Hegemon decamps from Europe, Asia

Hallelujah, a non-idiotic policy move by GWB, one which we have not had for a long time- 70,000 troops are being recalled from Europe and Asia.

Though of little immediate use/relief to the US forces in Iraq, its a good deal to remove our troops from areas of the world not immediately threatened by a re-emergence of World War II. Not only will it be cheaper to keep our troops based at home, it will have the salutary effect of eliminating some free-riders on America's defense budget, eliminating a source of cheap political posturing among 'allies' during election years, and removing millions of (US tax) dollars from the economies of the people who think we're so bad and nasty.

Of course, this could all be moot if Kerry is elected; pandering to our 'allies' (including massive tax dollar shifts to the German and South Korean economies, among others) is a campaign plank[1], after all.

fn1. No wonder the Germans didn't want US troops to go. They want them safe and sound on German bases, spending money, boosting the local economy...

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We must've been on the same

We must've been on the same wavelength this evening, BD. I was literally a couple minutes from publishing something very similar that I was wrapping up, titled "Auf Wiedersehen, meine Gastgeber" (Farewell, my hosts). :grin:

Needless to say, I agree with your assessment.

That's awesome! I think it

That's awesome! I think it would be even better if we cut the size of the standing army, but moving troops home is a step in the right direction. As the 5th largest economy in the world, Germany can defend itself.

Although there are still plenty of pork possibilities in where exactly these troops stay in the states, which areas get new bases to handle them, etc.

hopefully they'll just

hopefully they'll just enlarge existing bases, but given the track record of the Defense Dept, you're probably right.

Brian W. Doss, I would argue

Brian W. Doss,

I would argue that it has more to do with German government largesse than with American personnel spending money in local bars. After all, most of the O&M budgets for those bases comes out of the German government's coffers, and that money (in the billions I have read) wouldn't be spent if the bases were closed (which they would be, since the German military has its own bases already).