AM C article on KEEPING AMERICA SAFE: by Gene Barrett

“WITHOUT A RESPECTABLE NAVY, ALAS AMERICA!” Captain John Paul Jones, 17 Oct. 1776

The Earth is covered with 196.9 square miles of water, so why would a tiny strait of water matter much to anyone? Because that little stretch of water is knows as the “Strait of Hormuz” and is one of the most strategically important waterways in the world today.

The Strait of Hormuz is extremely important geographically because it is considered one of the world’s foremost chokepoints. A chokepoint is a narrow channel (in this case a strait) that is used as a sea route for the shipment of goods. The main type of good passing through the Strait of Hormuz is oil from the Middle East and, as a result, is one of the world’s most important chokepoints. It is the only sea route where oil from Iraq, Iran, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, and much of the United Arab Emirates can be transported. The majority of the world’s oil reserves today resides in the Arabian Gulf region, with few options for exporting this oil out of the region besides the straits.

Iran and Iraq’s anti-western regimes oppose the United States presence within the Persian Gulf and the security that the US provides for many of the Gulf States, 15% of the world’s commerce is routed through Hormuz. Should war break out in this region, any aggression by Iran or any other nation would disrupt a large portion of the world’s economy.

Two countries lay claim to the territorial waters in the strait, Oman and Iran. While Oman has been a relatively benign landlord, Iran has on several occasions threatened to shut the strait down with a naval blockade.

The U.S. Navy has been protecting trade and commerce as early as 1801, when U.S. leaders decided to take action against Barbary pirates who constantly kidnapped the crew of American ships and held them from ransom in the Mediterranean.

A strong U.S. Navy is just as important today as it was when Thomas Jefferson took on the Barbary Coast Pirates. SADLY, OVER THE LAST EIGHT YEARS UNDER THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION, OUR NAVAL FORCES have been dramatically reduced. TAKING ADVANTAGE OF THIS PERCEIVED WEAKNESS, IRAN was emboldened to seize a U.S.Naval vessel and hold 10 American sailors captive. Meanwhile China continues to build a military base on an artificial island in the South China Sea.



These are the top five Navies in the world as of 2016, although sheer numbers don’t always tell the tale of the tape, as the U.S. still possesses an advantage in war technology.

Despite that, a Chinese warship recently seized an underwater drone deployed by a U.S. oceanographic vessel in the South China Sea.

U.S. Navy Secretary Ray Mabus cited a “growing China” as one of the reasons that the Navy needed to expand its fleet to 355 ships, including 12 carriers, 104 large surface combatants, 38 amphibious ships and 66 submarines. The seizure of our underwater drone added to concerns about China’s increased military presence and aggressive posture in the disputed South China Sea, including its militarization of maritime outposts.

One of Ronald Reagan’s campaign platforms was to re-build our Navy into a 600 ship Navy. It peaked in 1987 at 594 ships before a sharp and steady decline into our 415 ships currently active today. Having a strong Navy will always be a strategic necessity of the United States. This is the only way to ensure a strong presence overseas, which provides the ability to forward deploy combat ready troops, aircraft  and armor  that can be ready to act, if needed.

IN ORDER FOR AMERICA TO REGAIN ITS MILITARY STRENGTH, PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP will have to find potentially tens of billions of dollars a year for new ships, amid falling federal revenues, something Trump and his political allies in Congress agree on.

Strategic chokepoints around the globe must be able to be kept open fy force, if needed. We conduct forward naval operations both to ensure unimpeded use of the seas and to project American influence and power into the littoral areas of the world. We must have a strong Navy to be able to continue those operations.


This articles was about what the 114th Congress approved for the VA and how much they approved for the VA.  But it was also about what is happening to our Military because of the BUDGET CONTROL ACT OF 2011 WHICH calls for a $487 billion reduction in Pentagon spending over a 10 yeaar period. Sequestration doubles that amount. The Dept. of Defense, which accounts for nearly half of the federal budget’s discretionary funding, has not been so fortunate.

The nation’s military has taken the brunt of sequestration’s withering cuts. The Air Force, for example, is experiencing a pilot shortage of between 700 and 1,000. News reports last year estimated that the service also was short 4,00 airmen-along with spare parts-to maintain its fleet.

Overall, since the end of 1991’s Persian Gulf War, the Air Force has 30 percent fewer airmen, 40 percent fewer aircraft and 60 percent fewer fighter squadrons. In 1991, the force had 134 fighter squadrons; today, only 55.

IT’S NO DIFFERENT FOR THE OTHER SERVICES. “For the Army, our No. 1 readiness risk is sequestration.” Gen. Daniel B. Allyn, the Army’s vice chief of staff, told the Senate Armed Services Committee last March.


According to the VFW, Ending sequestration is a top VFW objective.

This shows exactly what Pres. Trump has been saying all along. Hopefully we will back him 100% when he does what necessary to protect this country. THIS IS THE GOVERNMENTS NO.1 JOB.  A strong military sends a message to the world:  WE ARE PREPARED, SO DON’T TREAD ON US.










I know we are in the middle of confirmation hearings, but I wanted to print the background of these members he wants on his team.

MEMBERS OF PRESIDENT-ELECT TRUMP’S NATIONAL SECURITY TEAM REFLECT A COMMON  THEME: smart, tough, loyal, and not afraid to disrupt the bureaucratic status quo. His appointments strongly suggest that Trump seeks a major overhaul in the fields of defense, intelligence, and security.


Resume: Former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, former assistant director of National Intelligence, U.S. Army lieutenant general. Flynn, a Democrat, was forced out of the Obama administration after he repeatedly warned that ISIS was for real and trying to topple Bashar al-Assad in Syria would fuel rampant chaos. LITTLE KNOW FACT: The national security adviser is a member of the president’s personal staff, which means the controversial Flynn will not need to undergo Senate confirmation.

U.S ATTORNEY GENERAL: Sen. Jeff Sessions, 70

Resume: Sessions was the U>S> attorney for Alabama for 12 years before being elected the attorney general of Alabama in 1994: he was elected to the U>S>Senate in 1996. He was the first sitting senator to endorse Trump’s presidential bid, and will be called upon to fix a Justice Department and FBI that have become embroiled in Beltway politics.  LITTLE KNOWN FACT: Like Trump, Sessions is a climate change skeptic. He once remarked in a hearing that carbon dioxide “is really not a pollutant, that’s a plant food, and it doesn’t harm anybody.”


Resume: A strong pro-lifer who identifies with the tea party movement and a successful entrepreneur. Pompeo was first elected in 2010 to represent Kansas in the House of Representatives. He’s been a harsh critic of the administration’s handling of the Benghazi attacks, of the Iran nuclear deal, and of attempts to shutter the Guantanamo Bay detention facility.  LITTLE KNOWN FACT: A brilliant student, Pompeo graduated first in his class at West Point and later became editor of the Harvard Law Review.

SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: Ret. Marine Corps General James N. Mattis, 66

Resume: President Obama reportedly force Mattis into retirement after 41 years of service because he asked too many probing questions about Iran. MILITARY TIMES described Mattis as the most beloved Marine Corps general officer in a generation. LITTLE KNOWN FACT: Nicknamed “the warrior monk” for his single-minded dedication to military life and strategy, Mattis has never married and has no children.


I will leave you to draw your own conclusions. However, I know military people want Mattis in that position because they trust his common sense. The fact that Obama didn’t want him, is a very good sign.

Flynn is a Democrat, and was fired by Obama because he asked too many question, and Obama didn’t want anyone to question his highness. Since he is on the President’s personal staff, the Congress can’t touch him. It would also seem to point out that Trump is willing to work with both sides to get things done.

Sessions has years of experience and won’t be dragged into Beltway politics. We need him to clean up the Justice Dept and FBI and put an end to political interference. Perhaps, laws on Immigration and other areas will now be enforced.

Pompeo, Pro-life is good, he won’t be targeting Pro life organizations. He is brilliant, graduated first in his class at West Point, editor of the Harvard Law Review. You can’t beat that time of intelligence.


This would seem to point out that Trump is looking for the best of the best. God bless him and all who works with and for him.