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Robert Gates: A Parting Truthful Shot

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Bloviating Zeppelin: Robert Gates: A Parting Truthful Shot

Bloviating Zeppelin

(in-ep-toc'-ra-cy) - a system of government where the least capable to lead are elected by the least capable of producing, and where the members of society least likely to sustain themselves or succeed, are rewarded with goods and services paid for by the confiscated wealth of a diminishing number of producers.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Robert Gates: A Parting Truthful Shot

In Brussels, Belgium on Friday (6-10), at the Security and Defense summit, outgoing Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said, in so many words, that our NATO allies are shirking their responsibilities, not carrying their own weight, and primarily relying on the United States, its cash and its young men to be sacrificed in various NATO missions.

And, with that in mind, those US authorities who didn't live during the Cold War era may be more and more inclined to remove the United States from NATO.

I couldn't agree more: time for the US to shunt NATO aside. We've killed enough Americans in Europe and the Middle East.

Gates retires at the end of June after more than four years as SecDef, first appointed under President G.W. Bush.

For example, from the Christian Science Monitor:

Already, the US accounts for 75 percent of NATO members’ defense spending, up from just below 50 percent a decade ago. While America is planning to trim back projected defense-spending increases in the current deficit-cutting environment, the US share of the NATO military budget pie is still expected to grow.

Britain plans to cut its defense budget by 8 percent by 2015, and Germany this year decided to eliminate its compulsory military service and to trim back its ground forces.

In fact, what few realize is that the UK's air force possesses fewer craft than it did just prior to World War I.

That's how broken is NATO, and how Europe would simply rather sit back and allow America to sacrifice its cash and its young men.

Europe and the rest of NATO choose the easy road with undedicated people, instead of the hard road populated by those dedicated to hard work.

Gates said, specifically:
The blunt reality is that there will be dwindling appetite and patience in the U.S. Congress, and in the American body politic writ large, to expend increasingly precious funds on behalf of nations that are apparently unwilling to devote the necessary resources or make the necessary changes to be serious and capable partners in their own defense," he said.

From YahooNews:
The U.S. has been the brawn behind NATO since its birth in 1949. But the disparity between strength and allies' investment has only grown wider.

In a question-and-answer session after his speech, Gates, 67, said his generation's "emotional and historical attachment" to NATO is "aging out." He noted that he is about 20 years older than Obama, his boss.

For many Americans, NATO is a vague idea tied to a bygone era, a time when the world feared a Soviet land invasion of Europe that could have escalated to nuclear war. But with the demise of the Soviet Union in 1991, NATO's reason for being came into question. It has remained intact — and even expanded from 16 members at the conclusion of the Cold War to 28 today — but European reluctance to expand defense budgets has created what amounts to a two-tier alliance: the U.S. military at one level and the rest of NATO on a lower, almost irrelevant plane.

And I would submit this (and many of my readers would completely concur, I'll wager) as well: it's not only time to kick NATO to the budgetary curb, but the entire United Nations as well. Time for the UN to retire to, say, Vienna, on European soil -- and time for the US to step away from the UN entirely -- physically and fiscally. They can keep their powder blue powerless helmets.

And time for the UN building to be turned into a wonderful series of apartment or condos -- as I wrote quite some time ago.

I don't find this heretical. I find this cogent and logical considering current historical circumstances.

Please weigh in.



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