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Debate: Should the United States reduce military spending?

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Background and context

For fiscal year 2008, President Bush requested $481.4 billion for Defense Department spending. It also requested $145.2 billion to fund the “global war on terror". Many have called for dramatic cuts in the size of the military budget. In February of 2009, for example, US Representative Barney Frank called for cutting the US military budget by $160 billion.[1]. He and others sited economic difficulties and Defense Department excesses as rationales for such cuts. Others believe that, during the War in Iraq and Afghanistan and against terrorism, such cuts would undermine US national security. What is the balance of pros and cons in this debate, and what direction should US military spending take?

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