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American Military Spiraling Downward?
We’ve all seen the stories going back to the Obama years about the new woke military. The Left remake of the American military is having its predictable effects—the military is in the midst of a recruitment crisis, because who would join? Except misfits? Not content with that, the wokesters in charge are doubling down by kicking out qualified people who have demonstrated a modicum of common sense:
As many as 40,000 Army National Guard soldiers across the country have not yet gotten the mandated COVID-19 injections, and at least 14,000 of them have flatly refused, the Associated Press reported.
The National Guard is a very important component of America’s military readiness. How will these personnel be replaced?
Not to worry—the Army has a plan!
If you read the article you’ll see that this new program is carefully designed to maintain the high standards required for new recruits to an increasingly more technically sophisticated military. So the army should be flooded with top quality recruits—problem solved, right? Yeah, right.
In the meantime, the American military—whose star pupil is currently getting crushed—is spreading itself ever thinner, setting itself up to get involved in “near-peer” conflicts for which it’s manifestly unprepared:
BREAKING: @POTUS announces new US military deployments to Europe:
1. Create permanent HQ for US 5th Army Corps in Poland
2. Deploy additional rotational brigade to Romania
3. Deploy 2 additional F-35 squadrons to the UK
4. "Enhance" rotational deployments in Baltics
5. Deploy 2 additional Navy destroyers to Spain, bringing total from 4 to 6
6. Deploy "additional" air defense to Germany, Italy
“At a moment Putin has shattered peace in Europe... US and allies are stepping up, proving NATO is more needed than ever, and more important than ever"
White House fact sheet:
"We will permanently forward station V Corps HQ Forward Command Post, Army garrison HQ, and field support battalion."
"First permanent US forces on NATO’s Eastern Flank."
"US will also maintain and seek to enhance rotational force presence..."
"US will position rotational Brigade Combat Team, thus maintaining an additional brigade on the eastern flank compared to our January 2022 posture. This additional brigade will maintain the ability to deploy subordinate elements across the eastern flank."
The US will "enhance rotational deployments – which include armored, aviation, air defense, and special operations forces... a persistent, heel-to-toe presence in the region."
US will forward station air defense artillery brigade HQ, short-range air defense battalion, combat sustainment support battalion headquarters, engineer brigade headquarters. 625 personnel
Italy: US will forward station short-range air defense battery w/ 65 personnel
All that comes in addition to the announcement that Sweden and Finland have caved to all of Turkiye’s demands and will soon join NATO.
Zerohedge points out this is part of a large package of provocations against Russia:
While not mentioning Russia's 'red line' issue of future potential Ukraine membership in the Western military alliance, the statement still spelled out that NATO "fully supports" Ukraine's "inherent right to self-defense and to choose its own security arrangements."
But within the document, there are "partner" countries named which is sure to be seen as immensely provocative in Moscow, particularly the invocation of the names Georgia and Moldova:
"In light of the changed security environment in Europe, we have decided on new measures to step up tailored political and practical support to partners, including Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, and the Republic of Moldova. We will work with them to build their integrity and resilience, develop capabilities, and uphold their political independence," the NATO statement said.
Also on Wednesday NATO labeled Russia the most "direct threat" facing the alliance today, and vowed to take further steps at modernizing Ukraine's military. The alliance statement said Russia is the "most significant and direct threat to the allies' security and stability."
All brave talk, except that Ukraine is getting crushed by Russia, as even the WH is acknowledging in oblique fashion. If you believe “tailored political and practical support” to the marginal nations named above will result in a strengthened NATO, then you may also believe that taking in recruits who lack a HS degree with result in a strengthened military.
Dan Caldwell delivers the bad news in an article at the National Interest that, while containing the usual CW saber rattling, also delivers some home truths:
In truth, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine does not change the fact that America’s global power position is constrained.
The days of unquestioned US hegemony are over:
In truth, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine does not change the fact that America’s global power position is constrained. The heady days of unipolarity are over. Policymakers who fail to acknowledge those realities when dealing with the fallout from the war in Ukraine will only make America less safe and threaten the conditions of our prosperity.
To be sure, the United States retains a powerful economy and military. But unlike in the early 1990s, the United States faces real global competitors—in particular China—along with domestic challenges that will require better prioritization and trade-offs.
… the U.S. military has spent the last two decades bogged down in a handful of endless wars across the Middle East and Africa. The price of these conflicts has been steep. Thousands of American lives were lost and more than $8 trillion squandered. These conflicts also wore down important strategic assets like our B-1 bomber fleet, incentivized investments in platforms like the Littoral Combat Ship that are not suited for combat against near-peer adversaries, and forced cuts to the U.S. Air Force and Navy to build an Army designed to fight counterinsurgency conflicts in strategic backwaters.
The United States should not tolerate a delusional foreign policymaking elite that ignores real constraints on American power. Instead, our leaders should adopt a sober and realistic approach to the current state of the world that recognizes our limits so that America can remain safe and prosperous.
Isn’t that what Trump was saying? What major voices share his concerns? It appears that that “delusional foreign policymaking elite that ignores real constraints on American power” is simply ramping things up. With months to go before even a midterm election and years to go before a presidential election, I see no prospect for the national debate that we need. There’s a lot of serious things that could go wrong—in fact, that already are going wrong.