DoD Shifts Spending Focus, Prepares for Technologies of the Future
April 22, 2014 12:02 PM
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Major budget cuts could have ramifications for all US military branches in the years to come.
Due to increased scrutiny and frustration, the U.S. federal government is
shifting monetary budgets
with procurement and research and development projects likely receiving a $66 billion cut if spending caps aren’t adjusted.
The current five-year spending plan is more than $115 billion above mandated defense-spending caps, which could have major ramifications. The budget cuts would hit everything from the
Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II
Airbus Light Utility Helicopter
Boeing KC-46 tanker
. In addition, the U.S. Army wouldn’t be able to acquire new Black Hawk helicopters and Stryker double-hull vehicles might also face cancellation.
Boeing KC46A Tanker [Image Source: Wikipedia]
Moving forward, the DoD will focus on research, development, test and evaluation (RDT&E), with an estimated $63 billion spent in 2014 alone. One of the business sectors of the RDT&E program, the Future Years Defense Plan, will see its budget continually drop – from $20 billion in 2009 down to $10 billion by 2018.
“There’s a difference between spending money and spending money smartly,” said James Hasik, Atlantic Council senior fellow. “There are folks out in the world who make the argument that you have to spread money around the world wildly, because money spent on research is just good because it just leads to development. This is not a compelling argument because there are dead ends against which you can continue to apply money and not get very far.”
DoD officials want to make sure basic research funding and early-stage development both receive funding through the red tape, though this will force other future military technology research onto the shelf.
Congress is evaluating another wave of Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) papers in 2017, giving the DoD the ability to close bases on an individual basis.
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4/22/2014 5:03:05 PM
Actually the Army knows exactly what needs to do, it's Congress that's telling them they don't or they can't. Message to Congress, you can't cut without cutting.
4/24/2014 8:32:53 AM
There is that problem, too. Congress mandates the purchase of unneeded equipment, that is oftentimes stockpiled (M1A1 Abrahms tanks, for instance), just to keep the manufacturer in business. Likely with some cronyism going on there, too.
But no one can deny that the high ranking officers running the military branches tend to get lost in the "tacti-coolness" of new weapons platforms, adding features and capabilities to the original request, until the project in question has gone WAY over budget, and suffered countless delays (F-35, anyone??).
They also have suffered, far less, in the personnel cuts that have happened to the military branches (officer, enlisted AND civilian counterparts) in recent years. Our present day military continues to have unacceptably high percentage of senior officers, compared to the "troops" they're leading.
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