Is the U.S. military as modern and up-to-date as it should be for the defense of our country?
This is a debate that rages in circles everywhere.
While I will not provide my opinion as of yet; I do want to point out some modernization that we can count on this year or soon after.
- Improved turbine engines – The current engines in Apache and Blackhawk helicopters are sluggish in high altitudes. The new engines being designed will work extremely better in the high altitudes.
- Hydrogen power – General Motors along with the Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center have designed a prototype vehicle that will run on hydrogen instead of diesel.
- Joint Light Tactical Vehicles – The U.S. Army and Marine Corps have received 7 Joint Light Tactical Vehicles to test. This new vehicle has “belly” protection from blasts and also gets better mileage.
- 30 MM Cannons – The M1126 Stryker vehicle is armed with a 30 MM cannon. This provides better capabilities during aggressive acts.
- Ambidextrous Enhanced Grenade – These grenades will be able to be used by left or right handed soldiers. Current M67 grenades require different procedures for left handed users. The new grenades probably will not be in use until 2020.
- Lightweight ballistic shirts – These shirts were designed by studying athletic wear. There is a great acceptance for these new shirts.
- Long range Howitzers – The current M777A2 Howitzer can fire approximately 30 kilometers. By adding 6 foot of cannon and under 1,000 pounds, Picatinny Arsenal was able to double the firing distance.
- Armored vehicles – The current M113 Armored Personnel Carriers are being replaced with a new design.
- Torso tourniquets – These new “junction” tourniquets can be used on the torso and will probably save lives.
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- AH-64 Apache Helicopter Overview
Now, one of the debates
Donald Trump speaking on board the USS Iowa. Courtesy of the Daily Breeze
President Trump stated that we need more nuclear weapons to keep pace with Russia.
Here is what he Tweeted:
“The United States must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes.”
He also said other countries such as Japan should pay for, and have more nukes.
Before I give you my opinion, let’s hear some other opinions.
“The United States is the only declared nuclear power that is neither modernizing its nuclear arsenal nor has the capability to produce a new nuclear warhead.” Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates
“Instead of starting a new nuclear arms race, now is the time to reclaim our Nation’s position of leadership on nuclear nonproliferation efforts.” Dianne Feinstein
“The nuclear arms race is like two sworn enemies standing waist deep in gasoline, one with three matches, the other with five.” Carl Sagan
“Somehow we must transform the dynamics of the world power struggle from the negative nuclear arms race which no one can win to a positive contest to harness man’s creative genius for the purpose of making peace and prosperity a reality for all of the nations of the world.” Martin Luther King Jr.
“Let him who desires peace prepare for war.” Publius Flavius Vegetius Renatus
Now, my opinion
The last quote here resonates with me.
We have allowed Russia the lead in having nuclear arms.
Is that really in our best interest?
While Donald Trump…President Trump has made people angry, I have to jump on his side.
No, we don’t like nukes, and I pray to Almighty God that we never have to use them, but we must look at the Strategic Offensive Principle of War: The Best Defense Is A Good Offense.
If Russia, China, North Korea and other U.S. possible enemies understand that we are fully armed and capable of using them, they will be less likely to “try us.”
I also have to agree with our soon to be President that we need to mandate that countries such as Japan and others start purchasing and supplying their own nuclear defense structures.
We need to stop being the world’s police department
We need a strong military that is able to defend our interests and we need to stand our ground.
And, we cannot and shall not allow NATO the control over our military.
Revamping the military structure
I recently read a very well written article by David Small at the Truman Center.
You will find the link in the reference section.
Mr Small points out that the military retirement system is driving the military budget into extreme amounts that we will not be able to afford as time goes on.
Now we of course do not want to take away from those who have served our country with courage and honor, but the system and all the money handed out needs to be revamped.
Maybe the leaders about to take office can come up with a plan that will straighten the mess out.
Modernizing parental leave
Over time, the military has become more family friendly, but one slip has been parental support of service members.
House Representative Tammy Duckworth has introduced the Military Parental Leave Modernization Act to make it an even playing field for service members who have children.
This would grant Mother, Father or both 12 weeks of paid leave to care for a new child, but then again, we are back to spending a lot of money.
This is why…
While I consider myself good with my personal finances, I would never want the issue of figuring out how to solve the financial quandary that the United States is facing.
This is why I believe we as a nation; Democrat, Republican, or whatever… We need to give President Trump our full support because if anyone can get us somewhat straightened out financially, it is he and the people he is bringing in.
President Obama believed he and his administration was doing right in bringing many of our military home, but the fact is, our forces are quite low in places like the Baltic States and if Russia or China were to act aggressively, the only 2 choices we will have is to allow them to do what they will or drop a nuke on them.
General Milley, Army Chief of Staff, has stated that budgets over the past 8 – 9 years have reduced modernization of the Army by 75%.
This has hurt the adjustments and updates on outdated equipment along with training.
The Pentagon has canceled many Army modernization efforts
It sometimes seems the biggest battle is right in Washington with the Pentagon.
They have canceled programs that were in process such as:
- Future Combat Systems armored vehicles
- Crusader self-propelled howitzer
- RAH-66 Comanche stealth helicopter (after millions have been invested
Straight from the Military Times:
Trump wants an active-duty Army with another 60,000 soldiers in the ranks, an unspecified number of additional sailors to man the 78 ships and submarines he intends to see built in coming years. He wants up to 12,000 more Marines to serve in infantry and tank battalions, and at least another 100 combat aircraft for the Air Force.
We hope he can attain approval and money to make this all happen.
Well here we are with an Army that needs modernization.
We now have a new President and hopefully, the Army, along with the other United States military branches will get all the tools and training they need to be able to defend our country and assets.
So what do you think?
I especially would like to hear your thoughts on nuclear arms.
You can post any questions or comments below.
Former Army Major (resigned)
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1 thought on “U.S. Military Modernization”
In reference to Trump fixing our financial challenges he has brought in the very people he railed against. Goldman Sachs and Wall Street folks have received high level appointments in his administration. The man has stiffed many small businesses and has declared bankruptcy how many times? If he would show his tax returns that might help but he obviously has something to hide. It his hard for me to understand how intelligent people can not see that he is a pathological liar. Not to mention his attitude towards women. How can one swear an oath to this country and at the same time support this guy?