Experts who spoke to Sky News Arabia say the US government’s failure to pay its debts, pegged at $31.4 trillion, could lead to cuts in military spending, non-payment of salaries for US military personnel and the cessation of aid to Kiev. .
The White House is calling on Congress to raise the cap without any restrictions, but the Republican-controlled House of Representatives is tying the move to budget cuts.
For his part, US Navy Chief of Staff Admiral Michael Gilday warned that failure to pay Washington’s debts would have catastrophic consequences for the US military.
Gilday told a Council on International Relations symposium on Tuesday that:
The public debt ceiling would have serious consequences for sailors, military personnel and their families. Failure to pay could undermine the confidence of allies and international partners in the United States. I think this could lead us to disaster.
As for the United States Secretary of Defense, Lloyd Austin, he says that any possible default in payment carries serious risks for the reputation of the United States and its army in the world.
As Austin said last week:
Non-payment poses great risks to America’s reputation. Failure to pay the debt will directly affect the ability of the US military overseas and the civilians who cooperate with it. We won’t be able to pay collaborators appropriately, and China stands to benefit.
Ukraine aid crisis
US newspaper, The Hail, says US support for Ukraine may end due to national debt ceiling talks.
And the US newspaper added on Wednesday that military funding to Ukraine could be temporarily suspended indefinitely due to the debt ceiling crisis.
Lawmakers say delays resulting from the debt ceiling impasse and the murky implications of an expected counterattack by Ukrainian forces against the Russians have stalled talks on the next tranche of US funding for Kiev.
For his part, US Representative Bill Keating said that Kiev’s continued funding will depend on its success in the counterattack, expressing his belief that Ukraine has “sufficient funds in the near future”.
US President Joe Biden announced at the G7 summit in Japan a new aid program for Ukraine estimated at $370 million.
The package is the 38th of security aid packages estimated at $36 billion since the war began in February 2022.
The United States also plans to announce a new $300 million military aid package for Ukraine, according to Reuters.
The third crisis facing the US military is the reluctance of American youth to join the military.
To overcome this crisis, the Army recently launched a training course for those who wish to enlist, according to Fox News.
Since last March, the Pentagon has been warning about the repercussions of this phenomenon, as US Army Undersecretary Gabe Camarillo said that America’s youth:
Do not want military service The number of people wishing to enlist is at its lowest in 10 years Only 9% of those who wish to do military service 75% of them know almost nothing about the army
And last May, Army Secretary Christine Formott renewed her warnings that the United States will need more than a year to resolve the recruit shortage problem, adding that:
It will take more than a year to rectify the situation. Current difficulties in attracting recruits will gradually be resolved. 65,000 recruits joining the army this year will not be reached.
For his part, US military expert Peter Alex says the military already faces a problem recruiting for military service, citing young people’s reluctance to volunteer for military service and “the epidemic, which is one of the main reasons for lack of recruits.”
Regarding the debt ceiling crisis and its effects on the military, he added to Sky News Arabia that US non-payment is not in the interest of either Republicans or Democrats, stressing that: ” An agreement will eventually be reached on this crisis, and the proposed budget will be approved.
Alex pointed out that defaulting on the debt and not increasing the US budget would lead to real catastrophe, not only on a global economic level, but also on a military level, as it would result in Washington’s inability to pay the salaries of its military or assisting allies, led by Ukraine, pointing out that lawmakers last December allocated about $858 billion in national defense funding, including nuclear weapons development programs and others for US national security and military aid.
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