Cutbacks cast doubt over America’s military readiness

US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel (left) and chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin E Dempsey (photo: dpa)
US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel (left) and chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin E Dempsey (photo: dpa)

The state of readiness of America’s armed forces has become a major issue in Washington. Spending cuts mean that the US is significantly decreasing its military in relation to the global tasks and responsibilities traditionally identified as ‘vital national interests’. Little is likely to change before the economy enters a major period of recovery, leaving the nation open to some very difficult strategic dilemmas.

DEFENCE spending cuts threaten to leave the United States unable to respond effectively to foreign crises or homeland missions.

The US flexed its military muscles in November 2013, dispatching a flight of strategic bombers over contested a...

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