After President Obama was elected, most people assumed that America was finally going to be done with foreign interventions. It seems laughable in retrospect, but many Americans voted for him because they were tired of the wars in Iraq in Afghanistan. Unfortunately, the United States continued to intervene in other countries. The only thing we stopped doing was sending hundreds of thousands of soldiers to invade the world.
We replaced that with dozens of low intensity conflicts and clandestine operations that wouldn’t rile up the public in the same way that a full scale invasion would. These operations were largely fought with the special forces, rather than infantry divisions. This allowed Obama to keep America’s war machine rolling while significantly cutting the military’s budget. But now that Trump is in office, it appears that the special operations community is going to remain very busy.
That’s what Army General Tony Thomas, who is the commander of the U.S. Special Operations Command, told the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities on Tuesday.
“We are a command at war, and will remain so for the foreseeable future,” he told the subcommittee, before revealing that there are now 8,000 members of the special forces deployed in more than 80 countries. During the hearing, he was accompanied by a Department of Defense official who admitted that “We’ve been operating at such a high [operational] tempo for the last decade-plus.”
After making the case that the military needs a higher budget, General Thomas also revealed that the special forces are straining under the weight of conducting so many missions. “We are as–or more–challenged than the other services in the armed forces. That may come as a surprise to you, and I don’t want to get into the morbid [suicide] statistics, but we are suffering the same challenges as the rest of the services.”
Maybe instead of increasing the military budget, we need to stop intervening in so many countries, and start bringing these guys home.
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Contributed by Daniel Lang of The Daily Sheeple.
Daniel Lang is a researcher and staff writer for The Daily Sheeple – Wake The Flock Up!