“China’s J-20, roughly on the same technical level as the F-35, costs one-fifth as much. Quantity has its own winning quality. To achieve this unhappy balance, the U.S. government gave up on the best fighter in the sky, the F-22,” writes Angelo Codevilla (senior fellow of Claremont Institute, professor emeritus of international relations at Boston University and author of To Make and Keep Peace), in his article “Military Dollars, and Sense.” He continues, “If you cannot show how the number of F-35s you are planning to build before they bankrupt America can prevail in what theater of operations, stop pouring money into them, and figure out a way actually to prevail without them.”
Clearly, spending U.S. tax dollars by the deep state continues to lack accountability.
Consider nuclear forces which, subsequent to the Nuclear Posture Review, are now the Pentagon’s “number one priority,” and are to receive some $9 billion more. Our establishment, far from considering dispassionately what it takes to fight, survive and win in a nuclear environment, continues to plan and build for “deterrence.” Thus it neglects:
1) self-deterrence—Our officials have proven consistently that, whenever the possibility of using nukes arises they retreat, because “nothing is worth nuclear war.” Our continuing refusal to take missile defense seriously confirms this to China and everybody else.
2) Some countries—Russia especially—have fully integrated nukes in their military plans and regard them as artillery. Our Defense establishment stubbornly refuses to consider: ”What do we do when deterrence fails and the other side actually uses nukes or clearly means to use them? In short, we are still building nukes to be scarecrows, advertised as scarecrows. Because they are not meant to be used, they don’t deter anybody but those who make them. Hence, what does any amount of money buy us?
Missile defense is the clearest case. The current U.S missile defense budget comes to $12.9 billion—some $300 billion over the past forty years. But tiny, semi-starved North Korea has well-nigh built the capacity to overwhelm it. Because this year’s nearly $2 billion increase goes into the very programs that have made this possible, it cannot change our vulnerability. Nor would quadrupling that increase do so.
That is because all such programs remain predicated on some unwise notions about our defenses. First, the official U.S policy since 1972 has been that we must avoid doing anything that adversely affects the capacity of the USSR/Russia, and China, to attack America with ballistic missiles. Hence, its corollary: Such “national missile defense as we may build will be limited to one “site.” Its fire control system will launch interceptors only after they have come into view of the site’s radar. Though the 1972 ABM Treaty is no longer in force, the U.S will not do fire control using any orbital systems that “substitute for” ground based radars. That reliance on surface based radars means that our efforts to defend against missiles not just from Russia and China, but also from North Korea and Iran, suffer under insurmountable inefficiencies. Hence as well, the U.S will refrain from striking missiles from orbit, especially using systems “based on other physical principles” (read: lasers). In sum the money we have spent and are spending on missile defense is less a solution than a placebo.
Read more here.