Saturday, January 07, 2012

Defending Democracy Against a Warsaw Pact Invasion

See this where the "we can't cut defense spending in any way" mentality gets us. We end up not fighting the last war, but the war from 40 (or more) years ago. Obama Returns to Bush Plan for Cutting U.S. Troops in Europe - Businessweek
As of December 2010, the U.S. had almost 80,000 military personnel stationed in Europe, more than 54,000 of them in Germany, according to the Defense Department’s website.
OK, it is a convenient jumping off point to the middle east. Or it would be if Turkey would let us use their airspace. But that doesn't always happen.

So why do we we have 80,000 combat troops in Europe? Because of the imminent threat posed by the Warsaw Pact and the Soviet Union. (You might think the new Russia is a threat, but do you really think they are as big a threat as the old CCCP?)

At the very least, we could bring those troops home and station them on our southern border. If we are going to pay to house them, should the communities that benefit be in this country, or in Germany and Italy?

Once upon a time it may have made sense to keep paying for the defense of Europe and West Germany in particular. But that was a long time ago. Europe, even with its current problems is a thriving economy. It can surely afford to pay for its own defense.

Now I am all for keeping America strong. But part of that has to take into account how much we can afford to spend, and prioritizing what's what. Defending Europe is something that the Europeans need to do more of, and we need to do less of.


Zendo Deb said...

For those of you with failing memories, German reunification was completed in 1990 - 22 years ago. The Soviet Union was formally resolved in 1991. Long enough ago that even government bureaucracies should have responded. But not political insanity.

Zendo Deb said...

CCCP (se se se air) It has been so long I had to look it up. Сою́з Сове́тских Социалисти́ческих Респу́блик, which is roughly - in the western alphabet - Soyuz Sovetskikh Sotsialisticheskikh Respublik

Or the Supreme Soviet Socialist Republic.

I must be getting old. The memory isn't what it used to be.

Zendo Deb said...

You know it's funny, but I don't remember seeing anything about the 20th anniversary of the demise of the USSR. Maybe there was one and I just wasn't paying attention.

Comrade Misfit said...

And then there is the point that between the unification of the two Germanies, Poland and the Baltic states joining NATO and the independence of the Ukraine, the jumping-off point for a Russian invasion was pushed several hundred miles to the east.

Not that the Russian Army could invade much of anything these days.