Are we about to hire mercenaries to fight US wars?
Amid discussions surrounding the future of the U.S. military, there are voices advocating for the employment of mercenaries as a potential solution. While some presidential advisers argue in favor of the benefits mercenaries may offer, it is important to critically examine the implications of such a strategy. Instead of expanding the military through the use of mercenaries, an alternative approach would involve re-evaluating foreign engagements. By focusing on avoiding unnecessary conflicts, the need for large standing armies diminishes, and in the unlikely event of an invasion, the American people have historically shown a willingness to enlist in defense of their nation. And lest we forget, moral Americans want to fight only a moral war. How far back do we have to look to see a "moral war" in which the U.S. was engaged? Certainly not the Gulf War. Definitely not Ukraine.
Rather than resorting to mercenaries, a fundamental reassessment of U.S. foreign policy is needed. The focus should shift toward ending or avoiding foreign wars that do not directly serve our interests. By disengaging from unnecessary conflicts, we can reduce the need for an expanded military force. This approach allows us to allocate resources more efficiently toward domestic needs and investments in areas that directly contribute to the well-being of the American people.
Contrary to claims that a draft or the hiring of mercenaries is necessary due to a lack of willing recruits, history has shown that in times of crisis or invasion, lines of Americans have formed, ready to enlist in defense of their nation. The patriotism and sense of duty that exist within the American populace provide a strong foundation for a motivated and dedicated fighting force. Rather than rely on mercenaries, we should foster this spirit and cultivate a sense of national unity and readiness to defend our homeland.
While proponents of hiring mercenaries may argue for their specialized skills and flexibility, it is crucial to recognize the inherent risks associated with such a strategy. Relying on mercenaries introduces complexities and challenges that could compromise national security. The potential for mercenaries to prioritize personal gain over the nation's interests raises concerns about their loyalty and commitment.
The world watched as Wagner seemed to be turning against Putin, and possibly preparing to march on Moscow. What would stop the Wagner Group, if employed as mercenaries to "protect" the U.S., from marching on Washington?
Furthermore, integrating mercenaries into the existing military structure poses challenges in terms of cohesion, command, and control. Combining regular military personnel with mercenaries can create divisions and hinder effective coordination, potentially compromising the overall effectiveness of the force. Maintaining unity of purpose and a clear chain of command is essential for a strong and efficient military.
Instead of expanding the military through mercenaries, focusing on strategic interests and a judicious approach to foreign engagements allows for a leaner and more efficient military force. Emphasizing diplomatic efforts, alliances, and international cooperation can help safeguard national security without relying on a substantial increase in troop numbers.
Investments in cyber-security, technological advances, and intelligence capabilities are also essential in addressing modern security challenges. By prioritizing these areas, we can enhance our ability to defend against emerging threats and maintain a strong deterrent posture.
As discussions ensue regarding the future of the U.S. military, it is crucial to critically assess the potential drawbacks of employing mercenaries. Instead of relying on such a strategy, a re-evaluation of foreign engagements that do not align with our interests can provide a more efficient and effective approach. By fostering national unity, focusing on strategic priorities, and investing in modern defense capabilities, we can ensure the readiness and strength of the U.S. military. History has shown that if our nation were ever faced with a significant threat, lines of Americans would willingly enlist to defend our homeland. Therefore, prioritizing strategic interests and a judicious approach to foreign policy are key to maintaining a capable and dedicated fighting force.
Michael Letts is the founder of InVest USA, a not-for-profit organization donating chest protection to state and local police officers, particularly in areas where police departments have been defunded. Office Letts has 30 years of law enforcement experience under his belt, hence his pro-police stance for his brothers and sisters in blue, as well as in U.S. armed forces.
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