Addressing the National Guard Association Conference in Reno, Nev., Romney said, "Our world is a dangerous place. And the attack on our homeland and citizens on Sept. 11, 2001, reminds us that the mission of the [National] Guard is ever more critical, and ever more deserving of our support and honor."
Without mentioning his opponent, President Obama, Romney referred to Obama's plan to have U.S. troops out of Afghanistan by 2014.
"While the war in Iraq is over, nearly 70,000 American troops still remain in Afghanistan," Romney said in prepared remarks. "Our goal should be to complete a successful transition to Afghan security forces by the end of 2014. We should evaluate conditions on the ground and solicit the best advice of our military commanders."
Romney said, "Of course, the return of our troops cannot and must not be used as an excuse to hollow out our military through devastating defense budget cuts. It is true that our armed forces have been stretched to the brink -- and that is all the more reason to repair and rebuild. We can always find places to end waste. But we cannot cancel program after program, we cannot jeopardize critical missions, and we cannot cut corners in the quality of the equipment and training we provide."
Notable deaths of 2014 [PHOTOS]