February 24th, 2014
01:34 PM ET

Get real, Hagel tells nation in proposing military cuts

By Tom Cohen

Get real, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel told America on Monday in proposing a scaled back, modern military that would cut the Army to its pre-World War II size, retire the A-10 "Warthog" attack jet and reduce some benefits for fighting forces.

"This is a budget that recognizes the reality of the magnitude of our fiscal challenges, the dangerous world we live in, and the American military's unique and indispensable role in the security of this country and in today's volatile world," Hagel said in unveiling the Defense Department spending plan for 2015 and beyond.

"There are difficult decisions ahead," he added. "That is the reality we're living with."

Downsizing due to modernization and budget constraints began under Hagel's predecessor, Robert Gates, and the proposal outlined on Monday described a new phase in the transition.

"Not a war-footing budget"

"For the first time in 13 years we will be presenting a budget to the Congress of the United States that's not a war-footing budget," Hagel said in response to reporters' questions. "That's a defining budget because it starts to reset and reshape."

Under it, the former senator from Nebraska said the military would become a smaller, more tactical force capable of fighting on one war front and maintaining effective defenses for a second while shifting to more specialized capabilities.

"Our analysis showed that this force would be capable of decisively defeating aggression in one major combat theater - as it must be - while also defending the homeland and supporting air and naval forces engaged in another theater against an adversary," he said.

The proposal endorsed Monday by Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey, who appeared with Hagel at the Pentagon news conference, is certain to face strong opposition in Congress - especially with midterm elections coming up in November.

Hagel's budget will be formally proposed next week and legislators from states or districts with major military bases or a heavy presence of contractors are expected to rail against it.

In recent years, Republican hawks have battled military force reductions under President Barack Obama's attempts to reduce defense spending as part of overall deficit reduction.

Conservative Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, a possible GOP presidential contender in 2016, questioned the planned cuts in forces at a time of varying threats and a U.S. shift in emphasis to the Asia-Pacific region, saying it "does not make strategic sense."

"It's going to be a far slimmer military," noted CNN Military Analyst and retired Maj. Gen. James "Spider" Marks, predicting a rough reception in Washington. "This is the toughest part - the political part."

Retired NATO commander: It's necessary

Retired Army Gen. George Joulwan, a former NATO supreme allied commander in Europe, said he thought the changes were necessary.

"Whether it's smart or not is yet to be seen. But I think it's necessary to do, given the constraints that we face fiscally within the United States," he told CNN.

For now, the Pentagon budget for the rest of this fiscal year and for 2015 is about $500 billion for each, as set by a congressional compromise in December.

Hagel acknowledged the changes he proposed mean assuming more risk, but said the military would be better situated to respond to the evolving security challenges facing the country.

The recommendations in the budget plan for 2015 and ensuing years "favor a smaller and more capable force - putting a premium on rapidly deployable, self-sustaining platforms that can defeat more technologically advanced adversaries," Hagel said.

He added that the proposal includes "important investments to preserve a safe, secure, reliable, and effective nuclear force."

All military forces, both active and reserve, would be cut under the budget plan.

It calls for reducing the Army to a level of 440,000 to 450,000 troops, which would be the lowest total in more than 70 years. At its height, the Army had 570,000 troops after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, and currently has about 520,000.

According to Hagel, the budget proposal protects funding for cyberwarfare and special operations, and preserves money for the controversial and costly F-35 fighter jet.

Warthogs retired?

His plan would retire the A-10, which Hagel called a 40-year-old, single-purpose aircraft designed for Cold War operations, at a cost savings of $3.5 billion over five years.

Separately, Hagel said 900 additional Marines would be assigned to bolster security at embassies around the world under his proposal.

Diplomatic security has received close scrutiny since a terror attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, in 2012 killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans.

Also, Hagel said the plan envisions increasing special operations forces from 66,000 today to 69,700 in the future to better meet tactical needs of a modern military requiring counterterrorism and crisis response.

Other provisions would reduce some benefits for military personnel, resulting in them having to shoulder more of their housing and medical costs. Reducing the federal subsidy to commissaries would mean smaller discounts for groceries on U.S. bases.

Through his remarks, Hagel warned that if Congress fails to eliminate planned across-the-board spending cuts beyond 2016, the military reductions would be on a greater scale and significant enough to compromise U.S. national security.

Some of those forced cuts, known as sequestration, were eased for this year and next under the budget deal worked out by Congress in December.

CNN's Halimah Abdullah and CNNMoney's Jennifer Liberto contributed to this report.

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Filed under: Hagel • Military
soundoff (1,807 Responses)
  1. Rick

    I would rather have it and not need it than need it and not have it.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:52 pm | Reply
    • greennnnnn

      Eh, don't worry about that. These cuts are desparately needed. Way too much bloat and waste in the military.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:55 pm | Reply
    • Wolfaxe451

      Yes, but we could cut back tremendously and still outspend any other military in the world by a large margin.

      February 24, 2014 at 5:04 pm | Reply
  2. Chuck

    I'm afraid these cuts may sound a death knell to the horse and bayonette industrial complex

    February 24, 2014 at 3:49 pm | Reply
  3. PoliticallyDefused

    It's easy to say our military is too expensive until it is actually needed. My concern is that this could embolden some world antagonists. Also, our increased reliance on drones is something to be cautious about. It is only a matter of time before a technology is created to scramble the control signal, not to mention a targeted EMP device, rendering them useless. Assuming anything to the contrary is naive and arrogant.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:49 pm | Reply
  4. Communist Network News CNN

    We must downsize the perpetual war state. We must defend our borders and country against invaders that attack us. This war machine has gone on too long and it has impoverished hard working Americans. Now we need to get rid of the welfare state and we will be good. 90 million unemployed and it is going to be a lot more when these kids who were fighting for fake wars return. Sad but get ready. Obama has destroyed us with his man years of war. Too bad he allowed this to go on until we are broke.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:43 pm | Reply
    • CIA

      Obama didn't destroy us any more than Bush II.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:46 pm | Reply
      • kabelme

        doesn't matter who started it. It only matters who ends it.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:59 pm |
      • gmanng

        I agree, Oboma didnt put us in any more debt than Bush did. Bush Started this looking for Weapons of Mass Destruction and didnt find any but decided to attack anyway and thats where it all begin.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:11 pm |
    • jon wilson

      Too bad Bush started it.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:59 pm | Reply
      • kabelme

        doesn't matter who started it. It only matters who ends it.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:00 pm |
    • Eddie

      Those wars started under Bush's watch.

      February 24, 2014 at 4:00 pm | Reply
      • kabelme

        doesn't matter who started it. It only matters who ends it.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:00 pm |
      • No More Koolaid

        The war with Islamist terrorists started under Clinton. Attacks on the US and US citizens in 1993, 1996, 1998.

        The part where we actually started shooting back was under Bush.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:29 pm |
      • rp1588

        The modern cycle of war in Afghanistan, in which USA was a combatant, actually started under Carter. With UK, Queen Victoria or perhaps even earlier.

        For Iraq, USA under Bush1, UK under George (V, and David Lloyd).

        For Palestine, USA has Truman, who also started the Vietnam war.

        There is a lot of blame to go around. Millions died.

        February 24, 2014 at 5:52 pm |
  5. GrayWinslo

    US military is most corrupt waste of money. War mongers of the world. The rest of the world works to keep up with our armaments bought with borrowed money. Its insanity by definition.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:42 pm | Reply
    • Fed up Vet

      Warmongering? You are aware ELECTED CIVILIAN officials give the military its marching orders right?

      February 24, 2014 at 3:46 pm | Reply
      • GrayWinslo

        our defense contractors feed the world's war machines with vigor and glee. Billions to be had by a little free mongering, war mongering sell a fleet of over priced, over teched out nuke capable jets .... and we pay the cost overruns.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:53 pm |
    • Johnny B

      And yet without our "corrupt military" you might be working in a Mercedes Bentz labor camp...unless of course you were Jewish...then you'd just be dead.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:52 pm | Reply
      • GrayWinslo

        and if our military wasn't corrupt we could have decent schools, a good infrastructure, enough solar andwind to have no imported oil, we could be off coal, not need for fracking, ad nausium. How much did Haliburton screw us out of in Iraq? What's been the cost over runs on "needed" fighter and bomber jets? How many billions are just lost, unaccounted for in the military budget??

        February 24, 2014 at 3:57 pm |
      • jon wilson

        Huh? That was over 70 years ago. A lot of things have changed since then. This is 2014, try to keep up.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:04 pm |
      • No More Koolaid

        These nattering fools blame the military for the actions of their civilian government.

        Anyone that stupid is not to be taken seriously.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:31 pm |
      • rp1588

        That old myth. The Germans couldn't push the Brits out of North Africa, with the length of their supply lines one major problem, and their inability to control the Med (despite its choke-points) the other.

        So, how would Germany have been able to invade USA?

        Don't feel bad about being dumb on this issue. According to Omar Bradley, who once reported to Patton and ended up his boss, Patton never really understood logistics either.

        February 24, 2014 at 5:59 pm |
    • Tyler

      Military corruption? My god, look at the politicians first and foremost. Look at our tax policies. Look at thousands of areas before the war mongering. Our military is on back order. Young college ROTC grads are on standby b/c of the downsizing in the military. Where is the end to political corruption? Not even in sight yet b/c of purposeful distractions like a magic show that they throw at us. Smoke and mirrors, smoke and mirrors

      "There is corruption."
      "What?! No,

      February 24, 2014 at 7:07 pm | Reply
  6. What's next

    Come on, next thing you know they are going to cut funding to the Calvary and retiring horses. I just don't understand why we have to use new technology, that can be just as effective with less manpower, and just not stick with how we did it in the old days.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:39 pm | Reply
    • john

      Whats a Calvary?? Do you mean CAVALRY? Some people....

      February 24, 2014 at 3:48 pm | Reply
    • ken

      Calvary is a biblical referece - Cavalry is the horse soldier.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:51 pm | Reply
    • No More Koolaid

      The same "high tech" nonsense that we heard after WW II and cost lives in Korea.

      Heard it again after Korea, and it cost US lives in Viet Nam.

      Heard it in 2003 and it cost US lives in Iraq.

      But let me guess, this time it'll be different, and the miraculous technology will actually work like the PR flacks claim, and it won't matter that we don't have enough troops or that we're expecting the ones left to work 24/7 without enough equipment or supplies.

      February 24, 2014 at 4:42 pm | Reply
  7. Fish

    This is what's been needed for years, until we attacked Iraq we were on the road for that promised "Peace dividend" which we have never received. Our cold war military is due to be modernized from an occupying force to a tactical strike force to match the changed dynamics of our adversaries. This could not have been possible without our new technology but just as how business has downsized because of new tech the military can also. In fact the government as a whole could use a restructuring to eliminate redundancies and reorg for our new century!!!

    February 24, 2014 at 3:38 pm | Reply
    • ken

      Wait till there is an issue and you don't have a professional military force and we draft and have not the wrong equipment.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:54 pm | Reply
      • GrayWinslo

        ??

        February 24, 2014 at 3:58 pm |
  8. sly

    No one lies better than a Republican.

    1: they vote 100% for 8 straight years to increase military spending, federal spending and our deficit.
    2: they cry like babies when it comes time to increase the debt ceiling to pay for point 1

    Come on now hillbillies – are you FOR increasing military spending and the federal debt?
    Or are you for cutting military spending and reducing the federal debt?

    Come on – let's hear a single intelligent retort – and be sure to explain why you LOVED record debts 8 straight years under Bush. We all realize no one will reply – it's hard to admit you're a complete fraud and lyin' through your teeth.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:37 pm | Reply
    • Johnny B

      So besides hating republicans what exactly are you for? and I agree they can lie as well as any other politician.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:57 pm | Reply
      • sly

        I am for anyone who sticks to their convictions.

        Only a hypocrite supports debt increases 8 years in a row under Bush, then tries to shutdown government over a debt increase under Obama.

        Same debt increase. Only difference? Darker skin color.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:05 pm |
    • Ben

      Who are you talking to? The republican party is now just a collection of everyone else who isn't a democrat. they have nothing in common with one another. they seem to contradict themselves because they are more different from each other than they are from their enemy. Libertarians who want to legalize pot because the government has no business regulating peoples personal lives and evangelicals who insist that laws banning the girl from being on top in the bedroom are necessary are kidding themselves if they think they are both on the same team.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:59 pm | Reply
    • fred37ify

      One small detail slick – Barrack is gutting the military – and spending the money to arm HHS ! How's that grab ya slick – Barrack arming the black pampers !

      February 24, 2014 at 5:25 pm | Reply
  9. Mikexlx

    Perfect opportunity for North Korea to drop the bomb on us without struggle...Thanks Obama.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:35 pm | Reply
    • TR

      OMG...are you being serious? If your that deluded then you should off yourself as soon as possible. Them nasty north Koreans won't get you anways. Deny them that opportunity

      February 24, 2014 at 3:40 pm | Reply
    • Ryan

      I know! Our military is now only 5,631x the size of theirs, and over 11,000 times better funded. We barely stand a chance!

      February 24, 2014 at 3:44 pm | Reply
    • Paul

      Please. We are still the biggest military on the planet. As big as the next 10 COMBINED, and 8 of those are allies. We could level N Korea 100 times over even with cuts. Did you also notice Obama didn't make this decision? He's a smart man to support it.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:44 pm | Reply
      • Brandon

        You are confusing military spending with military size, China has the biggest physical military.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:49 pm |
    • CIA

      I'm guessing they pay you to troll.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:47 pm | Reply
    • GrayWinslo

      you are drunk

      February 24, 2014 at 3:59 pm | Reply
      • No More Koolaid

        And you are stupid.

        Tomorrow he may be sober. You?

        February 24, 2014 at 5:01 pm |
    • jon wilson

      They can't reach us... Yet

      February 24, 2014 at 4:09 pm | Reply
  10. Charlie

    I hate to say this, but our army doesn't need 550,000+ troops. Lets be realistic a soldier of the army is hardly more prepared to fight than an average hunter. Only reason the soldier is better prepared is due to the fact they have experience with the military equipment. The Army bootcamp test is far too relaxed… 2 miles in 17 minutes, 35 push ups,and 47 sit ups? That only means you're not obese. Both of my grandpas fought on the ground in WW2 and 4 of my uncles fought on the ground in Vietnam. I am in no way disrespecting the military, well not nearly as bad they do! One of the main contributors to the increase in troops is due to the signing bonus they were receiving… as the guys who received their signing bonus start to transition into a normal life troop levels will fall. Very few countries would be reluctant to engage America in a strictly ground to ground combat scenario on a neutral site. Conventional war is gone for good and never to return. Conventional war takes large numbers of troops, but the new warfare to be fought will be fought strictly on technology. The intelligence and military may spend 500 billon a year, but a decent percentage of that money is eaten up in salary which should be used for research and development. America needs to focus on training high level combat ready troops such as seals, rangers, and certain divisions of the marines.

    America has already made the mistake of building our military to fight a conventional war during the cold war… in retrospective it was definitely needed as it increased the gap between the soviet unions and caused the soviet union to go bankrupt. From 2001-2005 our military was no where near capable of fighting the war that we were engaged in.

    Hopefully no one takes this the wrong way(it's a cold hard fact), but there is a point where military spending on remaining troops becomes a social welfare program. I'm sure the troop levels would have been heavily decreased years ago if it wasn't for the staggering economy.

    Research and development is always the right path to success… Eisenhower was spot on with the military industrial complex, but he was a product of WW1 and WW2 history where conventional combat was the only way to fight. The military industrial complex is needed to keep our edge of an ever growing technological world.

    USA USA USA 🙂

    February 24, 2014 at 3:34 pm | Reply
    • TR

      Its obvious you haven't served in the military. While I agree with your assessment of our military being little more than a jobs program, the people serving are considerably more than hunters with military equipment.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:38 pm | Reply
      • Charlie

        I know it's hard to fathom and say but it is true. The contracts America signed into with the companies designing and producing our military equipment were for a far too long of period. If our military could have canceled our previous contracts on 9/12/01 our military would be far more modern today than it is, and i'm sure they would have. When the military purchases equipment it's for tens of years. For example if a technological advanced happened tomorrow and the F-16 or J-35 jet had now become obsolete(hypothetically this is) we would still be purchasing these aircrafts until their end of purchase date(which is probably somewhere in the 2020s). Military contractors don't see their profits come in till the end of the contracts. Contractors are usually highly leveraged at all times, but one cool thing history has shown us is the highly leveraged have always outperformed the not so leveraged. I don't want to make this sound super analytical because our troops are amazing people and i highly respect their service to America, but if we were to make a model based on being leveraged and not leveraged…. cutting our troops and investing in defense contracts our military would obviously become more leveraged. One would argue leverage is good and is needed to maintain our advance in military strength and long-term contracts equal a cheaper base price per year and the chance of a big advance is increasingly low. One would argue leverage is not good and the current contracts(at their length of time) inhibit innovation.

        We are in a period of time where no one would have thought possible. We have always been able to pay for our backlog outdated military equipment while maintaining our spending in developing the newest and latest equipment. In the next few years, if the economy doesn't start to grow and advert attention away from this topic(because people only pay attention when the economy is bad) the "military industrial complex" everyone speaks of will be forced to shrink.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:59 pm |
    • Charlie's Mom

      The Army's "too easy" but Charlie never was able to hack it.

      S T F U, Charlie. The real world isn't Call of Duty and Hotpockets.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:49 pm | Reply
      • Charlie

        The army is still important, but the bloated numbers make it not functional to maintain.

        I guess i wasn't able to "cut" it due to the fact every military service member i ever spoke to growing up spoke so poorly about the military.

        Probably due to the fact that in the 40s 50s 60s and 70s the military was ran by military historians from the early 1900s and technology was so poor and all the orders had to come directly from Washington that it put our troops in terrible places.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:05 pm |
    • Paul Tyrrell (USA, SSG)

      Charlie, a few corrections to your post. Firstly, in the Army we don't have "boot camp", we have basic training followed by AIT (advanced individual training). I orginall enlisted as an Infantryman. To pass my Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT), I had to run 2 miles faster than 16:18; again as an Infantryman it was expected that you run this in 13:00 or quicker. To pass push-ups you had to do a minimum of 53, again as in Infantryman it was expected that you do 70+, and to pass sit-ups it was a minimum of something like 56; again as an Infantryman you were expected to do 70+. Even at the minimums you are in decent shape, but not combat fighting shape.

      We have a decent fitness level in Combat Arms. Can't really speak to the rest of the Army.

      One more correction, or rather a disagreement. I would much rather maintain readiness via troop levels, than via technology. Paying a military force of 550,000 Soldiers is cheaper than F35 program has cost to date. Not apples to apples, but you get the idea.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:53 pm | Reply
      • Charlie

        I was typing on my phone at the time didn't really think to get everything correct.

        I thought most people would have been able to infer i was not directing my comments towards more advanced groups of military personnel.

        I don't want to hurt any feelings because this isn't what i'm trying to do. I respect our soldiers for serving. Every time military cuts come up people tend to get a little feisty.

        Training our troops to use equipment that will rarely if ever see a battle field again seems to be a huge waste to me. It might be the most advanced capable piece of equipment of its kind, but if that piece of equipment will never be needed does that make it a good piece of equipment? No. Why train people how to use it? I've had many friends who were and are currently in the military(Navy, Army, and Marines) and i've heard plenty of stories of wasteful spending.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:13 pm |
      • Charlie

        One last thing i wanted to add. Building, advancing, and innovation is a building block. You can't get the best aircraft in 2050 without building the latest aircraft in 2014.

        Deterrence is money. Technology deters.

        Everyone should be excited the military is cutting their numbers back and finally for the first time in history diverting much of their attention away from boots on the grounds. But for some reason people are angry.

        People get mad when troops are lost in battle and want no troops overseas.

        People get mad when the military cuts troops levels to put much effort in building a more efficient military where future casualties will heavily decrease.

        Very interesting

        February 24, 2014 at 4:36 pm |
    • Bacon

      Soldiers today have to be much more capable and intelligent as well as far more technically inclined today as compared to ww2. Just learning how to do push ups and shoot good does not cut it anymore if it ever did. Google an army training manual sometime. Or read up on the tactics,operations and strategy that is a part of the various levels.
      Also the Navy Seals,Rangers,Marines,etc all perform different wildly varying tasks. The army serves it's own purpose as part of our combined arms doctrine. Now all that said, it's fairly obvious to me this is a long term strategic decision. We are focusing more on r/d right now so we can better maintain our technological edge against the various rising powers like China or Iran.

      February 24, 2014 at 4:05 pm | Reply
    • dutchmen

      As a front line soldier.. those minimums you mentioned will get you kicked out of a combat unit. That is just to stay WITHIN the Army... and not get separated.

      Front line units ALWAYS maintain higher standards for their soldiers, and will kick you out if you do not meet them. IN addition barely meeting the minimum significantly hampers your chances for advancement or promotion.

      ALSO, being as how several guys in my unit ARE hunters, there is a HUGE difference between shooting a 240 Machine gun, military small squad tactics, urban operations, room clearing... than tracking an animal.

      February 24, 2014 at 4:06 pm | Reply
      • Charlie

        As i stated before, i thought everyone would be able to understand that specialized troops are still highly in demand.

        Military is all about deterrence.

        What's more deterring? A 100,000 soldiers or 150 stealth aircrafts with the latest capabilities?

        I hope everyone picks the second one.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:17 pm |
      • rp1588

        Charlie, what is more deterring is not running around killing people in the first place.

        In every significant attack of USA by a foreign enemy, USA incited by military action against them. (I note the USS Liberty was not in US waters, and USA was an ally and never attacked Israel but instead actively aided it in its wars. And, USA had not attacked Arabia, but had killed over a million Arabs plus many other Muslim people prior to 2001.)

        February 24, 2014 at 6:13 pm |
    • Kelley

      I agree fewer troops are needed overall, but those who have served or are still serving should not have promised benefits/compensation reduced so that we can buy more stuff from the military industrial complex.

      February 24, 2014 at 4:23 pm | Reply
  11. Conrad Shull

    Please, please, please keep a few of those A-10 Warthogs around and flying for airshows. They are so cool to watch in close combat maneuvers.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:29 pm | Reply
    • Caseyhd

      The military no longer flies in airshows thanks to those Teapublican sequestration cuts.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:34 pm | Reply
      • Mateo

        That's because Democrat's were deciding what to cut. They cut what would be the most visible to the tax payer. If they actually cut something that needed cutting, well, that would be a miracle.

        February 25, 2014 at 12:40 am |
    • Rudy1947

      Quite an aircraft, no art all function.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:36 pm | Reply
    • jon wilson

      Wart Hog Tank Busters, They were some bad ass planes. It'll be a shame to see them go.

      February 24, 2014 at 4:23 pm | Reply
  12. obotma

    after the incredible failure of obama russia and china are the worlds leading powers its their job to take care of the worlds problems now....

    February 24, 2014 at 3:29 pm | Reply
    • TR

      Please go back to school. If you work hard you can make it out of the 4th grade. Don't give up

      February 24, 2014 at 3:31 pm | Reply
    • Caseyhd

      Wow what an amazingly lame comment.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:35 pm | Reply
    • end3r

      Even with the cuts, our annual military budget will still be 5x's that of the #2 power Russia. And why wouldn't you anticipate cuts following the conclusion of two very long drawn out wars? Back in 2003 and 2004 we began ramping up military spending and recruitment heavily to provide the necessary means of fighting those wars, and its only a natural progression to draw down that spending when it's no longer necessary. I'm not in love with Obama's foreign policy to date, but drawing down the military budget to a typical post-war or peacetime readiness is par for the course.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:37 pm | Reply
    • svann

      What has Russia or China ever done to solve the world's problems? Or are you weakly implying that doing nothing is better than doing something?

      February 24, 2014 at 3:39 pm | Reply
      • sly

        If Russia or China wanted to solve the worlds problems, they'd start by destroying America.

        America is the worlds problem. Bomb 20 nations in 30 years? No wonder foreign freedom fighters knock down our skyscrapers. Goes around, comes around.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:44 pm |
      • Sly's Mom

        Scratch a liberal, find a traitor every time.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:51 pm |
      • Billy Gunadie

        Russia beat the NAZI ....

        Military in combat cost about 1million per person per year ...

        February 24, 2014 at 3:56 pm |
      • Kelley

        To Sly's Mom – so if you disagree with your country's international policies and/or you can see that the policies have not helped the country that makes you a traitor?

        February 24, 2014 at 4:29 pm |
  13. John

    120,000 more on umemployment and eventually welfare. But on the bright side, since they get paid like crap, They might make more on welfare.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:28 pm | Reply
    • end3r

      We need to think about government expenses more efficiently. The human cost in cutting the military budget is certainly not one that should be overlooked. It's important and the repercussions are quite clear, but at the same time simply dumping money into making tens of thousands of unwanted tanks just to keep the manufacturing sector afloat doesn't do anything for the economy in the long term. If we were to take the money we've dumped into failed fighter jet projects, obsolete tank production, and contractor waste, we could have improved our crumbling and out of date infrastructure a great deal. That would have lasting benefits for the economy and in the long term.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:41 pm | Reply
    • jon wilson

      An Army Sergeant E-5 with 4 years experience makes about $30,000 a year plus combat pay which doesn't amount to squat.

      February 24, 2014 at 4:33 pm | Reply
  14. sly

    Well duh – we spend more on military than the next 25 nations combined. No brainer.

    Question: Why did all the Republicans vote FOR budget and debt and military increases 8 straight years under Bush, but now, they seem to be AGAINEST debt increases? Sounds rather hypocritical now doesn't it?

    February 24, 2014 at 3:27 pm | Reply
    • GenPatton

      *bump* had to hit you, you are repeating like a scratched record.

      A record is how we used to listen to music.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:50 pm | Reply
    • aerokid6000

      For one, one of the main purposes of the government is to raise and sustain a military. Second, they didn't want to raise the debt ceiling because this harms us in other ways. Yes, raising the military budget doesn't helpt he ceiling but they also wanted other spending put into check which the democarts refused to do. (may I allude to Obama saying he won't deal). The U.S. spent like 3.5 Trillion in 2013. Yes the Military is 1/7 of that but there is still 3 Trillion to account for which again may I allude has been non negotiable and when there isn't a ceiling on the table becomes a non issue?

      February 24, 2014 at 3:54 pm | Reply
  15. greengestalt

    We should scale back the military big time – BUT – focus on "Defense Research", and on no-bid contractors doing for 20x the cost what existing troops could do for no more.

    Right now, thanks to the over paid no bid contractors, it all goes to CHINA. Before anyone whines, just look up how China is copying everything. Got news for you, it ain't just kids toys that get "Outsourced". So any $ we spend of defense, the blueprint almost always ends up in the hands of the Chinaman.

    The best defense would be to hold our cards, reduce all the useless bases, all the no-bid contracting. The troops need to have jobs, but that is the cheapest part of the equation. Regular turnaround will reduce the force to levels needed. But we should only need to defend our home land, maybe be able to wage one war on one front and keep a mild nuclear deterrent.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:26 pm | Reply
  16. Ricky V

    Considering 70% of the army is black, this is a huge blow to the black community. They cant find jobs already and now add in all those who cannot join the military for a job and its a disaster...

    February 24, 2014 at 3:25 pm | Reply
    • TR

      WHAT? 70% of the Army is black? Did you hear that at one of your clan meetings? PLEASE

      February 24, 2014 at 3:29 pm | Reply
    • Caseyhd

      Are you referring to South Africa or the US?

      February 24, 2014 at 3:36 pm | Reply
    • Michael K

      You're an idiot. Based on last years demographics of race in the Army 73.9% identified as white, 21.5% identified as black, and the rest identified as other

      February 24, 2014 at 3:41 pm | Reply
    • end3r

      http://www.statisticbrain.com/demographics-of-active-duty-u-s-military/

      74.6 % of the US Armed Forces is actually white. The statistic is pretty consistent across all of our branches. I think you might want to reconsider where you get your information.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:45 pm | Reply
    • John

      73.9% of the US military. 21.5% is black.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:45 pm | Reply
    • jon wilson

      Huh?

      February 24, 2014 at 4:35 pm | Reply
  17. rmcdonald

    I'm currently in the military. Cuts have already begun; we've been conducting budget drills to reduce spending for a while now. The result has been the mentality of "do more with less". We're asking military members to work longer hours and generate deliverables with far less funding. The environment is strained and people are very unhappy. Force reductions are kickstarting again and now enlisted and officers who have made a career out of serving this nation are creating paperwork packages to "plead" their case why they should get to stay in the military as a soldier. It's really sad to see honest people who want to serve the greater good and who have sacrified so much *fearful* that they won't be able to continue their service to this nation. If you need reductions, then reduce spending on some of the congressional pet projects and gradually reduce enlistement and commissioning rates for soldiers.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:23 pm | Reply
    • end3r

      ^^ This! I hate to reply to comments like this but there's really nothing else I can say. Reducing the military budget is a necessary step to any peacetime draw down, and there is without a doubt a lot of fat that can be cut to help balance out our deficit spending, but it's not just a clean cut across the board. It's amazing to see just how much could be cleaned out simply by a slow draw down in recruitment and cutting wasteful Congressional projects. I think you're 100% on point with your comment.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:47 pm | Reply
  18. mrpbnh

    Ok lets do the Math the 535 senators and congressman make roughly 95 million dollars a year. And they keep this salary even after leaving office. They have the power to vote for pay raises which they almost always do. They only let the American people vote on issues that they do not want to be responsible for passing or not passing. Yet anything that fattens their pockets or furthers their agenda, they have no problem voting on that without the approval of the voters that put them in office.

    Soldiers make less than minimum wage. An E1 makes roughly 7.50 an hour while in Garrison and roughly 3.30 and hour in the field. For all of you that are so inclined to jump on board for spending cuts to the military lets see how long you can make it on that pay.

    It is one thing to cut spending on programs that are no longer needed but where does that money go. Not to those who are working anywhere from 14 to 20 hour days while in a combat zone. It is very easy for someone making a decent living to run off at the mouth about defense spending but until you do as much work as the military does for as little pay as they do it for then maybe you should keep you uneducated thoughts to yourself unless of course you too are ready to take that pay cut.

    One more thing. This is not the 90's where there are plenty of jobs for people to get when they are let go of the military. The true unemployment rate to include those who no longer are eligible for pay is closer to 16 percent. So once all of those positions are cut from the military, that is only going to add to the pool of people who no longer are employed

    February 24, 2014 at 3:19 pm | Reply
    • Ken

      Couldn't have said it better. Right on the money!!

      February 24, 2014 at 3:40 pm | Reply
    • SignalBattalion2/81

      Exactly!

      February 24, 2014 at 4:33 pm | Reply
    • Kelley

      I don't disagree with your point overall, but Congesspeople do not continue to receive a salary after they leave office since early 1980's.

      February 24, 2014 at 4:34 pm | Reply
  19. noneya

    I thought the Warthog was the best and most cost effective close air support weapon we have ever had... Sure, decommission the Warthog so we can spend trillions on the F-35. This sounds like a conservative plan.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:18 pm | Reply
    • Jimbo

      Really? Since when do conservatives downgrade their military? I bet you it is Obama's doing.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:20 pm | Reply
      • Steel On Target

        I bet you're wrong and Obama has nothing to do with it.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:25 pm |
      • TR

        Good. I sent him there to downsize the military and end the wars. Its taken him long enough

        February 24, 2014 at 3:34 pm |
      • Caseyhd

        It the the Teapublicans who demanded we cut everything. Remember? We don't need a big gov't right? You seriously cannot be whining about the gov't cutting costs can you? You do realize this will enable the US to cut it's yearly budgetary deficit. Next up will be to cut corporate welfare down to the level we spend on traditional welfare. Especially since we spend 60% more on corporate welfare than all other welfare combined.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:40 pm |
      • No More Koolaid

        Hagel is Obama's appointee and does what he is told to do. Obama picked a "conservative" to distract simple-minded people from who is actually calling the shots.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:06 pm |
    • Steel On Target

      Its all about the fighter pilot community and Lockheed Martin jobs. Not what the actual ground pounder needs.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:21 pm | Reply
      • No More Koolaid

        It's long past time to tear up the memorandum that assigned all fixed-wing combat aircraft to the Air Force, and transfer the A-10 to the Army.

        The US Air Force spends more money on golf courses that it spends on the A10.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:04 pm |
    • fred37ify

      Nope – that money will be diverted to Barracks homeland security force ! His own private army ! Did you forget he said he wanted a private police force better equipped then our military ???????????????????///

      February 24, 2014 at 3:25 pm | Reply
    • Rigoberto Perez

      It certainly isn't against any credible air defense or any place with an actual air force. The F16 has been fulfilling the standard A10 role for over a decade now. F35 is needed because the now 30 year old F16s (block 40s) are WELL past their expected lifespan at this point. The F35 will become a decent bargain once production numbers hit stride.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:26 pm | Reply
      • No More Koolaid

        A single F35 costs more than what it costs the Air Force to keep ALL of the A10s operation at present.

        The F35 is a massive waste of money. An aircraft that is too expensive to buy more than a handful, too expensive to operate, too expensive to risk and too expensive to replace.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:01 pm |
    • end3r

      It actually IS a conservative plan. I grew up next to an A-10 base and the same idiots have been trying to draw away their funding for local Congressional projects (like the precious F-35 Flying Garbage). There's almost never any actual consideration of what the generals on the ground say or want. They'll cut it regardless of its decades of success and continued viability in modern combat situations. Instead they'll pass a grant to make another 100,000 tanks that will sit in a warehouse in Georgia to fatten some shortsighted Senator's pockets.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:51 pm | Reply
  20. Mad Dog Mike

    After The Cold War and Desert Storm it was called Force Restructuring. I was with VII Corps which was deactivated .. That's a lot of soldiers ..

    February 24, 2014 at 3:17 pm | Reply
    • Thunderbolt

      Was in Augsburg w/ VII Corps myself, way back when.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:24 pm | Reply
  21. Juergen

    Good luck with cutting our military budget. It ain't gonna happen. Too many contractors. Too much of their money in politics.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:17 pm | Reply
    • Kelley

      Right – that's why they'll take it out of the service member's benefits instead.

      February 24, 2014 at 4:38 pm | Reply
  22. Steel On Target

    They need to ditch the F-35 program and keep the A-10s. This is just the Air Force fighter pilot club trying to keep their shiny new toys. The A-10 is far more useful for ground attack and our current combat roles.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:16 pm | Reply
    • TR

      Its not pretty enough to be effective. You know, like the RPG

      February 24, 2014 at 3:18 pm | Reply
    • Cody

      The F-35 is a ground and air platform. The A-10 is awesome but only fits one role; the F-35 can do the A-10s job and more. I can tell you the A-10 will be missed 😦

      February 24, 2014 at 3:36 pm | Reply
      • No More Koolaid

        The F35 is not an effective ground attack aircraft.

        It is a very effective "make money disappear into the pockets of defense contractors" platform.

        The A10 has a proven track record and costs next to nothing to operate. The ENTIRE operational costs of the A10s we ALREADY HAVE BOUGHT AND PAID FOR are less than the price of a single F35 that has yet to successfully complete a single mission.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:57 pm |
  23. Really worried

    Never cut a paycheck from the white house, CONTINUE TO GIVE MILLIONS TO MUSLIMS IN OTHER COUNTRIES, but somehow cut our military spending?? The heads of this entire administration need to be checked with cat scans!!

    February 24, 2014 at 3:16 pm | Reply
    • TR

      The Whitehouse budget and payroll is NOTHING compared to the ridiculously bloated "Military Offense" budget. That's like comparing apples to asteroids

      February 24, 2014 at 3:27 pm | Reply
      • Stac Ace

        TR, The people in Washington only make a fraction of what the military has in their budget. However if the military folks lose jobs and work longer hours don;t you think as a sign of good faith congress should reflect this by decreasing their paychecks by even 10%?

        February 24, 2014 at 4:03 pm |
    • Caseyhd

      I thought this is what you Teapublicans have been crying about? You screamed about the need to make cuts to spending and now you got your wish.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:42 pm | Reply
  24. balls mcghee

    Republicans equate a strong military with money. as if one equals the other. So if money is the answer, please explain why we "lost" wars in vietnam, korea, Iraq, and other countries with military budgets at fractions the size of ours? common sense would suggest that the answer is strategy, not money. You really just hate that a liberal is running the military, and doing a great job at it.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:13 pm | Reply
    • Really worried

      Im in the military, ive been to IRAQ, Afghanistan and NO HE IS NOT........

      February 24, 2014 at 3:16 pm | Reply
      • balls mcghee

        Did you just break the military code of blasting your leader in public? I seriously doubt you are a soldier based on this post.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:19 pm |
      • Eman

        Dude people in the military hate Obama. Im in the Airforce and I hear him get slammed everyday. Do you really think theres a secret police out there listening to troops bash Obama then putting them in jail? Haha

        February 24, 2014 at 3:53 pm |
    • Cutting the Military - again

      If you really knew anything – you would know we lost Korea (the forgotten war) because the military was cut beyond the effectiveness point. Soldiers had to learn how to fight on the battlefield – which is not a good way to learn, one mistake and you are dead. Vietnam could be blamed on the politicians that decided they were military experts and not listening to the true military experts (boy does that sound familiar right now)... This president is clueless about how to run the military and how to balance a budget – as is Congress. I vote we put all housewifes/househusbands in Congress – those that are frugal, coupon clipping people that KNOW how to live on a budget. Also we need to eliminate congressional pay once you are out of office. You can earn retirement with Mutual Funds or Social Security like the rest of the American people – bet they would be much less wiling to tap the SS accounts for "must have" purchases that are really crap.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:32 pm | Reply
  25. Nick

    Have to wonder about the timing of this in an election year. Those that remember the impact of pre-WWII military size are no doubt shaking their heads (or rolling in their graves) thinking "did we not learn from past mistakes and the lives that cost"? If you want to cut DOD funding, start with the civilian workforce.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:13 pm | Reply
    • balls mcghee

      yes, i recall losing to other countries who had miniscule military budgets. that was embarrassing. i guess that proves that money isnt the answer

      February 24, 2014 at 3:14 pm | Reply
      • meleliko

        We lost to those countries because our political leaders didn't have a pair. You fight a war all out, not to some stupid line. You totally annihilate the enemies capability and will to wage war. There is no such thing as a limited war. You are either all in or should be getting out.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:29 pm |
      • fred37ify

        Hey bal-less – – Barrack gonna funnel that money to his "private police force" ! That gonna work out real well for you ! I'm well armed – ARE YOU ????????????????????????

        February 24, 2014 at 3:33 pm |
      • sly

        America always get's it's butt kicked during war. Basically, the white republican generals are incompetant – basically the Houston Astros of the military.

        Remember Vietnam? We fought all out for 15 years, and the superior Vietnamese freedom fighters sent our boys home in boxes.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:41 pm |
  26. Natrldiver

    What many people do not realize is that the first things to be cut are the services to dependents. Programs like MWR and Fleet Family Services will take the hit before troop readiness does. Tat being said, do people realize that this will impact schooling for hundreds of thousands of children. Programs have already been cut due to budget cuts. I have seen first hand athletic and other programs cut in an effort to keep schools running that were filled mostly with military dependents.

    Most bases have shut down their hospitals or reduced them to care clinics where all ambulatory emergencies are farmed out to hospitals off post. Housing has gone privatized and the military no longer has any real jurisdiction over the tenants because the owners like Balfour Beatty can rent to section 8 if they want to.

    As these benefits go away, the desire to join let alone make the military a career will also go away.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:12 pm | Reply
    • balls mcghee

      agreed, but long term ,the less soldiers you send to war, the less you have to pay for their care.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:15 pm | Reply
      • fred37ify

        YOU ARE AN IDIOT !!!!!!!!!!!!11111111111

        February 24, 2014 at 3:34 pm |
    • TR

      Medical benefits for dependents was farmed out to civilian resources because it was supposed to "save" money and instead costs 3 times what is used to. That's our "free" market taking care of us. Thanks republicans

      February 24, 2014 at 3:16 pm | Reply
  27. William Balderson

    Stop sending our money over to other countries that turn around and use it against us. What are you going to do with all the unemployed ex-military after the cuts, welfare. Tax dollars are tax dollars no matter how you spend them. Leave the military alone and secure the boarders with them.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:12 pm | Reply
  28. Jamie

    Why Not?

    Do we really need over 1000 overseas bases and 39 aircraft carrier to protect homeland?

    Lets not forget how British Empire and Soviet Union collapsed. By over-extension and military over-spending that came to no use at the end.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:11 pm | Reply
    • JLD

      HMMM really, 39 aircraft carriers?????

      February 24, 2014 at 3:23 pm | Reply
    • Joey

      "1,000 bases and 39 aircraft carriers..."???!!! Sorry Jamie but your numbers are WAY overstated. I will be the first to agree that in any government program there is likely waste to be trimmed, but we need reasonable/rational arguments, not emotional rhetoric. Our carrier program projects much more than military strength – the humanitarian missions they facilitate are critical as well. We cannot afford to downsize these programs too much – at present we have 11 carrier groups (I believe), no where near the 39 you state.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:29 pm | Reply
    • bmckniff

      I'm going to assume that you're just pulling those numbers out of thin air. We don't have nearly 39 carriers. We have 10. If you want to start counting LHAs and LHDs, which aren't technically aircraft carriers, the total goes up to 19. And there's no way in hell that we have 1000 bases overseas.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:47 pm | Reply
  29. DavidC

    What budget cuts? The article only mentions the current year spending but pointedly fails to mention future plans, which increase spending. The fact that troop levels will go down is not relevant. The US will still spend as much, or more, than the rest of the world combined on military spending. There is no sign that our fearless leaders recognize that the US worldwide military empire and its endless interventions creates more enemies than it defends against. Of course, that is the point, so politicians have more money to spend to reward friends and stay in power.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:11 pm | Reply
    • Jamie

      Very well said. Bravo.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:13 pm | Reply
  30. David

    This will be the biggest mistake since Obamacare or even Vietnam. China wants us desperately and that are some crude nasty people.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:10 pm | Reply
    • balls mcghee

      Bush already proved to be the biggest mistake. we are still paying for his mess.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:17 pm | Reply
    • sly

      Typical fool. The Chinese are not only better educated than Americans, they are more honest, have morals, and don't go around the world bombing 20+ nations in 30 years.

      As I said – fool.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:29 pm | Reply
  31. Barbara

    Does this surprise anyone? We all know Obama hates our military and of course the Military hates him as well. with good cause.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:10 pm | Reply
    • balls mcghee

      what have you done other than put a flag bumper sticker on your car?

      February 24, 2014 at 3:17 pm | Reply
    • cal

      Stop preaching that vile hatred Barbara- The President does not hate the military

      February 24, 2014 at 3:38 pm | Reply
      • Kelley

        Completely agree, Cal. The vitriolic rhetoric against our duly elected President is truly disturbing.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:45 pm |
  32. annier

    I do NOT support any cuts to our military in the way of pay, medical benefits etc. I wholeheartedly support cutting the billions spent on weapons which are warehoused and never used in order to grant huge defense contracts when some lobbyist in D.C. greases some palms. Likewise, I support the reduction in the number of troops stationed in places almost 75 years after the end of WW11. Time we took care of our OWN, particularly the men and women who have come back from these godforsaken countries with physical and mental wounds which in some instances, are beyond repair. Those in D.C. are quick to involve others' children in defending their country, while all but two of them find some excuse as to why their sons/daughters should not serve their country. Mr Romney????

    February 24, 2014 at 3:09 pm | Reply
    • Kelley

      Absolutely right!

      February 24, 2014 at 4:47 pm | Reply
  33. Scott

    The DOD needs to cut the double dipping civilian workforce also

    February 24, 2014 at 3:08 pm | Reply
    • GenPatton

      Why? I'd like to see you live on a Military retiree's pay. Think stupid, think.

      February 24, 2014 at 4:07 pm | Reply
    • Lifer

      Why? Why cut paying someone who has dedicated there life to serving their country? Very few do 20/+ years then continue to work DOD. We, I say we because I hopefully will be one shorty, have earned our retirement by sacrificing our lives and the lives of our family to defend/protect you and yours for a long time. And if we want to continue that service why not then let us? If it's a problem for you or any others or you think we are getting over go do it yourself if you can.

      February 24, 2014 at 4:49 pm | Reply
  34. JC

    Just listen to the wing nuts moaning and groaning about cuts to defense. Per usual, they want to reduce the deficit but not at the expense of THEIR sacred cow. The United States spent more on defense in 2012 than the next highest ten countries combined. We should be cutting defense spending by 90%.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:06 pm | Reply
    • Bad Bob

      Hear! Hear!

      February 24, 2014 at 3:16 pm | Reply
  35. Riquun

    Like what has been said before, of course the military size is going to go down, it needs to. I wouldnt be to worried about it, i would be more worried about whats the left hand is doing than what this right hand is showing us. because this isnt news at all.

    while the media is parading around this military cuts what else is happening that they arnt showing us?

    February 24, 2014 at 3:06 pm | Reply
  36. Keith

    Republicans will cry like babies !!!!

    February 24, 2014 at 3:05 pm | Reply
    • TR

      If President Obama cut taxes for the 1% down to nothing and nominated the Koch brothers as co-fed chairmen the republicans would complain about it.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:08 pm | Reply
      • Bad Bob

        LOL

        February 24, 2014 at 3:17 pm |
    • northerstar

      You can't be as stup$d as your post sounds. Democrats will also scream as cutting the military will cut JOBS in their states as well as in Republican states. Cutting weapon purchases will cost jobs. Obama will be long gone before the impact of the cuts are felt. How it impacts our ability to fight the next war will need to be determined. It about the JOBS stup$d.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:21 pm | Reply
  37. NealR2000

    Technology continues to be the biggest reason why less humans are needed in the military. We've come a long way since the days of a military's power being measured by how many men with rifles (or bows and arrows) someone has. Smart weaponary and satelites have changed the game. As for non-human cuts, well, a lot comes down to our country's current financial predicament and the shifting priorities of our President.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:03 pm | Reply
    • Paul

      Along these lines, drones will cut the need for aviators in all of the branches. So, a place like San Diego with both a major Naval and Marine base will suffer as they start needing less and less people to run these programs.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:38 pm | Reply
  38. Jamie

    Don't worry about it.

    Republicans will start a stupid war and expand the military again to an even bigger size the first year they get back to White House.

    I sure hope it never happens again but that may be an inevitability with our current two-party system.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:02 pm | Reply
    • Keith

      I agree if the Republicans get the presidential seat there will be a new War invented..

      February 24, 2014 at 3:07 pm | Reply
      • TR

        Ukraine is a pretty ripe target right now

        February 24, 2014 at 3:10 pm |
    • Big Bob

      You won't have to worry about it, Jamie. The Republicans are finished. It's one-party rule paving the way for one-world government. Careful what you wish for.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:49 pm | Reply
  39. JBHedgehog

    Let's be sure we have the logic down:

    1) The leader of the military wants to reduce spending.
    2) This will save money
    3) The more military minded congress (mostly Republicans) will reject this logic b/c they like military spending
    4) This congress also complains that congress spends too much money
    5) And congress tries to cut programs for health, welfare, education and environmental protection

    Does anybody see anything wrong here?

    February 24, 2014 at 3:02 pm | Reply
    • NealR2000

      Okay, you asked. You were doing good up until point 3. Congress isn't most;y Republicans. The House has a slight Republican majority and the Senate has a slight Democratic majority.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:06 pm | Reply
      • Phil

        They may have meant the House, but they are still right with "congress" being mostly Republican. There are more Republicans in the combined congress than Democrats. The senate has a 6 seat edge towards Dems and the House has an over 40 seat GOP tilt.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:48 pm |
    • Kuron

      The Republicans don't mind spending money if it suits their needs. The Republicans have no use for health, welfare, education and environmental protection, so, of course that is where they are going to offset their spending.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:13 pm | Reply
      • Big Bob

        Not to mention evil, old and white!

        February 24, 2014 at 3:51 pm |
    • MeganColorado

      The reason why many people are nervous about cuts to the military is two-fold:
      1) Where are 18-26 year old men going to find jobs in this economy. Better to have them working somewhere while garnering a check from the government. Better than having them on welfare–they are learning skills and they are achieving some self-esteem by working for the check
      2) No one wants to go to war–but many of us believe that a strong military is exactly what has kept us from having our homeland attacked. Going back years and years, people relied on a strong defense to keep their communities safe.
      As long as we can guarantee that we will not be invaded by others, then most people would say–cut the military. But also, cut the aid we send overseas to support other wars as well

      February 24, 2014 at 3:29 pm | Reply
      • sly

        So Megan – you are obviously in favor of increasing the federal budget and the debt ceiling.

        But there seem to be some Americans who say they want to decrease the size of government (although all of these same people voted 8 years in a row under Bush to INCREASE the government and the debt, but we'll ignore those ignorant hypocrites).

        Real simple: Want to decrease the debt? Cut the military. Kinda takes no brains to verify that conclusion.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:32 pm |
    • fred37ify

      You are a fvcking idiot – democrats own the senate – your name victor scott tiffany by any chance ???

      February 24, 2014 at 3:41 pm | Reply
  40. Uncle Al

    The A-10 "Warthog" is an astoundingly accurate and lethal weapon. Its depleted uranium 30mm GAU-8 shells penetrate any armor (PGU-14/B API does 3 inches of armor at 1500 feet), then burst into a Class 4/burning metal inferno upon exit. 80% of rounds hit within a cone angle of 5 milliradians. 65 shells/second. It's one of the few things in this politically impotent, REMF-infested, piece of crap Armed Forces that works.

    Let's get rid of it.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:01 pm | Reply
    • Jamie

      Too bad for DOD account directors...

      Guess why I'm not concerned with removal of U Depleted-Uranium-Warheads that brings cancer to Iraqi children born twenty years after the desert storm.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:08 pm | Reply
      • Big Bob

        They seem to be doing a wonderful job wiping themselves out right now. Oh! I know. Steak and Ice Cream before we showed up, right?

        February 24, 2014 at 3:58 pm |
    • JC

      No, let's save it. It's weapon of mass destruction. Our hopes and dreams all depend upon our ability to leave our enemies guts strewn across a countryside. Wing nut.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:09 pm | Reply
    • Lucifer

      Yup, it's an astoundingly good at destroying tanks, except none of our enemies really have/use tanks.. that was a long time ago... time to retire it as good as it was.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:33 pm | Reply
  41. Paul

    Fact is we could reduce our military budget by 75 percent and still have the largest budget in the world. The next 15 countries added together doesn't equal ours in military budget. Lets cut back by a reasonable amount, take care of our injured, and don't be so quick to get in the next one.

    February 24, 2014 at 3:00 pm | Reply
  42. Chuck

    America,...........taken down from the inside.......a shame

    February 24, 2014 at 3:00 pm | Reply
    • balls mcghee

      the shame is that we feel the need to police the world and spend 700 billion per year doing so. more than the the next 5 countries combined.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:04 pm | Reply
    • TR

      Its just a delusion YOU have. Go talk to a mental health professional before committing a mass shooting seems like a reasonable response to you. Thank you

      February 24, 2014 at 3:06 pm | Reply
      • MeganColorado

        Seriously? You are rude. If you can't debate someone without being rude, keep your thoughts to yourself. You are mean-spirited.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:31 pm |
    • Big Bob

      The Franfurt school indoctrinated these kids really well, Chuck. They'll never miss what was kept from them.
      Imagine being instructed in self-loathing.

      February 24, 2014 at 4:01 pm | Reply
    • Big Bob

      And it's what happens when your news sources are Jon Stewart and Bill Mahar.

      Welp: back to Rush and Fox.

      (Just beating you to it, kids...)

      February 24, 2014 at 4:03 pm | Reply
  43. Robert

    Personally, I think it's time to start preparing for and allowing machines to start fighting our wars for us. We treat our troops so poorly at home and sending them to die in aid to the interests of big money, why not just spend the money on combat machines, and stop spilling the blood of our citizens in the name of the dollar?

    February 24, 2014 at 2:59 pm | Reply
  44. Suncatcher

    Obama continues with his scorched earth policy for Amerika. First, spend way beyond his means in bail outs and universal healthcare and a surge in social ("buy the progressive vote") programs – while cutting/gouging Defense of this country. And now that there are enough uneducated Amerikans who blindly do Obama's bidding, and the media who is bought and paid for, this too shall pass. This country may never recover from this BO/left wing dictatorship.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:56 pm | Reply
    • balls mcghee

      you clearly were absent from 2001-2008

      February 24, 2014 at 3:02 pm | Reply
      • TR

        Based on his recollection and mentality I'm guessing he's about 5 years old

        February 24, 2014 at 3:13 pm |
      • MeganColorado

        America's situation here at home and internationally has exponentially gotten worse since Bush. Bush started the decline, and Obama is finishing it all up quite nicely.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:35 pm |
    • JC

      Oh the horrors. THE HORRORS. The United States is cutting its defense budget. No matter that it will still be 4 times what all other countries combined pay for defense. THE HORRORS. LMAO. WIng nut.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:04 pm | Reply
      • MeganColorado

        What are we going to do with the increase of more 18-26 year old unemployed men? Now, give them a check for doing absolutely nothing. At least in the army, they were working for a check–acquiring skills and experience. They will come home and do absolutely nothing. Sounds like yet another situation that wasn't completely thought through. So, the military budget decreases while our unemployment and welfare increases.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:37 pm |
      • rp1588

        Megan, doing nothing is a lot better than doing evil. Millions are dead for no useful purpose except fattening some already fat wallets.

        February 24, 2014 at 6:39 pm |
    • JBHedgehog

      Wow...that's an amazing distortion of reality.

      I'm not even angry...frankly, I'm impressed!!!

      February 24, 2014 at 3:04 pm | Reply
    • balls mcghee

      an 800 billion bank bailout happened in what year again??? and a trillion dollar medicare drug prescription plan was approved when? adn then we spend 2 trillion on wars under which President? A surplus was squandered in what year?

      February 24, 2014 at 3:06 pm | Reply
    • jeff

      if your not open to (changes) whether it be for good/bad in your< mind. Then maybe a relocation to another country to call home for yourself is warranted.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:07 pm | Reply
    • TiredOfWar

      You are a moron for speaking out like someone that doesnt know the full effects of things happening. If you sit back and watch what has transpired with things.. you will see America stepping forward. Even if we have another president.. there will always be changes that happen and that is part of the way of life in America. Suck it up!

      February 24, 2014 at 3:11 pm | Reply
    • alf564

      but this will make his deceased father happy...you know, destroy colonialism

      February 24, 2014 at 3:19 pm | Reply
    • Ben Jordan

      spending is down since Obama took office... seriously, what is wrong with you?

      February 24, 2014 at 3:51 pm | Reply
    • cal

      But the real question is will America survive having uneducated Americans who think of every thing in political terms and who hate people because of their political preferences-that is the real quandary. How easy it is for you right wingers to belittle anyone who disagrees with you and your politics- you don't even recognize how foreign that is to the country that was envisioned by out founding fathers.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:53 pm | Reply
  45. stuman

    Republicans will not agree on anything Obama does. No big surprise. They are starting to look like Putin and the way he governs Russia. Anti anything that stands for patriotic freedom

    February 24, 2014 at 2:55 pm | Reply
    • GenPatton

      We are listening.

      Love Obama's NSA.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:55 pm | Reply
  46. Exvet

    Stupid move. So when the next big war rolls around what are they going to do then?

    February 24, 2014 at 2:55 pm | Reply
    • Tarmac

      Be afraid. Always be afraid.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:05 pm | Reply
    • JBHedgehog

      Uhm...try not to get involved in every stinkin' conflict?

      February 24, 2014 at 3:05 pm | Reply
    • Steve

      The same thing we did for WWII. Build more weapons.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:08 pm | Reply
    • Derp

      "Our analysis showed that this force would be capable of decisively defeating aggression in one major combat theater – as it must be – while also defending the homeland and supporting air and naval forces engaged in another theater against an adversary," he said.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:13 pm | Reply
    • alf564

      white flag....white flag

      February 24, 2014 at 3:20 pm | Reply
    • GenPatton

      Draft.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:56 pm | Reply
  47. gts58

    Obama can not convert the savings from military cuts to "more free stuff for his welfare army of voters" as their numbers are increasing and the mid-term elections are coming up. Just more Chicago politics at work!

    February 24, 2014 at 2:50 pm | Reply
    • TR

      Newsflash buckwheat: Obama doesn't have to get re-elected to anything again, EVER, for the rest of his life.

      PS: you have to pay his pension forever.

      Have a nice day

      February 24, 2014 at 2:55 pm | Reply
      • ziggy

        Do you know what mid term elections are?

        February 24, 2014 at 3:27 pm |
  48. Jeff

    Pay them like plantation slaves, work them to the bone, send them to die for the CEO's of big banks, big oil and big pharma.
    When they come home for R&R or to their final rest, screw them over again, by renegging on their medical benefits etc.
    Time to stop paying any elected member of Congress at all. Serving the real people of this nation should be a privilege, not a means to personal wealth and power. These methods of cutting cost is simply disgusting.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:48 pm | Reply
    • The Truth

      It's obvious you did not read the article. I am a 11 year Veteran of the Navy and looking at the proposed cuts I have to say it's about time. I always believed that once the two wars wound down we need to transition to more of a home based rapid reaction force instead of a forward deployed force. The one exception being the Navy. The Navy is more than capable of keeping the forward watch with a smaller Army and Air Force ready to react if needed.

      Now back to your plantation comments. This article did not mention any cuts to pay or benefits. I did read in another article the plan is to limit pay increases in the future, again no mention of cuts to service members. I had no issues with my pay in service. Yes, we are not making tons of money but we do make enough for a comfortable living. You hear about service members running into financial issues, 90% of them are self imposed problems. Buying cars at 32% interest, I wish that was a joke. Having kids when they are not ready or having too many. Buying expensive crap they don't need to one up each other and blowing money at clubs. That is why they are on food stamps. Now there are those in the 10% that did everything right but fell on hard times for one good reason or another.

      For the other part about fighting for corporations, I fought for the Citizens of the United States of America. The lowest Private has made more of a contribution to the world then you will ever do in your losing fight against the mythical Man. I bet you rage against coporations but go out and buy the newest productts of corporation that has a partially eaten fruit as their logo. You know the one that needs to have suicide nets at their factories.

      It's too bad you are sick, commenting onan article that I did not read and being ignorant would make me sick too.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:24 pm | Reply
      • CrazyHeeb

        While this article did not mention anything about another cut to benefits, part of the plan is to CUT BAH to 95% of what housing costs. That's right, another cut to our Active Duty members' benefits. So not only have they come after my retirement, but now my allowance for housing. Please, by all means, have one of your lowly Seamen sit in front of you so you can look him/her in the eye and tell them why these cuts are "so necessary"....

        February 24, 2014 at 5:22 pm |
  49. Syd Chaden

    The largest reduction in US military strength in history came at the end of WWII. I entered military service in 1948, was assigned to the 2nd Infantry Division of the U.S. Army. The 2nd was the “ready division” of the Army, which meant that it had to be prepared to instantly meet any requirement for US military involvement. As the “ready division”, the units of the 2nd were constantly engaged in combat training exercises, most of which involved live fire.
    Since funding had been drastically reduced, the 2nd had to get by with what was available. I recall repeated instances of rounds being loaded into bazookas and failing to fire, and having to be unloaded at great risk to the gunner. I recall similar instances of rounds being loaded into 57 mm and 75mm recoilless rifles, which failed to fire, and accordingly, had to be unloaded by the crews. And, since I was assigned to a 60mm mortar squad, I most specifically recall feeling the barrel of the mortar after a round failed to fire, to try to determine if the propellant had begun to burn, or not, and then gingerly carrying the mortar to a “safe” area, where the round was eased out of the barrel and dumped.
    The problem was that propellants and explosives age and deteriorate. During the war, ammunition was expended as fast as it could be delivered, but after the war, it sat and aged, and was not replaced with fresh ammunition. And so, we wondered, since the 2nd is the “ready division”, what would happen if the call came, and we had to answer it? How could we fight if we couldn’t count on our ammunition and equipment?
    An opportunity to find out came when the Chinese Communists fired on a US naval vessel, and we spent three days on the docks at the Tacoma shipyard, waiting for the word to board a transport vessel. But, the word didn’t come. At least, not that time.
    But, when the war in Korea began, the 2nd went. I didn’t go with it, because I had been assigned to another division. Those who went with the 2nd suffered horrendous casualties. I don’t know how many of those casualties might have been caused by defective, over-aged ammunition and equipment, that had not been replaced or upgraded because of budget cuts. None of the letters that went out to the families of those killed said, “I’m sorry that we didn’t spend the money to equip your loved one properly”. None of the awards for valor were given for having fought with over-aged or faulty ammunition and equipment.
    The USA didn’t “lose” that war, but it certainly didn’t “win” it. US politicians weren’t prepared to do what it would have taken to “win” that war. If the USA isn’t prepared to do what it would take to win a war, then it should not fight that war, especially, if its goal is not to win it, but simply, to meet a budget. The lives and limbs of our American military are priceless. It is unconscionable to ask American military personnel to risk life and limb because American politicians decide that American “principles” demand that we fight, if those same “principles” don’t demand that we equip our military appropriately, and that, when we fight, we fight to achieve victory.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:48 pm | Reply
    • balls mcghee

      the budget was not to blame. it was the strategy. Remember, the countries we "lost" to had a fraction of the budget we did. So explain that.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:08 pm | Reply
      • Cutting the Military - again

        Perhaps you should read a few books written by people that were in Korea before you comment on something you know nothing about. I would recommend "From Pusan to Panmunjon" which was written by a S. Korean General, actually the first S. Korean General ever. I had the priviledge of meeting Gen Paik and hearing him speak. To this day, they still blame US politicians for the failure to win in Korea and the failure of uniting the penninsula. I visited the Korean War Memorial in Seoul in December, again – they blame the politicians, it was mentioned several times on the tour. Sorry but I have more faith in listening to the people that were actually there than an armchair quarterback that has 20/20 hindsight – or so they think.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:46 pm |
    • Steve

      Thank General McArthur for a lot of that. His reckless drive to the Yalu river getting the Chinese involved full force. He always was so confident in a win he had bulk loaded ammo ships turned around mid-pacific.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:14 pm | Reply
    • Larry L

      Great comment. Thanks.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:58 pm | Reply
  50. jimstaro

    States heavily dependent on the Military bases and more, from the Federal kitty that's mostly borrowed, along with the corrupt Defense Industries will be going Ballistic over these proposals!! They're also the states with the loudest War cheer leaders, as well as refusing to Sacrifice themselves thus free wars and decades of the results of, while ignoring the issues from these wars, of those who served them, in the Congress and Residents of!!!

    Freedom Isn't Free!! We Paid For It!! American Veterans!!
    "12 years also is a long time. We now have a lifetime responsibility
    to a generation of service members, veterans and their families." Dr. Jonathan Woodson 11 Sep. 2013: 'With 9/11 Came Lifetime Responsibility' {two tax cuts, especially for the wealthy, came with these two recent unpaid for wars, still not paid for nor the results of!}

    "If military action is worth our troops’ blood, it should be worth
    our treasure, too" "not just in the abstract, but in the form of a
    specific ante by every American." -Andrew Rosenthal 10 Feb. 2013

    Where were the 'offsets' to federal spending as the rubber stamping, more then the off the books wars with no-bid contracts, was going on and claiming 'patriotism' for?

    USN All Shore '67-'71 GMG3 Vietnam In Country '70-'71

    February 24, 2014 at 2:46 pm | Reply
  51. Morton LaBongo

    While they're at it, they might as well scrap the entire ballistic missile sub fleet. We have absolutely no need of Trident missiles capable of taking out an entire city when the biggest threats aimed at our country are coming from a handful of men in a tent. The beloved "Boomers" must now go the way of the cavalry horse and wooden ships, right into the dustbin of history.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:43 pm | Reply
    • TR

      I second that

      February 24, 2014 at 2:57 pm | Reply
      • Tim

        Missing the entire point of the article. It's not about fighting guys in tents anymore, the little money we have is being used to ensure we stay at the leading edge of technology.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:05 pm |
    • Ralter

      Navy's been converting them to carry absurd amounts of cruise missiles instead ever since the 90's. They seem far more forward-looking than the rest of the services. Scrapped the Sea Wolf and went with the Virginia nearly the moment the cold war ended, albit still had to honor the contracts for the subs that had their keels laid. Cause like many have said, can't infringe upon that defense-contract gravy train.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:09 pm | Reply
  52. Orest

    Hope Obama's got a bullet-proof vest. Remember what happened to JFK when he decided to scale back the military....

    February 24, 2014 at 2:41 pm | Reply
    • TR

      Why would he need a bullet proof vest? Are YOU making a threat against the President of the United States.

      Brilliant bumpkin. Good luck with that

      February 24, 2014 at 2:59 pm | Reply
      • GenPatton

        Easy there Home-slice.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:11 pm |
  53. blue079

    Really? Republicans are going to fight a budget that is meant to LOWER the deficit? I thought that was their whole platform. Hypocrites.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:35 pm | Reply
    • Woody93

      For comparison, the first line of dashes equals defense spending, the next social care, welfare and education programs. You'll see the underlying ignorance contained in your accusation.
      Defense --
      Social ----------–
      Where is there more to cut, the short line or the long one?

      February 24, 2014 at 2:52 pm | Reply
      • sambo

        You are blatantly lying. Defense spending is greater that social welfare programs by almost 10 fold.

        February 24, 2014 at 2:57 pm |
      • TR

        There is 4 different types of defense spending cleverly named to disguise its purpose.

        The lines look more like this:

        Defense -------------------------–
        Social ---–

        In the REAL world I mean. Not the Faux world

        February 24, 2014 at 3:02 pm |
    • Republican

      Republicans and dems are both hypocrites but stand on your side of the fence and act like your side is better

      February 24, 2014 at 2:52 pm | Reply
    • sambo

      Since when have republicans ever meant anything they pledged?

      February 24, 2014 at 2:56 pm | Reply
    • Aegius

      The irony of it all. They vote over and over again to slash the DOD budget. They go on air and declare that it is "not so bad". Yet when DOD has to close programs, cut troops, close bases due to lack of funding from said politicians, they get all angry and try to stop it. The Budget Control Act of 2011 is the perfect example. How many of these politicians voted to slash $500 billion from defense spending, yet are angry about cuts to the military?...hypocrits!

      February 24, 2014 at 3:03 pm | Reply
  54. JC

    Okay, we've heard the executive version, but how much is this going to cost? I bet the budget will still be hundreds of billions of dollars too much.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:34 pm | Reply
  55. Christopher

    And of course the article doesn't mention that he also plans to cut military housing allowances and promotions and increase healthcare premiums for military members. (Saw this on BBC first and they included that.) That's a bunch of bull crap too considering that our major military costs come from our tech investment (when we're decades ahead of everyone anyways), which aren't really being cut at all. Many of our service members don't even make minimum wage. Gosh we treat our service members like crap. (Coming from the son of an Airman. I know a fair bit about the military and how it's being treated lately.)

    February 24, 2014 at 2:31 pm | Reply
    • mountainlady

      Of course the military will be scaled down at the expense of our soldiers and sailors. We wouldn't want to infringe on the defense contractor gravy train, would we? Way way too much money out there in bloated defense technology contracts and kickbacks to the Pentagon to cut back on those expenses. Far better to abandon what our nation owes to its veterans and active military. I'd love to see a defense spending cut back proposal from outside the Pentagon. As a taxpayer I'm sick and tired of pouring my tax dollars down the military industrial complex toilet.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:45 pm | Reply
    • Riquun

      If you think we are decades ahead of everyone else on Earth, you need to wake up. We arnt anywhere near the top of the tech list. we used to be, but that time has passed. These are facts, feel free to look this up.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:00 pm | Reply
  56. jasonn13

    If you like your National Security you can keep it? Now we know what Comrade Obama was talking about when he whispered to Dmitry Medvedev to tell Putin he would have "more flexibility" after the election, eh?

    February 24, 2014 at 2:31 pm | Reply
    • mountainlady

      It wasn't President Obama or the Democrats who proposed and enacted a bill to deprive veterans of their pensions. Sorry.... I know how important it is to blame President Obama for everything but reality trumps Obama bashing.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:50 pm | Reply
  57. Donnie the Lion

    When you have a technological superiority over your enemies, you don't need a large number of ground forces.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:27 pm | Reply
    • Tyler Durden

      Then why were troop surges implemented in Iraq and Afghanistan as a way to improve the situation?

      February 24, 2014 at 3:13 pm | Reply
    • John Riley Goldsmith

      The techno-babblers still haven't figured out a way to deal with guerrilla warfare without large numbers of ground troops.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:50 pm | Reply
  58. Doug J

    It is long past time to cut military spending. If we believe it's really worth it, then we need to be willing to pay the taxes. It is immoral to keep spending beyond our means and leaving the bill for our children and grandchildren.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:26 pm | Reply
  59. Steve

    They'll keep enough troops to protect the Politicians – that's all they really care about anyway!!

    February 24, 2014 at 2:25 pm | Reply
  60. Sausage Frenzy

    The US will be happier with a smaller military once it gets used to the idea.
    Putting all its faith in a military response has become an addiction. And like all addictions it is harmful and damaging.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:21 pm | Reply
    • John Riley Goldsmith

      Wait till the parents of the next kidnapped overseas aid worker like Jessica Buchanan call the White House and Department of Defense for help and get nothing but busy signals!

      February 24, 2014 at 2:36 pm | Reply
    • Kendall

      Our enemies will certainly be happier.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:51 pm | Reply
  61. are122

    His plan would retire the A-10, which Hagel called a 40-year-old, single-purpose aircraft designed for Cold War operations?? Weren't these the "Warthogs" that took out everything in Iraq?? I wonder if Hagel even knows!

    February 24, 2014 at 2:21 pm | Reply
    • deathrace2000

      Dear genius: A paper kite could have "taken out everything in Iraq." The question isn't whether we COULD continue using outdated, obsolete equipment to fight fourth-rate opponents.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:32 pm | Reply
      • TinKnight

        Fact is, the A-10s have been around for 40 years because they continue to be relevant despite everyone that isn't directly affected by them (Congress, the Air Force, the defense aviation industry) being vehemently against them.
        A-10s were on the chopping block before 1990, and then proved themselves in Desert Storm.
        A-10s were on the chopping block repeatedly throughout the 90s, to be replaced by F-16s, and continued to prove themselves in all kinds of roles in Bosnia, Kosovo, and around the world.
        In Afghanistan and Iraq, the A-10s have been performing all of the CAS missions that the military will see moving forward with low-intensity conflicts. In one case in Afghanistan, they performed strafing and bombing runs within 50 meters of allied forces, and that was repeated throughout the conflicts (both at the more organized stages and the ongoing occupations).

        Just two years ago, a USAF study concluded that even the STOVL version of the F-35 (the F-35B) couldn't sufficiently replace the A-10 because it couldn't keep up with the sortie and on-station requirements. The conventional versions of the F-35 performed even worse. Then there was the proposal to replace the A-10 with the F-35 AND Reaper drones (so, to do the job of one 40-year-old bird, you need two top-of-the-line craft??). And ground commanders consistently request A-10 sorties over just about any other form of fixed-wing support.

        I'm not saying the A-10 is the end-all for our military's future, because it IS old...but it's the type of design that we need to move towards, not away from, and every discussion of replacing it with "fast-movers" has resulted in no progress towards a real replacement, because they're just not capable of meeting the A-10s performance.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:41 pm |
    • John Riley Goldsmith

      The A-10 was a ground attack support aircraft with a long loiter time that was very popular with the Army and Marine ground pounders. They get screwed if the A-10s are grounded.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:41 pm | Reply
    • Tom A

      It did, but the Iraqi Republican Guard used a lot of Soviet equipment and doctrine, especially in their armored corps. Even in Iraq, the A-10 was performing the role for which it was designed. I imagine Hagel knows this. I fully agree that the A-10 is an excellent ground-attack plane, but that's really all it has going for it. It's not very adaptable to other roles. So I think it makes sense to cut it.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:43 pm | Reply
  62. Mike

    Good bye America!

    February 24, 2014 at 2:20 pm | Reply
    • shel

      There in lala land.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:26 pm | Reply
  63. Chris D.

    Good!

    February 24, 2014 at 2:18 pm | Reply
  64. iReason

    Who is he kidding? First, which war is over? "As we end our combat mission......" We have troops in Iraq, and we will have troops in Afghanistan until we are thrown out, which we will be, just as the Russians were.

    And the folks who run things now are NEVER going to let him or anyone undo their decades of tapping into the national treasure (meaning your pocket and mine) to enrich themselves through continuous wars and overblown military budgets.
    They'll discredit him and anyone else that tries to take away their power – or they will just kill them.

    Last week his boss announced new "production regions" in Michigan – what is their focus??? DOD and the military. We need plowshares today, not more weapons that will eventually be turned on us.

    Wake up America.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:17 pm | Reply
    • sambo

      We have troops in almost every country in the world, are at war with all of them?

      February 24, 2014 at 3:00 pm | Reply
  65. Carl, Secaucus, NJ

    One of the reasons the Roman Empire fell was because it tried to defend too much territory for too long. There are going to be wars in the future, but I don't think we're going to win them with huge land forces. As has been pointed out, the Army got to its biggest size after 9/11, but we couldn't win in Iraq and Afghanistan even with those numbers. So how would we beat China with those numbers?

    February 24, 2014 at 2:16 pm | Reply
    • shel

      You do know China is now in Africa, Americans in lala land smoking their dope while Radical Islam takes over Europe.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:20 pm | Reply
      • shel

        Same exact mistakes that was made world war two

        February 24, 2014 at 2:21 pm |
      • digcom99

        paranoid much.

        equating nazi germany to china is ludicrous. increasing their influence in other regions is not the same as militarily conquering neighboring countries. america is politically and economically influential other lands too. can you equating u.s. to nazi germany? please...stop being an idiot.

        February 24, 2014 at 2:30 pm |
      • Carl, Secaucus, NJ

        But is this actually answering the question? Suppose we do go head-to-head with China in a straight up war. Let's say in Africa. Are massive ground armies going to win in 21st century warfare? As for comparing things to Nazi Germany and WWII, history has some lessons to teach us, but it's not reincarnation. History can mislead you as well as guide you. Every tinpot fundamentalist dictator is not the second coming of Adolf Hitler, and acting like they are is not serious military thinking.

        February 24, 2014 at 2:41 pm |
    • chopper007

      And why would we be fighting China at all?

      February 24, 2014 at 2:20 pm | Reply
      • shel

        why would Germany take over Europe? Because China is expanding duh!

        February 24, 2014 at 2:22 pm |
      • shel

        Google it China in Africa...Over the last decade, America has quietly expanded its military presence throughout Africa in an attempt to counter Chinese and other emerging nations’ influence, while consolidating control over critical strategic resources and trade routes.

        February 24, 2014 at 2:23 pm |
    • John Riley Goldsmith

      We will be in wars as long as there are enemies that want to knock down skyscrapers in New York City and kill thousands of people.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:43 pm | Reply
      • John

        And wasting resources fighting conventional wars against countries that had nothing to do with those events.

        February 24, 2014 at 2:58 pm |
      • rp1588

        You have it backwards. USA will have enemies as long as it conducts wars to recruit those enemies.

        As to who really knocked down the WTC towers, my primary candidate is Israeli Special Forces, and my secondary one is US Special Forces or mercs. We know what USAF did: it stood down until the attacks succeeded (except for the WH), and then put on an airshow for the next several days.

        February 24, 2014 at 7:04 pm |
  66. ELMO

    There goes the largest corporate welfare program that has ever existed or will it? Hagel can talk all he wants Congress will either do the heavy lifting to make these cuts or not. Given the current political climate and fear mongering I doubt this will happen anytime soon. Remember Hagel and the Pentagon wanted to cut the FD-35 program. Congress wouldn't let it happen.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:16 pm | Reply
    • John Riley Goldsmith

      Congress represents ALL the people!

      February 24, 2014 at 2:44 pm | Reply
  67. Snevil

    Maybe now the Military will stop helping the Nuclear Power Industry get rid of its Nuclear Waste in the form of Depleted Uranium Weaponry. Only a mindless jar-head would possibly think these RADIOACTIVE Weapons that cause MASSIVE BIRTH DEFECTS are safe (See Fallujah & Basra) ...

    February 24, 2014 at 2:13 pm | Reply
    • Wombat

      DU is the by-product of the enrichment process process, not from reactor waste.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:18 pm | Reply
      • zx81

        It is a byproduct of uranium enrichment and is pretty radioactive, all uranium isotopes are.

        February 24, 2014 at 2:38 pm |
      • JD

        DU is 99.27% U-238 which has a half-life of 4.8 billion years. That isn't "pretty radioactive", that's "barely radioactive."

        February 24, 2014 at 3:35 pm |
    • Berkeley

      Mindless Jar Head, really? Was it necessary for you to insult a group of men and women who have swore their lives to protect this country to make a point?

      February 24, 2014 at 2:35 pm | Reply
  68. Dale Mahalko

    Mr. Hagel, while you're at work cutting the fat, why do we still have independent military forces with duplicate overlapping functions and duplicate overlapping training and equipment? With instant unified global communications, we are long past the point of needing separate "branches" of the military with their own separate marching orders.

    Unify operations under a true Central Command, select the best-of-class methods (and eliminate the duplications) from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, etc, and make everyone simply a soldier of the new "United States Military".

    (Marines need no particular mention above, as they're merely Navy elites.. Every branch has their own "elites" with their own separate elite training..... probably can eliminate that duplication of eliteness, too.)

    February 24, 2014 at 2:12 pm | Reply
    • Doug

      It's a jobs program, silly.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:20 pm | Reply
    • James

      Dale, the Marines are elite, but we are also a separate and equal branch of service and the National Security Act of 1946 guarantee that the Marines will be around. And the elite part of the Navy is the SEALS. If you want to do away with a branch, how about the Air Force. All services have air components.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:34 pm | Reply
      • John Riley Goldsmith

        Give the Air Force command of all aircraft in all services, including the CIA, Navy and Marine Corps. They are the only service that understands how to use air power.

        February 24, 2014 at 2:47 pm |
      • Jay

        James, I completely agree with you about if the US would want to get rid of a military branch to get rid of the Air Force. It could save money. Whenever an airman comes to a naval station for some TAD billet, they get substandard housing allowance. The biggest thing that I have seen them do (being in the Navy) is transportation. When my unit was trying to leave Afghanistan, they couldn't get that right and it wasted money. They put our cargo on the transport scheduled for the people WHILE we were waiting in the sterile side of customs, failed to inform us of this fact, and then realized that we were still waiting for the first aircraft (which was gone) and after they had sent the second aircraft out (which was meant for the cargo but could have held the people, and was sent out empty).

        Also, I don't agree with how babied they are in exercises. In the electronic attack community, when we have a joint exercise with the Air Force that they invited us to, they get mad whenever we do what we're designed to do. So one of their pilots cry, we're are kindly "asked" to not utilize our capabilities. So then we are just targets out there, not getting training in the full capability of our aircraft.

        The other branches were flying (and unfortunately dying) for many years before the Air Force was even established.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:58 pm |
  69. sandalista

    Now us Canadians will invade you for your...your...actually you have nothing of interest.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:11 pm | Reply
    • shel

      LOL !!Canada ya in hockey but maybe Canada and Mexico can save our sorry butts since United States will be too high on pot and swing dancing..

      February 24, 2014 at 2:16 pm | Reply
      • Riquun

        "to high on pot"

        i didnt know this was a thing still....what year is it....OH MY MOVIES HAVE COLOR AND SOUND NOW...WOW!!!

        February 24, 2014 at 3:02 pm |
    • Violet Weed

      Canada is a second-rate banana republic with how many submarines? Two? Three? I remember when your 'navy' actually SANK one of their submarines, because someone forgot to close a hatch. So you don't want anything HERE? I think we both know that's a lie. I know a lot of Canadians who would give a limb to get a legal job in the USA, so you must be one of the totally on welfare ppl, huh.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:39 pm | Reply
    • afvet

      You won't invade us – because then you'd have Justin Beiber again! 🙂

      February 24, 2014 at 2:46 pm | Reply
  70. Donald George MacDonald

    And our United States citizens have always been told, “there are no diplomatic alternative left,” so our finest sons and daughters must again go to war as bravely as we did and our ancestors did.

    And our U.S. leaders have always pledged that our finest sons and daughters bravely sacrificed their lives in foreign nations for something..."for our further freedom and democracy at home."

    And our U.S. leaders and citizens still try to coerce more of our finest youths to defend more of their chosen causes and to attack more of their chosen foes.

    And the U.S. has allocated $572 billion in "defense" spending for 2014.

    And our majority of citizens only parrot to others that U.S. global military strength and expansionism and weapons productions and weapons sales will make us safer when instead the opposite is surely true.

    And even our most patriotic and brave soldiers will not be able to protect us from our foreign blunders.

    And even our most patriotic and brave soldiers will not be able to protect us from those who fear U.S. global military expansionism and from those who covet our sold weapons of mass destruction and from those who despise the arrogance of U.S. actions and its failed foreign policies.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:10 pm | Reply
    • Donald George MacDonald

      And the U.S. is the supreme military and economic power behind a worldwide military-industrial complex.

      And it is no surprise that our struggling U.S. and world economies, temporarily supported by weapons productions and sales, will continue to only flounder on by if...only if our "Masters of War" can fuel even more wars…even more foreign wars fueled by our failed foreign policies and with our sold weapons of mass destruction.

      And when “world peace’ is somehow discovered and is somehow forced upon even the U.S., the worldwide military-industrial complex, led by the U.S., will collapse.

      And this collapse will create a global economic depression and social upheaval that will put the “Great Depression” to shame.

      Why?

      Because this will be the price all world citizens will have to initially pay as we finally try to make right our past moral wrongs.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:10 pm | Reply
    • John Riley Goldsmith

      As long as America has college professors, doctors, nurses, missionaries and aid workers like Jessica Buchanan who choose to live and work overseas we need a sizable military to protect them because they and their relatives have this unusual habit of calling Presidents like Reagan and Obama to rescue them when they are kidnapped or protect them and their supplies whenever and wherever disaster strikes and they get involved. The Black Hawk Down incident grew out of requests from European and American aid agencies for protection from Somali thugs as they sought to feed thousands of starving men, women and children.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:57 pm | Reply
      • Donald George MacDonald

        And our majority of citizens only parrot to others that U.S. global military strength and expansionism and weapons productions and weapons sales will make us safer when instead the opposite is surely true.

        And even our most patriotic and brave soldiers will not be able to protect us from our foreign blunders.

        And even our most patriotic and brave soldiers will not be able to protect us from those who fear U.S. global military expansionism and from those who covet our sold weapons of mass destruction and from those who despise the arrogance of U.S. actions and its failed foreign policies.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:16 pm |
  71. Finaaly

    Funny how the military enough guts to make cuts to spending, while the rest of washington refuse to make necessary cuts to overspending.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:09 pm | Reply
    • American Worker

      The political cronies don't consider the lining of their pockets discretionary spending.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:11 pm | Reply
    • AF Veteran

      Tom Ulrich ...

      Not sure if you're aware how large the military became in the last 13 years. If that mission no longer exists, it'll senseless to have all those troops. As the USAF15's point, he is right in the sense that there are always jobs that are undermanned, but it's not always driven by cuts, but rather balancing the different type of jobs.

      Don't forget that Defense takes up the largest part of the budget,

      February 24, 2014 at 2:24 pm | Reply
    • Starman

      Smart politicians go after 100 bil in military spending, dumb politicians go after 1 million to NPR.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:41 pm | Reply
  72. granthumble

    This is a non-story. Of course, when we don't have a land war to fight, our troops numbers will drop. War time military's are absolutley necessary when we're pursuing threats and engagements outside of the U.S. What do you want? More troops in countries that end up despising us?

    February 24, 2014 at 2:08 pm | Reply
    • American Worker

      Do you think we'll have time to do a draft in the event of an attack or invasion?

      February 24, 2014 at 2:10 pm | Reply
      • Emigdio

        That's what the selective service program's for.

        February 24, 2014 at 2:22 pm |
      • chopper007

        What country will attack so we need to have a draft? We face terrorists as our primary threat and masses of soldiers will not deter them.

        February 24, 2014 at 2:23 pm |
    • John Riley Goldsmith

      Modern threats outside the United States are increasingly defined by journalists, college professors, missionaries, teachers and aid workers who choose to live and work overseas. When they are kidnapped, their relatives and employers are on the phone to Presidents like Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama demanding immediate action as in the recent case of Jessica Buchanan. Should these people be billed for the international military infrastructure necessary to insure their safety?

      February 24, 2014 at 3:04 pm | Reply
  73. American Worker

    Another reason for protecting the 2nd Amendment.
    When the government can't (Due to technology counter measures.) or won't protect us from a foreign invasion, who will?

    February 24, 2014 at 2:08 pm | Reply
    • Reality Check

      The US spends roughly 5-6 times more than the next biggest spender on the army (being China). This is good news but your paranoia is astounding.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:15 pm | Reply
    • Steven

      It says they'll still be able to be offensive on 1 front and defensive on another. Your paranoid delusions of global total war and living in constant fear is bankrupting the country, your fear-mongering would be better used as fear to budgetary concerns and not to global conflict.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:21 pm | Reply
    • chopper007

      You can't be serious. When was the last time we were invaded? The War of 1812. You are off by two centuries in your thinking.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:26 pm | Reply
    • kevin

      HAHAHAHAHAHA! yes, won't you brave gun-nuts protect us? It'll be just like Red Dawn! A rag-tag team of middle aged office workers, construction workers, and dentists will join together and form...The A Team!! You'll be superheros and save the world and get the girl! And somewhere the evil overlord will shake his fist and say "curses to those gun owners! i underestimated how important they are!"

      February 24, 2014 at 2:35 pm | Reply
      • dan

        What do you think Al Queda is? A bunch of afghan citizens with guns using ambush tactics.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:09 pm |
  74. Shane

    The problem with this is that while they cut our defense budget this "Saved" money will not go to those who need it, but it will most likely go to countries that hate us and in the package of more weapons.
    I stand with Rand 2016

    February 24, 2014 at 2:08 pm | Reply
  75. randyk

    It's about time. The key is to fund veterans and cut weapons programs. Heck with the pet projects and weapons designed to fight past wars. We need a streamlined, smarter model for our military. Bush never should have had such a military machine to play with. Invading a country for basically experimental reasons shows we've been investing too much on such a force.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:07 pm | Reply
  76. catori Shadi

    One public misconception (maybe) is that we have a disproportionately large armed forces personnel. We have a surprisingly small number of active personal per 1,000 of the population – less than Norway for example But 4 times that of Sweden, strangely.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_number_of_military_and_paramilitary_personnel

    What we do have is the most ungodly amount of hideously expensive toys, and unnecessary expenses.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:05 pm | Reply
  77. greg

    Sad to see so many neo-cons out there crying about cuts in defense spending. These cuts are nothing but positive. We will still be spending more than the next 15 countries combined. We aren't going to be defenseless by any stretch of the imagination...unless of course idiots who won't listen to a reasonable discussion.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:05 pm | Reply
    • shel

      Time will tell and we will know exactly who to blame

      February 24, 2014 at 2:06 pm | Reply
    • TR

      BUT BUT BUT...we'll only have 450,000 capable warfighters and 1M support personnel. How will we ever be able to defend ourselves. Oh, and I forgot the 300,000,000 domestically owned small arms and millions of former, trained military types. What will we do....EEEEeeeeeekkkkkk

      February 24, 2014 at 2:11 pm | Reply
  78. Bob

    why this even public- (facepalm) notice how china doesnt say anything about what they got and ESPECIALLY what they DONT HAVE... because that is smart.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:04 pm | Reply
    • Snevil

      Thats because China is NOT a Democracy.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:07 pm | Reply
  79. Jamie Santos

    Gary, I am an Army wife. Why should they keep it private what cuts they want to make to the military. People in the country are funny, They want a strong military to keep them safe but most don't want to pay for it. They don't like that a lot of the budget goes for defense. People cant have it both ways. Money is needed to run the military. Since less then one percent of the American population serves in the military or truly has an understanding of what the service people and their families go thru and deal with. What happened when the wars started was the military couldn't get people to join so they lowered the standards. In doing so, when the recession hit, everyone wanted to join and we took anyone. So my first suggestion, if they are going to make cuts is lets start with the ones who never should have been allowed in and also at the same time lets cut all the politicans pay and benefits before you cut the rest of the services down. We are going to get caught with our pants down so to speak.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:04 pm | Reply
    • AF Veteran

      I couldn't agree with you more ... I think our representatives get paid way too much money, to do way to little. I met O-1's and E-1's who are more qualified then some of these representatives.

      As a recent retiree, I do understand the need for cuts because we have grown enormously since 9/11. As long as the cuts are made in conjunction with mission changes, it'll work.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:35 pm | Reply
    • John Riley Goldsmith

      Isn't it odd that the parents and husbands of international humanitarian aid workers like Jessica Buchanan who choose to live and work overseas have no qualms about calling Presidents like Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama when their daughter is kidnapped expecting a timely military response by Navy Seals and people like your husband. There have been a number of instances where military men have sacrificed their lives to rescue American civilians who choose to live and do humanitarian work overseas. The Danish man who was kidnapped with her had no similar expectation that Denmark would or could come to his aid and was glad he was abducted along with an American. Rescued Americans to date have consistently been thankful about successful efforts to rescue them unlike some Europeans.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:17 pm | Reply
    • Jon

      There is a difference between soldiers salaries, and government contracts that inflate the price of everything due to croney capitolism. I'm all for cancelling every military contract and having the government pay a reasonable price for hardware. 22 billion dollars for a plane is not only rediculous, it's theft of our tax dollars by a private orginazation. If you can't see where the military could save a ton of money, and reduce their budget accordingly, you're blinded by propoganda. Hell, we have helicopters that can not operate in deserts, F-35 can't even keep a working engine it in, and we have tons of equipment still sitting in mothballs, brand new, never been used. These are all areas that would not effect soldiers salaries but save our tax dollars, each year. I can understand bring prepared for war, but in todays day and age, technology is such that we no longer require a large standing army. What is rather disturbing is the fact that we have more soldiers outside our borders that inside our borders. So end the end, yes cut the budget, get it streamlined so that we can get back to focusing on what's important. Keeping this country together.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:48 pm | Reply
  80. Billy O'Goat

    This means higher funding. Just less transparency.
    The Military Industrial Complex know how it's done.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:04 pm | Reply
  81. Solomon Walker

    Having a well-regulated militia that trains and prepares for war at all times, the United States only dismissed 10,000 full time troops while most of them went to part-time and reported for duty once per month.

    And everything else basically stayed the same.

    Hoowha.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:04 pm | Reply
  82. shel

    Music to the enemies ears..

    February 24, 2014 at 2:03 pm | Reply
    • catori Shadi

      Stop making so damned many enemies. Most people hate the US, due to it's tendency to implement foreign policy via B-52.

      Cut the number of loud-mouhed American military personnel overseas and MAKE the UN work.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:07 pm | Reply
      • shel

        You do realize liberty is the enemy freedom is what dictators and leaders of countries disagree with. you know the whole democracy thing liberals love oh so much your existence is the enemy to those people like North Korea.

        February 24, 2014 at 2:11 pm |
      • chopper007

        You really think that North Korea will attack us? And we will need a half million men to take them out? That is just silly talk.

        February 24, 2014 at 2:29 pm |
      • John Riley Goldsmith

        What reason was there to hate aid Jessica Buchanan, recently rescued by Navy Seals from Somali gangsters, who was in Somalia to help Somali women and children learn to avoid land mines, a cause dear to the heart of the late Princess Diana?

        February 24, 2014 at 3:20 pm |
    • Mikey

      Till the Chinese attack.

      February 24, 2014 at 4:04 pm | Reply
  83. Sam

    Well, it looks like the United States realized it can't achieve a domination victory. They can always try to build a spaceship bound for Alpha Centauri before 2050...

    February 24, 2014 at 2:03 pm | Reply
    • Joe

      Pure gold

      February 24, 2014 at 2:10 pm | Reply
  84. MGreg

    Yup... mean while China and Russia are dumping money into their military, increasing its size and power every day.

    Look i'm all for government cutting back it's spending but at the same time do it wisely. Let's hope if this happens that the move doesn't cripple us further, opening the increased possibility of invasion.

    February 24, 2014 at 2:02 pm | Reply
    • TR

      China and Russia are NOT dumping more money into their military every day. Quit being a clown. They are already invading us economically. The military spending has and continues to be a drain on our country. Its time to stop that bleeding and take the fight to the economic front where the war is being lost

      February 24, 2014 at 2:06 pm | Reply
    • Brian

      You're joking right? We spend more than twice as much as China and Russia combined. Besides, the idea that we would ever fight them in a conventional war is ridiculous. The world is too interconnected to allow another world war. It's a lose-lose proposition even without nuclear weapons because there is nothing to gain.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:07 pm | Reply
    • TS

      Neither China or Russia has the ability to project infantry power far beyond their own borders. On top of that, Americans are armed to the teeth. An insurgency in the US would put anything you have seen in other countries to shame. Even with the cuts the US still spends more than China, Russia and the next top 10 military spenders combined. The future of warfare is not about boots on the ground, it's about special operations forces and unmanned air vehicles.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:17 pm | Reply
    • John Riley Goldsmith

      Our military was too small during the years before World War I, World War II and the U.N. mandated Korean War.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:22 pm | Reply
  85. Brandon F.

    You are cutting the A-10? One of the most effective ground attack platforms of all time and arguably the cheapest (operational cost) fixed wing aircraft in our inventory? Yet you want to keep the F-35? Complete with the bad performance, pork, corruption and cost overruns?

    I'm okay for having a moderately sized military. But you are choosing the wrong tools for the job. Way to go U.S. Senators and Representatives, as long as you get the jobs in your districts, eh?

    February 24, 2014 at 2:01 pm | Reply
    • NMR

      Think your right keep the A10 scale back commitment to f35 and new Navy littoral cobalt ship.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:12 pm | Reply
    • TS

      The A-10 was fine for your daddies wars, but in a likely conflict of the future it is too slow to deploy in a timely fashion to distant operating theatres. The F-35 can fill the same roll as well as many others and can be deployed world wide on a moments notice. Even the F-35 will soon fall victim to the far more capable and expendable Unmanned Combat AIr Vehicle.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:26 pm | Reply
    • AF Veteran

      Love the A-10 and not a big fan of the F-35 because of all its obvious flaws. We deserve a better Airframe for all that money. As for the A-10, although it could still function today, we need an upgrade.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:41 pm | Reply
      • John Riley Goldsmith

        If the Air Force is not careful, the Army and Marines will scarf up any A-10s discarded by the Air Force.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:24 pm |
      • MilAirFan

        The A-10 upgrade several years ago to the A-10C variant saw many advancements in targeting, lethality, and combat awareness. With the ability to send target coordinates and imagery to each other, they can share such things as location, payload, and fuel which allows these crews to target and drop ordinance on multiple targets with increased efficiency and accuracy. The increased situational awareness is available to units on the ground as well as combat planners. They all know who is where, what they are carrying, and what the target looks like...all in real time. To sum it up in an example, it used to take 10 to 15 minutes for a group of three A-10A's to target and drop ordinance on four targets...now this can be done in 1 to 2 minutes. Frightening to think of if I were a bad guy. To completely mothball this asset is erroneous.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:49 pm |
  86. thesadtruth

    Now the GOP fans can be confused because their assertion that Obama is a war monger won't hold up, as are the NRA fear mongering claims that Obama's soldiers are coming to take all the guns away. Better call Koch brother central control for new orders on what to think!

    February 24, 2014 at 2:00 pm | Reply
  87. yumyumshisha

    It's about time we cut military spending. If we weren't so forceful, we wouldn't have enemies to begin with–and thus a lower need for so-called "defense". What are we "defending" ourselves against? We are defending ourselves against the enemies we created by being forceful.

    February 24, 2014 at 1:59 pm | Reply
    • John Riley Goldsmith

      Enemies will come after any weak and innocent American humanitarian aid workers like Jessica Buchanan who was recently rescued from Somali kidnappers by Navy Seals on the direct orders of President Obama.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:27 pm | Reply
  88. Mark the genius

    Looks a lot like the beginning of the end of the roman empire

    February 24, 2014 at 1:59 pm | Reply
    • TR

      Your welcome to leave at any time. I here Somalia is nice this time of year

      February 24, 2014 at 2:02 pm | Reply
      • John Riley Goldsmith

        Somalia wasn't too nice for American humanitarian aid worker Jessica Buchanan whose husband and parents contacted President Obama who then ordered Navy Seals to risk their lives to rescue her.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:30 pm |
  89. Fitz

    Yes, retire a weapon that has been proven highly effective time and again but push forward with one that has been in development for 20 years and still isn't ready.

    February 24, 2014 at 1:58 pm | Reply
  90. Muddy Road

    Congress will not vote for cuts. It's all lies, bs and business as usual.

    February 24, 2014 at 1:57 pm | Reply
  91. Ancient Texan

    Gutting the military while inviting even more folks to join the food stamp, disability, welfare and freebie gravy train. Now that is a real winner for America.

    February 24, 2014 at 1:57 pm | Reply
    • John

      Nah, let's maintain all those programs and call them the US military.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:04 pm | Reply
    • ksmary

      You do realize that many recently discharged military persons, and young families of current military members are on food stamps, right? Many newly discharged ex-military are also on unemployment insurance since their civilian jobs went away while they were serving. Should they be cut too?

      February 24, 2014 at 3:30 pm | Reply
  92. nhguy

    if we spend more on our military than the next 15-20 countries – combined – this is the least we should do. civilizations that don't last fall in part due to excessive military spending. we're next.

    February 24, 2014 at 1:55 pm | Reply
    • Person of Interest

      Could you please provide some examples? The most obvious you would call is the Roman empire and that is only partially true. By the time the Roman Empire fell it had more mercenaries than actual Romans fighting for it. They only fought for the booty they would receive and as the Roman Empire conquered there was less and less. The USSR is about the only example I can think of and considering we were outspending them and we are still around your logic is a bit faulty.

      I agree we need to majorly curtail spending but its about curtailing it in the right areas. We spend money on unnecessary programs. We ordered an additional 100 Abrams tanks to help keep the Lima Tank Facility open when the Army said they didn't need anymore. Why? Because it's in Ohio a battleground state and lawmakers didn't want major layoffs in the state.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:06 pm | Reply
  93. Tom Ulrich

    Are you kidding...Now Obama's soldiers want to do away with our ability to defend ourselves...What is going on?

    February 24, 2014 at 1:54 pm | Reply
    • sillybonobo

      Reshape- as in modernize. A modernized army with a focus on effective combat techniques will INCREASE our ability to fight, just as it did in 1918.

      This isn't the 20th century, and a 20th century style army is only hurting our combat effectiveness.

      February 24, 2014 at 1:57 pm | Reply
      • USAF15

        Military spending cuts HURT. Those of us in uniform are required to do the work that would normally take 3-4 people.

        February 24, 2014 at 2:04 pm |
      • John

        @USAF15–more like we spend the amount required to pay 3-4 private sector employees, on one member of the US military. The private sector is much more efficient at allocating resources.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:13 pm |
      • AF Veteran

        @John ... Not sure if you're kidding about the whole private sector statement, but rest assure that concept is wrong when it comes to the military (DoD) ... I spent over 20 years in uniform and worked for a civilian contractor for the Air Force ... the amount of waste that existed with salaries was unreal, plus they were out of sync with how the military works.

        There is definitely a role the private sector can/should play, but don't ever believe it's at a savings to the taxpayer or better for the military as a whole.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:45 pm |
    • TR

      Quit being a drama queen. We are not defending ourselves in the middle east. We are over there conducting offensive operations. The military industrial complex is ridiculous and needs to be cut. Get over your Obama obsession. Freek

      February 24, 2014 at 1:59 pm | Reply
      • John Riley Goldsmith

        There was nothing offensive about the purely defensive operation to rescue the innocent American humanitarian aid worker Jessica Buchanan and her Danish associate from Somali war lords and criminals.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:34 pm |
    • AF Veteran

      Tom Ulrich ...

      Not sure if you're aware how large the military became in the last 13 years. If that mission no longer exists, it'll be senseless to have all those troops. As to USAF15's point, he is right in the sense that there are always jobs that are undermanned, but it's not always driven by cuts, but rather balancing the different type of jobs.

      Don't forget that Defense takes up the largest part of the budget,

      February 24, 2014 at 2:28 pm | Reply
  94. gary

    if there are any sensitive topics such as this should be kept secret

    February 24, 2014 at 1:54 pm | Reply
    • John Riley Goldsmith

      You mean like the Navy Seals rescue of American humanitarian aid worker Jessica Buchanan and her Danish co-worker?

      February 24, 2014 at 3:45 pm | Reply
  95. pikeone

    Out of control spending = defense budget slash. Brilliant. Who elected these clowns running (ruining) our country?

    February 24, 2014 at 1:54 pm | Reply
    • TR

      You did, pat yourself on the back

      February 24, 2014 at 2:00 pm | Reply
    • balls mcghee

      yeah, i voted for Gore.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:10 pm | Reply
      • John Riley Goldsmith

        In Florida during the Bush/Gore vote controversy, Gore's Democrat Party operatives made a significant effort to suppress voting by military personnel.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:37 pm |
  96. billmosby

    I'm surprised that the A-10 cost so little to operate, actually. I wonder what that 60-year-old design called the B 52 costs per year?

    February 24, 2014 at 1:53 pm | Reply
    • aaronwhite

      I imagine the B-52 would be a bit pricier. It's not that it's bad technology, it's just that it was equipped with 8 engines, instead of 4 more powerful and efficient engines. The A-10 I believe uses the same engine as some modern Commuter jets, but obviously to a different end. The B-52 was good for it's time, but not as useful now. War has changed to sneaking in, and dropping 1 or 2 really accurate bombs, and while the B-52 could probably manage the accuracy part, there's not much sneaky about it.

      As for the people decrying THE END OF AMERICA! this is hardly it. You shrink your military down in peace time, and grow it in war. It's the way it's always been (Not surprisingly, people have always cried out "the end is near!" anytime someone mentions cuts.
      We need a strong military, no doubt, but we don't need a constantly sitting military. Those things aren't free. We could use a scale back of forces to save a lot of money, and start chipping away more and more at the deficit.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:04 pm | Reply
      • AF Veteran

        Sounds like a person who knows what he's talking about. You are absolutely correct! A lot of people who jump on the complaint bandwagon appear to have no clue.

        February 24, 2014 at 3:56 pm |
      • northerstar

        The B52 has been "re-engined" using much more modern engines similar to those currently being used on Boeing airliners. The B52 in addition to being able to carrier nuclear bombs carry a huge amount of both conventional bombs & "smart" laser & GPS guided bombs. The operating costs are much less since being re-engined. The B52 is a solid aircraft.

        February 24, 2014 at 4:00 pm |
    • John Riley Goldsmith

      The Army and Marines would love to get their hands on discarded Air Force A-10s as well as the Air Force's KC 135 tanker fleet.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:43 pm | Reply
      • billmosby

        I bet they would. I wonder what the chances are that some well-heeled, properly-licensed weapon collector will end up with one of the GAU-8s?

        February 24, 2014 at 4:54 pm |
  97. Steve

    Memo to UN – the USA is done being your police man and food distributor. Get your own forces and let them get slaughtered in many countries while trying to help people out.

    February 24, 2014 at 1:50 pm | Reply
    • norm

      Stevie boy... you can shout all you want but your republic is full of young idiots who will ensure you continue to go into all those counties. Their Daddy's have taught them it's the only way to become a man. Good luck to you all.

      February 24, 2014 at 1:59 pm | Reply
      • kennyzales

        Steve & Norm – Well said. Both of you.

        February 24, 2014 at 2:06 pm |
    • Camila

      Yeah, except that the US funds over 22% of the UN, so really it's the US running that show. So now, this isn't a backhanded message to the UN but if that's the message you got out of this, ok then.

      February 24, 2014 at 2:00 pm | Reply
    • John Riley Goldsmith

      What about those humanitarian American college professors, journalists, missionaries and humanitarian aid workers who choose to live and work overseas but whose husbands and parents call the President demanding military action whenever they are kidnapped or otherwise interfered with.

      February 24, 2014 at 3:41 pm | Reply
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