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 Post subject: Re: North Korea Is Best Korea
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 11:13 am 
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I see no reason for the USA to curb regional instabilities. Indeed, allowing instability to thrive would force manufacturers to relocate to very stable places like the USA or western Europe. and that would be a very good thing.
"Stabilizing" foreign lands so that they can be safe places to offshore American manufacturing or American wealth, at the expense of the US taxpayer, is strategically unsound policy.

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 Post subject: Re: North Korea Is Best Korea
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 12:44 pm 
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Lava wrote:
Anthropoid wrote:
So basically: we pull out of everywhere, and maintain cooperation with Japan, GB and several of the former Eastern Bloc countries?

Me personally, I think that doing what is strategically smart is always a good thing. However having a blanket agenda to either (a) withdraw/pull-back; or (b) doggedly maintain status quo; or (c) extend/push-out, all seem to be strategically stupid to me.

Every single location where the United States has any presence, whether civilian travelers/business, multi-national patronage, finance, aid, military, political stewardship, expeditionary force, etc., etc., must be assessed on a case-by-case basis and decided on based on a case-by-case basis.

The current situation of U.S. global presence is what it is; there is no point having ANY ideological, or political agenda about it, other than: it should change where that is a smart thing to do and it should stay the same where THAT is the smart thing to do.


The international situation has changed dramatically and no longer needs PAX Americana.


PAX Americana never existed. What existed was a Cold War.

Quote:
There no longer is a Soviet Union which declared it's intent to conquer the world. That is a huge change. America is no longer energy dependent on the Middle East. That is a huge change.


Yes, these points are true. Which is why "Every single location where the United States has any presence, whether civilian travelers/business, multi-national patronage, finance, aid, military, political stewardship, expeditionary force, etc., etc., must be assessed on a case-by-case basis and decided on based on a case-by-case basis."

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Why should we guarantee free and open sea lanes to Europe when Germany doesn't have a single operational submarine?

There simply is no threat to world peace and no need for the US to guarantee it.

There are regional instabilities, and in those areas, we will remain committed. But even then, the US will demand that our allies in those regions take the appropriate measures to defend themselves.

Israel is an example. Japan is another. Other than those 2, I fail to see where a US presence (with the possible exception of Eastern Europe) is required.

Once the world needed PAX Americana... now it does not and that hard fact will change American foreign policy no matter who the American President is.


I didn't say that U.S. presence was or was not required. I said that EVERY existing U.S. presence should be assessed on a case by case basis, an argument which you just made by pointing out examples where you suggest a draw down is necessary. There may be some examples where a draw-down is a bad idea, and maybe most of them a draw-down is a decent if not fantastic idea.

The point is that, each case must be assessed on a narrow context specific basis, not an overarching philosophical/ideological standpoint such as Isolationism or Expansionism.

What worries me is a "one-policy platform fits all 186 countries, and 15,000 metro areas on the planet" mentality. There may be areas where a certain degree of INCREASED U.S. presence is warranted: for example, arm sales, training exchanges and garrisoning of some support troops in the Baltic states, Poland, Ukraine . . . There may be areas where a complete withdrawal is warranted (the entirety of the Middle East and Africa?) . . . There may be areas where a phased draw down is warranted (South Korea?) . . . There may be areas where the "costs" of keeping the status quo are so ridiculously low compared to the costs to pull out that it makes sense to just retain the contingency of the U.S. presence (Diego Garcia??)

jwilkerson wrote:
Quote:
... strategically stupid ...


Of course, where we really disagree is on funding.

For me, it is strategically stupid to spend money you do not have. Or re-stated to "mortgage wealth that does not yet exist" ... which is what OOOSAH has been doing for many years.

IIRC, your come back to that is something along the lines of "Well, money does not really exist" ... leading to the idea, that it is fine to buy 20 aircraft carriers ( and the planes and the men and the 50 years of maintenance that goes along with all that ... how many military retirements must be funded to support one aircraft carrier over a 50 year life span !!!)

So, again, THAT is the fundamental area of disagreement. Does money exist? And if so, can we afford to build more aircraft carriers to defend "every single location".


When I consider that similar arguments were posed and account for the massive downsizing of the U.S. military immediately after the American Civil War, WWI, and the Korean War, as well as the mid 1970s I am made uneasy at the unaccounted COSTS which history suggests for these cost-savings conceptions.

Arms races happen when polities who are roughly on par try to keep ahead of others, else when upstart nations strive to catch up to leaders. At this point, when it comes to sheer might, no one is even close to us. That can be taken to mean that we can afford to reduce overall military size, but where is the magic threshold below which arms races become a risk?

I take seriously the above concept, and I often get the impression that you guys do not. It seems to be something rather deeply encultured in our American psyche as it would seem that our grandfathers similarly did not take the concept seriously numerous times in the past.

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Last edited by Anthropoid on Wed Jun 13, 2018 12:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: North Korea Is Best Korea
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 12:48 pm 
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Another spot where we no longer need to be is the Persian Gulf. There is a serious Iranian threat there but we are nearly energy independent of the Persian Gulf now.

Just alert the Arab states ahead of time and let them develop naval forces to counter the Iranians.

maybe you keep 1 carrier group in the Indian Ocean and have serious surge capability at Diego Garcia

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 Post subject: Re: North Korea Is Best Korea
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 12:53 pm 
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abradley wrote:

China would knock Japan out of the scenario and the others are easy meat to threats.


China would do no such thing.

China's shit navy and air forces are a paper tiger. Much of it is outdated filler and has been for a long time. Japan, on the other hand, has pretty sophisticated equipment across the board, and they've been keen on keeping it that way.

If China made an offensive move at Japan, they'd take pretty heavy losses. Not to mention cornholing their own export economy.

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 Post subject: Re: North Korea Is Best Korea
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 1:29 pm 
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Anthropoid wrote:
When I consider that similar arguments were posed and account for the massive downsizing of the U.S. military immediately after the American Civil War, WWI, and the Korean War, as well as the mid 1970s I am made uneasy at the unaccounted COSTS which history suggests for these cost-savings conceptions.


Trump does not advocate downsizing... he advocates modernization.

The Navy, for example, with the odd exception, is still using the ships they had when I was in the Navy 26 years ago. They still depend on the F/A (laughs out loud) 18 Strike Fighters of which only one third are operational.

The Air Force needs 2,000 pilots 'cause their people are consistently deployed throughout the world.

And our nuclear deterrent still flies an aircraft designed in 1948 for Christ's sake.

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 Post subject: Re: North Korea Is Best Korea
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 1:30 pm 
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That's a corner the Chinese have painted themselves into, their reliance on exports to the West. Wonder how long the regime can go with several millions of folks unemployed because there were no more container ships loading at Chinese ports?

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 Post subject: Re: North Korea Is Best Korea
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 1:40 pm 
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NefariousKoel wrote:
abradley wrote:

China would knock Japan out of the scenario and the others are easy meat to threats.


China would do no such thing.

China's shit navy and air forces are a paper tiger. Much of it is outdated filler and has been for a long time. Japan, on the other hand, has pretty sophisticated equipment across the board, and they've been keen on keeping it that way.

If China made an offensive move at Japan, they'd take pretty heavy losses. Not to mention cornholing their own export economy.
You forgot to quote my saying China was cutting off Japan's tankers in the South China Seas, neutralizing Japan and it's Navy. No need for offensive moves.

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 Post subject: Re: North Korea Is Best Korea
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 1:55 pm 
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Downsizing was VERY GOOD for the USA after the Civil War and WW1. Maintaining a permanent state of mobilization is extremely expensive and, historically, has caused the nations that do it to be massively overinvested in outdated arms and tactics.

It was extremely beneficial for the USA to downsize its armies and fleets post Civil War. The fleets were largely obsolescent. Despite the existence of ironclad monitors, the USN's blue water navy was all wooden vessels and many of them side or back wheel paddlers, rather than screw ships. The USN had pretty much NO seagoing ironclad vessels. We also avoided being involved in wars. Basically, the USN benefitted from extensive R&D absent a huge mobilized fleet. The US was in a very good position to modernize starting in the late 1880s. Ironclad vessels were all the rage in 1864 and completely obsolete ten years later when siemens process steel and similar processes made steel-hulled ships truly feasible.

In 1939 the USAAF was among the smallest in the world. Rumania's air corps was larger. Most of the powers with large air forces in 1940 were massively overinvested in outdated tech. Japan, Italy, France, and Russia all suffered from trying to cling to outdated designs long after they were obviated simply because, having spent the money to build crappy planes, they felt obliged to keep fielding them.

Imagine if the USN had tried to maintain a bunch of fleet carriers, in defiance of the Washington Naval Treaty, chockablock full of mighty Boeing P-26s, later Grumman F3As, and Curtiss SBCs. Having all those, the USN would at the direction of some self-infatuated Chief Exec sailed triumphally into every conflict around the globe armed with DRECK.

Periods of massive demobilization allow the US to stay OUT of the early stages of foreign wars, and allow the USA to mobilize, if needed, with MUCH BETTER STUFF.

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 Post subject: Re: North Korea Is Best Korea
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 1:56 pm 
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China can't cut off Japan without blockading Japan. The South China Sea is not the world's only commerce corridor.

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 Post subject: Re: North Korea Is Best Korea
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 2:00 pm 
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Quote:
... cutting off Japan's tankers in the South China Seas, neutralizing Japan and it's Navy. No need for offensive moves ...


"cutting off" is a completely offensive move. Using force to prevent someone from walking down the sidewalk or driving down the highway is 100% offensive and warrants response in kind.

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