Mackenzie Eaglen, writing for Time:
Last month, the Obama Administration began noticeably increasing military shows of force on or near the Korean peninsula, as the North’s young leader increasingly took steps of his own to increase tensions. Some of the earliest high-profile decisions by the President included bolstering missile defense capabilities in order to protect the American homeland, deployment of B-52 and B-2 bombers in military exercises, and the mobilization of stealthy fifth-generation F-22 fighter jets.
The moves are designed to highlight American military technological supremacy and power, warn the North and show support for our treaty ally.
But the biggest irony of all is that the Obama Administration has targeted many of these weapons and capabilities for budget cuts and cancellations previously.
Early on in President Obama’s first term — before sequestration and debt reduction started chipping away at the defense budget — missile defense was singled out for major reductions. In 2010, the Administration cut $1.4 billion from the Missile Defense Agency. This included eliminating 14 planned ground-based interceptors in Alaska, cancelling the second Airborne Laser prototype aircraft, and terminating the Multiple Kill Vehicle. The President also reversed course, backing away from Bush Administration efforts to deploy elements of a missile defense network in Poland and the Czech Republic, and killing the Kinetic Energy Interceptor.