Politico admits that Obama’s indefensible defense cuts may become an issue in the 2012 presidential election. If that happens, defense will play a role in the presidential campaign for the first time since 2000.
And Obama is preparing himself for that. Knowing full well that his record on defense and foreign policy is downright disastrous and indefensible, and that Ron Paul and Jon Huntsman (both of whom are extremely weak on defense and foreign policy) are trying to outbid him on defense cuts proposals, he plans to lie to the American people to lull them into a false sense of security and mislead them to think they are secure and that Obama will keep them secure. This is what he has been doing for the last 3 years.
The average American is not stupid, but he/she does not have enough free time to research these issues and become a foreign policy wonk, and most Americans still get their news from the mainstream media (ABC, CNN, NBC, MSNBC, and CBS), which, of course, will lie about these issues through their teeth to make Obama look good. This is how last year, with a downright disastrous record, Obama could still get a plurality of Americans to approve of his job on foreign affairs, while a sizeable majority disapproved of his domestic policies.
Indeed, we conservatives have wrongly assumed that ordinary Americans should research the facts for themselves, when they don’t have the time to do that, and we get uppity when we discover that they don’t know the facts and don’t understand our policies. It is OUR job to explain that to them.
In terms of foreign and defense policy, it means we conservatives must continue to research the facts, translate them into terms that the average American can understand, and use these facts against Obama. The facts are on our side. The truth about Obama is that his foreign and defense policies have bene downright disastrous. Our job is to collect all the pertinent facts, convert them into a coherent message, and deliver that message to the American people.
So what exactly should we tell the American people? Let’s start with Obama’s newest round of defense cuts.
Obama’s previous rounds of defense cuts reflected the same left-wing defense cuts agenda. In his first year as President, he and his then-OMB chief Peter Orszag ordered Robert Gates to cut his defense budget request from $585 bn all the way down to $534 bn (in 2009’s money) and THEY ordered him to kill the F-22, delay the tanker replacement program, and cancel plans for a next-generation bomber, as proven by GlobalSecurity.org and Josh Rogin.
Then, in early 2010, Obama negotiated and signed a disastrous New START treaty, which orders the US to cut its nuclear arsenal to just 1550 warheads, and the fleet of delivery systems (ICBMs, SLBMs, bombers) to just 800 vehicles, of which no more than 700 may be deployed at any one time. Former SECDEF James Schlesinger deems these levels to be “barely adequate”. Then-Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, Gen. James Cartwright, estimated, however, that to protect America, at least 870 delivery systems were needed. Veteran arms control officials such as Fred Ikle (former ACDA Director) and John Bolton (former Asst. Secy. of State for Arms Control) opposed the treaty. Also, the document puts onerous restrictions on missile defense: a linking (and dangerous logic) of offensive nuclear weapons to missile defenses, a prohibition on the conversion of ICBM siloes and launchers to missile defense interceptor siloes and launchers, and the creation of a Bilateral Consultative Commission that has sweeping prerogatives to impose even more restrictions on missile defense.
Then, in 2010, Obama and Gates cancelled the next-gen cruiser, EP-X aircraft, and C-17 programs. Because of that, the US now has to pay the Russians to fly supplies, troops, and equipment to Afghanistan, at a much higher cost than it would cost to buy and operate additional C-17s.
Then, in late 2010, Obama railroaded the New START through the Senate, together with his pal Vladimir Putin, who threatened a new Cold War and a new arms race if the US would not ratify the treaty. Robert Gates and Hillary Clinton lied about the provisions of this treaty under oath while testifying in the Senate, thus committing a crime. The Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, John Kerry (the Dems’ 2004 presidential nominee), arrogantly told Senators-elect elected in Nov. 2010 that they were irrelevant. On December 22nd, the Senate ratified the treaty in the lame-duck session, even though it had not seen the New START’s negotiating record (indeed, the Obama Administration STILL hasn’t released that negotiating record to this day). 71 Senators (including 13 bribed Republicans such as Bob Corker) committed the biggest act of capitulation in US history and voted to ratify the treaty, thus capitulating to Obama and to the Kremlin.
In January 2011, Obama ordered the DOD to find another $178 bn in budget cuts, allowing the DOD to reinvest only $100 bn of it in military modernization while using the other $78 bn to pay for his bloated entitlement programs. In April 2011, he signed a CR that cut defense spending further. In the negotiations over the debt ceiling deal, he demanded deep defense spending cuts to pay for his bloated welfare programs. The debt ceiling deal that he did sign was the worst of all worlds: cutting defense immediately by $465 bn while creating a sequester that will cut defense by a further $600 bn because of the Super Committee’s failure, which he did nothing to prevent. When pro-defense lawmakers proposed to undo these cuts or at least spare the DOD from it, he threatened to veto any such legislation – because he WANTS defense to be gutted.
Now Obama has grown the first tier of the budget cuts demanded of the DOD to $487 bn and these cuts will be very damaging. Among the targets for cuts will be the already-inadequate US nuclear arsenal, even though it costs very little to maintain.
The “Defense Strategy” unveiled on Thursday was not really a strategy, rather a propaganda document designed to give Obama political cover so that he can cut defense spending deeply and transfer that money into welfare programs. The DOD claims it has achieved $465 bn in cuts based on a strategy and that it would’ve done these cuts in any event, with the budget cuts being only an additional impetus, but the fact is that if it hadn’t had to cut $465 bn from its budget over a decade, it would’ve never done it, and many of the decisions they’ve made or are likely to made would’ve never been made.
In short, Obama put a cart before the horse. The DOD had to figure out how to conform to his directive and find that $465 bn in cuts.
Few details were announced on Thursday, but most of those that were are troubling. The Administration wrongly believes that America can be protected with an even smaller nuclear arsenal than the small, inadequate arsenal America has today. Conventional ground troops (the Army and the USMC) will be cut to pre-9/11 levels. The Air Force will lose, without replacement, 200 aircraft, on top of all the aircraft retired without replacement during the last few years or crashed. Among these aircraft may be B-1 bombers – priceless assets.
Obama counters these claims with his standard line: “Ask Osama bin Laden and Anwar al-Awlaki whether I engage in appeasement.”
But Obama did not order the assassination of OBL; Leon Panetta did. And yes, for the record, Obama DOES engage in appeasement. He’s an even worse appeaser than Neville Chamberlain.
Obama’s appeasement policy towards Russia has failed abysmally. Despite the US ratifying a treaty deeply unfavorable to it, one that favors Russia, and despite Obama surrendering robust plans for missile defense in Europe for nothing in return, has not been placated and remains even more hostile to the US than during the Bush era. Russia now threatens to start a new nuclear arms race, deploy ballistic missiles on its western and southern borders, and withdraw from the New START treaty if the US does not give up ANY plans to deploy ANY missile defense system in Europe, no matter how rudimentary. Russia’s Ambassador to NATO even denies that Iran is a threat.
Obama’s appeasement policy towards Iran has been just as fruitless. Three years of appeasing Iran have produced only scorn from the Tehran and further Iranian progress on nuclear weapons. Iran is still pressing ahead, and now has 6,000 centrifuges at Natanz alone. It now has enough centrifuges to produce enough HEU for a nuclear warhead every 2 months or so. It is projected to have a nuclear weapon by November or December 2012.
When a USAF RQ-170 Sentinel drone malfunctioned and landed in Iran, what did Obama do? He refused to recapture it or destroy it on the ground, thus allowing the Iranians to capture this piece of sensitive technology that they will now likely pass on to Russia, China, North Korea, and Venezuela.
And just days ago, the Iranians behaved more belligerently than ever since 1979, closing the Hormuz Strait as a rehearsal.
Obama’s appeasement policy towards China has been a failure as well. Until recently, he’s been cravenly appeasing it, even staging a huge visit by, and a red-carpet welcome for, Chinese dictator Hu Jintao, a genocidal politician, even as China is hurting the US in a myriad of ways – militarily, economically, technologically, etc., as told in detail by Brett M. Decker and William C. Triplett II in their Bowing to Beijing book.
Despite Obama’s appeasement, China continues to conduct massive cyberattacks against the US, extensive espionage in the US, theft of US intellectual property, piracy of American products and technology, harrassment of unarmed US ships in neutral waters, an arms race against the US, and harrassment of America’s allies in the Pacific Rim. America’s response, until recently, has been to do nothing. Obama is also undercutting America’s ability to defend itself and its allies in the Pacific by cancelling the very weapon systems designed to do that – such as the F-22, the Navy’s promising electromagnetic railgun, the Zumwalt class, the SM-3 Block IIB, the MKV, additional GBIs in Alaska, the Airborne Laser, and the Kinetic Energy Interceptor. Defense commitments are worthless and meaningless if you can’t back them up. The current under-equipped US military can’t do that.
And that is to say nothing of Obama’s appeasement of Latin American communists such as Hugo Chavez, Raul Castro, and Daniel Ortega.
Yet, Obama still stubbornly says: “Ask Osama bin Laden and Anwar al-Awlaki whether I engage in appeasement.”
So whenever he says that, Republicans should ask him the following questions:
“Actually, Mr President, why don’t I ask Vladimir Putin or Mahmoud Ahmadinejad whether you engage in appeasement?
Why don’t I ask Hugo Chavez, Raul Castro, and Daniel Ortega?
If you don’t engage in appeasement, why are you so afraid to release New START negotiating records? Might that be because they prove that you are an appeaser?
If you don’t engage in appeasement, why did you unilaterally America’s nuclear arsenal and cancel missile defense plans for Europe to placate Russia?
If you don’t engage in appeasement, why are you kowtowing to Beijing?”
Obama is extremely vulnerable on foreign and defense policy. Republicans just need to educate themselves on it, research the facts, and present these facts to the American people. If they do that, I’m quite confident they will win the foreign policy debate – and the general election.