Would the U.S. military still be able to adequately defend the nation if it were half its current size?
So now our Nation's guard is being debated of a decrease? Four more years...four more years...four more years....
Our country is huge!!
America enjoys its freedoms because of brave Americans who have died and bled in the battlefield, if you lower the size of military watch our enemies take advantage. You need a congress and leadership with Military experience to know that
Our power is always relative to the other powers like russia and china. I think if we stop looking at them and they grow in size then that would be threatening.
Before WW2 we had pearl harbor. Before iraq we had 911. both tomes we went from being vulnerable to being apex predator. So yes well be fine without preemptive buildup.
The wording is misleading. I read it as the country being half the size.
I read it clearly as the military being half the size. Respectfully, I believe you read this question too quickly.
It's immoral for a country to spend more or war than it does on taking care of the needs of its citizens. We could cut the military budget in half and still have room to spare. Unfortunately we've allowed military spending to become such a major component of our economy that we're addicted to it.
That's simply not true. Military spending is about 1/4 of the budget. Most of the rest is social spending.
It's irresponsible for someone to comment on this issue when they think we spend more on defense than on social welfare.
I said no. Even when we stop playing world police, we'll still have a lot of people gunning for us. Personally, I'd like to see an increase in Guard/Reserve strength and a decrease in active strength. Revive the citizen-soldier concept that America's military was built on.
I agree completely.. Our enemies come from us sticking our nose in stuff for America's personal gain and that is not right.
The citizen soldier idea is how America was made and if we re-employ that idea we can more influence our steady ride to socialism/fascism.
No the military budget is only as big as the next 16 countries combined... Including china! And the neo cons want more wars and military spending but they'll burn the social safety net? Military budget comes from the tax paying citizens that they're destroying, imbeciles....
Defending the United States? Yes.
Playing World Police? We're headed for bankruptcy because of it.
You have just painted half of the picture.
More spending doesn't mean more protection, contrary to popular belief. We have thousands of tanks we don't use, and our nation is wasting the future on war and destruction.
Considering how the war on terror is lasting more than ten years, I don't think we should cut defense. That is the LAST place the government should cut. We need to be able to readily defend ourselves and help our allies.
Coming from an Active Duty person, how the hell do you expect us to protect, defend and fight with HALF the personnel and supplies that we have?!?!?!
You people are damn-near BEGGING for a defeat!!!
Exactly! Stay safe, and God bless!
By bringing you back home where you belong, protecting the nation not raping resources from others. :D
And how about fighting them there so the fight doesn't come here?!?!?! No sh!t right?!?!
It could be done in a way that would not hurt our national defense. However, whenever it is discussed in politics, this is not what they are talking about.
They are talking about uniform cuts, without adjusting how things are done. They want to do all the same stuff with less people and things.
We need to draw down, around the world. Not necessarily pull out, but drastically reduce our presence, then move those resources to our boarders (ei: physical boarders, air space, customs, etc.)
"Walk softly, speak softly, but carry a big stick." President Theodore Roosevelt
Basically saying, it's better to have what you "don't need", rather than vice versa.
That philosophy is fine and dandy for a country that has money to spend. Our country is in massive debt. Having excess of something should be the last thing on our mind.
And we could cut the spending for this "stick" in half and still be spending more than twice as much as anyone else.
Absolutely if we actually started just defending ourselves and not inserting ourselves
We spend about 25% of our national budget on defense, and our military is the largest and best equipped in the world. We are the #1 defense spender in the world, and we spend more than the next 5 or 6 nations put together. The only wars we're in right now are wars we started.
So yes, our military could be half the size and do the job effectively
Wow! So many military experts here!
Heck no would be my choice if it where an option.
I feel like if you're not in the military or have extensive military knowledge, your opinion is invalid.
If you don't work at Macdonalds nor do you have extensive knowledge on Macdonalds, you can't have an opinion on it.
I agree, Shelby.
Oh, I forgot that a national defense system and a fast food chain were comparable. Silly me.
You're missing the point. It is foolish to say people's opinions are invalid unless they have extensive knowledge on the subject at hand.
Maybe this will be easier to understand:
"Unless you have participated in China's government, or have extensive knowledge on it, your opinion is invalid."
You can have extensive knowledge on just about anything, but never become directly involved in it, which is where true knowledge comes from. There's always more to the "story" that's behind the scenes.
I say yes, because I have tremendous faith in our men in uniform. But it sure would make their job a lot harder and more dangerous if we were ever invaded.
I am in the military and we don't need to reduce it. The area around military bases are booming economies because military members have money to spend. If you cut the amount of military, those businesses would be hurt as well.
You should also know that there is A LOT of fat that could be trimmed. I'm in too, the DoD has way of much money. But Defense is one of those things that most people have been scared into or think its patriotic to support without question. Questioning is how this country started.
The military budget and spending could be cut to some extent without hurting defense. Probably not by half, but certainly by a lesser percentage.
Notice the very distinct difference between the intelligent, reasonable notions, and the idiotic hillbilly fear/hate motivated ones.. I pray the war driven half of our population evolves before it's too late
Such hate for hillbillies. So sad.
It's not the size of the military, head count, that is costing us the most, it the freaking ridiculously expensive defense contracts..
I'd like this multiple times if I could!!!
Defend itself, yes... Police the world, no.... And IMO that would be a good thing
Can anybody explain what the NATO is doing in Afghanistan?
Bin Laden is dead.
I couldn't care less what the Taliban do, it's not our responsibility.
Let them kill each other and get our boys home.
Just sayin....it was the Taliban who harbored and supported such folks as bin laden
We handled Afghanistan wrong. We should have either sent in a small, elite force to hunt down and assassinate Bin Laden; or we should've given the Taliban the choice between handing Bin Laden over, or having the entirety of Afghanistan bombed into a desolate wasteland. No need for so many boots.
It definitely would.
It wouldn't, however, then be able to serve as the global police force for most of the rest of the world.
Yes we have more military than most of the world put together. We need those funds for other things.
Half our military strength will be enough to defend the country.
It's unlikely we get attacked anyway.
We just have to stop policing the world.
I disagree about the likelihood of attack. North Korea and Iran would both love to stick it to us. And I don't trust China as far as I can throw them. That said, if we vastly improved our aerial, naval and missile defenses with new technologies, we could reduce the need for a large standing army.
Kind of the Iron Dome on steroids. If no plane, ship, or missile could get within 500 miles of our shores without our say so, then Canada and Mexico would be the only routes of invasion. And we'd still see that coming long before an invasion.
If the nation was half its current size, the military would do even better than it is today.
The question is worded poorly. It makes it sound like it's asking about the size of the country, not the size of the military.
This is exactly what I thought. And then I was wondering, are we talking land mass (Canada takes the western states) or population. Either way, how would I know, I'm no military strategist.
I was reading this thing in Popular Mechanics that said that making the military so that it can fight 1.5 ground wars instead of 2 would be better.
That's called reducing the defense budget, which IS happening. However, cutting the military by 50% will not allow us to fight one war effectively.
Btw, when fighting a war (ie defending our country AND it's strategic objectives), having a military equal to the other guys' will result in more casualties...overwhelming power will 1) deter others from wanting to pick a fight, and 2) ensure a quick end and reduce overall casualties on all sides.
We need a military capable of fighting two wars at once because we have enemies (or at least, not friendly nations) on both coasts. China and Russia to the West and most of the Middle East (and Russia) to the East. What happens if they attack both coasts simultaneously? Not good.
One thing the question didnt specify was if the civilians get to keep THEIR guns...an unarmed public puts our country at greater risk
Yes! I would support a mandatory training period after high school, say, six months, teaching basic firearms handling, safety and marksmanship; basic military strategy; basic fire team tactics, basic supply logistics and battlefield medicine, and anything else normally taught in basic training.
If every citizen is a soldier, and armed, we have a much higher level of national security overall. We'd have to screen out violent felons and the crazies, of course. But everyone else should be trained to a certain level as a citizen.
With many nations, worldwide, preaching anti-American sermons daily to their youth, we will need all the protection we can get.
Defend the nation, yes. Continue wars and occupations all over the world, no
We gotta test our new toys out though! What fun is there in having a state of the art military if you cant use it?
Not at all. In fact we should expand our military even more! We need better protection, and we need to keep up with countries such as china that will surpass our military strength In the up coming years.
They already have surpassed us. Dont kid yourself.
Then were in an even more desperate situation. Hahaha
Mass isn't class.
China went into Vietnam for a "punishing action" in 1980.
They lost 80,000 troops within days.
Not only in size are they growing, but technology wise they will surpass us too. And there is a very good chance they already have.
Chinese tech is catching up fast. When they catch up with the reliability of our technology is when we should be concerned. Yet another reason to maintain and upgrade our nuclear deterrent instead of unilaterally disarming ourselves.
The Chinese mean business, not war. They lent us a lot. Why would they strike the US, and destroy our ability to pay back? Their govt may display a fundamentally different ideology (influenced by the distinct domestic problems they face), and neglect individuals' rights, but they aren't stupid!
Escalating armament in the US with China ostensibly considered as a foe may be the more dangerous path, as they might rightfully infer that we have no intent to pay our debt back...
we couldn't even secure the borders with a force 3 times the size we have now unless we invaded Mexico down to Mexico city
I say we annex Mexico. We could add a couple of states, and have a much smaller southern border to patrol. The upside for the Mexicans: No more sneaking in and border hassles. The upside for us: No more Mexicans sneaking in. And more beaches.
Yes, because we want the cartels to be able to easily move to the US, that would be a great idea.
Protect us= Yes
Achieve our geopolitical strategic objectives= No
I think that we probably could defend ourselves with half the size good enough, but i wouldn't feel nearly as safe. You have to sleep better at night knowing you have that much force defending you
It will take massive amounts of time to scale down the military. I dont think half would be ok. Maby drop it by 30%. It employs many and produces many useful technologies. The US is also huge compared to most countries and we have the most fanatic and deadly enemies. Tread carefully
Actually, relative to Russia and China, the lower 48 are smaller. Many other unfriendly nations are 1/3, or more, of our size by land area. By population, we're outnumbered 3-1 by China. By standing military numbers, North Korea has more than us.
If WHAT were half its size - the country or the military? The way the question is worded it is asking about the military protecting our country at half it's current size. Not the intention I know but I thought I'd have a little fun pointing that out.
Defend? Of course! But we Americans can't be content with defending ourselves, can we? We have to go out and put our noses in everyone else's business.
Military should be cut and spent on other, more important things. for example education, a lot of people these days NEED it. The only problem with cutting the military in half would be that a lot of people would be left without a job AND we get some of our best technology there.
Cutting the military is not a solution. We need to be able to defend great country. Cutting big government and their unbridled sending and using that money to improve programs like education would more 'cents'.
There's a nuanced difference between cutting MILITARY spending, and cutting DEFENSE spending. We could streamline military spending without cutting into defense spending.
It's like the difference between spending money for food to stock the fridge, or spending money at a restaurant. Both are food money, but you could cut the spending at the restaurant and still survive without starving.
Hey republicans in case you remember we don't like government spending, if we cut the military budget we can decrease taxes and pay off our debt.
At least military spending actually pays off. It leads to countless technological improvements just like NASA did
Even at half the current size I'd still be the biggest military budget in the world. If we can't defend ourselves with that, then we're obviously pretty bad at the whole military thing, aren't we?
We are also alot bigger and more hated than most countries
If we withdrew from all of our foreign bases and focused directly on defending U.S. territory, then sure, half would be plenty.
That however would be like putting up a big sign saying," please come attack us".
@shoppe, At half of our current spending we would still have the largest military budget in the world. And don't even get me started on nuclear deterrence.
Defend our mainland + Hawaii + Alaska would take 25% current size. It's all the stuff they send the military to do on the side. And we could just sell Alaska to Canada. Good riddance.
Alaska is awesome, plus it has a lot of oil.
seriously...come on, some people can see Russia from there...
It's called Nuclear deterrent. Plus, we actually toppled the Taliban in just a few weeks with only 200 men. Work smart not hard, quality over quantity.
Do you realize that the US has over 40% of the world's total military spending. 6-7 times more than China. More than the next 20 top spenders combined. Us and our allies account for over 2/3rds of military spending (which we are the majority)
Which is why other counties do not attack us on our own soil. That and thefact that so many Americans have snd know how to use guns. Even if we bicker amongst ourselves, most would defend the U.S.A. if someone (i.e. other countries) tried to invade.
We are Chinas R&D department. We spend billions inventing it, they steal it
I say give the military everything they really need and then some. Without them we are ****ed!
We have WAY more than we need. You can't buy liberty. The military could be cut 50% and you would never know the difference.
RebeI: The current administration has already desemated our military. If they would keep their hands out of our millitaries back pocket military sending would not be so high. Cutting big government would do much more good.
Agreed. If I were president I'd cut every department and organization's budget by 50% on day one. This country is going to destroy itself with it's fiscal policies. Someday children will read about the great nation of the "USA" and talk about what happened to it.