At a time when politicians are looking to cut back the federal budget, the United States needs to expand the military’s budget, Rep. Allen West (R-FL) said Tuesday. Otherwise, the Tea Party favorite warned, troops could run out of toilet paper.
Speaking Tuesday at an event at the conservative Heritage Foundation, the West warned against any military cuts and said the military needed to have “strategic mobility” instead of getting tied down in nation-building.
“I can tell you as an executive officer, we did not have enough money to buy tools to repair our howitzers, or we did not have enough money to get toilet paper for some of our soldiers, we did not have enough money to buy the ammunition so that guys could stay out on the rifle range. And we find ourselves going down that exact same path,” West said, warning of going down a “bottomless pit” between major military excursions, as he said happened between World War II and World War II.
The freshman Republican warned that the U.S. could “lose and opportunity to ensure that we protect America for the future, for our children and our grandchildren.
The 22-year Army veteran endorsed cutting off foreign aid to Pakistan and said that Islamic jihadist are beating the U.S. in the psychological operations.
“We’ve got to do a better job of beating them as far as the message, we’ve got to do a better job of getting the word out, we’ve got to do a better job with our psychological operations units,” West said. “Part of that is our own media, hate to tell you. I see more stories about us doing things like Abu Ghraib — how many pictures do we see of Abu Ghraib — than we do about the bad things that the enemies are doing.”
“When our media sees themselves as an ideological-political wing, I’ve got some serious concerns about that,” West said.
Speaking out against the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” West also said that the “rules are very clear in the United States military” and implied that sexuality was a choice.
“For those that will sit there and say, ‘well, Congressman West, you should understand because after all, you are black,’ — unless I’m Michael Jackson, I can’t change my color,” West said. “But people can change behavior, and you do not base being a part of the military on adjusting for individual behavior. That’s my position.”
“Now is not the time to try to appease a very small special interest group,” West said.