Ryanb741 From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2002, 3221 posts, RR: 16 Posted (11 years 7 months 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 787 times:
The US spends a high amount of its income on its military, whereas in Europe, only the UK and France spends a lot on defence. What do you think - should countries spend highly on defence, or simply remain reliant on a few countries (US/UK/France) to defend them in conflict?
I used to think the brain is the most fascinating part of my body. But, hey, who is telling me that?
Banco From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2001, 14752 posts, RR: 54 Reply 3, posted (11 years 7 months 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 764 times:
If successive British governments intend to continue to act as a mini-superpower, then defence spending needs to rise. Or, the decision taken to scale back our military commitments. One way or the other, the decision needs to be taken. The two new proper aircraft carriers (as opposed to the current three through-deck cruisers) due to be built in 2008 is a step in the right direction.
She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.
GDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 12968 posts, RR: 79 Reply 5, posted (11 years 7 months 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 753 times:
At 2.7% of GDP, the UK is the highest EU defence spender.
However, the forces are small in comparison to many in Europe, equipment is generally good, with some shortfalls, and training is first class.
The problem the UK has is that large amounts of money are spent on deployment, usually the costs are covered by the contingency fund separate from the defence budget.
All well and good if a major deployment is happening once a year or 18 months, but now the forces are multi-deployed with problems of overstretch.
Chancellor Gordon Brown won't raid the contingency fund for every deployment.
Many in the UK are getting a bit fed up with the UK doing the lion's share of European military deployments.
Who was first into the former Yugoslavia, and apart from the US had the most assets out there?
Who led the Macedonian mission last year?
Apart from the US, who is boxing Iraq in?
Who lead the Stabilisation force in Kabul, (and no one seems to want to relieve them of that role, despite promises from Turkey)?
If the bombing had failed in 1999, who was the only NATO nation willing to go all the way with ground troops in Kosovo? Fortunately not needed in the end.
France, Germany, Denmark and Norway have provided help in Afghanistan, but who's got the biggest non-US combat units in theatre?
Then there's Sierra Leone, (preventing another African slaughter), a small but expensive presence in the Falklands, still a (reduced) presence in Northern Ireland.
I understand European concerns about some aspects of Bush's policies, but until some European NATO nations get their military act together their arguments lack credibility.
The Netherlands have done a good job restructuring their forces to be useful in the post Cold War world, they've reduced spending like everyone else, but not just by 'Salami-slicing' cutbacks.
(Provided airlift capability, a helicopter transport and attack capability for the army, more sealift capability).
If they can do, so can everyone else.
As for the UK, I think a £1-1.5 Billion on the budget for the next few years is appropriate, to safeguard projects as spending on the big ticket items, like the new 50,000 ton carriers ramps up.
Banco From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2001, 14752 posts, RR: 54 Reply 6, posted (11 years 7 months 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 748 times:
Interesting point GDB. Especially when you consider that the US Rangers and British Royal Marines are in the mountains of Afghanistan, not natural terrain for either set of troops, whereas the likes of the Germans have specific divisions trained for mountain warfare.
She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.
PH-BFA From Netherlands, joined Apr 2002, 562 posts, RR: 1 Reply 8, posted (11 years 7 months 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 732 times:
I must say our defence spending are going to rise very soon with some billions of dollars, since it is very likely we are going to buy some nice Joint Strike Fighters from the USA(and join the project!!!!!!) I can't wait to see them in the Netherlands.
Alaska739 From United States of America, joined Apr 2002, 86 posts, RR: 0 Reply 9, posted (11 years 7 months 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 713 times:
I would like to see defense spending increase a ton. With the post-Clinton military (stripped down from its former Reagan-era glory), we do NOT have the ability to fight a total war in one theatre, let alone two.
We have also put more emphasis on "toys" (basically bombs) instead of the traditional ground combat war. Massive bombing (as we've done in Afghanistan) makes the enemy scatter and take shelter, ready to fight again another day, whereas sending in a huge number of ground troops takes care of the enemy once and for all. But we do not have the number of troops that we need to do this on one or two or even three fronts. With the growing possibility for conflicts worldwide, our military is not prepared under its current funding. I believe that funds from bureaucratic factions of government that have absolutely no use and are not authorized under the constitution should be diverted to the military where they would become more useful.
Jwenting From Netherlands, joined Apr 2001, 10213 posts, RR: 20 Reply 10, posted (11 years 7 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 706 times:
Don't count on those JSF orders, BFA. I have a gut feeling they will not go ahead or will be reduced even further from the ridiculously low 90 or so now planned for whatever aircraft is chosen.
Dutch defense spending is in a terminal nosedive that, unless reversed quickly, will see our defense forces in a state that is worse than they were in May 1940 (when they had to plunder the army museum to get some weapons to fight the Germans).
The AF is at 1/3 the strength it was 10 years ago, the army at less than half, the navy at about half the strength. The only improvement has been in the marines who are a bit stronger now (they gained a few mortars from the army who got nothing in return).
We've cut back too far and I fear the next cabinet will cut even further, the LPF has the disdanding of the army and airforce as part of its party program and they are about 30% of parliament with the communists/socialists another 30%...
GDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 12968 posts, RR: 79 Reply 11, posted (11 years 7 months 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 703 times:
I don't really agree with Aslaska739, 'toys are only of so much use in the war against terrorism, human intelligence and the political will to use ground forces, even if it means casualties, are more important in this case.
Using proxy Afghan forces let Bin Laden get away in December.
And all the F-22's and NMD would not have mattered a bit on Sept 11th, had they been available.
PH-BFA From Netherlands, joined Apr 2002, 562 posts, RR: 1 Reply 13, posted (11 years 7 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 692 times:
Jwenting, the LPF has announced they are willing to vote in favour of participating the JSF project and buying the JSF. Together there are about 100 votes in favour then and only 50 against. So I don't see any problems so far