FROM Robert Hale
Defense Spending and the Federal Deficit A familiar scenario is developing this year on Capitol Hill. Defense Secretary Robert Gates has advised President Obama to veto a spending bill that includes the C-17 Cargo plane and an alternative engine for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. Those are two projects the Pentagon says it doesn't need, and Gates has warned that the soaring deficit is about to shrink the "gusher" of money that has poured forth since September 11, 2001.
Defense Spending, Military Needs and the Federal Deficit Ever since Dwight Eisenhower warned about "the military-industrial complex," there have been complaints about bloated Pentagon spending. Defense Secretary Robert Gates complains that Congress is, once again, pushing job-creating projects the Pentagon doesn’t want, including a spending bill that includes the C-17 Cargo plane and an alternative engine for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. But critics say Gates has his own recipe for new spending, a Quadrennial Defense Review that calls for ambitious new missions America can’t afford. If Iraq and Afghanistan wind down as expected, will defense spending increase anyway? What about getting the deficit under control?
Why Don't Facts Matter? "Fake News" may have a long history, but social media and 21st Century politics have brought it front and center. One reason for its appeal and its power is the tendency of so many people to cling to their beliefs — even when confronted with contradictory evidence. Today, another look at the Emotional States of America.
Nuclear crisis on the Korean Peninsula slowly coming to a head North Korea did not conduct a nuclear test this weekend, but it did show apparent progress in developing a missile that that could strike the United States. The Trump Administration says it has lost its "strategic patience." We hear what that might -- or might not -- mean for North Korea, China and the prospects for diplomacy.
Mixed Messages from US diplomats on the new hard line on Syria Since President Trump's surprise retaliation against Syria's use of chemical weapons, Bashar al-Assad has used the same airport to launch conventional attacks on his own people. It's not clear what the US, its allies — or Vladimir Putin's Russia -- plan to do now.
The US gets deeper into Middle East wars. What's the endgame? President Trump welcomed Egypt's President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi to the White House today… just one of the changes in America's approach to the Middle East since Barack Obama left office. We hear about that and the escalation of warfare as well as civilian casualties.