Full Speed Ahead for Panetta-Led Pentagon

CIA Chief Turned Military Chief Will Resist Major Cuts

Early reports had now-confirmed Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, a career politician who has left his CIA Director post, as a reformer being brought into the Pentagon with his experience as Office of Management and Budget Director, and an eye toward the sort of military spending cuts Robert Gates would never consider.

But Pentagon officials seem to be doing everything possible to dispell this viewpoint, insisting rather that Panetta intends to fight tooth and nail against military spending cuts, and believes that “it is a false choice between fiscal responsibility and national security.”

Of course at this point neither genuine security nor fiscal responsibility seem anywhere on the radar, and military spending levels that dwarf any other in the history of humankind are not only the norm, but are railed at by Pentagon officials as woefully insufficient.

But Panetta’s unanimous endorsement at the Senate was the first indication that he is not being brought in for radical change, and early reports from his Pentagon seem aimed at confirming that it is business as usual for a military locked in perpetual war across the globe.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.