Who is to “blame for the gasoline and fuel oil shortage? The Middle East War? The environmentalists who blocked the Alaska pipeline and California offshore drillings? The politicians who thought frozen tundra and wilderness were more important than people? The automobile manufacturers v/ho each year made cars which guzzled more gasoline per mile? Or, the oil companies which did not increase production?
They all share some of the blame. But the most blame must be placed on the high Washington officials in the Johnson and Nixon Administrations who secretly and deliberately dismantled the overwhelming nuclear superiority which the United States had at the time of the Cuban Missile Crisis in I962. Richard Nixon himself estimated our nuclear superiority then as eight to one.
1973 is not the first time the Arabs have been in a war with Israel, A Middle East War happened three times before: in 1948 in 1956, and in 1967. But the Arabs did not dare to cut off our oil then because the United States was the No, 1 power in the world. Tenth-rate nations don’t break their contracts with the No. 1 power in the world any more than a frail boy tries to push around the toughest kid on the block.
In 1973, however, we are only No. 2 — and the No. 1 power, the Soviet Union, is on the side of the Arabs. So, they can cut off our oil with impunity. The Arabs literally have us over an oil barrel — and they have no worry whatsoever that our military power will interfere with their shut-offs.
Those Americans who haven’t read the Moscow SALT Agreements of 1972 may not yet realize that we are a poor No. 2 to the Soviets in military power. But you can bet that all foreign government officials have studied them.
They know that our President signed, and the Senate approved, one SALT Agreement which guarantees the Soviets a 3-to-2 superiority in numbers of strategic nuclear missiles (both land-based and submarine-launched), and another SALT Treaty which
surrendered our right to protect our cities from a Soviet missile attack. That’s right — the SALT Treaty guarantees a “free ride” to Soviet missiles to attack and destroy our defenseless American cities.
When you find it difficult to obtain enough gasoline for your car, or fuel oil for your home, remember that these are some of the many unpleasant consequences which flow from the harsh truth that the United States is no longer the No. 1 power in the world. Now that we are No. 2, it is time that we start trying harder to be No. 1.