Tags: Donald Trump | Military Strength Marginal

Trump's Defense Plan Based on 'Marginal' Rating of Armed Forces

Trump's Defense Plan Based on 'Marginal' Rating of Armed Forces

 (AP)

By    |   Sunday, 27 November 2016 10:46 PM

The U.S. armed forces are too small to win major wars, according to The Heritage Foundation's annual Index of U.S. Military Strength.

The conservative Washington think tank, which has helped shape the military views of President-elect Donald Trump, gives the armed forces a collective grade of "marginal," which is only in the middle of it 5-tier ranking.

Further, the Army gets the group's lowest ranking - weak.

Trump based much of his major speech on national security last month on Heritage's military assessments, which urges a massive increase in military spending to bolster the armed forces and give the U.S. the ability to credibly face threats around the world.

"The U.S. military is two-thirds the size it needs to be and, of that two-thirds, only one-third is at acceptable levels of readiness," Heritage's Dakota Wood, who edited the index, told The Washington Times.

"The combined effects of reduced spending, worsened by the Budget Control Act of 2011, and sustained high levels of operational employed have resulted in a U.S. military that is too small for the tasks it is being assigned, rapidly aging due to program delays and cancellations needed to replace equipment that is being worn out, and far less ready for combat operations."

Trump has vowed to increase defense spending, saying that part of the cost could be offset by eliminating vacant jobs inside the Pentagon.

However, the Military Times points out that the cost will be very high if Trump keeps just one of his promises for a military buildup - a Navy with 350 ships, which is some 80 more than what it has now. Each aircraft carriers can cost some $10 billion, while an attack sub is about $3 billion and a combat ship approximately $500 million.

The extra ships would also mean the necessity for some 50,000 additional sailors, which would increase the cost some more.

Even if the money is found, building the number of ships described in the plan would take at least 15 years.


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The U.S. armed forces are too small to win major wars, according to The Heritage Foundation's annual Index of U.S. Military Strength. The conservative Washington think tank, which has helped shape the military views of President-elect Donald Trump, gives the armed forces a...
Military Strength Marginal
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2016-46-27
Sunday, 27 November 2016 10:46 PM
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