Essay On Cost-Benefit of the US military Spending

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Cost-Benefit of the US military spending

The United States has the most potent military in the world. It maintains the largest spending on the military that goes to the invention and purchase of new equipment. The Military budget can be expressed as the portion of discretionary money that is set aside by the United States Federal budget that is often allocated by the Department of Defense and it broadly refers to the portion of the United States budget that goes to any military expenditures.

This budget often pays the salaries, healthcare and training of both the uniformed and civilian personnel, and it maintains the facilities and equipment. The military budget has been increasing in the United and the spending in the year 2011 summed up to around 664.8 billion. Military spending can be described as the topic that is governed primarily through perception as compared to reality.

Facts are often facts, however, if you do not look at it enough then, one cannot be able to understand the whole story. The issue on many people's minds is why the United States military demanded and gotten funds, but other sectors have not been able to do the same. However, it is imperative to note that it is often the congress that determines the budget of the military. This paper is going to analyze the military cost benefits of the current use as well as the current size of the United States Military.

The purpose of the armed forces in the United States is often to protect the nation's citizens as well as territory from different threats. This United States is defensive in nature, and this means that it is reactionary. However, there are several instances where the government acts, for example, when it comes to defending the national interest in overseas territories. Historically, it is important to understand that without having a military, the United States would not entirely.

The military was important as it was the one that helped the United States earn freedom from Great Britain. Further, it is was the United States that helped win the World War I and World war II. In fact, it is of the essence to understand that without the United States military, Europe would have been a totally different place as compared to what it is now (Eland 73). Therefore, it can be argued that the value of the military forces was proved to the world through the history of the United States. By having a well-funded military, there are several benefits that come into play. Firstly, nobody can try to attack the United States; this is because the military of the United States is known to be extremely powerful.

Another benefit of the United States is that there is nobody that exists in the United States that can decide to organize a revolutionary army in a bid to topple the government. This is because the United States is extremely powerful and, therefore, people often fear it. The United States army is extremely important as it has enabled other countries to effectively honor their commitments as well as their agreement with the United States.

The military forces are often able to provide jobs either directly or indirectly, and it often provides valuable training as well as conditioning of the people that often enlist (Eland 12). The military is often able to act as well impose America's will or morality on other nations as it often deems necessary. It often has the resources as well as training that is needed that is intended to intervene around the world, it further has enabled the world to conduct missions of mercy.

It of the essence to understand that the United States army is not the same as other militaries that exist in other nations. This is because there are other militaries that have large law enforcement duties and it might often be involved directly in the governance of the nation and at times it be used to repress the citizens and at the same time protect the people that are in Power.

It is important to understand that with no military in this technological age; countries will often have no structure. Every country understands that there is a need to have and maintain regimental armed forces, not only physically but mentally as well. Whether in the Marines, Air force, Coast Guard, Navy, and the US government provides structured training in order to keep the military personally safe as well as the families "back home". The military is hell-bound in defending the United States borders and it uses high tech devices to do so, and this venture often needs money. Therefore, the most obvious reason as to why the military is importance is because of defense.

The military often helps in the community services. For example, during Hurricane Katrina, the National Guard and the army played an important role in terms of evacuation, as well as the delivery of supplies to the area. It is of importance to also note that the military has been of profound importance in the promotion of the Nation's heritage and especially patriotism.

The people that serve in the United States military are often regarded to as patriots and for they are seen as promoting the American dream overseas. The word military often parallels with the word such as courage, duty, honor, sacrifice and duty. The importance of the United States military can never be underestimated, and this is despite the costs that accrue in the military.

The United States need to maintain an involved presence when it comes to preserving the security of its allies, and this is because of the commitments that the United States has given to its allies. Taiwan/Chinese issues remains a large concern and consequently, the United States should still can protect its neighbors and its allies (Chao 18). Further, when it comes to Israel, there are still several problems that occur in regards to terrorism and external attacks and the presence of the United States has been instrumental in ensuring that indeed Israel still remains UN attacked by any country. Therefore, the costs that have been put in the American Military have been of importance because it has ensured that the country remains a superpower, and it can easily protect its allies in different situations.

In regards to the cost the Department of Defense (DoD) the military in the fiscal year of 2013 requested about $150 billion in order to pay and benefits of current and the retired members of the military. The United States currently spends roughly one trillion on the defense as well as homeland security. There are those that have argued that the programs in the United States army are enough to justify their costs. There are those however that argue the United States is unlikely to engage in a cataclysmic conflict like World War II and, therefore, the continued overspending is unnecessary.

It is imperative to understand that terrorism is a worldwide problem and, therefore, the United States should not spend its military might on terrorism alone. It is not acceptable for the United States to pay all costs in regards to terrorism, and this can be evidenced by the overspending in the military.

There are those that argue that indeed the spending on security can be prudently reduced and the government will still be operational. The government can maintain some rapid response forces as well as a number of nuclear weapons in order to increase the capacity to quickly rebuild a sizeable threat to eventually materialize (Chao 14).

The government can decrease costing and be able to remain still relevant in the world in terms of the armies. They further argue that indeed the united States have not fought any modest successful ground war since the year 1945. In fact, it can be argued that that Korea was a stalemate, Vietnam can be described as a loss, and the invasion of Iraq was nothing but a morass.

In fact, it can be established that indeed the gulf of war that occurred in the year 1991, and this could have been accomplished with the half of the force that was sent there. Therefore, it can be argued that indeed the United States has done nothing of worth in terms of military instead of its fear against an aggression attack. In terms of new threats, the terrorists often serve for a time, and the devastating attack on the world trade center can only be described as a pinprick.

Terrorists cannot be described as a strategic threat that requires large forces of over 60,000 operations on force at a $10 billion cost. There are other cost effective ways that exists that do not often need the use of such large amounts of forces and unnecessary use of the tax payer funds. They argue that the military budget in the United often consists of approximately 45% of the total global arms spending and that the budget of the United States is 6-7 times that of the military budget of China.

Further, it is important also to note that the close allies of the United States are responsible for the two-thirds to three-quarters of the military spending in the world. Further, the United States still retains the largest number of military bases on foreign soils across the world. This, therefore, according to critics begs the question, what is the United States preparing for?

The healthcare and education in the United States are not at their best, but the government sees it wise to spend billions of dollars in the creation of foreign military bases across the world. They argue that the cost to benefits ratio of the spending on the military is not on the same boat, given that the military continues investing in archaic threats (Eland 71). They argue that there is a need for the United States to get its investment priorities right and eradicate the lax attitude towards costs that are by the day being increasingly divorced from the real threats that exist today, the ever growing perils of tomorrow and the nation's grim financial outlook.

The United States has been spending heavily on the military with no end game in sight. In fact, the military of the United States can be said to be searching for a big threat, and this is the reason as to why they are ever growing in terms of numbers. Recently, the country has landed on China. China can be described as an ideological adversary, one which is assertive and can also be defined as a regional power.

Unlike the Soviet Union, China cannot be described as an ideological adversary in fact; China is extremely intertwined in the global economy. Researchers have argued that the Chinese Military is probably a half a century away from competing with that of the United States. However, the United States will hear none of that, and this is the reason as to why they continue to increase their spending on the United States army.

In fact, it can be argued that as compared to the benefits, the costs outdo the benefits. The excessively large all volunteer force is extremely expensive, and politics often makes a rational force planning extremely impossible (Feaver 82). The redundant and expensive military health care systems can be described as chewing up the budget resources. The compensation system that currently exists provides across the board pay increases so that the different and average military pay completely surpasses the pay of around 89% of all the civilians in the United States.

The politics in the United States that exist in changing this system are lethal, and consequently secretaries can only tweak at the existing margin. Therefore, the main question is why the United States spends too much given the low cost to benefits ration. The answer can be seen in poor management, lack of cost control, politics, and choices making that are mainly based on budgetary margin and economics (Rundquist 63). Each and every American knows that there is a ludicrously over-budgeted defense system; however, no one is willing to do anything about this situation. The system can be described as being too hard to change and consequently, new leaders just layer new things on top of the old, and this occurs at a great cost and they prioritize it as national security.

In conclusion, the costs in the military outperform the benefits. The true national security is getting lost and is being buried in a language of a consistent debate where the words threat and strategy can be described as the refuge of the scoundrels that defend that which can only be described as a less attractive goal. At best, the United States spending represents a system that deludes itself into believing rhetoric.

It is important for the United States to understand that the defense budget and the size of the military are extremely large for the country's security needs. Therefore, must major economic as well as budgetary issues to be solved. Currently, there exists no threat and in fact, there would be no threat for several decades. Therefore, the United States should look keenly at the costs versus the benefits and determine whether indeed they still want to go forward with an extremely large budget and oversized military.


Rundquist, Barry, and Thomas M. Carsey. Congress and Defense Spending: The Distributive Politics of Military Procurement. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2002. Print.
Feaver, Peter. Soldiers and Civilians: The Civil-Military Gap and American National Security. Cambridge, Mass. [u.a.: MIT Press, 2001. Print.
Eland, Ivan. Putting "defense" Back into U.s. Defense Policy: Rethinking U.s. Security in the Post-Cold War World. Westport, Conn. [u.a.: Praeger, 2001. Print.
Chao, Wan-Jung, Greg Sanders, and Guy Ben-Ari. Trends in European Defense Spending, 2001-2006: A Report of the Csis Defense-Industrial Initiatives Group. Washington, D.C: Center for Strategic and International Studies, 2008. Internet resource.