Pentagon: Protecting You While Stealing Your Money?

F-35 (2)

The Pentagon is like a rich man who must have the latest car or newest airplane. Before their arsenal is complete they want new toys. The problem is that each new toy costs twice as much as the last one. The Pentagon is constantly preparing for war; never for peace.

Congress is voting on a defense spending bill in excess of $800 billion. Fear tactics by politicians have created a national paranoia, and allowed our military brass to spend five-times more than any other nation in the world. The fact is that at least half of its yearly allotment is wasted.

We have unnecessary military bases around the world, including the United Kingdom, Italy, Germany, France, and Japan. There are warehouses filled with Bradley tanks which will never see a battlefield. Warehouses full of ammunition continue to gather dust; some of which would have been used for what are now obsolete weapons. The “ultimate fighter,” the F-35, is a failure. The aircraft was intended to be adaptable to the needs of each branch of the military, but has continued to fail tests, including a mock battle with an F-16 where it was defeated. As the costs rise, nothing has changed.

After waging war for 15 years in Afghanistan and Iraq, the Pentagon is fighting to keep its wartime budget.

Although President Obama said the following, the media is covering up the truth; our military is “modernizing” its nuclear military arsenal; in other words, it is getting bigger.  The President was in Hiroshima last month. There, he urged “nations like my own that hold nuclear stockpiles” to “have the courage to escape the logic of fear, and pursue a world without them.”

While the American people are suffering income inequality and a growing number of families are slipping into poverty, the Pentagon continues to line its pockets with your tax dollars or wasting them on unnecessary weapons and bases around the world.

The only tactic our government, including the military, has found successful is fear. The possibility of military conflict with other nations remains a reality, but not in the manner suggested by the Pentagon. Iraq, Afghanistan, and ISIS have engaged armies in a new type of warfare. It is fought with improvised devices, not entirely with bombs and missiles. It is also fought with minds.

Terrorist groups are far more adept at convincing recruits that their “cause” is just. When politicians such as Donald Trump single out one religion and label it as “evil,” this rhetoric is nothing less than an additional recruiting tool for ISIS, Al Qaeda, and other terrorist groups. Words alone cannot win wars, but they can extend and expand them.

Wars are no longer fought on ‘battlefields.’ They are fought in jungles, villages and cities. More innocent civilians die than soldiers. The Pentagon must rethink the way they do battle. Congress must rethink their bloated yearly allotment of tax dollars, and consider spending some of that money on programs which positively affect the majority of the American people.

Op-Ed

By James Turnage

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