- Despite Obamacare problems, some Dems want Sebelius to run for Senate: report
- Angry New Yorkers shred gun registrations in deadline day protests
- Uninsured rate dropping faster in places that embraced pillars of Obamacare, survey shows
- Hawaii gives residents two more weeks to sign up under Obamacare
- Climate change causing fish to lose their minds, researchers say
- Great Britain tops World’s Most Sexist Nation list
- Aaron Hernandez investigated for threatening to kill prison guard
- Putin tells Merkel that Ukraine is on the brink of civil war
- San Antonio mayor to Obama: Give amnesty to illegals with legal families
- NYPD disbands unit that spied on Muslims to go after ‘real bad guys’
Ex-Obama aide’s think tank hits defense budget
A Washington think tank founded by President Obama’s first Pentagon policy chief has issued a report criticizing the administration’s defense budget, which the think tank’s founder played a role in developing.
Michele Flournoy co-founded the Center for New American Security in 2007, then became undersecretary of defense for policy in 2009. She left that post in February after helping Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta put together the fiscal 2013 defense budget.
Ms. Flournoy rejoined the think tank as a member of the board of directors and is mentioned in national security circles as a candidate for defense secretary in a second Obama term if Mr. Panetta leaves.
The Center for New American Security report released last week is pointedly critical of the Panetta plan, saying it does not go far enough in consolidating missions and functions, or in cutting back big weapons systems.
“The Pentagon still has not enacted the types of reforms that we believe are necessary to sustain U.S. military pre-eminence into the future,” says the report, written by four think-tank scholars.
“Too many [Department of Defense] structures, processes, programs and operational concepts are legacies of the past, which create unnecessary redundancies, waste valuable resources and encourage unproductive competition among the services, rather than cooperation. These practices are no longer acceptable in the current fiscal environment.”
The report could give some insight into Ms. Flournoy’s thinking should she return to the Pentagon next year.
Responding to an inquiry for Ms. Flournoy’s comment, Sara Conneighton, the center’s spokeswoman, said: “This report only reflects the thinking of the four co-authors.”
The report, “Sustainable Pre-Eminence: Reforming the U.S. Military at a Time of Strategic Change,” was written by retired Army Lt. Gen. David Barno, along with Nora Bensahel, Matthew Irvine and Travis Sharp.
Deeper defense cuts
As output from a Democrat-leaning think tank, the report is notable for how often it disagrees with the Panetta defense budget.
Where Mr. Panetta calls for continuing the procurement of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter for the Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps, the Center for New American Security report calls for deep cuts in the Air Force and Navy purchases.
It says the Air Force should slash procurement from 1,763 planes to as few as 1,000, and the Navy should halve its purchase of 369 F-35Cs, which it calls flawed, and keep purchasing the F-18 Hornet.
“Due to its short range, the F-35C requires aircraft carriers to get dangerously close to enemy coasts or necessitates frequent aerial refueling,” the report says.
“While external fuel tanks can extend the F-35C’s range, such tanks compromise its stealth and thereby sacrifice an essential attribute. By buying fewer F-35s more quickly, the Navy will revitalize its strike fleet sooner.”
Shrinking the F-35 procurement would free up more money to invest in what might be the Navy’s future - the X-47 unmanned combat drone being developed by Northrop Grumman Corp., the report says.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
- Hillary Clinton all but erased from tragic story of the attack in Benghazi
- Indiana assured that Pakistani firm working to thwart bomb makers
- Doubts on military's sex assault stats as numbers far exceed those for the U.S.
- Political hunt for sex abusers puts military justice in peril, lawyers say
- Sailors leaving Navy over stress on social issues, Top Gun instructor says
TWT Video Picks
By returning to Christian roots, the nation can achieve greatness once again
- Fuel-filled wings, ability to swarm: Pentagon offers glimpse at future of drone fleet
- Secret U.S. assessments show Afghanistan not ready to govern on own
- CARSON: Recovering Tocqueville's vision of American exceptionalism
- 'Culture of intimidation' seen in Nevada ranch standoff
- GOP writes legislation to deny Attorney General Eric Holder his salary
- WEBER: Obamacare cuts home healthcare for millions of seniors
- PHILLIPS: What did Harry Reid know and when did he know it?
- HURT: Wilson and Obama ... 100 years apart, but so alike
- U.S. Navy to turn seawater into jet fuel
- HHS nominee Sylvia Burwell entangled in MetLife lawsuit
Celebrity deaths in 2014
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.
Chaos as Manhattan building explodes