Craig Campbell: The 'Make America Weak Again' doctrine of Joe Biden - Must Read Alaska
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Craig Campbell: The ‘Make America Weak Again’ doctrine of Joe Biden

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ALASKA’S MILITARY ASSETS COULD BE ON CHOPPING BLOCK

By  CRAIG CAMPBELL

I’m not ready to accept that President Donald Trump did not win re-election.

I just can’t face what our state and nation will be like if Trump does not get another four years to crush the swamp and bring back that booming economy we all had just 10 months ago.

However, if I end up being wrong, Alaska is in for one hell of a bad time. 

A Harris/Biden administration — my mistake, a Biden/Harris administration — will present historic challenges to Alaska. From working every angle to shut down petroleum exploration and development in Alaska, to hollowing out our military, our future does not bode well under Joe Biden’s “leadership.”

There is historical precedent. Jimmie Carter’s election in 1976 was a backlash against the Nixon/Ford presidencies. The nation was split and mad about almost everything. America wanted a period of peace and harmony.  Jimmie Carter, a quiet Georgia Democrat governor with U.S. Navy experience, was the answer. Or so it seemed at the time. 

During Carter’s one term in office, Americas faltered. Inflation spiraled out of control. A stagnant economy dragged down the middle class and increased poverty. An energy crisis hit in 1979 as foreign oil squeezed the U.S. market.  Some readers remember those long lines at gas stations.

While Carter strived for détente with the Soviet Union, he was stupefied by their invasion into Afghanistan. He had no credible response to the Soviet Union’s expanded global sphere of influence.

In November of 1979, 66 Americans were taken hostage by radicals in Iran. Carter ordered the military to conduct a covert operation to rescue the hostages. 

Called Operations Eagle Claw, it was a miserable failure, resulting in eight dead Americans in the Iranian desert, never reaching their intended objective to liberate the hostages.  

With that segue, let’s consider some potential national defense impacts to Alaska under presumably (or at least as declared by the mainstream media) President-elect Biden.  

I have met Joe Biden. I met him at the funeral for Senator Ted Stevens.  He was a very likable guy, kind of shallow, but likable. He was a typical politician, with a big smile, lots of handshakes, and he just seemed friendly.  That was then, this is now.  

The Joe Biden of 2020 has been coopted by socialist progressives. His presidency will be a return to the Carter years. In Alaska, we should be prepared for an overt frontal attack on our state.  

I’m not kidding. This is a Code Red Alert. We are about to face the biggest challenges to our prosperity and liberties in over 40 years.

One of the sectors of government to-be hit the hardest will be national defense. The Biden administration will use military funding to pay for new and expanded social programs and the Green New Deal.

How do I know this? Because that is exactly what the Obama/Biden administration did during their destructive years occupying the White House.  

My critics will be quick to point out that the defense budget increased during the Obama era. They are partially correct. In 2010 and 2011 the defense budget increased; however it decreased every year thereafter. 

The principle reason was the implementation of sequestration. Sequestration resulted from President Obama’s inability to reach budget agreements with the Republican Senate and Democrat House. Basically, Obama wanted to implement new taxes to pay for more government and was rebutted by Congress.  

Sequestration was a bad idea that had terrible impacts on America. It arbitrarily cut the budgets across all discretionary accounts. The problem is, the military, homeland defense, and NASA budgets are discretionary; while Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid, and national health programs are non-discretionary funds (code for entitlements). Almost two-thirds of the federal budget is non-discretionary.

The military budget makes up approximately one half of all discretionary funds in the federal budget. Under Obama, the military took massive budget reductions while funding for social programs was preserved. 

That was no accident; it was by design, and Joe Biden was part of the Obama Administration’s strategy team.  

Biden has stated he will reduce the military budget. “The real question is not how much we invest — it’s how we invest,” he said, quoted by Military.com on Nov. 7, 2020.  

Now, I do not expect another round of sequestration. That’s way too painful. Biden will simply cut the military budget to pay the entitlement bills. 

Alaska has tremendous military assets, comprised of active duty, reserves, and the Alaska National Guard. They have some of the most modern equipment. F-22’s, C-17’s and combat search and rescue assets at JBER; F-35’s at Eielson Air Force Base; the nation’s Missile Defense System at Ft. Greely; Surveillance, tracking and early warning at Clear Air Force Base; and a mission-ready U.S Army Alaska that includes a Stryker Brigade, Brigade Combat Team (Airborne), Attack Reconnaissance Battalion, and General Support Airborne Battalion. We also have Coast Guard Base Kodiak, which supports both the maritime cutter and airborne operations across the North Pacific Region.  

With our strategic location, Alaska can ill-afford to undergo any military reductions.  On the contrary, I would argue that the military presence in Alaska should be expanded.  

As Billy Mitchell once said, “whoever holds Alaska will hold the world. I think it is the most important strategic place in the world.”  That statement is truer today than ever before with our nuclear-powered adversaries Russia, China, and North Korea all in close proximity to our state posing significant tactical and strategic threats to America.

So back to the question, what will the impact be of a Biden administration cut to the military budget?  Here is my prediction:

  • Ft. Greely missile defense expansion will be reduced.
  • U.S. Army Alaska will experience up to a 25% reduction in soldier strength.
  • No additional U.S. Coast Guard icebreakers will be built.
  • No upgraded air refueling tankers at Eielson AFB.
  • Reduction of half the F-35’s programmed for Eielson AFB.

This would not be good for Alaska.  It would cause further damage to our state’s economy.  But more importantly, it would be terrible for America.

Joe Biden does not like Alaska.  He is going to shut-down North Slope oil leases, he will enact strict environmental policies that punish mining development in our state, and he will look to Alaska as a bill payer for funding his progressive social programs. The current military structure in Alaska will just be too tempting for Joe to ignore. 

We do have some leverage.  With Sen. Dan Sullivan on the Senate Armed Services Committee and Sen. Lisa Murkowski on the Senate Appropriations Committee and Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, we have the best shot at stopping, or at least mitigating these damaging actions. 

But America can ill-afford to have a misguided, progressive president cause damage to our nation’s defense simply to appease the socialist democrats’ quest to Make America Weak Again (MAWA). 

Craig E. Campbell served on the Anchorage Assembly between 1986 and 1995 and later as Alaska’s Tenth Lieutenant Governor.  He was the previous Chief Executive Officer and President for Alaska Aerospace Corporation.  He retired from the Alaska National Guard as Lieutenant General (AKNG) and holds the concurrent retired Federal rank of Major General (USAF).

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  • Even now as Vice-president Biden announces his cabinet and other positions within a Biden Administration, all I can do is look and think that it’s Part III of the Obama Administration.

  • I’m not just for a strong military, I’m also for a strong leader of our military. Trump being that leader has accomplished way more than scores, perhaps hundreds of billions of dollars of military spending could. A strong leader prevents other countries from trying things (like China laying claim to most of the South China Sea under Obama) while a weak leader invites other countries to test what they can get away with. That said, I think military assets need to go where they will be the most effective, not to where they will give an economic boost. So while I shudder at the thought of a Biden social engineering presidency, I’m not overly alarmed by reduction or movement of military assets. Both China and N. Korea are very likely to really spin up their aggression under a weak man like Biden so having the full complement of missiles would be a really good idea, I hope, if Biden ends up in the White House, that he isn’t as foolish as he appears to be and doesn’t reduce the missile program. As to oil production on the North Slope, we are in the early stage of a energy and economic revolution that’s going to radically alter(decrease) the demand for fossil fuels. Just like much of rural Africa went straight from few or no phone communications right to cell phones, largely skipping land lines, economical battery storage(which now exists and is available for purchase) will cause much of future increased energy demand to skip fossil fuels and go right to renewables. And this will be market, not government mandate driven. Electric cars are already cheaper than ICE cars and that’s only going to accelerate as the market grows. Most of the people reading this will own an electric car, not because they want to save the environment, but because it’s significantly cheaper than the alternatives. So Biden f’ing or not f’ing with oil leases on the North Slope is largely irrelevant. Oil demand is going to decrease and that’s what’s going to sink Alaska’s oil industry, not government interference. We have one and only one method for returning our state budget to solvency and that’s through cutting spending. And that’s in the hands of our state leaders, not the president. We all knew the boom times were going to have to end sometime and their expected end was almost 2 decades ago. So we can try to keep up boom era levels of spending and go really broke in a couple years or we can do some voluntary belt tightening now and not ever have to face a late-80’s recession again. But focusing on who is president and what they are doing or not doing is to neglect the sure solution we already have in our hands, cutting spending.

  • The only leverage we have is Senator Sullivan. Murkowski won’t do a thing for the military in Alaska her disdain for the Military will kill any chance we have at saving any of it in the State. You may think she would not want the reduction but her Socialist Agenda that she obviously pursues is not in line with a Strong Defense. The incursions into the Alaskan Air Space Defense Zone will only increase in the appeasement of a Biden Presidency if it happens.

  • We all know the destruction heading our way. Personally I am tired of hearing all the unconstitutional tripe heading our way.
    We all know of the voting issues across the country, we need answers to put a stop to this overthrow of everything this beautiful country was founded on. As a Former Marine I swore an oath to uphold the Constitution, uphold everything this country is and stands for. While I can sit naked on my porch, drinkin a beer, watching our country burn munching on popcorn. My heart breaks…

  • Campbell, you have been rubbing elbows with Murkie too long….she is in the trash bag and ready for reject next vote for that seat…believe that the numbers of republicans will vote against her. Your nightmare needs trimming because you have the democrat sitting on your elbow all this time and you didn’t recognize her. Take off your shades and see the real world in Alaska. The military stays and so does the oil and the gas. All the mineral wealth is in tact. Its hard to believe you had those positions in your work life and and can’t see the forest for the trees. National Security of this country is here in Alaska and it isn’t going anywhere. Wake up Campbell!!

  • From the Fox News feed:
    “Mattis says he hopes Biden takes ‘America First’ out of national security strategy”,
    “Biden’s new WH national security adviser downplayed Antifa threat”,
    “US should encourage China’s rise, Biden national security pick Jake Sullivan says”.
    .
    Add the likelihood that the communist Chinese will see the Biden-Harris coronation as a go-ahead to annex Taiwan, dump U.S. Treasury notes, and hit the U.S. with another version of China flu that new vaccines won’t cure, and we might have the beginning of a potentially nation-ending problem that no amount of defense budgeting can fix.

  • A well written grim litney of what may come. However, I believe it will be far worse. Look for Old Joe the master of corruption to be removed early on via the 25th amendment. Think I am kidding? Harris and her cabal are this close to the totalitarian power they crave. All hell is about to break loose.

  • When Alaska produced 2 million barrels of oil a day we had a population of 500,000. We also had an integrated forest products industry employing 4,000. Now we produce 500,000 barrels a day and have a population of over 700,000. Yet we have a larger state and municipal government workforce than when we were 4 to 5 times more productive. We have 6 medium-sized mines, a fishing industry that largely ships unprocessed fish – much of it to China, and a tourism industry that retails goods made anywhere but here. So we were in for economic dislocation no matter the election. But Biden coming out on top makes the outlook far worse.

  • A well written grim litney of what may come. However, I believe it will be far worse. Look for Old Joe, the master of political corruption to be removed early on via the 25th amendment. Think I am kidding? Harris and her cabal are this close to the totalitarian power they crave. All hell is about to break loose.

    • Yeah if we sit back and do nothing, this San Francisco chick is going to try and be president for the next 11 years.

  • This assessment only touches on the truly devastating affects of a Biden administration on Alaska. It will push Alaska into an immediate depression.

  • Craig, While I agree with the majority of your article’s premise, I most strongly disagree that Social
    Security is an “entitlement”! I have been forced to contribute to this plan since I started working in
    1964. How can this then be an entitlement?

  • Murkowski will be no help. She is a coward, has no spine at all. Do not trust her.

  • Who exactly are we defending against with this massive military industrial complex?
    .
    As we’ve seen recently, they, (the military brass) are the very embodiment of “spineless swampy creatures.”
    .
    Exhibit A: Gen. Mark A. Milley

  • I had depressive thoughts when Jimmy Carter was president and more of them when we lived through Bill Clinton and Obama but I was younger then and must admit the prospect of finding ways of working at making a living under heavier Democrat control is not at all inviting…under democrat control the long record of failure for Cities and States across the Nation is just bad and I certainly do not want any more of it in Alaska…I managed to keep our business open and everyone employed throughout this virus slow down to date but we have certainly not had a great year doing it and cannot take much more in the way of Government interference if we are to survive. I still have not given up on Trump wining again and Lord knows the Country needs him now more than ever….

  • Xiden’s best shot at funding his long list of entitlement:.

    I once predicted Obama might sell Alaska to Russia for some ready cash.

    I was wrong. And I agree with those who feel Xiden won’t do that.

    No, his customer will be China.

    No, I don’t think we’d be be any better off…..but at least certainly no worse.

  • I grew up in a military family with my father a pilot in SAC (Strategic Air Command) and various uncles in the Army, Marines and Air Force. I know from years of following military history and our dependence on our military’s strength, the last thing our state needs is a reduction in force. Alaska is a bulwark to any aggression that might force their way into the United States. I’m sure that the progressive left will not allow their shock collars, the main stream media, from promoting the Armed Forces and the role it plays in protecting our homeland. We all need to acknowledge just how selfless our servicemen and women are in sacrificing their time and lives in making our country the strongest it has been. With strength, comes peace. Since Trump has been in office, guess what? No wars have been started … He’s even trying to get us out of Iraq and Afghanistan early. Biden is just plain wrong … God help us all.

  • Biden will send your son’s and daughters over seas again to fight useless wars while our own country
    deteriorates. Biden is a Globalist and Climate Change Clown He said he will makes Americans proud again. This coming from a crook who sold us out to China for money and even his staff has ties with China.. Look him to weaken us immensely BIG TIME . He has bought into this policy that America is Racist

  • China likes to buy American industries, land, and whatever else gains them political and financial clout in America. Our ex-governor Walker is a prime example of China’s strategy: finance the proposed gas-line, with Alaska’s permanent fund as collateral. They build it, and then find some excuse to not buy the gas. Ergo: Alaska then owes China 50 billion or so.
    There’s also China’s trade agreements with many of the Asian and African countries: with the goal of a hegemony which will enhance their economy, at America’s expense. To see where this is headed, google “Thucydides Trap”.
    If Biden weakens America’s military too much, we will either have to dance to China’s tune, or get into a nuke war with them. China doesn’t now have, nor will have for some time, the military to go toe to toe with us. They will continue to play brinkmanship, at least until they miscalculate and get into a shooting war with us. We will win that war, until we don’t, until nobody wins. MAD!

  • Obama was president during biggest increase in oil production in American history. Price of oil during his 8 years averaged close to twice that of the Trump presidency. Under Trump Alaska exports to China things like fish, timber, minerals dropped over 26%.
    Interesting your made up numbers only focus on how much pork the federal govt. puts in AK. Amazing you bash Democrats and blue states while our state depends on them for handouts.
    Biden was elected he deserves an opportunity not made up numbers.

  • I don’t expect Lisa Murkowski to be of any help to Alaska. She will stand with her fellow Democrats.

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