Pentagon Not Ready for Budget Cuts

The Defense Department is apparently counting on Republicans to roll back new spending cuts: the Pentagon has made no plans for the $500 billion in budget cuts that, as a result of the congressional supercommittee’s failure to strike a debt deal, are set to begin in January 2013. Military analysts, according to The New York Times, say the cuts will be manageable and could touch most weapons programs. Layoffs of civilian employees at the Defense Department are also a possibility, as is reduced military training time. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has opposed the cuts, which come on top of $450 billion in cuts he agreed to last summer. He has warned they will leave the country with “the smallest ground force since 1940, the smallest number of ships since 1915, and the smallest Air Force in its history.”