Okay, now this is my last political thought. Reading about Korea has really changed my attitude about defense spending. In 1950 our defense budget was 5% of its peak in 1945. Now, we'd just finished fighting the largest war in human history, so we can expect a drawdown, but Truman and the Democrats went famously overboard. People tend to simplify defense while complicating domestic issues. There was an obvious correlation between rapid cuts in spending and grossly inadequate preparation for any kind of armed conflict. Korea is often remembered as a war won by the Marines. The United States Marine Corps, however, did not enter the war until August 1950, when the 1st PMB and 5th RCT were attached to the 24th Infantry Division at the battles of the Naktong Bulge. It is not surprising that the Marines were hit hardest by the budget-hawking in Washington. In early battles fought by the 24th, which was the only division we were able to mobilize until late July, their equipment and weaponry were extremely ineffectual against the Soviet armor. This was largely because the antitank weapons we had were obsolete. Only the Air Force was ready in any significant capacity. Our transportation was sluggish, our logistics were weak, and our supplies were a joke. Even in peacetime the effects of the cuts were evident in our extremely lax training. People look at our military and how huge it is and think that a few cuts won't harm it. Korea is evidence of the danger of excessive and wanton spending cuts.If you got that as an answer to an essay question in college history class, it would get a pretty high grade. Not bad for a high school sophomore.
Wednesday, October 3, 2012
Shamelessly Exploiting Child Labor... More from the Regular Son
The Regular Son on proposed defense cuts that could occur automatically if the sequester goes into effect: