LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Beef up thinning U.S. military infrastructure

Question of the Day

Should Congress make English the official language of the U.S.?

View results

After reading his recent column on how the “Global War on Terror” has hijacked the national security function of our military (“Obama’s national security legacy may be the fall of America,” Web, Feb. 16), I am compelled to expand on Daniel de Gracia’s argument that we need to update aging military equipment.

In brief, the U.S. Air Force is smaller and older than it has been at any time in recent history, and experts predict that a significant shortfall of fighter planes will severely impair our ability to protect the United States and its global interests. The U.S. Navy has fewer ships now than it did on Sept. 11, 2001; our tanks date back to the 1980s. Operations in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya have run these planes, ships and vehicles ragged.

What’s more frightening than today’s overworked military? It could actually get worse, thanks to the defense cuts required by last summer’s budget deal. Totaling $1 trillion, these cuts would cancel any effort to replace retiring planes, ships or ground vehicles over the next 10 years, according to Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta.

Meanwhile, Iran is building nuclear weapons. China is clearly building a blue-water navy that will challenge us globally. Russia is building a new stealth fighter. North Korea is building a mobile ballistic-missile launcher. And our national defense structure, from our industrial base to the planes, ships and tanks that are the elements of a rational national defense posture, is being deliberately felled.

While our principal adversaries arm themselves to the teeth, are we really going to base our national security on stern warnings backed by a hollow military?


U.S. Naval Reserves, retired

New York

© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

blog comments powered by Disqus
TWT Video Picks
You Might Also Like
  • Maureen McDonnell looks on as her husband, former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, made a statement on Tuesday after the couple was indicted on corruption charges. (associated press)

    PRUDEN: Where have the big-time grifters gone?

  • This photo taken Jan. 9, 2014,  shows New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie gesturing as he answers a question during a news conference  at the Statehouse in Trenton.  Christie will propose extending the public school calendar and lengthening the school day in a speech he hopes will help him rebound from an apparent political payback scheme orchestrated by key aides. The early front-runner for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination will make a case Tuesday Jan. 14, 2014, that children who spend more time in school graduate better prepared academically, according to excerpts of his State of the State address obtained by The Associated Press. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

    BRUCE: Bombastic arrogance or humble determination? Chris Christie’s choice

  • ** FILE ** Secretary of State Hillary Rodham testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013, before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the deadly September attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, that killed Ambassador J. Chris Stevens and three other Americans. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

    PRUDEN: The question to haunt the West

  • Get Breaking Alerts