Free Newsletters - Space News - Defense Alert - Environment Report - Energy Monitor
. 24/7 Space News .




MILPLEX
US military ordered to prepare for fiscal 'perfect storm'
by Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) Jan 10, 2013


Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on Thursday ordered the US military to "prepare for the worst" and take cost-saving measures as it faces the threat of potential deep budget cuts.

The steps include scaling back maintenance, freezing civilian hiring and delaying some weapons contracts, Panetta told a news conference.

The US military's vast budget is the by far the largest in the world, with proposed spending for fiscal year 2013 of roughly $614 billion, and will remain so -- despite what Panette dubbed a "perfect storm of budget uncertainty."

"We have no idea what the hell is going to happen," he added. "All told, this uncertainty, if left unresolved by the Congress, will seriously harm our military readiness."

The uncertainty stems from Congress's failure to adopt a defense budget for the current fiscal year 2013, its inability to resolve a stalemate that could trigger massive cuts and a looming crisis over the country's debt ceiling.

If lawmakers fail to approve the Pentagon's proposed budget for 2013, the department will suffer an $11 billion cutback to funding for operations and maintenance, he said.

If Congress cannot agree on a deal to stop automatic budget cuts, known as "sequestration," by March 1, the Defense Department would see funding slashed by more than $50 billion this year and $500 billion over ten years.

As a result, Panetta said: "We really have no choice but to prepare for the worst."

The announcement marked the first concrete measures by the Pentagon's leadership to prepare for cuts.

Panetta, who is due to retire soon after President Barack Obama nominated ex-senator Chuck Hagel as his successor, said the precautionary steps he had ordered should be "reversible," in case lawmakers clinch an agreement.

But he did not say how much the measures would save.

If the sweeping budget cuts come to pass, the military would seek to shield troops deployed to Afghanistan from the effect of the reductions, Panetta said.

That would mean "very serious cutbacks" for other training, scaling back flying hours for pilots and time at sea for ships as well as disruptions to most weapons programs, he said.

In addition, the entire civilian workforce for the Defense Department would be subject to furloughs and the cost-saving measures would harm the military's readiness, he admitted.

The chairman of the US Joint Chiefs, General Martin Dempsey, was even more blunt about the possible impact of automatic budgets cuts.

Although troops on the battlefield and wounded soldiers would be safeguarded from any budget cuts, the rest of the armed forces would be hit hard, the general told the same press conference.

"We won't short-change those in combat, and we'll continue to resource those who are the next to deploy," Dempsey said.

"But for the rest of the force, operations, maintenance, and training will be gutted. We will ground aircraft, return ships to port, and sharply curtail training across the force."

Dempsey, painting a dire scenario, said the military's "readiness will begin to erode" and warned: "Within months we will be less prepared, and within a year we will be unprepared."

.


Related Links
The Military Industrial Complex at SpaceWar.com
Learn about the Superpowers of the 21st Century at SpaceWar.com






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





MILPLEX
India's Tatra truck order in the balance
Bangalore, India (UPI) Jan 10, 2013
India's armed forces are looking for an alternate missile deployment truck after the Defense Ministry put on hold procurement of a Tatra vehicle because of bribery allegations. Under consideration are trucks by manufacturers from Russia and, in particular, the Volat series made by MZKT - Minsk Wheel Tractor Plant - in Belarus, a report by the Press Trust of India said. MZKT was ... read more


MILPLEX
Mission would drag asteroid to the moon

Russia designs manned lunar spacecraft

GRAIL Lunar Impact Site Named for Astronaut Sally Ride

NASA probes crash into the moon

MILPLEX
Mars500 project - salt balance of the Mars 'astronauts'

Simulated mission to Mars reveals critical data about sleep needs for astronauts

NASA's Big Mars Rover Makes First Use Of Its Brush

Lockheed Martin Delivered Core Structure For First GOES-R Satellite

MILPLEX
AXE to Send 22 Guys to Space with New Apollo Campaign

IBM tops as tech titans scramble for US patents

Chinese tech firms pump up volume at CES

High fashion, high tech intersect at CES confab

MILPLEX
Mr Xi in Space

China plans manned space launch in 2013: state media

China to launch manned spacecraft

Tiangong 1 Parked And Waiting As Shenzhou 10 Mission Prep Continues

MILPLEX
Crew Wraps Up Robonaut Testing

Station Crew Ringing in New Year

Expedition 34 Ready to Ring in New Year

New ISS crew docked at Space Station

MILPLEX
Arianespace's industry leadership will continue with 12 launcher family missions planned in 2013

Arianespace addresses The Insurance Institute of London

Cargo loading underway with the next ATV resupply spacecraft to be launched by Ariane 5

SpaceX sets March 1 for launch to ISS

MILPLEX
Earth-size planets common in galaxy

NASA's Hubble Reveals Rogue Planetary Orbit For Fomalhaut B

NASA, ESA Telescopes Find Evidence for Asteroid Belt Around Vega

Kepler Gets a Little Help From Its Friends

MILPLEX
How the kilogram has put on weight

Japan to survey Pacific seabed for rare earth

3D printing creates 'virtual' fossil

LEON: the space chip that Europe built




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement