Saturday, January 31, 2009

The hollowing begins ...

In the middle of a war. It has started.
The Obama administration has asked the military's Joint Chiefs of Staff to cut the Pentagon's budget request for the fiscal year 2010 by more than 10 percent -- about $55 billion -- a senior U.S. defense official tells FOX News.

Last year's defense budget was $512 billion. Service chiefs and planners will be spending the weekend "burning the midnight oil" looking at ways to cut the budget -- looking especially at weapons programs, the defense official said.

Some overall budget figures are expected to be announced Monday.
Elections mean things.

We cannot leave troops in the field hang'n can we? Nope, therefore look for more than the fair share to come from the USN and non-AMC USAF.

$55 billion? What does the Navy throw on the alter? At the low end, I would think that we will have to eat at least 30% of that - let's call it $18.3 billion that needs to go as a baseline. Where do you start? Eat the sunk cost and kill DDG-1000 like they did the
USS United States (CVA-58)? Cut SSN production in half? Kill LCS (not going to happen, sadly, because it is the "cheapest" way to get new CDR Command slots)? Kill the new CVN design, eating those sunk costs, and go back to Nimitz with a slide to the right? Cut personnel faster, going down to the 311-300,000 line? For the USMC - kill the EFV? Does that get us to $18.3 billion? I need a stable of staff weenies to run some numbers ... but that is what people are doing this weekend.

USAF, you're done with F-22. As for BMD - Sen. Levin ain't playing.

If you were wearing a uniform and hoped for change - you're going to get it good and hard. If that makes you mad, take a powder.

Hat tip MajHam.

Hmmmm, more nuance?
The Pentagon refused to comment publicly on why it would need the higher amount. Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates has said the fiscal 2010 Defense budget must contend with the realities of the bad economy and stop the trend of steep increases in military budgets since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

Gates also has said the department will deliver Congress a formal request for a second tranche of fiscal 2009 war funding “in the coming weeks.” He sent Congress an estimate for that tab of $69.7 billion.

“I believe that the FY 2010 budget must make hard choices,” Gates told the Senate Armed Services Committee on Jan. 27.
Is someone in uniform playing games - or are requirements requirements?

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