Departments of Defense & War
War is not defense. Defense is defense, and war is war.
One is preventing hostile nations from harming us. The second is going out to find antagonists who are actively trying to do so, and either forcing their surrender or destroying them. The sad fact of our defense posture today is that we label defense with what's actually war, and the reasons we're constantly at war are rooted as much in resource acquisition and geopolitical power posturing as they are against hostile threats that actively plot to do us harm.
We recognize that global affairs today are complicated and our massive resource needs as a society have in the past caused military action that benefitted our economic interests over the values of human rights we'd otherwise seek to uphold. Our investment in Universal Energy is intended to change that so that we no longer need military force to acquire resources nor devote our industrial might towards building needless weapons. With that goal accomplished, we seek to separate the functions of the present Defense Department into two separate entities: the Department of Defense and the Department of War.
In our model, the Department of Defense is a purely defensive entity that coordinates the large-scale defense of our nation in the event we are ever attacked by a hostile power. It would maintain NORAD, dedicated air wings, contingents of professional troops and heavy-weaponry functions of the present National Guard and domestic military units. It would also coordinate our proposed Civilian Defense Force to deploy in the event of national emergency.
The Department of War is designed exclusively for foreign power projection. It would maintain the same bases it does presently both within the United States and abroad, except slimmed down to focus exclusively on foreign deployment, coordinating in real time with the Department of Defense, and would primarily be naval in nature combined with the Air Force's satellite, aerial refueling and air superiority expertise.
There are several reasons we advocate for this separation.
The first is for accounting and perspective. What are we paying to defend our nation, and how much are we spending to deploy our military abroad? These are essential questions that must be discussed honestly among a democratic society to make the most informed decisions about how we're using our military.
The second is for efficiency. A streamlined military force dedicated to either defense or war establishes exclusive areas of responsibility. Money devoted to defense isn't spent on war - if we're at war we in turn fund war. This makes spending more efficient and transparent. For too long our nation has seen endless warfare waged under the auspices of defense, and we intend to let America see exactly what we're buying with our tax dollar.
The third is for mindset. The Department of Defense is tasked with defending us from hostile attacks. The Department of War is tasked with identifying hostile actors and either forcing their surrender or neutralizing them. We aren't confusing war with defense nor defense with war. We know exactly what we're doing when we engage either function, and in turn we know exactly what result we intend to achieve.
The Alliance Party believes in these facts as they are, and beyond paying attention to an honest accounting of war we also will pay attention to its history and the realities that come with it. No matter the conflict or the reasoning, war is one parent's child killing another parent's child for the benefit of their country - almost always in pursuit of another nation's resources - and it's a horrible, wretched thing. Yet it's also sometimes a necessary thing.
We do not ignore either reality.
Cognizant of the horrors it brings, we would seek to avoid war until we have no other option. As Sun Tzu, author of The Art of War once wrote, “The supreme art of war is to subdue your enemy without fighting.” We would furthermore seek a military deployment that was targeted and specific, electing not to waste resources on protracted campaigns without defined endgames. As Sun Tzu further wrote in Chapter II of the Art of War, versus 3-8:
“Victory is the main object in war. If this is long delayed, weapons are blunted and morale depressed. When troops attack cities, their strength will be exhausted. When the army engages in protracted campaigns the resources of the state will not suffice. When your weapons are dulled and ardour dampened, your strength exhausted and treasure spent, neighbouring rulers will take advantage of your distress to act. And even though you have wise counsellors, none will be able to lay good plans for the future. Thus, while we have heard of blundering swiftness in war, we have not yet seen a clever operation that was prolonged. For there has never been a protracted war from which a country has benefited. Thus those unable to understand the dangers inherent in employing troops are equally unable to understand the advantageous ways of doing so.”
In fact, that quote sounds a whole lot like our circumstances today. Perhaps our policymakers should have paid better attention to such works in the past. We instead plan to pay attention to such works in the future.
By doing so, the Alliance Party will not ask the Department of War to fight pointless conflicts to enrich special interests. We will not make killers out of 19 year old boys at the life of some mother's son for shallow reasoning, nor will we deploy soldiers towards ends for any other than the national interest. Our service members honored our country by devoting themselves to its service, and we will honor them in kind by never asking anything of them that is imprudent, unnecessary or unbecoming of that service.
As was once said by a man far wiser than ourselves: “Eagerness for combat is an asset for a soldier, dangerous for a commander and criminal for a politician,” and that is a reality our mindset will respect and concordantly adopt.