The Cost of Global Policing
Forget the fact that the U.S. can’t seem to keep its military industrial complex under control. Forget the idea that Clinton fought a whole war with only a couple of casualties, no infantry, and every warrior at or above 30,000 feet – or on the ground, negotiating, in Dayton. Forget the fact that, in U.S. history, the country has gone to war every 19 years since its inception.
Here is a more interesting question. All of the past world policemen, the great Keepers of Empire, got their money back: whether one looks at Rome, Greece, Persia or Great Britain, it’s pretty clear that they used their military adventurism to exact huge economic prices, in many ways. In fact, they tended to colonize their conquests, the takeover was so dramatic.
There was no need for an accountant to sit at the side of, say, Marc Antony, and ask whether conquering Egypt was really worth it.
Today, the United States is constantly in global business news because the adventures of the last eight years have destroyed its economic vitality. More important, the world, from Europe and NATO, to Japan and ASEAN, seem to depend on the willingness of the U.S. to cast a military umbrella over them, keeping the peace and preventing any problems from the neighbors.
I am not saying that Empires don’t bring peace: they always do. But if this is the first Empire not to charge for the service, one is left with two questions:
1. Is this the stupidest Empire ever conceived? Who would ever volunteer to police the world for zero pay? Or,
2. Will this continued practice bankrupt the U.S.?
Clearly, the answer to (2) is a resounding Yes. – and it also fits number (1).
What is the Post – WWII, post-Cold War model for world peace? Is anyone talking about it?
I literally do not see how the U.S. (or any country) can continue to protect everyone from Germany to Australia, without collecting a service charge. It isn’t that we taxpayers don’t like peace, it’s just that we can’t even afford to rebuild Afghanistan, or protect it from itself.
Is there a cost analysis balance sheet being put together by anyone, anywhere in the world, which measures responsibility against cost, cost against revenues?
Of course not.