This is an idea I've had for years but due to life, work, and a bit of my own procrastination, I've failed to get this idea on the road in a timely manner. So, I"ll condense things and be more than happy to work out details later if asked.
People are always 'reshaping' our Armed Forces, for either political or monetary gains. This is wrong on every level and must be fully addressed by the Congress of the United States with the inclusion of The People and the men and women of our Armed Forces. For some insane reason, with every Democrat President, there is a reduction, draw down, social engineering of our Armed Forces, Then comes the Republican that puts money into the Military and let's the Military be the Military.
Building up too much, is often out of monetary gain for a few. While on the outside, it looks nice, all these huge new machines, bases, and divisions of manpower, it creates a sluggish monstrosity that fails to do it's mission. Look how long it took to build up sufficient forces just to go to war with Saddam's Iraq twice, once should've sufficed to have learned. The amount of 'National Guard' that had to be called up for duty for each sends a clear signal, something is wrong with our Active Duty levels.
Draw down too much, it creates a vacuum of security that is always exploited by our enemies. This has been sadly history proven time and again. Unlike previous generations since post Vietnam War, the United States due to the advances of technology, does not, repeat DOES NOT, have the luxury of time and distance on it's side any more. By that, I mean our enemies will crush us within days if they carefully plan and chose to do so. Everyone knows an EMP will devastate this Nation, the resulting deaths will climb into the millions from a large scale EMP attack. The sick and elderly in nursing homes and hospitals will be the first wave to die. The riots across the Nation for food, out of spite and hate, the prisoners that will be released will put over a million angry men onto the 'streets', making their own small armies,gangs.
The back n' forth of Democrat/Republican influence upon our Armed Forces must stop. The Clinton Year's are a prime example of 'Democrat' influence: how the political winds changed in the United States and social progress-ism took hold and began dismantling the 'warrior ethos' of our Armed Forces. The attrition and turnover rate was tremendous, leaving many gaps in mid level leadership in both the Officer and Enlisted ranks. Also during this time, again, a draw-down and reduction in material forces began.
History again repeated itself as the enemies in far away places geographically, took notice and began to plot, plan, and move to fill the vacuum. The enemy even began prodding at the United States, executing operations to see how far they could go without worry of major reprisals, i.e. USS Cole attack and 'BlackHawk Down' debacle in Somalia.
Then the enemy struck early after again, political winds changed direction inside the United States, but by then, the new 'Government' had yet to fully grasp what lay over the horizon and prepare against it. The 9/11 attacks.
I won't go into the successive years of wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, many better than me have already written much about them. But those years brought rapid change to our Armed Forces, in technology, tactics, formations. But again, as in all wars and years go by, things slow down, politicians change and so does the way of business for our Armed Forces.
Now I can again, draw more examples of Democrat Obama and Republican Trump, how each 'Party President' has such negative/positive influence upon our Military. If it comes down to it, I will take the time and site factual, historical examples, you dear reader, know I can easily do this.
This is the cycle that MUST STOP! The People, the Pentagon, and especially the Politicians all need to hammer out once and for all:
1. Size of our Armed Forces
2. Rules of Engagement
3. Scope of any mission from start to finish.
Roll your eyes and take a sip of coffee I know. How can this be accomplished. Easy, if everyone sticks their minds to it, and does this within one year of committing to this goal. When you look at those thing bullet points, one actually needs to work backward from that.
A belligerent Nation sinks one of our Military ships or a civilian cruise ship. Once that Nation is clearly identified, the mission is to severely punish that Nation. On the political level, our Politicians should demand the immediate overthrow of that regime by it's own People to demonstrate the 'will' of the people of that Nation. They do, we work with them to punish those responsible. They don't.... we move to point #2. Engage and destroy any and all military assets of that Nation regardless of vicinity of collateral damage, history has taught strongly that only that method brings war to a faster conclusion. Then point #1, the US should have at it's disposal, enough assets to accomplish the 'mission' within 30 days.
With both Russia and China rearing their military might, it would behoove of our political leadership to ensure the survival of the US and 'victory' in any conflict.
Now just some thoughts on a more macro level of our Armed Forces.
Health care - any person that served in our Armed Forces and was honorably or medically discharged, should have immediate and life time access to healthcare. For any 'retiree', this is a lifetime commitment. For those who served at least 4 years and up to 12 years, services should be provided but only select ambulatory services. 12 to 19 years some details need to be worked out as to level and length of medical care. But 20 and beyond, it should be full life time, total health care. Sure with a little co-pay as it is now, but to totally switch the health care into some sort of 401K -benefits program, is criminal. The V.A. should be totally invested into handling the Administrative portion of all U.S. Military Veterans and be in charge of all rehabilitation only. All Veterans should be on a 'Tricare' type system where private, civilian physicians are chosen by the member and care is handled via that provider and his/her supporting hospital-medical system.
Rank and pay: Military should switch to a 'Civil Service' type of pay, using years and steps. No one should be 'forced' into taking the 'next advancement' exam. Leadership is built over time and some people are promoted into a rank that they have no business holding. It only hurts the organization. Myself, I saw men that were happy at being just 'deck seaman' but would enjoy, benefit and deserve having more pay. The 'Navy' for example, could retain those seamen for an entire 'career' if they are left to just be happy, doing their job, getting a fair and good wage for doing it, using the 'step' pay method.
What's really funny, I've been working on this for about 3 days now, and just saw a news story about the Navy. http://www.navytimes.com/story/military/2015/10/19/early-out-chances-sailors-leave-navy-double/73160194/ "Early out chances for sailors to leave Navy double" is the title.
This just proves my point that Washington DC is totally out of touch with the Armed Forces and the challenges ahead.
Now, another part of the heading says "Public Service Corps'. Not every person can be or is a warrior. That type of person is a select few, which only thrives in the environment of the Armed Forces and military arena. President Obama, in a speech said the United States needs a Civilian Security Force, just as powerful, just as well funded. He is the first President to really broach the idea of a large separate service. Now personally, his idea IS a very dangerous idea. Dangerous to the National Security of this very Nation. The entire U.S. Congress should have stood arm and arm after that speech and dress down the new, young President. But sadly, that didn't happen.
What the United States does need, is a 'Service' that can respond to Natural and man-made disasters World wide. Every time, the Armed Forces have to take up this task and that immediately reduces our combat effectiveness and National defense posture. By building a large 'Public Service Corps', the US could have ready assets to go, anywhere, anytime and not affect our Armed Forces from current missions or in a post deployment rebuild.
What also this PSC would provide is a place where 'non-warriors' could serve this Nation, something many people desire to do, but physical, emotional, conscience, etc abilities prohibit them from joining the Armed Forces. The US could have two main PSC 'bases', one on each coast with forward deployed resources in storage and minor bases abroad.
The Public Service Corps should be operated as 'disciplined' as the Armed Forces, requiring uniform and grooming standards and the physical ability to carry out their duties. But at no time, shall firearms be assigned to the PSC. Any 'security' necessary should come from the Armed Forces or 'host Nation'. Pay scale would as well be set up like the Federal Civil Service in a step and tier model. Healthcare would be provided free only while on 'active' duty with the PSC and a post service health care insurance option be available.
Americans want to 'serve' their Nation. It's time the Politicians get their act together and make this happen.