Buck McKeon, Chairman

For Immediate Release: October 6, 2011                 Contact: John Noonan or Claude Chafin, 202-225-2539

Carafano: Heed HASC Warning, Keep the Military a Stabilizing Force in the World

Washington D.C. – On Thursday, Dr. James Jay Carafano asked on, “Will Our Military Soon Be Unable to Prevent World War III? The answer, he says, depends on whether the Super Committee on deficit reduction listens to the warnings of the House Armed Services Committee Republicans and spares our military men and women from crippling budget cuts.

“Has HASC—the House Armed Services Committee—prevented World War III? That depends on whether the Congressional Super Committee, charged with slicing a trillion-dollars plus from the federal budget, listens to what HASC has to say.

“If the Super Committee heeds HASC’s warning and refrains from savaging the already anemic defense budgets proposed by President Obama, America may be able to continue to be a stabilizing force in an increasingly dangerous world. If not—well, we could soon find ourselves embroiled in a world war of 1914-like scope.”

Using analysis from House Armed Services Committee Republicans, Dr. Carafano analyzed the impact of potential cuts on the military if the Super Committee fails.

“Big picture summary: the military would be even smaller than it was under President Bill (‘Peace Dividend’) Clinton. Likewise, as a percentage of the federal budget, defense spending would fall to sub-Clinton levels.

“Without question, the military capability would be greatly diminished. ‘The Navy will likely mothball more than 60 ships,’ the report concludes, ‘including two carrier battle groups, while we give up nearly a third of Army Maneuver Battalions and Air Force fighters, a quarter of our bombers, and jeopardize our ability to defend America against a nuclear attack. As a service, the Marine Corps will be broken…’

He continued:

“Some media coverage has fixated on the prospect that reduced military spending might force return of the draft. Actually, the report makes the case that a ‘draft’ would be the least of the Pentagon’s problems. Under a ‘sequestered’ budget, the services would go broke just paying all the costs associated with converting from an ‘all-volunteer’ to conscription force. Nor would the effort be worth it—under the projected budgets, service men and women—be they volunteers or draftees—would not have enough ships, planes, and vehicles to fight with anyway.

“Here is the bottom line: The military remaining after sequestration took effect would be unable to do what our military has done since World War II—be able to prevent World War III. That’s because the U.S. would cease to be a global military power. Absent a global force, regional powers will scramble for primacy in their part of the world.

Carafano’s conclusion is clear: our military men and women can take no more cuts.

“Increasingly this will lead to friction and conflict. Seeking advantage, the regional competitors will enter unstable, frequently shifting alliances. And U.S. military power won’t be there to act as a brake. The freedom of the seas and the other ‘commons’ that we (and other nations) have enjoyed will be gone. Cracks and fissures between regional rivals will become a devil’s playground for transnational criminal cartels and terrorists. Until one day—it is 1914 all over again…

“Forget about the sequestered budget, Congress must be wary of a Super Committee recommendation that piles on any defense cuts beyond those already on the books.”