MCViewPoint

Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

When Your Government Ends A War But Increases The Military Budget, You’re Being Scammed

Posted by M. C. on December 18, 2021

https://caitlinjohnstone.substack.com/p/when-your-government-ends-a-war-but

Caitlin Johnstone

The US Senate has passed its National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) military spending bill for the fiscal year of 2022, setting the budget at an astronomical $778 billion by a vote of 89 to 10. The bill has already been passed by the House, now requiring only the president’s signature. An amendment to cease facilitating Saudi Arabia’s atrocities in Yemen was stripped from the bill.

“The most controversial parts of the 2,100-page military spending bill were negotiated behind closed doors and passed the House mere hours after it was made public, meaning members of Congress couldn’t possibly have read the whole thing before casting their votes,” reads a Politico article on the bill’s passage by Lindsay Koshgarian, William Barber II and Liz Theoharis.

The US military had a budget of $14 billion for its scaled-down Afghanistan operations in the fiscal year of 2021, down from $17 billion in 2020. If the US military budget behaved normally, you’d expect it to come down by at least $14 billion in 2022 following the withdrawal of US troops and official end of the war in Afghanistan. Instead, this new $778 billion total budget is a five percent increase from the previous year.

“Months after US President Joe Biden’s administration pulled the last American troops out of Afghanistan as part of his promise to end the country’s ‘forever wars’, the United States Congress approved a $777.7bn defence budget, a five percent increase from last year,” Al Jazeera reports.

“For the last 20 years, we heard that the terrorist threat justified an ever-expanding budget for the Pentagon,” Win Without War executive director Stephen Miles told Al Jazeera. “As the war in Afghanistan has ended and attention has shifted towards China, we’re now hearing that that threat justifies it.”Ali Harb @Harbpeace”For the last 20 years, we heard that the terrorist threat justified an ever-expanding budget for the Pentagon. As the war in Afghanistan has ended and attention has shifted towards China, we’re now hearing that that threat justifies it.” aje.io/f9d44e via @AJEnglishUS military spending grows as policy shifts to ‘prioritise China’Progressive legislators question massive US defence budget, which officials say is necessary amid China competition.aje.ioDecember 16th 202116 Retweets46 Likes

Upon the removal of US troops from Afghanistan, President Biden said the following in August:

“After more than $2 trillion spent in Afghanistan — a cost that researchers at Brown University estimated would be over $300 million a day for 20 years in Afghanistan — for two decades — yes, the American people should hear this: $300 million a day for two decades. If you take the number of $1 trillion, as many say, that’s still $150 million a day for two decades.  And what have we lost as a consequence in terms of opportunities?  I refused to continue in a war that was no longer in the service of the vital national interest of our people.”

You would think a government so grieved over the loss of “opportunities” for the American people due to Afghanistan war spending would be eager to begin allocating that wealth toward providing opportunities to Americans at the end of that war. Instead, more wealth has been diverted to the US war machine.

Antiwar’s Dave DeCamp reports:

See the rest here

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