The Truth About Clinton's Military - Continued
By Jonathan Clark
April 16, 2003
The equipment we have is aging:
The average age of the B-52H bombers-- put to use in the Balkans--is 40 years old.
The average age of the Amphibious Assault Vehicles (AAV) is 29 years old.
The design of the CH-46 helicopter--a Marine mainstay--is approximately 43 years old.
A-10 pilots flying over Kosovo were forced to spend their own money to buy inferior, off-the-shelf GPS receivers at local stores and attach them with Velcro to their planes to use in conjunction with their outdated survival radios should their planes crash.
At a congressional hearing held in February 1999 at the Navy's Strike and Air Warfare Center in Fallen, NV - the world-renowned "Top Gun" fighter pilot school - Members were told that mechanical problems had grounded 14 of the center's 23 aircraft.
In 1999, more than half of the B1-Bs at Ellsworth AFB were not mission capable because they lack critical parts.
And I can tell you that speaking with pilots first hand as of August 2001, they were complaining about the lack of flight time due to the age of the aircraft and the need for servicing and lack of replacement parts.
On Friday, the leading House Democrat, Nancy Pelosi chimed in with her two cents.
She said, "I have absolutely no regret about my vote on this war. The cost in human lives, the cost to our budget - probably $100 billion - we could have probably brought down that statue for a lot less. The cost to our economy. But the most important question at this time, now that we're toward the end of it is, is what is the cost to the war on terrorism?"
Pelosi talked of the toppling of Saddam's regime as if were some sort of public works project. And as Mrs. Pelosi praised the troops, she also said their success was owed "in large measure" to former President Bill Clinton.
Pelosi continued with the left's defense of Clinton saying "This best-trained, best-equipped, best-led force for peace in the history of the world was not invented in the last two years. This had a strong influence and strong support during the Clinton years," she said.
The problem with this line of reasoning besides it being factually incorrect is that if this is 'Clinton's Military', then this is also 'Clinton's Economy'. As always they want to have it both ways.
Funny how just last week, the pundits were blaming Bush for basically what amounted to their own impatience with how they thought the war should have progressed. Now that the success is so overwhelmingly apparent, they attempt to re-write history. The one thing that folks like Pelosi and Miller overlook is the intangibles. The biggest is the military's adoration of President Bush. From top to bottom, the U. S. military loathed his predecessor, Bill Clinton. They genuinely adore Bush. And it is a mutual adoration. This intangible piece provides motivation not seen during the Clinton years. From 1993 through 2000, our military had no clear focus. It was used primarily in diversionary tactics by Clinton when the heat of attention to his many scandals became more than he wanted to bear. Have we forgotten Clinton's military escapades into Haiti, Kosovo, Mogadishu and Waco?
And don't forget that the Franco-German wing of the Democratic Party put themselves in to a position in which America had to suffer a loss in this conflict in order for them to come out on top. They have done the same thing with domestic issues. They are continuing this failed strategy by attempting to 'raise the bar' on what defines success in Iraq. The problem is that it's not 'playing well in Peoria' anymore. More and more people are getting their news from reliable sources like Fox News. And after finding out how CNN withheld the truth about Saddam's brutality, more will follow.
The cold hard truth of the matter is that Rumsfeld and Franks put together a well motivated military force in short order that executed a well designed plan in which they overwhelmed the enemy and shocked the world.
Sermons over, pass the plate.
* Military Depletion Source: 1999 Congressional Fact Sheet