Potentatus - Politics and Policy

Politics and Policy Blog

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

 

Bush announces major troop realignment

Bush said about 60,000 to 70,000 uniformed personnel would move from overseas to posts in the United States over the next decade. Bush contends that the realignment will lead to a more agile and flexible military. I applaud Bush for making a change that was long overdue. Current US troop deployments are based on needs determined by the Cold War. Deployment realignment should have happened a decade ago and this proposal represents a fundamental shift for our military that needed to happen a long time ago. While Bush has not provided details on the realignment, Pentagon sources have stated that most of the reductions will come from Europe as well as from South Korea (the US has indicated it would like to withdraw 1/3 of the 37,000 troops deployed in South Korea)

However, given that this had been in the works for so long, I can't help but question the timing of the announcement. US troop commitments and support has been a presidential campaign topic for some time, and Bush has not alluded to the realignment. The timing of the realignment raises the question as to whether the decision was politically motivated rather than solely based on stregthening our national security.


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