Gates: Military Cuts Could End Ability to Fight Multiple Wars

Defense Secretary Continues to Rail Against Possible Cuts

by Jason Ditz, April 25, 2011

Though it was already established by the Congressional Budget Office earlier this month that the “$400 Billion” military spending cut will actually amount to a small increase in spending in the near term, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates is still lobbying hard against it.

The latest line from Gates is that the cuts would force a major revision of how the US views warfighting, and that they could likely no longer fight two regional wars simultaneously. The Pentagon has predicted the cuts will also mean a reduced number of troops.

Nowhere in their assessment is the obvious question of whether the United States should be constantly fighting at least two major wars simultaneously. Indeed, with the Libyan War still being escalated the prospect of the Obama Administration fighting three major wars doesn’t seem far-fetched.

The warning is likely a dramatic overstatement from Secretary Gates, however. The $400 billion “cuts” are by and large reductions of the size of projected future spending, and not cuts in real terms. Even then most of the “savings” come many years down the road, with plenty of time for officials to pare them away.

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