If anyone missed the reference, Hawk also talked about the speed of response of the Navy, "And again, going into Singapore, for example, for the USS Freedom that's there now. Our ability to land at [Pilbara], Changi East and unload and reload right away with [assembling] LCSes in the — that’s one of our ConOps."
We may not have achieved the Swiss standard of promised - except maybe for the elites and their cronies - but it must make better sense to aim for the Swiss standard of neutrality. The Swiss Confederation has not been in a state of war internationally since 1815, and its non-alignment with warlike factions must have contributed to its suitability as the birthplace of the Red Cross and home to a large number of international organizations, including the second largest UN office. That stance has not prevented it from pursuing an active foreign policy and being involved in peace-building processes around the world.
Welcoming the American military hardware to Changi to "rebalance to the Pacific" when China is getting antsy about Diaoyu Islands doesn't sound very prudent a strategic move. Especially when we already have so many PRCs in-country. When push comes to shove, identity crisis may clash with nationalistic loyalties. Dogs are known to bite those who feed them, we have seen one ugly episode when our own senior citizens have been castigated as canine equivalents.
The most troubling bit about Hawk's statement is about "where they're are putting it in their budget". If Uncle Sam does not have the answer to that, you can bet Uncle Tony Tan will not be volunteering the information any time soon. Unlike the US, which has committees to oversee defence procurement, Singaporeans are treated like mushrooms in this purchase - keep them in the dark, and feed them shit. Even with the price of the F-35B having fallen to US$104 million per aircraft (sans engines, which have to be bought separately), that's an awful lot of money that could be expended on making housing affordable and transportation reliable.