Squaring the Pentagon

Former Antiwar.com columnist Doug Bandow writes this week in The National Interest

President Barack Obama has unveiled his new budget, which proposes continued increases in military outlays. What for? The United States is spending far too much on the Pentagon.

There is no more important federal role than providing for the common defense. But what is required for defense depends upon circumstances. Military requirements in 1900 differed dramatically from those in 1940 and in 1980. What are the requirements today?

The latest Pentagon budget suggests that the United States is embattled and isolated, its territory threatened and its future imperiled. The Obama administration has proposed a $40 billion (8 percent) hike in military outlays in 2010 to $527.7 billion. (Counting Iraq and Afghanistan will push annual military spending up to around $700 billion.) President Obama plans to continue increasing the size of the Army and Marine Corps.

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