Switzerland is known around the world as the militarily neutral country. It's been nearly 200 years since their last war. Unfortunately, the United States and many other countries have been involved in numerous wars and military conflicts over that same period of time.
by Nick Coons
During WWII, the Swiss, wanting to remain outside the path of destruction, invited high-ranking German officers to examine their military infrastructure. Amazed at the defensive capabilities of the Swiss, Hitler decided that he would go around Switzerland instead of through it, calling it "the little porcupine."
What's their secret? How was Switzerland able to avoid an invasion by Germany during Hitler's quest to take over Europe, and remain at peace for the last 200 years? Most countries have a centralized military, maintained and operated by their federal government. The United States is no different in that regard. But we are different in one aspect. We spend more on our military than any other country in the world, but this has not kept us safe. Indeed, since WWII, the US has been the aggressor on multiple occasions, costing Americans in both lives and money.
Switzerland's military is mostly decentralized. Decentralized so much that it is made up primarily of every adult male citizen ages 20 to 34 in the country (women may serve by choice). There are aspects of the Swiss military that I believe are unnecessary (such as its compulsory nature), but the foundation is solid. Each household has military-grade weaponry, and is capable of being mobilized when needed. The very basic and important concept is the idea of a citizen military, and has many consequences.
First, if a foreign invader wanted to take over the entire country, it's no longer a matter of conquering the centralized military (which makes up only a small fraction of the population of a country), but would instead require subduing every household in the nation, a prospect Hitler wisely decided to avoid.
Second, any rational person will defend their own life and the lives of their friends and family, when there is a legitimate threat to their safety! Imagine a foreign invader deploying soldiers on your local street. You and your neighbors, carrying the appropriate armament in your own homes, would have no qualms defending your neighborhood. In fact, the very likelihood of this happening would cause a foreign invader to think twice.
And lastly, a legitimate military is intended for defensive purposes only. The United States has soldiers deployed in over two-thirds of all countries world wide, and this is not for the defense of Americans. These actions are extremely expensive, and can only occur when government has the legal ability to extract property from the general population (i.e. taxes) to fund these acts. A military consisting of the general population, who have no motives other than the defense of themselves and their loved ones, would not engage in offensive actions overseas. It is, in fact, these offensive actions over the last century that have motivated terrorist attacks against the United States, something the Swiss are not bothered with.
A voluntary citizen military would save hundreds of billions of dollars per year and make us far safer than we are now.
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