Significant and far-ranging budgetary cutbacks are planned, over the next several years, for the United States Armed Forces --- how, if at all, will these reductions affect our country's military stature on the world stage? And how, if at all, will they influence our own feelings (or perceptions) of security here at home? On today's show, we welcome Col. Thomas X. Hammes (USMC, Retired), who recently gave an address to the Tulsa Committee on Foreign Relations entitled “Defense in Times of Austerity.” In his three-decade stint in the Marine Corps, Col. Hammes served at all levels in the operating forces to include command of a rifle company, a weapons company, an intelligence company, an infantry battalion, and the Chemical Biological Incident Response Force. He's also the author of "The Sling and the Stone: On War in the Twenty-First Century," along with more than eighty articles and opinion pieces. He's been a featured speaker on future conflict and homeland security at conferences around the globe. You can learn more about the appearance that Col. Hammes recently made here in Tulsa at this link.