Fox News ran with misleading figures and false comparisons after Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel outlined a five-year Pentagon budget to stoke fears that the budget will harm the military.
Fox Claims Budget Will Shrink Military To Pre-World War II Levels... But The Claim Of A Pre-WWII-Sized Army Is Misleading.
In Foreign Policy magazine, American University international relations professor Gordon Adams explained that headlines claiming the military is shrinking to pre-WWII levels are "simply not true," pointing out that "the Army, in fact, would be larger.
Adams also pointed out that even after the budget cuts, the military will be larger than "almost any nation the United States might fight ... and the only one that can be deployed around the globe."
"[W]e don't live in Hitler's world -- there is no major enemy ground force surging into other countries that the United States needs to confront. Moreover, this ain't the conscript Army of yesteryear -- it is a well-armed, superior force any way you look at it, larger than that of almost any nation the United States might fight (except that of China, which it wouldn't fight on the ground) and the only one that can be deployed around the globe." [Foreign Policy, 2/27/14]
On the February 27 edition of Fox & Friends, co-hosts Elizabeth Hasselbeck and Clayton Morris called the cuts "balancing the books on the backs of our heroes" before comparing entitlement spending with defense spending.
The Congressional Budget Office explained that entitlement programs are included in mandatory spending and that Congress authorizes any changes, not the President: "For mandatory spending programs, funding levels are generally determined not by annual appropriations but by eligibility rules, benefit formulas, and other parameters set by Congress in authorizing legislation." [Congressional Budget Office, 3/10/11]
Excerpts From "Fox Distorts Debate Over Defense Budget" by OLIVIA MARSHALL