Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Mr. President, You Sank Mitt's Battleship.

By Dale Bowling

As everyone knows this morning, Governor Romney criticized the Obama administration's handling of the military by pointing out that there were fewer ships in the U.S. Navy now than in 1916. President Obama replied that there were fewer "horses and bayonets" now too.

A good one, right?

The point that the President made was that the military adapts to the wars they're likely to be called to fight. Large scale naval battles are so twentieth century. This is why the Pentagon hasn't asked for fleets of battleships and this is why the President hasn't asked Congress to pay for their construction.

None of this matters much to Romney. He'll build weapons the military doesn't want, doesn't need and can't use. This will show everyone in the world that he's the Real Deal.

And you'll pay for it. Literally.

At another point in the Debate, President Obama slammed Governor Romney for having said last March that Russia was our greatest geopolitical foe - the President saying that the 1980s called and wanted their foreign policy back.

Yes, it was another good one.

But more than that, it makes the point that Romney seems quite oblivious to the end of the Cold War and what that means to our position in the world and potential dangers to US interests.

Foreign policy needs to reflect the real situation in the world as we encounter it. Not decades old understandings of what the situation was. A Hot War with the Evil Empire is no longer a plausible outcome for the US military and pretending otherwise (either from ignorance or political expediency) just wastes US power, weakens US influence and diverts us from the real challenges that America faces.

The Navy has a tradition. When they have antiquated battleships the Navy torpedoes them and allow them to settle to the ocean floor. That's what President Obama did to Mitt Romney's geopolitical vision last night and Davy Jone's Locker is where it belongs.

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