Do you have adblock enabled?
If you can read this, either the style sheet didn't load or you have an older browser that doesn't support style sheets. Try clearing your browser cache and refreshing the page.

(NBC News)   Congress: the military needs to save money. Pentagon: Okay, we'll stop refurbishing tanks we don't need. Congress: How about no   (openchannel.nbcnews.com ) divider line 8
    More: Fail, congresses, Center for Public Integrity, Odierno, General Dynamics, House Armed Services Committee, Operation Desert Storm, political action committees, Senate Armed Services Committee  
•       •       •

2960 clicks; posted to Politics » on 30 Jul 2012 at 1:19 PM (3 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



Voting Results (Smartest)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest


Archived thread
2012-07-30 09:26:21 AM  
6 votes:
"But top Army officials have so far been unable to get political traction to kill the M1. Part of the reason is that General Dynamics and its well-connected lobbyists have been carrying a large checkbook and a sheaf of pro-tank talking points around on the Hill.

For example, when House Armed Services Committee member Hank Johnson, D-Ga., held a campaign fundraiser at a wood-panelled Capitol Hill steakhouse called the Caucus Room just before Christmas last year, someone from GD brought along a $1,500 check for his reelection campaign. Several months later, Johnson signed a letter to the Pentagon supporting funding for the tank."



In most other parts of the world, that's called bribing public officials, and people go to jail for that sort of thing.
2012-07-30 01:09:01 PM  
4 votes:
Credit where credit is due: NBC's report was well-written, referenced multiple sources and was targeted, detailed and specific.Good job.
2012-07-30 04:55:23 PM  
1 vote:

verbaltoxin: In the last decade, however, as hundreds were deployed to Iraq and later Afghanistan, a key shortcoming became apparent: Their flat bottoms made the Abrams surprisingly vulnerableto improvised explosive devices (IEDs). As a result, the Abrams in Iraq ended up being used as "pillboxes"- high-priced armored bunkers used to protect ground.

I gotta give the military credit, they routinely take gear that was made for a war they fought ages ago and adapt it to the current one, logic be damned. Our military, highly funded and powerful as it is, often functions in spite of itself and politicians' best wishes.


As a former Combat Engineer, all tanks in the world have always been susceptible to anti-tank mines. This is nothing new. The only people surprised by it was the media and families at home who thought their son was "safe" because he was in a tank.

To limit armor weight, tank designers don't protect each surface the same. Top and Bottom and Engine compartments are always thin skinned, always have been. It is an uncommon tank that can shoot another tank in the bottom.

What we were surprised by was command detonation of artillery shells as IEDs. We are also not fighting other tanks. Without tanks or vehicles to fight, tanks belong in the garage for the most part. Too expensive running them around all over the place
2012-07-30 02:06:10 PM  
1 vote:
Here's how the Defense budget gets spent:

1Q: Beginning of fiscal year (Every October), all money gets assigned and doled out, down to the last grunt's mop for barracks latrine duty. This is also the time of year when most people go on leave for the holidays, so it's the nicest, quietest time of year for the DOD.

2Q: Most of that money is pretty much spent. Whatever isn't is locked up in some specific or obscure budget that can't be used very easily. It's at this point a lot of units start holding bake sales and running personal snack bars to have a company or squadron picnic, because the morale money was already spent on the Christmas party.

3Q: Commanders from the smallest unit up jockey and beg for whatever's left and is touchable w/in allocated budgets. Generals go to Congress to start asking for money next year (And hey, guess what time of year it is, and guess what this article's about!). This is when sh*t gets uber-political and contractors start lobbying the sh*t out of Congress.

4Q: Unspent funds in specific budgets (That can't just be tapped from willy-nilly and moved anywhere freely) is spent up immediately on useless junk so next October, everyone gets the same amount of money as last year.

Repeat every fiscal year, forever, until China calls in its favors.
2012-07-30 01:47:18 PM  
1 vote:
Hilarity abounds in this article.

After putting the tank money back in the budget then, both the House and Senate Armed Services Committees have again authorized it this year - $181 million in the House and $91 million in the Senate. If the company and its supporters prevail, the Army will refurbish what Army Chief of Staff Ray Odierno described in a February hearing as "280 tanks that we simply do not need."

Okay here's a term any civilian needs to know: legacy program. Anything that has long lived out its usefulness and seen its best day passed, but carries on in defiance of all fiscal knowledge and understanding of warfare, is a legacy program in the DOD. The U2 is a great example of such a thing. The Global Hawk does everything the U2 does and more, with no need for a pilot with special pressure suits and training, yet the U2 is still around, getting upgrades, and being employed daily. That's because it's a legacy program, and dammit, we need that 1950s Cold War relic soaring 70,000' with a human in the cockpit!!!

The M1 Abrams entered service in 1980, but first saw combat during Operation Desert Storm in 1991. That episode indicated that, on the battlefield at least, the only thing that could destroy an Abrams was another Abrams; only seven of the tanks deployed in the operation were destroyed, all by friendly fire.

Friendly fire isn't funny but the obscene disparity between the Iraqis' old Soviet tanks and our obnoxiously powerful Abrams is. I was a kid during Desert Storm, but the media seriously tried to make it sound like we were liberating France from the Nazis all over again. Nobody dared question the Gulf War the first time around. We were way too busy being ra-ra, war-loving, patriotic Americans ignoring a growing recession.

In the last decade, however, as hundreds were deployed to Iraq and later Afghanistan, a key shortcoming became apparent: Their flat bottoms made the Abrams surprisingly vulnerableto improvised explosive devices (IEDs). As a result, the Abrams in Iraq ended up being used as "pillboxes"- high-priced armored bunkers used to protect ground.

I gotta give the military credit, they routinely take gear that was made for a war they fought ages ago and adapt it to the current one, logic be damned. Our military, highly funded and powerful as it is, often functions in spite of itself and politicians' best wishes.

"The M1 is an extraordinary vehicle, the best tank on the planet," Paul D. Eaton, a retired Army major general now with the nonprofit National Security Network, said in an interview. Since the primary purpose of tanks is to kill other tanks, however, their utility in modern counterinsurgency warfare is limited, he added.

National Security Network, for those curious, is a liberal defense industry think tank formed by an analyst that broke from the Bush regime and supported Kerry in 2004. I'm not saying or implying anything else, I'm just stating what it is so people know the person quoted here better. He is essentially admitting though that the M1A1 was built for a war we last fought 22 years ago - just like any good, defense program is designed to do: fight the last war.
2012-07-30 01:43:46 PM  
1 vote:
But the neocons need tanks to preemptively invade oil-producing countries and spread democracy!
2012-07-30 01:25:36 PM  
1 vote:
The $3 billion at stake in this fight is not a large sum in Pentagon terms - it's roughly what the building spends every 82 minutes.

Whoa now, lets not stray from the narrative that its welfare, Planned Parenthood and Obama's teleprompter that's bankrupting this country...
2012-07-30 01:24:07 PM  
1 vote:
This is why we can't have nice things.
 
Displayed 8 of 8 comments

View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest


This thread is archived, and closed to new comments.

Continue Farking
Submit a Link »
Advertisement
On Twitter






In Other Media


  1. Links are submitted by members of the Fark community.

  2. When community members submit a link, they also write a custom headline for the story.

  3. Other Farkers comment on the links. This is the number of comments. Click here to read them.

  4. Click here to submit a link.

Report