It's money that matters
February 13th, 2012
06:47 AM ET

It's money that matters

By Adam Levine

With today's budget for 2013 comes the latest sign of how the Obama administration wants to reshape the military going forward to deal both with the changing nature of threats to the U.S. and a scaled back military budget.  The 2013 budget request will be the first truly detailed look at how the shaping of the military vision impacts the bottom line.

Of course, even adjusted for inflation, the reduction in defense budget growth will still add up a historically high budget and the biggest in the world.

War spending remains high, even though the U.S. military is out of Iraq.  The military is expected to ask for $88.4 billion, down from $115 billion, for war spending.  The reason, said Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, that the "costs associated with that effort are pretty significant."

"As we try to deal with the supplying of our troops, this is not, you know, it's not as easy as Iraq in terms of our ability to provide the supplies and needs that our troops need," Panetta said in January.  " To support them, to give them the best supplies, to give them the best weaponry that they need in order to meet this mission, is going to continue to require support and funding."

The Pentagon intends to bring down the force size with the Army and Marines cutting back by thousands.  The global presence is shifting as well.  The U.S. will reduce its presence in Europe.  While Asia and the Middle East.  How much of that will be reflected in the 2013 budget remains to be seen. 

Even as some, like Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, raise concerns about the growing threats in Latin America, the military devotes mere "budget dust" of spending in that area using very focused training and advising programs.  That is not expected to change in the coming budget. 

While some big projects will be cut or trimmed, some future weapons programs will remain, especially those considered necessary for dealing with countries like China, North Korea and Iran. 

Special Operations is also expected to get more in their ever increasing budget as the use of commandos increases. The head of Special Operations forces is seeking greater autonomy in deployments, reports the New York Times on Monday.

Two of the more controversial aspects of the budget vision could be the realignment of health benefits and, of great concern to communities around the country and the congressional members who represent them, the potential to close and merge bases.  Military pay, however, will increase as long as the war in Afghanistan continues, with the Pentagon expected to request pay hikes in this year's budget and 2014 to keep pace with the private sector.  But those requests for increases will begin to level off in 2015.

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Filed under: Afghanistan • Air Force • Army • Asia • Budget • China • Congress • Defense Spending • drones • Foreign Policy • Iran • Iraq • Marines • Middle East • Military • Navy • North Korea • Romney • Secretary of Defense • Special Operations Forces • USSOCOM
soundoff (36 Responses)
  1. Gazton

    Like it or not we have to go global. It is a nsitescey not an option. It will happen.The real debate is only this:how will we manage this transition; and what form will the initial phase of global cohesion and governance take.The task before our species in this century is the creation of a rational and humane world order that will be basis of the next phase in human civilisation and the unfolding of life on earth.I hope we make it.

    April 4, 2012 at 6:49 am | Reply
  2. John "Aids Man" Holmes

    Money means nothing.

    It's all about the cock, baby.

    February 13, 2012 at 9:16 pm | Reply
    • kechax

      You didn't answer the antaspim question correctly, your comment was not saved. Press "Back" and answer the question better.Just to be sure that your message won't be lost – copy it now to the clipboard. 搞得我很紧张来着.. 特地来留言测试一下下....果然..是啥子插件啊?压根都木有问题出来

      April 4, 2012 at 1:43 pm | Reply

    i believe in you, obama, u can do better, keeping it in mind

    February 13, 2012 at 5:03 pm | Reply
  4. mipolitic

    the patch job in greece is a scam , the people revolting is the risk not the default. i expect the pm of greece will resign before april and leave as the people and the security forces unite on the ground of hardship. the euro pressured greece into the deal because the alternative would be the fist block kicked out from the euro, which would have been the begining of the collaps of the euro. and so if obama has the same track record of failing to make deals with congress and the senate the usa huge debt will continue to be adrift on a patched raft of failure. wow, does anyone think this can go on for another year without catastrophic relaps into the deepest recession ever in the history of the usa. the usa needs a working washington, washington is outright refusing to accept obama and his plans and it is hurting the country big time.

    February 13, 2012 at 9:12 am | Reply
    • Obama promised me free pussy

      Stop your fucking "Obama is ruining us" whining. You wouldn't say shit about the man if he were white. When he is re-elected, I suppose you'll off yourself.

      One can only hope.....

      February 13, 2012 at 12:09 pm | Reply
      • mipolitic

        hey guy your level of understanding of how to comunicate is showing , perhaps you would be heard if you took your comments back to the gutter of stupidity

        February 13, 2012 at 12:22 pm |
      • Buzzer

        This juvenile tool with his username could have just posted a "." and his creditbility would have been in the toilet. CNN moderators must have had the filters on "auto" and/or don't care about the integrity of this blog.

        February 13, 2012 at 2:33 pm |
      • Obama promised me free pussy

        Assholes: when Obama is re-elected (as he will be, thanks to the pathetic excuses for human beings comprising the GOP), I sincerely hope the both of you kill yourselves.

        February 13, 2012 at 8:16 pm |
  5. Hahahahahahahaha

    Hey everyone!!! Look at your money!!!! Mine's made out of..........................PAPER!!!!!!!!!! Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!!!!! Hahahahahahaha

    February 13, 2012 at 9:06 am | Reply
    • Juninho

      Thank you for the tragic leossn in economics. We have already surrendered our manufacturing jobs to the lowest bidder. If something is made here, it is such a big deal, the advertising campaign is MADE IN THE USA . I was surprised that we export 40%, I thought it was less.As a society we are spoiled. I grew up in a Philadelphia row house that was over 100 years old. The closets were small for a reason. In the 1900 s the average adult female owned 1 coat, 2 pairs of shoes, 4 dresses which all fit into her closet together with a few incidentials. Clothing was worn for decades, shoes were repaired by a cobbler. The first thing a new homeowner does is demolish the existing closet and erects a walk in to acquire space for all the new purchases. In the 50 s, when war was still profitable, Eisenhower won the presidential election with no political experience, he was a general who encouraged spending and all the happiness it could buy. Credit cards in the 60 s really got things rolling, now everyone had spending power. Advertising made sure you wanted the latest piece of clothing, home furnishings, little red or blue Japanese transistor radios, etc. Most often the items they were replacing were still in good condition but were disgarded and disposed. No big deal; everyone was doing it. By the 70 s, Nixon got us out of Viet Nam, the National Debt was introduced. The government continues to encourage more personal spending by allowing tax payers to deduct credit card and financing interest. Why would the Baby Boomers spend conservatively? Personal Debt, National Debt; what are a few commas and zeros.The question: What will we do when the lien holder demands payment?

      March 2, 2012 at 8:30 pm | Reply
  6. MildredFJones

    You may look at the premium amount and think that there is no way that you can afford it. You cannot afford to be without health insurance! shop around you may find it easy to find an affordable premium, I always find health insurance through "Penny Medical" network.

    February 13, 2012 at 7:45 am | Reply
  7. michaelfury

    Follow the yellow brick road.

    February 13, 2012 at 7:23 am | Reply
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      April 4, 2012 at 2:55 pm | Reply
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      April 7, 2012 at 2:10 am | Reply

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