This week, retired Lt. Gen. David Deptula penned a scorching op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, pointing out that military options being planned for Syria ignore the effect of sequestration on the U.S military at home. One suggestion was a limited no-fly zone over Syria, with Air Force and Naval aircraft flying out of Jordon. One of the facts being ignored is that aircrews are not flying training missions to maintain their proficiency to fly, fight, and win with air supremacy. Right now, the biggest unreported, no-fly zone is already up and running–it’s the one in the United States! US bases are being ordered to reduce flying time, training, and maintenance, greatly compromising America’s air combat readiness.
Gen. Deptula, the former head of intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance on the Air Staff, was one of the primary planners of Operation Desert Storm and a joint task force commander during Operation Northern Watch. He served as Director of the Combined Air Operations Center for Operation Enduring Freedom. He has flown more than 3000 combat hours.
The real danger of sequestration begins when politicians and the American public believe that budget cuts do not affect combat forces. “Sequestration was designed (by Obama) to be so irresponsible that Congress would be forced to prevent its implementation. Now that it has been implemented, the danger is that Washington will begin to think the military cuts are tolerable.” In order to fight and win a war, troops must constantly train for war. Perpetually idle airmen are not ready to effectively engage the enemy.
Training and testing are important; improvements and upgrades are vital to combat readiness and safety. Maintaining high standards, education, and proficiency are only accomplished by continuous preparation and training for combat. It’s what taxpayers expect from the military. America is no longer protected by the oceans as it once was over 100 years ago. And isolation is not an option that we can afford. It takes time to move force from the United States to forward bases.
Americans see exorbitant IRS bonuses and Mr. Obama’s $100 million, in your face trip to Africa as the U.S. military is being told to stand down. Gay pride celebrations, held at the taxpayer’s expense, are doing wonders for military readiness (by helping to destroy it!) If you voted for Obama, the next attack on the United States will be your fault and will probably be executed by terrorists entering the country through Mexico. Don’t think the rest of the world isn’t paying attention as Obama works to turn the United States military into an incompetent joke.