Different Kind of Threat
Normally we look at a variety of external factors that pose varying degrees of threat to the nation's security, but for a change I would like us to consider an equally insidious threat: domestic ignorance.
There are a number of reasons why politicians rarely talk about defense and security issues even in the midst of war. Complexity is one factor, but perhaps the most significant reason is simple politics: these are issues that do not regularly or directly – with any granularity - impact the lives of a majority of Americans. Contrast this to issues like health insurance, social security or taxes, which impact everyone to some extent and many people with great intensity.
We can argue about the state of our national security establishment and the impact related issues will have on the country over the next few years, but one thing we should all be able to agree on is that the more people know about these issues the better. We cannot expect everyone to become technical or functional experts, but we should at least be encouraging an increased dialog of said issues by those we hold responsible for looking out for our interests. That any attempt to limit any sort of discussion by elected officials – especially via means that are becoming increasingly popular with the present and future electorate – is something dangerously close to tragedy and creeping towards oppression.