Senator Jim Inhofe (R-OK) was in Norman, Oklahoma this week, and visited Tinker Air Force Base as well. Inhofe told the Norman Transcript that a national commission is charged with examining cost efficiency at several military bases nationwide. He wants the Senate Arms Services Committee to hear the report, saying “it’s a good group” and he indicated they will tell the “truth” about their findings on Military spending. According to an Inhofe op-ed, the Military is severely underfunded, and understaffed – in direct opposition to the U.S. Constitution which calls for a strong national defense, yet the Department of Defense is spending $170 Million on biofuel refineries, with Obama instructing Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel not to ask for emergency funding from Congress.
Senator Inhofe sent a request to Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel asking for details of how the DOD’s sequestration will affect the Military as they are required to cut $52 BILLION in fiscal year 2014. He received a reply, begging more questions. Inhofe’s full response is posted on his website, here’s a snippet:
“While I would have liked more details, Sec. Hagel’s response makes clear that the devastation of sequester budget cuts will only be amplified beyond what we have experienced thus far,” said Inhofe.
“As I predicted, sequestration is leading to the hollowing out of our military and if the Department of Defense’s sequestration is not averted for future years, we will move beyond furloughs and programmatic reductions to firing personnel and canceling our critical weapons programs.
Earlier this year, Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Sandy Winnefeld, warned that if these drastic and historic cuts were allowed to continue, we would reach a point where our military would be unable to respond to future crises.
Inhofe writes “we’re well on our way to this unthinkable reality.
His [Hagel] letter clearly states that if sequestration occurs again in FY 2014, our military will likely be unprepared to deal with future contingencies around the world—a startling fact given the growing instability and threats across the Middle East, North Africa, and around the world.”
In June 2013, an Inhofe op-ed said sequestration had cut $37 Million from the defense budget.
…and our forces are struggling with its impact on their combat readiness and capabilities.
Meanwhile, President Barack Obama continues to gut military programs, capabilities and the readiness of our forces, leaving our commanders with a hollow force unable to provide the global security needs of the U.S. and our allies. He has cut more than 100,000 military personnel from the ranks, reduced the size of our naval fleet, cut hundreds of Air Force combat aircraft — and allowed sequestration to impose devastating cuts in the funds used to train our military units, repair equipment and recover the preparedness of our armed forces.
In addition, unforeseen costs associated with the president’s call for an accelerated withdrawal from Afghanistan have left the department billions of dollars short in vital warfighting funds. Instead, the secretary is being forced by the administration to sacrifice other current defense priorities, leaving our combat forces in Afghanistan short nearly $4 billion and shortchanging other base defense accounts by $2.3 billion…
…in the face of devastating cuts to civilian workers, carrier deployments, military training and equipment maintenance, the Defense Department is planning to contribute $170 million to a massive federal giveaway to private biofuels companies to aid in the construction of commercial biofuel refineries…
Like so many of the other decisions by this administration regarding our national security, it defies comprehension. Rather than use our military as a piggy bank to fund the president’s domestic energy agenda, we should be ensuring that every scarce defense dollar is going toward maintaining our military as the best-trained and best-equipped fighting force in the world. I hope the secretary of defense stands up to this White House and demands some common sense. Read the entire Inhofe article on wasteful biofuel funding and a “hollowed-out” Military here.
We are gutting our Military to spend Department of Defense monies on biofuel refineries! Something needs to be done in Congress to change the way Departments get their budget increases each and every year, whether needed or not. The drill is, spend all the money on something and the next year the taxpayers give you an increase. Baseline budgeting is allowing the theft of, and the irresponsible use of, taxpayer monies to the enormous detriment of national security. It must stop.
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