July 28, 2012
It was refreshing to read Thomas F. Schaller's commentary about the burden of America's superpower status ("America should give up its role as lone superpower," July 25). Mr. Schaller was a bit too reserved in his criticism, however. While he points out that our military budget dwarfs all others, he falls into that trap of attributing it to "defense spending. " The Defense Department, which used to be called the Department of War, is actually involved in offensive operations. The invasions of Grenada, Panama and Iraq were classic examples of warmongering that had nothing to do with defending the country.
December 2, 2011
Pundits can argue about the political fallout of the supercommittee failure, but the damage to our national security is indisputable and severe. According to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, the resulting defense cuts will hollow out America's military, slashing fighters, bombers, helicopters, submarines and coastal ships; devastating training and readiness; and cutting the satellites and drones that deliver our surveillance/reconnaissance advantage. After years of cuts, our military already runs lean - down to just 16 percent of federal spending (it was over 40 percent in the 1970s)
July 29, 2011
Back in 2008, George Bush was painted by all Democrats the worst president because of the wars and financial mess we were in. You voted in President Obama, and he can't even rein in his own party to fix the debt ceiling. Americans were fooled thinking this man was going to change things around. Well he's done that! The country is about to get huge tax increases and job losses, and the only ways Democrats can remedy that is to cut seniors' Medicare, cut the military budget and hurt poor, working families.
July 12, 2011
Recently, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a $650 billion Pentagon budget ("House targets 'don't ask, don't tell' repeal," July 9). Am I in a time warp? I thought that it was necessary to cut back on spending in order to cut the deficit. Then I read this: "The Defense Department is the only government agency that will receive a double-digit increase in its budget for fiscal year 2012. " What gives? Why is the War Department funding being increased when social services are being slashed?
May 17, 2011
Northrop Grumman Corp.'s plan to cut 500 jobs in the Baltimore region — largely through buyouts but also with 70 layoffs — underscores the uncomfortable shift defense contractors are feeling as the era of big spending growth ends. The Baltimore-area reductions account for most of the nationwide cuts Northrop Grumman is making to its electronic systems sector, which produces airborne radar, navigation systems and other military equipment. The defense-contracting giant notified affected employees at the sector's Linthicum headquarters and several other locations Tuesday that their last day of work would be May 31. Northrop Grumman blamed a reduction in business "that is directly related to the current slow-down in defense spending as well as increasing international economic pressures" — a problem facing not only the industry but the state.
January 17, 2011
Fifty years ago today, on Jan. 17, 1961, President Dwight D. Eisenhower issued his prophetic warning about the military-industrial complex, anticipating the increased political, economic, military and even cultural influence of the Pentagon and its allies. Several weeks earlier, he had privately told his senior advisers in the Oval Office of the White House, "God help this country when someone sits in this chair who doesn't know the military as well as I do. " Several months after his inauguration in 1953, he warned against warfare that had "humanity hanging from a cross of iron.