United States Defense Thread

Blackshoe

Defense Professional
Verified Defense Pro
Some sobering numbers on the cost of US counter terrorism measures for the last 15 years.

Here’s how much the US has spent fighting terrorism since 9/11
As I noted on Twitter, around $190 bn/yr. Spread over mostly a few departments, and while it's not quite budget dust, it's not that far off, even limiting ourselves to just discretionary spending.

Additionally, while saying we've only had about 6 killed a year by jihadi/Islamist-inspired attacks) sounds damning, if one remembers that the entire point was to fight the extremists on their own shores and not play defense. Also ignores how many have been arrested pre-attack (although IMHO I'm not sure how good a metric that really is anyway).

TLDR article has a big number, but can't answer (and doesn't try to raise) question of "Is it worth it?"
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
Interesting article that profiles military innovations and the attributes of those behind them. Rather than creating a new thread, I placed it here as the US has been the recent leader military innovation but is now under threat from increasing Chinese innovation e.g. quantum technology, hypersonic weapons, space technology etc. How real these emerging technologies are of course debatable.

Voices from the Disruptors: Profiles in Leading Military Innovation | Small Wars Journal
 
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FormerDirtDart

Active Member
Hi Tod,

Thanks for the clarification, (I'll probably have to have a bit of a read up on the US system at sometime too).

Whilst I understood the Republicans have a majority in both houses, I didn't realise that there was a 60% (60 out of 100) requirement in the US Senate, I would have thought as long as you get to 51% that things could be passed (as it would here in Australia).

And with members from both sides crossing the floor to the other side, it certainly makes getting that 60 votes very very difficult to say the least.

I also assume then that crossing the floor to vote with the other side is more normal in the US?

That doesn't normally happy here, they usually vote along party lines (except for conscience votes of a special nature, such as religious, moral or ethical issues).

Cheers,
Some clarification.
It is not 60% to overcome a potential filibuster. It is 60 votes, even if less than 100 Senators cast their vote. The only exception to the 60 vote rule is if a senate seat is vacant. The it reverts to 60%
And again, as it is there is no requirement for 100 total vote to be cast on any bill, it is not necessarily 51 vote, or 51% of votes cast. It is greater than 50% of votes cast, or 50% plus one vote (the Vice President). And, the VP can only cast his vote for approval in cases where the vote is tied.
 

Todjaeger

Potstirrer
Some clarification.
It is not 60% to overcome a potential filibuster. It is 60 votes, even if less than 100 Senators cast their vote. The only exception to the 60 vote rule is if a senate seat is vacant. The it reverts to 60%
And again, as it is there is no requirement for 100 total vote to be cast on any bill, it is not necessarily 51 vote, or 51% of votes cast. It is greater than 50% of votes cast, or 50% plus one vote (the Vice President). And, the VP can only cast his vote for approval in cases where the vote is tied.
In addition there is supposed to be a quorum present (currently 51+ Senators) for the Senate to conduct business, though in practice this is only a requirement if there is either a roll call or quorum call.

In practice, if there are less than 51 Senators present and someone is trying to pass a bill, it can be easily stopped or blocked by someone requesting a quorum call. If no one opts to do so, then the bill can proceed.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
Trump has said Russia didn't interfere in US elections thus confirming Steven Colbert's accessment of Trump, a (ock holster for Putin. The director of US intelligence has publicly disagreed with Trump. It will be interesting to see if Trump fires him. Can't believe Mattis will put up with this moron much longer.
 

MrConservative

Super Moderator
Staff member
Here is the full transcript

Read the full transcript of the Helsinki press conference

Here is the question and reply in context:

REPORTER (Jonathan Lemire from AP): Thank you. A question for each president. President Trump, you first. Just now President Putin denied having anything to do with the election interference in 2016. Every US intelligence agency has concluded that Russia did.

My first question for you, sir, is who do you believe? My second question is would you now with the whole world watching tell President Putin — would you denounce what happened in 2016 and would you warn him to never do it again?

TRUMP: So let me just say that we have two thoughts. You have groups that are wondering why the FBI never took the server. Why haven’t they taken the server? Why was the FBI told to leave the office of the democratic national committee? I’ve been wondering that. I’ve been asking that for months and months and I’ve been tweeting it out and calling it out on social media. Where is the server? I want to know, where is the server and what is the server saying? With that being said, all I can do is ask the question. My people came to me, Dan Coats came to me and some others and said they think it’s Russia.

I have President Putin. He just said it’s not Russia. I will say this. I don’t see any reason why it would be, but I really do want to see the server. But I have confidence in both parties. I really believe that this will probably go on for a while, but I don’t think it can go on without finding out what happened to the server. What happened to the servers of the Pakistani gentleman that worked on the DNC? Where are those servers? They’re missing. Where are they? What happened to Hillary Clinton’s emails? 33,000 emails gone — just gone. I think in Russia they wouldn’t be gone so easily. I think it’s a disgrace that we can’t get Hillary Clinton’s 33,000 emails. So I have great confidence in my intelligence people, but I will tell you that president Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today. And what he did is an incredible offer. He offered to have the people working on the case come and work with their investigators, with respect to the 12 people. I think that’s an incredible offer. Okay thank you.

Thus I would rather not breathlessly leap into taking filtered MSM reports nor dive into conclusions until after the joint hearing of the House Oversight Committee and House Judiciary Committee into the FBI has been completed.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
Makes one wonder what Putin has on Trump. The Russians have always being very good at compromising people and Trump would be highly susceptible to a honey trap. I would not be surprised if some in the US now see Trump as a traitor.
Honey trap, I doubt that would hold much leverage over Trump given given the crap that is already public about his affairs. The more likely scenario would be Russian money shoring up his flakey business empire.
 

MrConservative

Super Moderator
Staff member
Honey trap, I doubt that would hold much leverage over Trump given given the crap that is already public about his affairs. The more likely scenario would be Russian money shoring up his flakey business empire.
Where is the evidence for the "Russians" loaning money to Trump?
 

Todjaeger

Potstirrer
Where is the evidence for the "Russians" loaning money to Trump?
Please let us not start having DT infected by the plague (or if not plague, then at least something as awful as late stage syphilis) which is discussion of US politics and/or the current POTUS. That is apt to attract the wrong sort of crowd here.

EDIT: left out two words
 
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MrConservative

Super Moderator
Staff member
Please let us not start having DT infected by the plague (or if not plague, then at least something as awful as late stage syphilis) which is US politics and/or the current POTUS. That is apt to attract the wrong sort of crowd here.
Have a read of what you just wrote above and then contemplate how that all starts.
 

Stampede

Active Member
Makes one wonder what Putin has on Trump. The Russians have always being very good at compromising people and Trump would be highly susceptible to a honey trap. I would not be surprised if some in the US now see Trump as a traitor.

Trump's news conference 'suggests Putin has something on him'

I wonder if the US President actually believes his own words and fully comprehends how he comes across to the rest of the world

In the DT context it is a timely reminder that Trump wears many hats as US President, one of which is Commander In Chief.

I hope their CiC is unencumbered to make mature and responsible decisions for both the nation that elected him and for those who are allied to them.

History will be the judge.

Regards S
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
Not sure if he believes his own words or not but as to how he comes across to the rest of the world, clearly he doesn't care. I don't see much reason for believing he will make mature and responsible decisions either.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
One has to wonder about what foreign governments think about some of the claims made in Woodward's new book "Fear". Some claims aren't new but some of the other stuff....Meanwhile the NAFTA talks resume today. Fully expecting Trump to proclaim some new grievances against Canada to create a diversion. Considering some of the other stuff, derailing a trade agreement is minor.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
With possible peer to peer confrontations now coming to the forefront again, the problem of logistics is a major concern. The enormous amount of military kit that has been moved to Afghanistan and the ME was accomplished in a more or less threat free environment. This certainly won't be the case should the adversary be Russia or China. Ships and large transport aircraft losses would be significant due to missile proliferation. The link below discusses this. Makes one wonder about the feasibility of large submarines for shipping in addition to forward basing. The cost and time to develop large stealth transport doesn't seem viable.

Pentagon Searching For New Ways To Move Gear During Next War
 

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
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With possible peer to peer confrontations now coming to the forefront again, the problem of logistics is a major concern. The enormous amount of military kit that has been moved to Afghanistan and the ME was accomplished in a more or less threat free environment. This certainly won't be the case should the adversary be Russia or China. Ships and large transport aircraft losses would be significant due to missile proliferation. The link below discusses this. Makes one wonder about the feasibility of large submarines for shipping in addition to forward basing. The cost and time to develop large stealth transport doesn't seem viable.

Pentagon Searching For New Ways To Move Gear During Next War
I don't think large subs would be the answer because would it be feasible to build them in the sizes and numbers required? You are looking at displacements of 40,000 tonne just for the USN T-AKE class of ships, and considering the amount of materials requiring shipping, maybe subs of even larger sizes to move 20ft TEU boxes, AFVs, vehicles, guns, etc. Even if such a concept is viable it's weakest links are ports which could easily be attacked by ballistic missiles etc., because ports are geographically fixed and not something that you can pick up and move. I haven't even touched on the transport of troops and support personnel. WW2 illustrates the numbers of such that the US alone moved across the oceans.
 

STURM

Well-Known Member
With possible peer to peer confrontations now coming to the forefront again, the problem of logistics is a major concern. The enormous amount of military kit that has been moved to Afghanistan and the ME was accomplished in a more or less threat free environment. This certainly won't be the case should the adversary be Russia or China.
In a high intensity, protracted conflict I think a major concern would be the availability of restocks for missiles, spare parts, etc. If I recall correctly stocks fell to a dangerous level post Kosovo and Iraq; rush orders had to be placed with the OEMs. Another issue would be NATO allies which would also be dependent on emergency restocks for ammo and spares; for their U.S. sourced gear. Yes, if faced with an open conflict with China; the U.S. would be facing an adversary which [on paper at least] has not only the ability to prevent or interdict the flow of supplies by sea but also to strike at U.S. logistic hubs in Japan and Guam. Most would like to assume that because the U.S. still has a major edge over China in terms of technology, human resources, etc, that it will still be able to overcome whatever surprises the Chinese might have in store and ultimately prevail. This really remains to be seen however.

There is also the concern of how overstretched the U.S. military is given that, unlike China it has military commitments globally and various NATO and non NATO allies that rely on the U.S. In the past a major concern was the U.S. simultaneously having to deal with conflicts in more than one area. There is always the possibility of trouble breaking out in both Asia and the Middle East and the U.S. military having to juggle resources. Operations in Korea in the 1950's had a major impact on the ability of the U.S. to maintain readiness in case of troubles in Europe. Same thing with the Vietnam conflict, it had an impact on U.S. resources in Europe.

WW2 illustrates the numbers of such that the US alone moved across the oceans.
5 weeks after the Normandy landings; the U.S. conducted landings in the South of France. A week after the Normandy landings; across the other side of the globe, it conducted landings in Saipan. The ability of the U.S. to move men, supplies, heavy gear, etc and to sustain ops, was phenomenal.
 
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KiwiRob

Active Member
5 weeks after the Normandy landings; the U.S. conducted landings in the South of France. A week after the Normandy landings; across the other side of the globe, it conducted landings in Saipan. The ability of the U.S. to move men, supplies, heavy gear, etc and to sustain ops, was phenomenal.
The import word in that sentence is WAS, they couldn't do today what they did then, not without many years of build up.
 
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