The mantra often recited by defense analysts is that U.S. Defense Department budgets are increasing because the world is now a more dangerous place, rife with escalating threats. However, a look back over the past 40-50 years indicates there has been no period free of threats. North Korea has been a constant menace, as has Iran since its 1979 revolution. Although there have been a few gracious interludes with Russia and China, the former has maintained a lethal nuclear arsenal. And the U.S. ...

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