Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Military Officials Agree: Diplomacy Necessary for National Security

According to findings released last week, 90 percent of active and retired U.S. military officers surveyed agree that a strong military alone is not enough to ensure national security. 83 percent of these officers agree that humanitarian aid in the form of health care, education, and economic development are vital to national security.

75 percent of these officers said that, in their military career, they had personally seen non-military tools like diplomacy and development make their work more efficient or effective. Furthermore, a majority of officers agreed that an increase in non-military funding (funding for diplomacy and development) would help them achieve their national security objectives.

Today, U.S. outreach to developing nations ranks last among high-income countries. As of 2008, Americans spent just 0.16% of their national income on diplomacy, equivalent to $73 per American per year -- military spending, on the other hand, adds up to $1,763 per American. Visit The Borgen Project's website to learn how you can help urge Congress to correct this imbalance by funding tools of diplomacy and development, increasing stability and justice at home and abroad.

-Elizabeth Newton

U.S. Global Leadership Coalition, Guardian