(Daily Mail) The US military has become so depleted by cuts that it has been left only ‘marginally able’ to defend the nation.
Decreases in the number of soldiers and naval ships have led to armed forces falling short of President Obama’s national security strategy, a report by The Heritage Foundation claimed.
Obama’s aim was to ensure that the country could still fight two major conflicts at once.
But the Index of US Military Strength report, released by the think tank on Tuesday, said that with current funding this would be problematic.
The report said: ‘The consistent decline in funding and the consequent shrinking of the US Army are putting it under significant pressure.
‘The cumulative effect of such factors has resulted in a US military that is marginally able to meet the demands of defending America’s vital national interests.’
The Quadrennial Defense Review announced last year that the Army would be cut from 570,000 soldiers to 440,000 – the fewest since World War II.
The Army historically commits 21 brigade combat teams to one war but would struggle to do this and leave reserves if there were two simultaneous conflicts, the report said.
It added that the Navy would need another 62 ships to be able to carry out two large campaigns.
However the Air Force’s fleet is judged ‘strong’.
Dakota Wood, a Heritage analyst and former Marine Corps officer, said: ‘The US military itself is ageing. It’s shrinking in size.
‘It’s quickly becoming problematic in terms of being able to address more than one major conflict.’