Robert Gates Leads The Charge To Cut Costly Weaponry
A new type of threat requires new ways of combating it.
Thankfully our Defense Secretary is leading that charge with some needed changes to the Pentagon’s budget.
WASHINGTON – As the Bush administration was drawing to a close, Robert M. Gates, whose two years as defense secretary had been devoted to wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, felt compelled to warn his successor of a crisis closer to home.
The United States “cannot expect to eliminate national security risks through higher defense budgets, to do everything and buy everything,” Gates said. The next defense secretary, he warned, would have to eliminate some costly hardware and invest in new tools for fighting insurgents.
What Gates didn’t know was that he would be that successor.
So what will be cut?
Two defense officials who were not authorized to speak publicly said Gates will announce up to a half-dozen major weapons cancellations later this month. Candidates include a new Navy destroyer, the Air Force’s F-22 fighter jet, and Army ground-combat vehicles, the offi cials said.
More cuts are planned for later this year after a review that could lead to reductions in programs such as aircraft carriers and nuclear arms, the officials said.
We all knew that somebody had to reign in this spending eventually, and of course it had to be under a Democratic administration. Still, it’s heartening to see that a guy like Gates realized that these cuts had to be made even before Obama won. Because, as stated, our weaponry doesn’t necessarily make us any safer.
More as it develops…