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Defense spending declines

By Michael Margavitch, Columnist

Republican leaders are having a debate within their party. This debate concerns the issue of cutting the Pentagon military budget. Various members committees that are supported by the Tea Party say that the nation's debts are becoming a national security risk.

However, other Republicans are concerned that the budget will jeopardize the lives of the soldiers. The plan, according to Defense Secretary Robert Gates, is to lower the military spending by $78 billion over the course of five years due to the nation's "extreme fiscal duress."

Tea Party movement leader Dick Armey said, "A lot of people say if you cut defense, you're demonstrating less than a full commitment to our nation's security, and that's baloney."

War can be a serious drain on the economy. Two wars occurring simultaneously prove even worse.

However, the Republican leaders for the budget cuts are rushing into this decision with the obsession of saving money and cutting corners.

What they should be concentrating on is the men and women in uniform who serve their country. Whether you are a pacifist or believe that war is the only way to obtain peace, there are human beings in constant danger every day. We need to sufficiently protect them in this time of war.

Republican Representative Vicki Hartzler from Missouri once stated that her priority was too "reign in runaway spending."

However, Hartzler changed her tune when she was inquired about the Pentagon budget. Hartzler responded, "Now is not the time to talk about defense cuts while we are engaged in two theaters with men and women in harm's way."

Republican Representative Scott Rigell from Virginia agrees with the position posed by Hartzler. No matter how much spending needs to be done, a strong and protected military is necessary. Rigell said, "As a very first priority, it is our constitutional duty to stand an army.

Cutting corners could also mean cutting military jobs, which would contribute to the already high unemployment rate.

If there are fewer soldiers able to work in the areas of war, then we have fewer soldiers on the battlefield, decreasing their chances to survive and increasing the danger facing them exponentially.

Before a hasty decision is made about decreasing the Pentagon budget, leaders must look at the peril facing the soldiers if the cuts are made. Our military could be less protected in the way of armor, job security, and strength in numbers. This is not a quick fix solution.

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