Obama seeks more military funding for Europe, countering Russia

posted at 8:01 am on February 3, 2016 by Jazz Shaw

Wait… I thought we were doing a Pacific pivot.

In a move which I suppose can be dropped into the category of better late than never, the President is requesting a fourfold increase in military spending for operations in Eastern Europe, presumably in support of the EU against increasing tensions with Russia. Relations over there have been on edge ever since Putin went into Ukraine and our allies have been understandably nervous about the level of support they could expect from the United States. This may be a signal that Barack Obama is ready to play hardball if push comes to shove. (CNN)

President Barack Obama’s administration said Tuesday it was seeking to expand U.S. military spending in Europe four-fold in a bid to reassure allies still unsettled by Russia’s incursion into Ukraine.

The new spending would increase to $3.4 billion under the new plan, which is set to be formally unveiled next week as part of Obama’s final presidential budget.

The Pentagon also said Tuesday it was ramping up spending for the battle against ISIS, doubling last year’s request to $7 billion.

The White House said that figure would allow for “continuous U.S. armored brigade rotations” through stations in central and eastern Europe, as well as ramped-up U.S. participation in NATO military exercises and the deployment of additional combat vehicles and supplies to the region.

Russia was quick to label the announcement, “destabilizing and detrimental to the European security.” If nothing else we seem to have gotten their attention, but our relationship with both the EU and Russia has gone well beyond the stage of simply being “complicated.” Think about it for a moment… Russia’s incursion into Ukraine was pulled off with very little in the way of a challenge from the west. That’s had our allies looking sideways at us, wondering if we actually had their backs. But at the same time, we’re allegedly on the same side as Russia in Iraq (along with Iran, in one of the great ironies of our time) in the battle against ISIS. Meanwhile, in Syria, we’re supposed to be fighting the common enemy (ISIS again) but the Russians are backing the play of Bashar al-Assad. This became even more clear when Russian commandos and aircraft were seen supporting their latest incursion against the Syrian Rebels who we ostensibly support.

While I’ll generally take any positive move by the White House these days with a large grain of salt, this could be the ideal time to strengthen our military relationship with the EU. We’ve recently begun exporting not only crude oil, but natural gas as well to Europe. Their dependence on Russia for their energy supplies is somewhat lessened and they might be able to act a bit more boldly in the face of aggression from Putin without fear of having the pipelines cut off. Anything that weakens Putin’s hand along his western flank could result in the Russians being a bit more willing to come to the table in other areas. Of course, Putin has been spitting in our eye for so long now I’m not sure how much he’ll be cowed by this seemingly stronger stance.

Going back to that Pacific pivot for a moment, there was one more piece of news from that part of the world to keep an eye on. The North Koreans announced this week that they plan on launching a satellite in the near future.

North Korea has indicated that it will launch a satellite sometime between February 8-25, a United Nations agency said Tuesday, drawing condemnation from South Korea and Japan.

North Korea told the International Telecommunication Union on Tuesday that it intends to launch an Earth observation satellite, ITU spokesman Sanjay Acharya said. The ITU registers all satellite transmission frequencies to ensure there is no cross-satellite interference.

South Korea condemned the planned launch as a “direct challenge against the international community,” and warned that North Korea would pay a “grave price” if it went ahead.

Having a satellite is no big deal in most cases, but the North Korean situation makes it special. If they can really put one into orbit it raises questions about just how far their long range missile capabilities have come. Also, what do they plan on doing with the satellite, and what else might they put on those missiles? Of course, it could all be a PR stunt which will fail spectacularly, as with many of Kim’s claims, but they’re clearly continuing to work on the technology. The international situation is heating back up and we’d best hope that Barack Obama is up to the job.

ObamaPutin


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Hey Barry, is that the 1980’s calling?

ConstantineXI on February 3, 2016 at 8:03 AM

Pentagon also said Tuesday it was ramping up spending for the battle against ISIS, doubling last year’s request to $7 billion.

Obama will spend equiping all U.S bases, planes, and ships with transgender safe spaces. That will show those ISIS bastards a thing or two.

Magicjava on February 3, 2016 at 8:09 AM

Wait… I thought we were doing a Pacific pivot.
==============================================

Kind’ve!

Patrol#2
————

South China Sea dispute
3h
Pentagon: US Navy carries out ‘freedom of navigation operation’ near disputed Triton Island in South China Sea
End of alert
============

SCMP News [email protected]_News 14m14 minutes ago

US Navy carries out another patrol challenging Beijing’s territorial claims in disputed area of South China Sea http://buff.ly/1OWvro6
========================

US Navy carries out another patrol challenging Beijing’s claims in disputed area of South China Sea

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 30 January, 2016, 7:25pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 30 January, 2016, 8:01pm
********************************************

http://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy-defence/article/1907488/us-navy-carries-out-another-patrol-challenging-beijings?utm_content=buffera1fb5&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

canopfor on January 30, 2016 at 7:11 AM
====================

That was fast,……………RE: Patrol#2:
——————————————–

South China Sea dispute
2m
China’s foreign ministry says US warship that sailed near Triton Island violated Chinese law by entering its territorial waters – Reuters
Read more on trust.org
===========================

Beijing says U.S. warship sailing near Paracel Islands violated Chinese laws
Source: Reuters – Sat, 30 Jan 2016 12:18 GMT
Author: Reuters
***************

SHANGHAI, Jan 30 (Reuters) – China’s foreign ministry said on Saturday a U.S. warship that sailed near an artificial island claimed by Beijing and several other nations has violated Chinese law by entering its territorial waters.(More…)
==========================

http://news.trust.org/item/20160130122038-8i7r6

canopfor on January 30, 2016 at 7:31 AM

canopfor on February 3, 2016 at 8:16 AM

Navy decides to make USCLASS a tanker so they can buy more F-35s, which in yet another simulation gets clobbered.

“A submission to a Senate inquiry into the feasibility of Government’s planned purchase of at least 72 F-35 Lightning II fighter jets says that the multirole planes will be instantly outmatched in air superiority by the airborne wings of competing countries in the region like China and Indonesia”
http://www.gizmodo.com.au/2016/02/australia-should-buy-f-22s-not-f-35s-says-retired-raaf-wing-commander/

moebius22 on February 3, 2016 at 8:17 AM

Call me cynical but I bet that funding will go to Muslim immigrant resettlement. Just like PP gets $500 million/yr but says they use none of it on abortion, we will fund their military forces and they can use the money of their own which they would have spent on their military to resettle more immigrants.

menacetosobriety on February 3, 2016 at 8:17 AM

this could be the ideal time to strengthen our military relationship with the EU.

So instead of European countries using there own money to defend themselves, we’re going to borrow/print our money to do it for them. Insanity.

lowandslow on February 3, 2016 at 8:18 AM

Let the Europeans pay for their own defense.

Racistanyway on February 3, 2016 at 8:19 AM

ISW [email protected] 5m5 minutes ago

New ISW #Russia security update. US announces new troops for #Europe. More aggressive Russia.http://bit.ly/1SszRat
===================

https://twitter.com/TheStudyofWar/status/694871016045203456

canopfor on February 3, 2016 at 8:19 AM

Thank goodness we’re not broke …

ShainS on February 3, 2016 at 8:21 AM

Why would I trust or believe in Obama now? Let’s keep him occupied / distracted and out of the way.

steveracer on February 3, 2016 at 8:21 AM

https://twitter.com/TheStudyofWar

ISW [email protected] 22h22 hours ago

Carter Unveils Budget Details; Pentagon Requests $582.7 Billion http://defnews.ly/1WZZzlp via @defense_news
=============================================

VIDEO:

Carter Unveils Budget Details; Pentagon Requests $582.7 Billion
Feb 2 2016
**********

WASHINGTON — President Obama’s fiscal year 2017 budget will request $582.7 billion in funding for the Pentagon, including $71.4 billion for research and development, $7.5 billion to fight the Islamic State group, $8.1 billion for submarines, and $1.8 billion on munitions, Secretary of Defense Ash Carter announced Tuesday morning.

Among the numbers put out by Carter:

*The European Reassurance Imitative (ERI), the umbrella under which funding for European support has been funneled following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2014, will be more than quadrupled from 2016, going from $789 million to $3.4 billion for this budget.
(More…..)
===============

http://www.defensenews.com/story/breaking-news/2016/02/02/carter-unveils-budget-details-pentagon-requests-5827b-funding/79686138/

canopfor on February 3, 2016 at 8:24 AM

I would like to thank Jazz Shaw for doing a Cruz post at 8 am this yesterday morning.

Amadeus on February 2, 2016 at 8:10 PM

ShainS on February 3, 2016 at 8:26 AM

Aaron Mehta [email protected] 23h23 hours ago

Carter: In Ukraine and NATO we are going to “have to help countries harden themselves” against Russian influence.

https://twitter.com/AaronMehta
=================================

Mark Knoller [email protected] 22h22 hours ago

.@POTUS further says added funding should be reminder that every NATO ally must properly support the alliance defense capabilities.

Mark Knoller [email protected] 22h22 hours ago

In written statement Pres Obama says addtl funding should make clear US stands firm with NATO & “shared principles of intl law & order.”
=============

Mark Knoller [email protected] 22h22 hours ago

Pres Obama proposing quadrupling US funding for NATO/European defense to $3.4-billion to support Europe “that is whole, free, and at peace.”

https://twitter.com/markknoller

canopfor on February 3, 2016 at 8:26 AM

Why would more spending be needed on the military when all the troops are going to say when confronted is “#handupdontshoot”. Besides, as pointed out above, it’s time the euroweenies carried their own water.

Skip2014 on February 3, 2016 at 8:27 AM

This may be a signal that Barack Obama is ready to play hardball if push comes to shove.

hahahahaha! thanks for the chuckle

In any event, let the pansies in Europe provide their own defense, for once.

james23 on February 3, 2016 at 8:30 AM

United States Department Of Defense
Fiscal Year 2016 Budget Request
FY2016
******

http://comptroller.defense.gov/Portals/45/Documents/defbudget/fy2016/FY2016_Budget_Request_Overview_Book.pdf

canopfor on February 3, 2016 at 8:33 AM

The international situation is heating back up and we’d best hope that Barack Obama is up to the job.

….Spring is Coming!

JugEarsButtHurt on February 3, 2016 at 8:34 AM

Reset button-Fail
Nobel Peace Prize-Fail
Obama-Fail

Mr. Arrogant on February 3, 2016 at 8:34 AM

Isn’t the EU a bigger economy than us? How much is the EU gonna spend to defend us from the invasion at our southern border? How much is EU gonna spend in the Pacific?

Buddahpundit on February 3, 2016 at 8:36 AM

I’ll lay a wager that we’re going to defend the migrants from Europeans.

Rix on February 3, 2016 at 8:37 AM

I would like to thank Jazz Shaw for doing a Cruz post at 8 am this yesterday morning.

Amadeus on February 2, 2016 at 8:10 PM

ShainS on February 3, 2016 at 8:26 AM

ShainS:

Jazz is a trooper, in light of this:)
=====================================

D*mn:
———-

Jazz Shaw [email protected] 8m8 minutes ago

Sick. This just sucks.
========

Jazz Shaw [email protected] 12h12 hours ago

It’s official. I”m sick. I really hate this because I almost never get sick.

https://twitter.com/JazzShaw

canopfor on February 3, 2016 at 6:35 AM

canopfor on February 3, 2016 at 8:38 AM

If Europe has the money to take in a million muslim migrants and put them on the dole then they have enough money to provide for their own military security.

tommyboy on February 3, 2016 at 8:40 AM

I’ll lay a wager that we’re going to defend the migrants from Europeans.

Rix on February 3, 2016 at 8:37 AM

Of course. Obama sides with the muslim rapefugees just as he does the terrorists.

ConstantineXI on February 3, 2016 at 8:41 AM

Let Europe pay for their own defense. We pay for their defense and they criticize us, run us down, and tell us how uncouth and stupid we are. They won’t even defend their own women. Unless I get to have sex with them, I shouldn’t have to pay for them. They deserve what they get!

Old Country Boy on February 3, 2016 at 8:43 AM

Remind me again why we are paying to defend a rich continent from itself…

JohnGalt23 on February 3, 2016 at 8:43 AM

We could use another big european war. Makes room for more middle easterners.

WryTrvllr on February 3, 2016 at 8:45 AM

RE: Budget:

European Reassurance INITIATIVE:

begins on pp. 83, from above
FY 2016 Defense Budget PDF thingy:

canopfor on February 3, 2016 at 8:49 AM

We could use another big european war. Makes room for more middle easterners.

WryTrvllr on February 3, 2016 at 8:45 AM

Ah! Now all this makes sense. More Muslim outreach.

Obama’s NASA first, and now the Pentagon.

Difficultas_Est_Imperium on February 3, 2016 at 8:51 AM

canopfor on February 3, 2016 at 8:16 AM

Thanks for the links. A guided missile destroyer…nice.

Misha on February 3, 2016 at 8:54 AM

The international situation is heating back up and we’d best hope that Barack Obama is up to the job

Grifters don’t have “jobs”.

Cleombrotus on February 3, 2016 at 9:13 AM

It was an error to reduce the number of US troops in Europe by so much.

albill on February 3, 2016 at 9:14 AM

More US troops will be needed in Europe to fight the Muslim invasion…
#MerkelsMuslims

albill on February 3, 2016 at 9:15 AM

The “reset” with Russia had a brief, unhappy life. It began with then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton presenting her Russian counterpart with a mistranslated reset button reading “overcharged.” It ended with current Secretary of State John Kerry denying knowledge of the late, unlamented policy on “Meet the Press” on Sunday: “Well, I don’t know what you mean by the reset.”

J_Crater on February 3, 2016 at 9:28 AM

So a two year budget deal monstrosity was just passed and signed and now we’re already looking to add to the FY 2017 numbers?

lymond on February 3, 2016 at 9:32 AM

More US troops will be needed in Europe to fight the Muslim invasion…
#MerkelsMuslims

albill on February 3, 2016 at 9:15 AM

Europe isn’t worth saving. The only thing of cultural value there are the Roman ruins.

ConstantineXI on February 3, 2016 at 9:35 AM

So a two year budget deal monstrosity was just passed and signed and now we’re already looking to add to the FY 2017 numbers?
lymond on February 3, 2016 at 9:32 AM

Cloward-Piven, remember?

Cleombrotus on February 3, 2016 at 9:52 AM

OMG, Romney was right, and so prescient.

Another Drew on February 3, 2016 at 10:21 AM

Why would more spending be needed on the military when all the troops are going to say when confronted is “#handupdontshoot”.
Skip2014 on February 3, 2016 at 8:27 AM

That “thing” in the Persian Gulf WAS just a training exercise.

Another Drew on February 3, 2016 at 10:31 AM

Unless I get to have sex with them, I shouldn’t have to pay for them. They deserve what they get!

Old Country Boy on February 3, 2016 at 8:43 AM

You made me laugh, Old Country Boy!

My Texas born and raised hubbie says the exact same thing, when the many single females in the family come around asking for money!

Typicalwhitewoman on February 3, 2016 at 10:35 AM

Let me get this straight: We want to heighten military tensions with Russia because of Ukraine?

And our vital national interests there are?

Nomennovum on February 3, 2016 at 10:41 AM

Oh goody. Let’s send Europe some more of our hard earned tax money, so they can then tell us what a “failure” American capitalism is, and how superior European culture is. Then let’s hear about how every European has free healthcare and a fantastic welfare system that they’re using to support the millions of “refugees” coming out of the Middle East.

This all makes perfect sense to me.

KMC1 on February 3, 2016 at 10:58 AM

Is Poland going to get their missile defense system?

Cindy Munford on February 3, 2016 at 11:22 AM

There are a lot of questions about ‘why defend Europe’ here, and I know where you’re coming from.

If you are actually interested in a very good discussion of this topic from a strategic viewpoint (including info on what our adversaries are actually trying in the real world to manage conflict with the USA, which outclasses them in all metrics), take 45 (!!) minutes and watch this. All the way to the end.

It will make the Obama Admin’s move much clearer, and possibly much more palatable.

Prufrock on February 3, 2016 at 12:01 PM

And that’s not to say it’s not irritating to hear the kids squabble while we’re manning the defenses… but sometimes the responsible folk have to put up with some crap in the course of their duties. Comes with the territory. c.f. Sheepdogs and Wolves

Prufrock on February 3, 2016 at 12:03 PM

Echo’s of the 1980’s.
So now with no time on the clock King Putt gets a clue.
As in the rest of his foreign policy, he’ll have no idea how to correct 7 years of stupid.
You can end a war by losing it, but Obowmao can lose a war without ending it.
Iraq
Syria
Libya
Lebanon
Yemen
Let’s just say a prediction of an Equatorial Global Caliphate has a chance of fruition.
Historians will be dissecting his carcass for decades.

Missilengr on February 3, 2016 at 12:28 PM

….so much for that ‘overcharge’ button.

Andy__B on February 3, 2016 at 12:45 PM

It will make the Obama Admin’s move much clearer, and possibly much more palatable.

Prufrock on February 3, 2016 at 12:01 PM

No, it wont. Obama has done so much to hurt America that at this point I will not believe anything he does or thinks is going to benefit America at all, in any way, at any time. I’ll not watch 45 minutes of something trying to justify the idiocy that obama and his policies are.

Andy__B on February 3, 2016 at 12:48 PM

That “thing” in the Persian Gulf WAS just a training exercise.

Another Drew on February 3, 2016 at 10:31 AM

For the Iranians…

Skip2014 on February 3, 2016 at 1:33 PM

Not another US dollar for the self-destructive Euro-Zoners.
Let them take their “migrant” welfare payments and use them to pay for their new migrant army.
Oh wait….we’ll pay them to take all the Muslimes from the US.

Sgt Stryker on February 3, 2016 at 1:52 PM

19 trillion in DEBT

V-rod on February 3, 2016 at 2:21 PM

Europe isn’t worth saving. The only thing of cultural value there are the Roman ruins.

ConstantineXI on February 3, 2016 at 9:35 AM

Maybe, but the **** Muslims will blow those up, too.
See “Palmyra, ruins of…”

ReggieA on February 3, 2016 at 2:57 PM

Sure, because we have lots of extra cash to just give away.

Actually, I’m guessing that it probably has a little to do with various contractors getting some “free” money…and much of that money won’t go to anything remotely resembling anyone’s national defense.

It’s not like these pitifully small European armies are going to grow by leaps and bounds on the rank and file side, or see massive increases in armor, artillery and aircraft. In fact, they’re continuing to downsize.

From January last year for instance:

PARIS — France will reduce by 7,500 a planned 34,000-strong cut in military personnel set out in the multiyear budget law, President François Hollande’s office said on Wednesday.

Of the military jobs saved, 1,500 will be effective this year, the president’s office said in a statement.

The total military budget of the EU is around 200 billion Euros, so I can’t see how a mere 3.4 billion dollars would amount to very much?

As for the 7 billion to combat ISIS, what a joke. I’m guessing they mean 7 billion to help arm and equip ISIS.

Mr Carter said US forces engaged in an air campaign against IS in Iraq and Syria were “starting to run low” on laser-guided missiles and “smart bombs”.

“So we’re investing $1.8bn (£1.2bn) in 2017 to buy over 45,000 more of them,” he said in a speech to the Economic Club of Washington.

Fouty-five thousand more missiles to fire at empty desert like they have been doing?

“We’re taking a strong and balanced approach to deter Russian aggression,” he said. “We haven’t had to worry about this for 25 years, and while I wish it were otherwise, now we do.”

The Russians certainly have made an impression upon ISIS, but ISIS still there and still controls most of what they did before the Russians started blasting them. I can’t see any credible evidence that Russia has designs on Europe, nor could really take over much if they did. NATO is no real threat to Russia, either. What it seems to come down to is saber-rattling over those areas on Russia’s frontier.

Dr. ZhivBlago on February 3, 2016 at 4:51 PM

And this is after Obama neutered out military.

bartbeast on February 3, 2016 at 5:12 PM

It will make the Obama Admin’s move much clearer, and possibly much more palatable.

Prufrock on February 3, 2016 at 12:01 PM

No, it wont. Obama has done so much to hurt America that at this point I will not believe anything he does or thinks is going to benefit America at all, in any way, at any time. I’ll not watch 45 minutes of something trying to justify the idiocy that obama and his policies are.

Andy__B on February 3, 2016 at 12:48 PM

Too bad. The top-level people are disappointing, but there are some very sharp folks that have been working quietly for a long time to keep things together in spite of all the miscues. This particular move, in contrast to most of what’s been happening, is pretty good. It gives one reason to hope.

Prufrock on February 3, 2016 at 10:02 PM