology cannot defend against millsions of chinese fighter coming at you.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:29 am |
      • Steve

        craig why is the South embarassing. Is it because we still have our values as a nation?

        February 24, 2014 at 11:30 am |
  55. Itsaconspiracy!

    Take 20% of the current war budget and spend it to put solar panels on every building in the US. Way better use of taxpayer money than developing really expensive ways to kill poor brownish people.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:11 am | Reply
  56. Charles

    Finally! You can only destroy the earth once. When did we decide to build an empire anyway?

    February 24, 2014 at 11:11 am | Reply
  57. Donald George MacDonald

    And our United States citizens have always been told, “there are no diplomatic alternative left,” so our finest sons and daughters must again go to war as bravely as we did and our ancestors did.

    And our U.S. leaders have always pledged that our finest sons and daughters bravely sacrificed their lives in foreign nations for something..."for our further freedom and democracy at home."

    And our U.S. leaders and citizens still try to coerce more of our finest youths to defend more of their chosen causes and to attack more of their chosen foes.

    And the U.S. has allocated $572 billion in "defense" spending for 2014.

    And our majority of citizens only parrot to others that U.S. global military strength and expansionism and weapons productions and weapons sales will make us safer when instead the opposite is surely true.

    And even our most patriotic and brave soldiers will not be able to protect us from our foreign blunders.

    And even our most patriotic and brave soldiers will not be able to protect us from those who fear U.S. global military expansionism and from those who covet our sold weapons of mass destruction and from those who despise the arrogance of U.S. actions and its failed foreign policies.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:11 am | Reply
    • Donald George MacDonald

      And the U.S. is the supreme military and economic power behind a worldwide military-industrial complex.

      And it is no surprise that our struggling U.S. and world economies, temporarily supported by weapons productions and sales, will continue to only flounder on by if...only if our "Masters of War" can fuel even more wars…even more foreign wars fueled by our failed foreign policies and with our sold weapons of mass destruction.

      And when “world peace’ is somehow discovered and is somehow forced upon even the U.S., the worldwide military-industrial complex, led by the U.S., will collapse.

      And this collapse will create a global economic depression and social upheaval that will put the “Great Depression” to shame.

      Why?

      Because this will be the price all world citizens will have to initially pay as we finally try to make right our past moral wrongs.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:12 am | Reply
  58. noneya

    This will make all of the warmongers unhappy. So let me get this straight... The Pentagon creates this multi-trillion dollar fiasco for the new jet fighter, and decides to lay off soldiers to pay for it?
    Classic.
    If this doesn't prove that the U.S. is run by defense contractors, I don't know what will.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:11 am | Reply
    • LINDA

      I agree with them.my hubby was in Viet Nam,say's the samething.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:14 am | Reply
  59. Ron

    This is a great beginning. Now how about cutting federal workers who have gold plated benefits and blotted salaries.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:11 am | Reply
    • Itsaconspiracy!

      Please enlightened one, tell us who they are.......credible studies of the federal workforce shows most are underpaid, have not had raises in years, and their benefits are not much different than private sector, except of course they are smart enough to demand the pensions the deserve. You deserve one too. Might want to unionize and demand what is rightfully yours instead of rolling over and letting the boss steal it from you.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:15 am | Reply
    • afvet

      You have no idea what you're talking about.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:18 am | Reply
  60. James

    Great! More unemployed to add to the government doles.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:11 am | Reply
    • Kevin

      More people at home = More demand.
      More demand = More profit for businesses, and busier stores.
      More profit for businesses and busier stores = Need for more employees

      February 24, 2014 at 11:17 am | Reply
    • bev

      What a Big-Government response there...

      February 24, 2014 at 11:23 am | Reply
  61. anthrogirl

    Good. I could use the tax break.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:11 am | Reply
    • Michele Davis

      Tax break? Instead of paying their salaries to defend our country, you'll be paying their unemployment benefits.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:22 am | Reply
  62. Itsaconspiracy!

    Take 20% of the current war budget and spend it to put solar panels on every building in the US.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:10 am | Reply
    • Raymond

      Or give it to NASA or the DoE.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:15 am | Reply
    • Don

      Are you a nut or something? Have you learned NOTHING from the solar scandals? Have you not learned that the government should not be just tossing money around anywhere. If they are going to slash the Defense Department then fine. It is a bad idea but if they do it then so be it. But taking the money and doing another bad idea with it is just stupid. All that would happen is they would GIVE the money to some solar companies and the plan would fall WAY short. Most buildings would never, ever see any kind of solar energy. But I guarantee that the solar companies would be sitting fat and happy. Right up until they went into bankruptcy. Can you say Solyndra?

      February 24, 2014 at 11:16 am | Reply
      • Kevin

        Yeah, the failure of a single company means the entire technology is wrong. Certainly, oil, coal, natural gas and nuclear energies never had government subsidies, and surely none of the pioneering companies in those techs failed...

        February 24, 2014 at 11:18 am |
      • Craig

        Don, please you tell on yourself! The US has been subsidizing oil and gas for well over 100 years to the tune of many hundreds of Trillions of dollars and lots of that was lost on bad wells, etc. that wasted money, lots of it. So you point to Solyndra, GET OVER IT! IT'S A DROP IN THE BUCKET COMPARED THOSE WHO WANT TO DO NOTHING MORE THAN DRILL, BABY DRILL!!!!!!!!! WE MUST CHANGE AND HELP OUR CLIMATE BEFORE ANY MORE LIKE YOU SQUAK!

        February 24, 2014 at 11:37 am |
      • Raymond

        >implying that Solyndra is the only solar company in America

        February 24, 2014 at 1:35 pm |
  63. Steve

    Hagel is nothing but a puppet for Obama. These cuts will be our nation in harms way. We are cutting our forces while Russia and China increase thiers. At one time we were a super power, now we have turned into a police force under this administrattion. Everyone take up your arms because you'll have to fight the next war. Cut the military to afford an inept health care system. Oh yeah, Obama wants to make a national police force, SS come to mind. Come one people, its not about the hand outs that everyone expects, its about preserving our nation.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:10 am | Reply
    • Mike

      Dude. Learn how to spell. It's the first sign of your overall ignorance.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:14 am | Reply
      • Steve

        Dude??? Sorry, did not use my spell checker like you did.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am |
    • johnbiggscr

      you want to claim the US only became the worlds police force under this administration? grow up

      February 24, 2014 at 11:15 am | Reply
      • Steve

        yes, because that is all we can do. Police force. We cannot maintain a war on two fronts. This was the policy of the US Military for many years. Now we cannot even maintain one front. Who knows what will happend with China, North Korea, or even Russia. They are building while we are cowering.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:23 am |
    • Kevin

      Name one actual conventional military force that has attacked the US since 1941.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:16 am | Reply
      • Craig

        The only time the US has been attacked since wwii was 9/11 under the Bush watch and there went $3 Trillion, nuff said

        February 24, 2014 at 11:41 am |
      • Steve

        not much like the 7 Trillion that Obama has done.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:45 am |
      • Kevin

        Steve, you know full well that $4.5 of the "new" $7 trillion was simply accounting for the cost of the war, and another trillion was due to the Bush Tax Cuts.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:50 am |
    • rrock

      The pentagon is bloated and has been unable or unwilling to balance its books for over 10 years. It is a convenient way for congressmen to send pork to their districts. We can no longer afford to be the world's policeman while other western countries spend their money on their economies. We must demand that other nations do their part.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:21 am | Reply
      • Steve

        Kevin,

        That total debt figure stood at just under $16.75 trillion on Oct. 4. That’s an increase of 57.6 percent since Obama was first sworn in.
        http://www.factcheck.org/2013/10/obamas-numbers-october-update/

        February 24, 2014 at 12:10 pm |
    • Just a thought

      Might want to check the history just a little. It was the First George Bush that mentioned the U.S. as the police of the world under the doctrine of "The new world order" I believe Obama got handed a big pile of Dung, and is trying to end what some one else started, fully utilizing ALL available to him, INCLUDING mandates.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:25 am | Reply
      • ireuel

        Might want to check history a lot farther back then the point at which is convenient to the point you are making. So take religion and add that to your facts and then you may just find out, by doing a little research that it was not either of the Bush's that started this. I don't think either of them were alive thousands of years ago. The cause of this all is religion it self. That is a fact and if you do not understand that. I feel sorry for you and all the others they believe that it was just one man in present time that is responsible for this. Oh don't forget the Democrats voted for this last 2 wars also, and no GWB did not lie or did all the Democratic Politicians that said the same thing about WMD. They are always for something just before it goes bad, you know Heath care is the best, now they are running for the hill to hide from that total waste of money program that will never be solvent to sustain it self. PS I am not religious because it is the cause of most wars. I do believe there is Good and Evil though.

        February 24, 2014 at 1:33 pm |
    • anothermuse

      There's almost nothing in your post that's actually true. Except perhaps that Russia and China may be growing their forces. The cutbacks suggested would have no impact on that since there is no likely scenario of ground conflicts with either of those nations that a 400,000 person army can't deal with. We are exceptionally over armed and armed to fight a war that is unlikely to take place, meaning a large scale ground war.

      Our budgets and troop levels could be reduced by half and still serve it's deterrent role against both Russia and China. Unless of course we get sucked into their regional land grabs. Our navy alone can deal with those threats for a decade before the troop issue would be a problem.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:27 am | Reply
      • Steve

        everyone;s so high and mighty about this. I have one question. If cut, where should the money go?

        February 24, 2014 at 11:39 am |
  64. The Dead Critic

    The unemployment rate is over (including those off the grid, people unemployed over 3 years) 10%-13% already. The Prez trying to get over the 15% hump? The military can be used for other things than just taking life and policing the world. Use your heads guys.....common sense.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:10 am | Reply
  65. Joe Famolaro

    I think if we did not fund 85% of the UN then we would not have this problem. However, I do agree with making cuts in the Army but I'm not too sure about making Air Force cuts nor Navy if they do. That is the real defense of our country think about it we are on our own continent. Being able to stop someone before they step foot on our soil is a pretty big deal.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:09 am | Reply
    • Speedster

      85% of our Funding for the UN (when we pay it, which is infrequently), does not add up to 1% of military spending.

      Sorry, math is hard (for you).

      February 24, 2014 at 11:14 am | Reply
      • Itsaconspiracy!

        Less than 1/10 th of a percent of the war department budget. ThenUS contributes 22% of the UN budget, to the tune of less than 1BN.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:18 am |
    • Dale Harmon

      The US provides 22% of the UN's budget.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:17 am | Reply
      • anothermuse

        And is still dwarfed by the dollars spent on defense. Not a rational argument..

        February 24, 2014 at 11:28 am |
    • chrisrapier

      We don't actually provide 85% of the funding to the UN. We provide, by charter, a maximum of 22% of the budget. The amount of money each member contributes to the UN is determined by each country's GNI. As we have one of the highest GNIs in the world we contribute the largest amount – roughly $6B (which is rounding error in our military budget). The EU contributes 40% of the total UN budget.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
    • kahuna

      USA funds 22% of the regular U.N. budget. Stop listening to FOX for your FACTS!

      February 24, 2014 at 11:23 am | Reply
      • Craig

        Really, this forum should disallow all inputs from fox, no surprise it originates from the south!

        February 24, 2014 at 11:44 am |
  66. vidal808

    Great job! no need for those large bases in Europe, Asia and some other areas of this planet? we have the capacity to get there within hours by air and necessary by sea. We need to spend money on our infrastructure and education, right here at home – I hope the Republicans can see that and don't try to obstruct the move of this Administration.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:09 am | Reply
    • The Dead Critic

      Think Jimmy Carter...then try again.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:12 am | Reply
      • Kevin

        So it's our job to police the Middle-East? Sorry, but the last 40 years of foreign policy bungles have shown that it's a bad idea.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:15 am |
      • Itsaconspiracy!

        Righties love to repeat the reagan commercials about Carter......historians and political scientists have a bit different view that reaganistas.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am |
  67. Smeagel4T

    Cutting back troop levels to pre-WWII is long overdue, but troops are not the core of wasteful military spending. Although no-doubt there is plenty of bloat in the Pentagon's administration strength.

    The Pentagon's graft and corruption wastes money on the military industrial complex welfare queen corporations like Lockheed. That's because Lockheed has the corporate welfare bucks to keep bribing congress for more corporate welfare bucks.

    That's reflected in the saving of the totally corrupt F35 program. A plane that is now six years overdue, has bloated to cost $1.5 TRILLION, and STILL remains less functional (LITERALLY) than a $60,000 Cessna. Why? Because the contract cut with Lockheed under the Bush Administration (I'm only saying that to cut off the Obama critics of making the mistake of trying to blame Obama) said that the customer (us, through our government) had minimal oversight of the project, and that if Lockheed made a mistake we'd get the honor of paying Lockheed to fix that mistake. Can anybody think of a better incentive for a company to make a long string of "mistakes"?

    February 24, 2014 at 11:09 am | Reply
    • chrisrapier

      Not so sure about that. 30 years ago the average annual cost of each soldier was around $48k. Currently the cost is closer to $150k. That's not a small chunk of change when multiplied over the large number of service people we have.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:21 am | Reply
  68. mm

    You have the Republicans to thank for that. They are the ones who committed the tax payers of this country to 2 open-ended/ill-planned wars. Both of which were financed (through China) from day one and unfunded for repayment under their 2 term administration. It was only under Obama that we started paying down that debt.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:08 am | Reply
    • afvet

      Afghanistan was reaction to 9/11 – or do you think 3k murdered Americans should have gone unanswered?
      Iraq was in response to Saddam's repeatedly ignoring multiple UN resolutions.
      I'm not commenting on how both were handled politically (politicians ALWAYS screw things up somehow), just the reason the military action is justified.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:21 am | Reply
      • Craig

        Sorry, you provide no justification what so ever. spend your own money, sell your toys

        February 24, 2014 at 12:12 pm |
      • chrisrapier

        Iraq was a mistake. We all know that. There was no need or cause to go invade Iraq. We also ended up making Iran that much stronger by removing Iraq as a regional blocking power. Afghanistan was a righteous act. However, Iraq ended up distracting us from the war we should have been fighting.

        February 24, 2014 at 12:23 pm |
    • anothermuse

      Both wars had bi partisan support.. Iraq less so..Please come back try less partisan arguments.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:32 am | Reply
      • chrisrapier

        Both wars had bi-partisan support – that is true. All that means is that they were both wrong at least in terms of Iraq. We *never* should have gone in there and the supposed information supporting the war (WMD development) was highly suspect at the time – at least the non-politically motivated people in charge of analyzing the data were concerned.

        February 24, 2014 at 1:41 pm |
  69. Steven Gold

    Cut the things that are most costly and least likely to be needed/used.
    Tanks for example.
    Also let's stop fighting multi-year long civil wars in other countries.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:08 am | Reply
  70. JPM1952

    Pre-WWII levels?? Is that 1939 or 1941?

    February 24, 2014 at 11:08 am | Reply
  71. nonyabidnes2

    In its heyday 1969, we had over 500,000 troops in Vietnam. Somehow I seem unable to trust politicians with their math.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:07 am | Reply
  72. Haybaler

    Will they be closing bases in the South?

    February 24, 2014 at 11:07 am | Reply
  73. Robert Breisch

    lol-so-I did not read it close enough-only 100,000 Army to lose their jobs-the careers they enlisted for the benefits promised-do not enlist-its a big lie and you will be lucky to get anything out of it. "Serve" your country-Bull! Your lives have far more value than the broken promises Congress and the Military industrial complex have in store for you!

    February 24, 2014 at 11:06 am | Reply
    • Will S

      You understand that everyone gets paid monthly for the work they perform, right? It isn't a lump sum? So everyone is being fairly compensated for their service? Also, they will undoubtedly implement a draw-down over three or four years; by reducing the number of new enlisted they accept, offering 15-year early retirements, and normal attrition (most people leave the service after 4 years), they can easily cut 100k troops without drastic involuntary outs.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:24 am | Reply
  74. Kevin

    Good. The "defense" department eats up about 1/3 of our budget each year, and it does so propping up pointless military bases like those left over from WW2. It's the single most fiscally responsible thing we can do, especially considering that our military is larger than every other industrialized nations' combined.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:06 am | Reply
  75. Steve

    Cutting troop count is not going to make a significant dent. You think paying privates and other low ranks is the problem with defense spending? Ask that kid of hard question to people like hagel, cnn

    February 24, 2014 at 11:06 am | Reply
    • Kevin

      Steve, troop count doesn't just cut labor liabilities, it means fewer bases needed, fewer weapons needed, fewer support personnel needed, less complicated logistical procedures, etc.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:08 am | Reply
    • Will S

      Cost of F-35 program over 55 years, +/-2,500 planes: $850 billion (lowball, most estimates are in the range of $1.5 trillion)

      Cost of 100k enlisted at (generously) 45k/year: $4.5 billion
      Cost of 100k enlisted for 55 years: $247 billion
      Overhead for above troops: generously at 200%: $594 billion
      Total cost of troops for 55 years saved: $841 billion

      So even use absurdly generous numbers, you save $9 billion over 55 years by eliminating one new aircraft program.

      Personally, I think we should eliminate both.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:36 am | Reply
  76. mm

    Good. If we haven't learned anything over the past 12-13 years, we should have learned that it is downright stupid to engage in ill-planned, obsolete wars over nothing, which are financed by China, ultimately. Talk about long-term damage to national security..

    February 24, 2014 at 11:06 am | Reply
  77. Matthew Kilburn

    "USA spends more on military spending than the next top 10 countries combine."

    Yes. What this statistic ignores, however, is exactly what each country gets for its spending. The United States might well have the most expensive military, but we don't even come close to having the largest standing army. We have that nagging little inconvenience of actually having to pay and recruit our troops. In China or Russia, you get a conscription notice and you're in the military and if you don't like it, well, there's nothing much you can do about it.

    A military that is strong enough to defeat an enemy, but not strong enough to establish stability in the wake of a battlefield victory is a military that will sew the seeds to the next war, with the same enemy, before they've even cleaned off their guns.

    Nation-building might not be popular, but if our goal is true security, rather than a revenge-like hit-you-when-you-hit-us approach, and if we truly want to see some form of global order and stability, then nation-building is a necessary component of a conflict.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:05 am | Reply
    • aleenik

      You have no clue what you are talking about. In China, while conscription is part of the law, it doesn't take place. The army is entirely made up of volunteers.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:09 am | Reply
      • MdawgMike

        Chinese "volunteers"? Classic!

        February 24, 2014 at 11:26 am |
    • karlotious

      A standing army means nothing when there are nukes.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:15 am | Reply
  78. jjr

    So does this mean that the USA will no longer be the worlds police force? Maybe the UN will step up....yeah right.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:05 am | Reply
  79. Alex

    People complain about military cuts and then complain that we are in debt. Something has to give.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:05 am | Reply
    • marsha321

      How about cutting the ridiculously overblown salaries of our representatives in Congress?

      February 24, 2014 at 11:24 am | Reply
  80. rol

    so – that adds what – another 1M – or is it 2M to the unemployment line? The 200K or so military guys – plus all the civilians that make a living off them... tent makers, boot makers, housing, etc.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:03 am | Reply
    • david

      From a fiscal standpoint, govt jobs do not exactly equate to lowering unemployment

      February 24, 2014 at 11:13 am | Reply
    • Coffeeclue

      Yep, let's keep on making buggy whips. God forbid we lay off unneeded employees in order to make us more efficient.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:19 am | Reply
  81. Rusty

    At least I already like Chinese food for when they take over entirely. Thank you Barry.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:03 am | Reply
    • Robert

      The Chinese will take over because they save and educate their people while we cut job training and education programs to support our military which is larger than the next few countries combined. Uneducated people will ruin this country, not a small reduction in military spending.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:06 am | Reply
    • Kevin

      China needs a customer. Without us, they don't have enough demand to maintain their supply of labor.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:09 am | Reply
    • JakeKincaid

      You are a ridiculous person. Get a grip.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:27 am | Reply
  82. Tom in Desoto, TX

    At any recent time there is anywhere from 1.4 to 1.5 MILLION people in the service. WHY? There always talk of a military conflict to gauge the publics feeling. Let the people of the involved countries figure out THEIR differences. Vietnam, which I am a veteran of, Iraq, and Afghanistan had the U.S. invade and Vietnam was an abysmal farce and failure. The other two countries are sliding back after 10 YEARS of U.S. involvement. Much like when the Germans fought with the British in the Revolutionary War, it wasn't the German fight. It wasn't there land and didn't have a dog in the fight. When I was in Vietnam I didn't care about the country or people, my ONLY concern was getting home alive. What also was somewhat startling, and us troops questioned, we saw A LOT of Army eligible age Vietnamese guys walking around as civilians. Our general thought was, "Why aren't they in the service? it's there country. What are we doing here." There is NO NEED for the U.S. to be the worlds policeman. For the 3 needless wars I mentioned there are over 75,000 DEAD, countless maimed. Returning home you may get little ribbons indicating you did some military good. I gave my 2 Bronze Stars to me sister. They stay in the family but I don't care about them.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:03 am | Reply
  83. Lewis

    If you put what all of the world spend on it's military together and doubled it then you would finally equal what America spends on it's military. This will be no big loss to the military, honestly it will make the military more effective seeing as it will be choosing only specialized and capable people rather than just collage dropouts.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:03 am | Reply
    • Trish

      I didn't know there were actuall classes for doing collages that you could drop out of. Guess you are just mad that the military wouldn't accept you with your "collage" degree!!

      February 24, 2014 at 11:11 am | Reply
  84. Robert Breisch

    They do not have the $$ for the lame F35 jet-so-cut back on troops! $4trillion for 1 fleet of jets-so-just dump another 500,000 unemployable individuals into the empty job market.Not very many jobs for combat soldiers

    February 24, 2014 at 11:03 am | Reply
    • fact

      Exactly

      February 24, 2014 at 11:05 am | Reply
  85. oldbear60

    In the final analysis all wars are settled by "boots on the ground" Don't lose that capability. And yes, the military is bloated in several areas, starting with general Officers, outdated weapons systems and overseas committments that we shouldn't be in. Cut there as well.

    February 24, 2014 at 11:02 am | Reply
  86. mro

    blacks gots to be unhappy – this will push them even further down the unemployment lines as I will hire a Vet over a Lazy any day

    February 24, 2014 at 11:01 am | Reply
    • mm

      Does this mean the veterans that actually need care will get it now – and on the other side of the coin – Does this mean all the waste and needless spending in our veterans' care will be stream lined now?

      February 24, 2014 at 11:14 am | Reply
    • Don't be a hypocrite

      Lazy white bigot hating lazy blacks? I'm assuming you are from the south, gainfully employed, but overweight and throw garbage out of your truck windows because we have "n@##$rs to pick that up". You might have the benefit of being white and employed, but you're still a lazy piece of trash waste of natural resources. This is coming from a white person. Your ignorance makes you hated by your own kind, buddy. Hell, please. Reservation for one.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:28 am | Reply
  87. MightyMoo

    I like this plan, we cut the budget for equipment that works and is cheaper by plane but may not necessarly be useful for equipment that is considered ncessary yet problemmatic and much more expensive per plane. What can possibly go wrong?

    February 24, 2014 at 11:01 am | Reply
  88. RLynn

    So, what happens if we are attacked again? DRAFT? Guess the President thinks there are no longer any threats to the US? No terrorists that hate us? Yeah, good luck with that......

    February 24, 2014 at 11:01 am | Reply
    • johne7

      Explain how having 400-500k troops helps to protect against another 9-11 attack.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:05 am | Reply
    • CJ

      Did you know the United States spends more on the military than all other nations of the world combined. Maybe after a small decrease in Military spending, we will not be spending that much but the cuts mentioned in the article above are not massive. Our nation is changing our approach and would prefer to not invade a nation with boots on the ground unless it is absolutely necessary.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:11 am | Reply
    • Kevin

      The last time a military strike occurred on US soil was in Hawaii.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:11 am | Reply
    • paul213

      The nature of warfare has changed – there will be no more wars such as those envisaged in the 50's-80's for which the current armed forces were designed and built to address. We need to adapt or be left with a monolithic organisation unable to address the new nature of warfare.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:12 am | Reply
    • Raymond

      The U.S. is not at war with any organized military. The U.S. is at war with bands of rebels patrolling the mountains of Arabia and western Asia. There's no weapon of theirs that they can hit us with that our military can stop.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:20 am | Reply
    • Tom in Desoto, TX

      If the U.S. soil was attacked that is one thing. There's no reason for 1.4 to 1.5 MILLION People to waiting for a republican president to start a war. The F-35 jet is JUNK and doesn't work, it's 7 YEARS behind schedule, over budget by 2X's at 120 MILLION EACH. The U.S. doesn't need to have a nuclear sub every place possible. I was in the artillery in Vietnam, there isn't a civilian job that's compatible. There are a number of MOS's, jobs, in the service that doesn't have a civilian equal. The bloated military spending has long ago become an anvil on the infrastructure.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:29 am | Reply
  89. Bret Thoman

    Good

    February 24, 2014 at 10:59 am | Reply
  90. ireuel

    This is like a Yo Yo. President Clinton cut do to cold war over. Yeah Right, Not, needed more troops at a later date and it cost twice as much to rebuild military. If anyone thinks a smaller military is ever going to work, they are not at all in touch with reality. Do I like a lot of my tax dollars being spent on a military? No. But this has and will always be a world of good and evil. The history is evident and weak countries are replaced. Now if we must make cuts to spending, I am sure Washington is full of other areas that can be cut. Wait till you see the retired military people that can not go to the commissary on post to get there well deserve discounts on basic needs. Oh well next war we will hopefully be prepared for. Yes next war, there will always be another whether you believe the talking points or not. Both sides have supported it and not just what is referenced here as Neo-cons. Check the record, Democrats voted for war to. Kumbyebye if we are not.

    February 24, 2014 at 10:59 am | Reply
    • Jimmy

      The problem is we're the world police which as evidence shows creates just as many enemies as it eliminates. Our budget is more then the next 13 countries combined, if your for keeping it that way you better be for raising taxes significantly across the board while cutting essentials like infrastructure, education, SS

      February 24, 2014 at 11:13 am | Reply
    • Ted

      We can't continue to think of ourselves as the world's policemen. It will bankrupt us if we do. And a lot of our "help" to other countries isn't wanted. Instead of trying to win glory abroad, we need to clean up our house at home.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:14 am | Reply
  91. The Dead Critic

    I was in the military when Carter was president. He almost single-handily destroyed the military by gutting it to pay for his failed policies. Then Reagan bailed it out and earned a money victory against the Russians, and defeated them without firing a shot. Then came the Clinton's and their attempt at destroying the military by creating massive troop cuts which I had too endure again a second time. As an independent voter (I HATE the 2 party system), I see no PAY OFF destroying the only leverage we have in this world. I get the distinct feeling the democrats just want our nation to be ruled by the UN.

    -US Army Retired (Airborne Rangers lead the way)

    February 24, 2014 at 10:59 am | Reply
    • Andy

      And then came Bush, who started two of the most destructive wars so far this century.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:07 am | Reply
      • afvet

        Afghanistan was because of 9/11 – or should Bush have not reacted to 3k Americans being murdered? Or maybe he should have done something useless like Clinton did and lobbed a couple missiles?

        February 24, 2014 at 11:25 am |
      • Craig

        Of those 3K killed over 50% killed themselves!!!!! Face the facts and zip it.

        February 24, 2014 at 12:17 pm |
      • Ted

        afvet,
        Maybe you're right about Afghanistan. But keep in mind that Bush didn't pay for those wars or his Medicare prescription benefit. He did more to balloon our deficit than anyone else has done, except maybe Reagan. The debt limit was increased 8 times during Bush's administration. Republicans in Congress were fine with increasing it since he was a Republican president.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:34 am |
    • add more facts

      The Russkies were drained by 10 years in Afghanistan. Don't give Reagan so much credit. Odd we never learned.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:07 am | Reply
    • Ted

      add more facts is right. Keep in mind that the communist world was already starting to collapse in the late 70's, before Reagan was in office. You can see that in the Solidarity Strike in Poland in 1979. Communism crumbled from within, not because of anything we did. The Russians got tired of it. Reagan might have sped the process up a little, but not by much.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:17 am | Reply
  92. fact

    This sounds great and all, but where will these people find jobs when they come back? Think about it.

    February 24, 2014 at 10:59 am | Reply
    • hkirwin

      we need more poor and unemployed to add support to the Dim ticket

      February 24, 2014 at 11:01 am | Reply
    • ireuel

      They won't, if you search a resent article on the subject, they are already not finding jobs. Of course not on this site.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:02 am | Reply
    • Coffeeclue

      So we should spend taxpayer dollars to keep up the unneeded military because soldiers can't find civilian jobs? Brilliant!

      February 24, 2014 at 11:11 am | Reply
      • Steve

        either we pay them one way or another. I prefer them having a job.

        February 24, 2014 at 12:07 pm |
    • Kevin

      Their return will mean an increase in demand, which will drive businesses to grow, then hire.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:12 am | Reply
    • mart

      They could be put to work repairing all the crumbling infrastructure across the country. But then fixing that stuff is boring and doesn't make for hero's and you cant do a flyby at Daytona 500 with a new bridge

      February 24, 2014 at 11:35 am | Reply
  93. FlatFour

    Heck, if we were smart and organized enough we actually wouldn't have to cut any programs from our defense budget. We waste hundreds of billions simply by over-paying for arms and equipment. For instance – we equip our Apache Helicopters with Hellfire Missles we pay $200,000 for A PIECE. How much do we sell hellfire missles to our allies for? Like $50k.

    We do that just about for everything we buy. Politicians get kickbacks for their campaign trails by negotiating HIGH prices for many types of military equipment or negotiate low prices on Inferior equipment that costs us more money on the long-run because manufacturing was done in X district vs. another.

    If we just made smart spending decisions for our defense equipment, we could cut 2/3 of our defense spending. The only change would be that we'd be shooting some different guns, flying different planes and launching different missiles etc. But our capabilities would be just as good as they already are.

    See the M1A1 Abrams tank – the costliest tank to operate in the world and we have about 5x as many as we will EVER need even in WWIII. If we were smart, we'd have the right amount of diesel powered medium weight tanks that cost 1/2 as much as an Abrams to buy, 1/3 as much to run and simply rely on advanced radar and munitions to make up for the difference in armor. That's like 200Billion in savings right there....

    February 24, 2014 at 10:58 am | Reply
  94. ChiefTom

    It looks like the Air Force is trying to kill the A10 again. They were trying to kill it before the first Gulf War but realized they didn't have any ground/close air support without it. They were trying to kill it again before the Iraq war and again kept it in service. So here we go again.

    What are they going to use to replace it?
    Sure won't be the F35. The Air Force will never let their pretty little stealth jet get close enough to the ground to get shot at.

    February 24, 2014 at 10:58 am | Reply
    • Iraqvet02

      The A10 is a fine plane with a unique role in combat but their numbers are limited. The AF has to realize their inventory cannot fly forever and those aging aiframes will have to be retired at some point before they start having accidents (mechainical or stress failures) or it becomes too expensive to maintain them.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:43 am | Reply
  95. Robyn

    .

    You mean that after only 14 years,
    the Pentagon noticed that you don't fight terrorists hijacking an airplane with tanks and artillery?
    Wow, nothing gets by those guys.

    Next thing you know,
    they will say that cavalry charges are obsolete
    and that we should try out that newfangled telephone gizmo from Alexander Graham Bell.

    .

    February 24, 2014 at 10:57 am | Reply
    • johnbiggscr

      'they will say that cavalry charges are obsolete'

      T-90s to right of them,
      T-90s to left of them,
      T-90s in front of them
        Volley'd and thunder'd;
      Storm'd at with shot and shell,
      Boldly they rode and well,
      Into the jaws of Death,
      Into the mouth of Hell
        Rode the six hundred.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:04 am | Reply
  96. nuevocicero

    Great! Now all we need to do is cut our UN contributions by 85% and we will be doing great!

    February 24, 2014 at 10:57 am | Reply
    • Ron

      Can't agree with you more. Time for the rest of the world to pull its weight.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:06 am | Reply
  97. Balance

    Great, you think we would be able to defend ourselves without having to outspend almost every other country combined.

    On the other hand, I sure wish we would reform the social spending side as well. Do we really need to take money from the middle class to pay for poor people to stay home and have an average of 6 children? Some cuts there with some accountability would really help this country out.

    February 24, 2014 at 10:57 am | Reply
    • MIchele

      Agreed. My husband is in the National Guard. He has been deployed numerous times over the past 10 years due to the shortage of "regular" military personnel.
      Democrats are going to bankrupt this country. So today we cut military, what's next? We are financially at the mercy of some foreign countries due to our debt, now we will "physically" be at mercy of those countries.
      Who will defend us? All of those folks at home who collect money for doing NOTHING??? Why don't we make them give up two to four years of their life for taking welfare and other benefits? That's win win to me.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:09 am | Reply
      • johnbiggscr

        'Democrats are going to bankrupt this country. So today we cut military, what's next? We are financially at the mercy of some foreign countries due to our debt, now we will "physically" be at mercy of those countries.'

        oh noooos, these cuts means we will be left with the capability of an old man with a stick, or something. run,. run for your lives.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:11 am |
      • mart

        run up the debt but that okay as long as we have a big military so we dont have to pay it. Wouldn't it really make more sense to get the financials fixed so we dont have to worry about someone coming to collect

        February 24, 2014 at 11:40 am |
      • Phillip from Texas

        Mlchele most that get food stamps or other government help are elderly...so they should just dye in 4-5 years so we can a have a few more F-35's........:)

        Last time I checked the National Guard is part of the Military

        February 24, 2014 at 11:53 am |
    • Ron

      We have a revenue problem and not necessarily a spending problem. The tax cuts for the Corporations and 1% have proven devastating. Time for the Trust Fund Babies to let go of some of daddy's windfall.

      February 24, 2014 at 11:09 am | Reply
      • Balance

        Sure, go ahead and tax the rich more. Poor people are having kids at four times the rate of everyone else. They are born to parents that don't care and go to schools that could care less. How long do you think the extra money from the taxes will be able to pay for this exponentially growing population?

        February 24, 2014 at 12:18 pm |
    • Phillip from Texas

      Really blaming poor people and they all have 6 kids.....please inform yourself.
      The military is bloated and they know it. Let them trim it down...they know where to cut the fat

      February 24, 2014 at 11:49 am | Reply
      • Balance

        You get informed. Go look up the birth rate of people below the poverty line. Then look at the birthrate of the middle class. The middle class can't afford to have many kids because they are paying for those in poverty to have them. Each poor person gets $60,000 budgeted for them each. That's just social services and not the education system.

        February 24, 2014 at 12:14 pm |
  98. B Bruyere

    This makes sense to me intuitively; do we ever expect any more in-the-trenches battles that are similar to the levels of WW II? Doubtful. Wars and related havoc occur differently now. Dont just keep funding tanks and planes and soliders because of some fabricated "can't cut the military" rhetoric that equates defense cuts with lack of patriotism. If we are ever to get our debt under control, we have to look at defense, the largest component of the discretionary portion of the federal budget. It has to be in the discussion.

    February 24, 2014 at 10:57 am | Reply
  99. Dave - Phx

    About time! All these Republicans who want to cut the budget need to start here.

    February 24, 2014 at 10:57 am | Reply
    • Glenn

      how about the increase in spending on unemployment benefits you are about to create

      February 24, 2014 at 10:59 am | Reply
    • hkirwin

      they need across the board cuts in the same percentages

      February 24, 2014 at 11:00 am | Reply
      • Patrick O.

        We have already seen cuts everywhere else. The military is the only government agency that hasn't gone under the knife.

        February 24, 2014 at 11:43 am |
  100. James

    If we keep cutting education and jobs programs there will be nothing left to fight for!

    February 24, 2014 at 10:57 am | Reply
    • Robert

      Exactly!!!

      February 24, 2014 at 11:03 am | Reply
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