The Instigator
nivac817
Con (against)
The Contender
Emily77
Pro (for)

The American Military budget is excessive

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Debate Round Forfeited
Emily77 has forfeited round #2.
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/26/2017 Category: Politics
Updated: 11 months ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 402 times Debate No: 103301
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (2)
Votes (0)

 

nivac817

Con

First i would like to start by stating i have already posted this debate a few times, however my opponent has always forfeited, or simply stopped posting their arguments. This has frustrated me quite a bit, and as a result, you must have completed three debates to accept my challenge. Please do not accept this debate unless you have the intention of finishing it.

Hello, I am a Sailor in the USN, and a proud patriot of the United States. One of the most common debates about the American government is our very large defense budget, of hundreds of billions of dollars, which is larger than the next several countries combined. While often criticized for being excessive i hope to prove that it is necessary to safeguard our interest.

First Round- acceptance (no arguments here)
Second Round- Opening statements, and arguments
Third Round -Rebuttals
Fourth Round- Additional arguments
Fifth Round- Rebuttals to the fourth round and closing statements.

I would appreciate if you stick with this format. Please no Ad hominem attacks.

Thank you, and i look forward to the debate.
Emily77

Pro

I accept the pro side, and will argue that the American military budget is excessive. I look forward to your opening arguments. Cheers!
Debate Round No. 1
nivac817

Con

Thank you for accepting.

First Argument (Round Two): Our Military safeguards our economy, (We can't afford NOT to have such a large budget)

The United States military is beyond any doubt the most well funded military in the world. In 2016 the United States spent $580 Billion on defense, where as China, the country with the worlds second most well funded military, spent just $146 Billion. We can dig even deeper, and find the United States spend more on it"s military than the next eight countries combined. Not to even mention our massive number of Aircraft Carriers, and overseas bases. [1] [2] [3]

This is all true. But simple number comparisons are just too... simple. If we are too debate this then we must ask ourselves... WHY is the budget this large? Where is this money going? What is unique about the American military capabilities, as compared to other countries? And how does it help America more than it hurts us?

For my opening arguments i hope to help explain these very questions to demonstrate why it is necessary.

One thing I've always found interesting, when i researched any data on the US military is how unique the American Navy and Air force are compared to other countries. For instance if we compare the US, China, and Russia's capabilities, to each other we get some interesting numbers.

Fighter jets by country [4]
Russia-806
China-1,271
USA- 2,296

The US has more than both countries combined. We see similar numbers with nearly every aspect of Naval/Air warfare

Destroyers by country [4]
Russia- 15
China- 35
USA- 63

Aircraft Carriers by country [4]
Russia-1
China-1
USA- 19

Unfortunately i can't include everything from my source, but if you go to [4] and flip through the Naval/Air figures, it is clear the US has a strong advantage over our adversaries in these areas, with the exception of certain ships such as frigates/mine warfare/ and coastal patrol craft. However the US chooses not to invest very much in these ships anyways, due to their inherently coastal nature.

However something interesting happens when you look at land systems

Tanks by country [4]
USA-5,884
China-6,457
Russia- 20,216

Self propelled artillery by country [4]-
China-1,710
USA-1,934
Russia- 5,972

Now the point of my message isn't too say that our Army is ineffective, or even that it needs more funding. My point is that this goes a long way in demonstrating where the American Military's priorities lie. It is clear America want's to have control over Naval and Air spaces. Much more so than any other country.

I apologize if it took me a while to get too my point, but ultimately the reason for these numbers is because the United States military has the intention of establishing "Command of the Commons". For those who don't know, Command of the Commons, is when one country has established sufficient control over the worlds trade routes and economic areas.

One, frequent criticism of the American Military is our vast number of overseas bases. These are very expensive to operate, and cause some to question if it is a sign of America's borderline-imperialism. I don't want to get too off topic here, but consider where our overseas bases are located...

1.) Bases in Countries we frequently trade with, such as Germany Italy, Japan, South Korea, Spain, (various European/Asian countries), etc.
2.) Countries near "Naval Choke points" such as Turkey, Bahrain, Italy Spain, Japan, South Korea, etc.

[5] [6] [7]

For my first point... I don't wish to sound rude to certain people when i say this, but when you think about it, we don't really have any large military presence in poor countries. (Except maybe Iraq, and Afghanistan for obvious reasons). We do have a few hundred soldiers in various South American, and African countries. But this presence is very small. Japan, and Germany have the two largest foreign American bases in them, and they are two very important trade partners. If our allies and trade partners are threatened... does that not threaten our economy?

For my second point, the US desires to control these choke points to help control Naval traffic. 90% of the worlds trade is done by ship, as it is easily the cheapest form of transportation. That is 90% of OUR imports and exports. By controlling these "choke points" we can control a very large volume of cargo traffic, allowing us to enforce embargoes, and defend our own trade.

Think back to World War 2, and the devastation German U-Boats caused the British. The British frequently suffered supply, and food shortages due to their dependence on trade. The current American strategy is built around establishing control over these trade routes. This allows us to protect our merchant ships, while simultaneously, threaten adversaries trade during times of war.

Unfortunately however... this requires money. Lots of it. Having a global military presence is very expensive. But it is worth it, as it allows us to safeguard our economy. And in all reality this strategy even pays for itself, by ensuring global economic stability.

During the Iran-Iraq war only a few decades ago, numerous merchant ships from various countries were attacked and sunk by both sides. This had such an effect on the American economy, that US warships were sent to the Persian gulf to escort Allied merchant ships. This was known as "The Tanker War". By the end of the conflict hundreds of ships were sunk including two American ships. [8]

You see countries like Russia, and China do not have these global capabilities. They simply can't afford them. China's GDP is half the size of America's and Russia has a GDP smaller than California. This puts them at a significant disadvantage. If such a conflict such as the Tanker War were to happen again, they would struggle to do anything about it. Especially if it was far away from their own country, or against a powerful adversary.

Now i know you may be thinking that i spent too much time talking about where our military is, or why we do what we do, and not enough about money itself. But that's also my point. Our military logistics capabilities far exceed that of any other country, allowing us to protect our economic interest on a global scale. But we also have to be able to pay the bill. Because defending the United States doesn't always mean protecting our soil. It also means protecting our assets . It means protecting our economy.

The United States and our Allies have collectively put ourselves in a very powerful position. A position to safeguard our economic interests for many many years. It is expensive... yes. But honestly ask... can we afford NOT too?

[1]
http://comptroller.defense.gov......
[2]
http://chinapower.csis.org......
[3]
http://www.pgpf.org......
[4]
http://www.globalfirepower.com......
[5]
https://www.stripes.com......
[6]
https://www.airforce.com......
[7]
https://qz.com......
[8]
https://www.usni.org......
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Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
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Debate Round No. 4
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Debate Round No. 5
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by nivac817 11 months ago
nivac817
Hey it's been about a day and a half since i posted my round 2 argument, and i just want to check... you intend to finish this right? I'm not trying to be rude, or rush you. If you are still preparing your argument then obviously it's fine. However as i said I've posted this debate several times because whenever i tried to do this my opponent just stopped posting new arguments.
Posted by FanboyMctroll 11 months ago
FanboyMctroll
I agree with you sailor!!

Semper Fi
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