Romney: Reinforcing alliance's military might is vital - chicagotribune.com In a post-Cold War world, territorial defense of Europe is no longer NATO's one overriding mission. Instead, the alliance has evolved to uphold security interests in distant theaters, as in Afghanistan and Libya. Yet through all the changes to the global landscape, two things have remained constant about the alliance. For it to succeed, it requires strong American leadership. And it also requires that member states carry their own weight. In recent years, neither requirement has been sufficiently met. ---------------------------------------------- Duh!! Does this guy have a "clue" the economic crisis tearing though Europe? And he thinks they don't spend enough money on the military because we are being threatened by, uh, by who? al Qaeda? How many battleships does al Qaeda have? Romney says Obama isn't leading yet, now, the rest of NATO, under Obama's leadership, are stepping up their own "drone attacks". And how successful have they been? But while the al-Qaida leader plotted the downfall of the US, he was forced to acknowledge that American drone attacks were taking a toll on his followers in Afghanistan and Pakistan's Waziristan region, and to contemplate withdrawing forces. He wrote: And what does Mitt say? This is reckless. We have a military inventory composed of weapons designed 40 to 50 years ago. The average age of our tanker aircraft is 47 years, of strategic bombers 34 years. Our Air Force, which had 82 fighter squadrons at the end of the Cold War, has been reduced to 39 today. TheU.S. Navy, at 285 ships, is at levels not seen since 1916. Mitt wants to return to a strategy that's 50 years old against an enemy Obama has on the run. Can you imagine the damage and the cost if Mitt is allowed to carry out his "reckless" policy of "spend, spend, spend" on Military equipment that will never be used? Look at what he says: I will work with the Europeans to advance interoperability of equipment, and a more rational division of labor among national forces to increase their military potential at a moment when the continent is under severe financial strain. And I will exercise leadership on missile defense, cyber capability, energy security and sufficiently mobile forces to make sure that there is never any doubt that the alliance can meet its collective defense obligations. Mitt Romney telling Europeans how to spend their military money is like Newt Gingrich wanting to speak at the NAACP to tell black Americans what their choices should be. Looking at Red States and their "schools", like Liberty University and Oral Roberts University, as well as their past "successes" in Iraq and Afghanistan and getting Bin Laden, America can't afford anymore Republican "success". The cost is simply too high.