The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. Mike Mullen, said yesterday he supports spending at least 4% of GDP on defense to secure America’s freedom. Mullen’s comments came during a wide-ranging speech at Heritage about the state of the U.S. military and its role in the world.

In addressing a question about defense spending, Mullen said America needs to have a national debate on how much the government should spend on security in these dangerous times. The U.S. currently spends much more on leisure pursuits than on national defense as Americans shell out more on pleasure trips than our government does on the armed forces.


Mullen also spoke about building the military’s global capabilities, winning the long war, fighting in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and the progress being made in Iraq. Clips from the speech are available on YouTube.