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Solution #5:  Bring Home the Ground Troops

The Pentagon's planning scenario is to fight three wars at the same time:  one in Europe, one in Asia, and one in the Middle East. Is this really necessary?  

The last presidential military budget request of $773 billion included $177.5 billion for the Army, $194 billion for the Air Force and Space Force, and $230.8 billion for the Navy and Marine Corps.  The sum of our defense spending is about 40% of all the defense spending on earth, according to the 2022 SIPRI Military Expenditure Database.  By contrast, China spends about 13% and Russia about 4%.  So we are currently outspending China by 3:1 and Russia by 10:1.  We have room to safely reduce military spending.

Add to these facts that our European allies, without us, are outspending Russia by 4:1; our Asian allies are spending nearly as much as China (82%), and the Middle Eastern regimes generally friendlier towards us are collectively spending more than Iran.

It's time for us to begin downsizing the Army and bringing those troops (Marines, also) home, giving them a more defensive mission.  We should have learned in recent decades that being an occupying / pacifying force is not our distinctive competency.  Let the UN do that.

We can continue to support our European, Asian and Middle Eastern allies with our best-in-class Navy and Air Force.  We can continue to invest in the best strike forces on earth (Marines, SEALs, etc.) to carry out missions on foreign territory when necessary.  And of course we must maintain a nuclear deterrent that dissuades anyone on earth from provoking us. 

We can do this without abandoning our contractual allies. But they must create more self-sufficiency in their national defense, as has Israel. Our assistance to allies should involve diplomatic support, selling them defensive armaments, sharing military intelligence, providing air and naval support.  We can no longer afford to give near-unlimited armaments to our friends. We are doing it now entirely with borrowed money.

Paid for by Bob King for Texas-21
Kristin Abel, Treasurer
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