National Security and Veterans
- U.S. national security policy should promote a capable military, strongly support our troops and reflect American values.
- We must continue to look for ways to improve how the Department of Defense spends taxpayer dollars.
- We should leverage the power of U.S. industry and recognize the limits of military force.
As chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, helping craft U.S. defense policy is one of my most important duties. Our national security policy must maintain a military capable of defending the United States, its allies and its interests around the world; fully support the men and women of our military and their families in keeping with their sacrifices; make careful use of taxpayer dollars; take full advantage of the productivity of U.S. workers and the innovation of U.S. companies; remain firmly grounded in American values; and recognize that our security challenges cannot be solved by the use of force alone.
Those principles led to my support for military action in Afghanistan in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks, my opposition to the 2003 invasion of Iraq and my efforts to exercise vigorous congressional oversight of U.S. operations in both countries.
As part of our oversight responsibility, the Armed Services Committee has investigated failures of U.S. policy and misuse of taxpayer dollars, including mistreatment of detainees in U.S. custody; abuses by private security contractors; and wasteful procurement policies.
I am an advocate for fair pay and benefits for service members and their families, including pay raises and support for health care and educational benefits for families, ensuring that wounded warriors receive first-class care, and caring for our veterans after they leave military service.
I will continue to seek improvements in how the Department of Defense spends taxpayer dollars. Those efforts led to the 2009 passage of legislation to reform Pentagon procurement efforts, and to efforts to end unnecessary programs such as the F-22 fighter.
Senator Levin’s Record on National Security and Veterans
- March 26, 2012 – Levin, McCain release GAO report on fake parts from China
Sen. Levin and Sen. John McCain, the chairman and ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, release a report from the Government Accountability Office showing that China is refusing to shut down the flow of counterfeit electronic parts that endangers U.S. national security, the safety of troops and U.S. jobs.
- March 26, 2012 – Sen. Levin calls missile defenses key to U.S. defense strategy
Addressing a major missile defense conference, Sen. Levin says missile defenses hold "a place of growing importance to our national security" and can help deter nations such as Iran from endangering global security.
- March 20, 2012 – Sen. Levin presses Air Force officials on proposed National Guard cuts
Chairing a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing, Sen. Levin presses Air Force officials to explain proposed aircraft and troop cuts that disproportionately affect the National Guard in Michigan and other states.
- March 6, 2012 – In speech, Sen. Levin says Iran ignores U.S. warnings 'at their peril'
In a speech to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, Sen. Levin says Iran must heed U.S. warnings that "all options are on the table" to prevent its acquisition of nuclear weapons, and outlines how joint U.S.-Israel missile defense programs contribute to security and stability in the Middle East.
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