By Jacqueline Cabasso
[Calmers] Johnson in 2004 estimated that the Pentagon maintains more than 700 overseas bases in about 130 countries, with an additional 6,000 bases in the United States and its territories. He concludes:
"These numbers, although staggeringly large, do not begin to cover all the actual bases we occupy globally.... If there were an honest count, the actual size of our military empire would probably top 1,000 different bases in other people's countries, but no one — possibly not even the Pentagon — knows the exact number for sure, although it has been distinctly on the rise in recent years."
A 1993 Congressional Research Service (CRS) study of the U.S. Navy's Naval Historical Center records identified "234 instances in which the United States has used its armed forces abroad in situations of conflict or potential conflict or for other than normal peacetime purposes" between 1798 and 1993. As the author noted, "The list does not include covert actions or numerous instances in which U.S. forces have been stationed abroad since World War II in occupation forces or for participation in mutual security organizations, base agreements, or routine military assistance or training operations."
In a 2006 review of this study and two other surveys of U.S. military interventions, journalist Gar Smith found that "in our country's 230 years of existence, there have been only 31 years in which U.S. troops were not actively engaged in significant armed adventures on foreign shores." He concluded:
"The arithmetic is daunting. Over the long course of U.S. history, fewer than 14% of America's days have been marked by peace. The defining characteristic of our nation's foreign policy for 86% of our existence would appear to be a bellicose penchant for military intervention.
As of 2006, there were 192 member states in the United Nations. Incredibly enough, over the past two centuries, the United State has attacked, invaded, policed, overthrown or occupied 62 of them."
"Atomic Audit," a study by the Brookings Institution completed in 1998, found that, as a conservative estimate, the United States spent $5.5 trillion dollars on nuclear weapons alone, from 1940-1996 (in constant 1996 dollars.) The Brookings study found that nuclear weapons spending during the 56 year period it examined exceeded the combined total federal spending for education; training, employment, and social services; agriculture; natural resources and the environment; general science, space, and technology; community and regional development, including disaster relief; law enforcement; and energy production and regulation. On average, the study estimated, the United States spent $98 billion a year on nuclear weapons.
The Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments estimates that the United States currently spends approximately $54 billion annually on all nuclear-related programs and activities including offensive and defensive capabilities, Department of Defense and Department of Energy activities, strategic and theater forces, as well as associated command, control and communications capabilities. That is more than the entire military budget of nearly every individual country in the world. In 2006, only China ($121.9 B), Russia ($70.B), the United Kingdom ($55.4B), and France ($54.B) spent $54 billion or more in total on their militaries.
What else could $54 billion a year be used for? According to the 1998 United Nations Development Program report, the additional cost of achieving and maintaining universal access to basic education for all, basic health care for all, reproductive health care for all women, adequate food for all, and clean water and safe sewers for all would amount to roughly $40 billion a year.
On February 4, the Bush administration released its budget request for Fiscal Year 2009, which begins Oct. 1, 2008. For FY 2009, the White House is seeking $711 Billion for the military - $541 for the Pentagon and the nuclear weapons-related activities of the DOE, and according to Defense Secretary Robert Gates, at least $170 Billion for ongoing military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Wow, what an important and comprehensive piece. Jacqueline Cabasso has done a service to humanity in doing all the work that was required in bringing forth this article. You should visit the link to afterdowningstreet.org at the beginning of this post so you may read the whole article. It has many interesting images, graphics, and charts as well.
Just look at the wasted money and what it could have done and could be doing. Then ask yourself if demons are in charge of this planet. The Bible says that Satan is the ruler of this world. That's correct. However, the prophecy is that Satan (the spirit of evil) will be overthrown and replaced by God's spirit that is righteousness. Whose side are you on?
Things are getting worse. I've been saying that they would and writing about it since 2002. It's going to keep getting worse until things become so stark that no one will have a choice but to choose either to be on the right side that is unselfish and harmless or the wrong side that is selfish and harmful. It's that simple yet that complex. It's complex, because people have such a difficult time firstly in understanding what is harmful and secondly in sticking with not engaging in it once they know.