Part 1 of a 3 part story on the Department of Defense and its coming to the realization of its own shortcomings and the realities it faces; and the motivation for those that will not go down swinging.
It appears the Department of Defense annual increasing budget; coupled with the unsuitability of our foreign policy is finally starting to coalesce. Later this week, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta will unveil $450 Billion in cuts over at least a 10 year span. If we remember, it was the “supercommittee” last fall who were supposed to put together cost cutting measures that would help reduce the deficit (through in part) of $600 Billion in defense cuts.
The “supercommittee” that President Obama put together to reduce the federal deficit of 1.2 Trillion dollars over ten years went up in smoke as we seen unfold back in November of last year. So, the default 1.2 Trillion reductions will take effect effective in 2013 unless Congress can work it out before then. Knowing Congress has been a huge failure, one that seems to trip on its own feet at every step - 2013 is the only option.
Then, to try and blunt the coming hatchet, Panetta went on the offensive. Panetta has said the 600 Billion cuts coming would be like: "we'd be shooting ourselves in the head." That however seems just a tad heightened dose of hyperbole if you consider what 450 Billion actually amounts to in context of the sum of fighting two wars and the base cost of the defense’s annual budget (excluding wars and nukes) over that span.
According to the New York Times, its about 8 percent of that sum. Now quick… what would it be versus the proposed cuts to enter in 2013 automatically? It is only 10.6% of the stated total cost - hardly earth shattering are those 2.5 points in the grand scheme of things now is it?
But why is 2.5% such a drastic change? What in that 150 Billion over 10+ years is so damaging? Something just doesnt make sense in all of this or does it?