The passage from war to peace is more critical for an established order than the passage from peace to war.
~ Eric Hoffer (1951)
As I imagine everyone reading this will agree, the American empire our politicians have foisted on the world must be ended, and the sooner the better. The loss of life, the squandering of wealth and the inroads to our liberty engendered by their foolish quest to bring the world to heel all argue for it. Yet, nothing should be started without first thinking it through, and it must be realized that ending our empire brings with it a unique set of dangers. Specifically, we need to be wary about bringing onto our shores a large, standing army.
It’s a blunder of monumental proportions that we find ourselves in this position at all. Our Founders (and all recorded history) warned us against so absurd a notion that America should have, or even needs, a large standing army. Naturally there will be, and always have been, those who argue that a large standing army is necessary for the defense of our country. In the Federalist Papers #25 Alexander Hamilton, always on the lookout for any excuse to augment power, railed against "the impropriety of a constitutional interdiction of (standing armies)" and extolled the wisdom of leaving such a profound decision to "the discretion and prudence of the legislature".
His excuse was not Al-Qaida or a "Red Menace" but England, France, and Spain, acting alone or in concert against us. The thousands of miles of ocean God blessed us with as a shield against the world’s turmoil was thrown aside as he declared "the improvements in the arts of navigation have…rendered distant nations, in a great measure, neighbors". This, to say the least, was Mr. Hamilton flailing about for he had earlier written in the Federalist Papers #8 "Europe is at a great distance from us. Extensive military establishments cannot, in this position, be necessary to our security." That last was true in his day, and is true in ours.
From the Egyptian Army’s thuggish behavior in Tahrir Square, to the bloodbath visited upon the workers protesting in Tiananmen Square by the Chinese Army to the unarmed students shot dead at Kent State University by the US Army, the danger to a people’s liberty wherever politicians have at their disposal a large standing army is too obvious to ignore. To "bring the boys back home", to close our foreign bases, end all the wars and allow the uncountable multitudes of uniformed servicemen and mercenaries to re-enter our borders as an armed compact body is an extremely dangerous proposition and one to be avoided at all hazards.