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Thu Feb 27, 2014, 08:15 AM

Congress signals tough fight for Pentagon plan

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_CONGRESS_MILITARY?SITE=VANOV&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT

Congress signals tough fight for Pentagon plan
By BRADLEY KLAPPER
Associated Press
Feb 25, 4:45 PM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Lawmakers signaled a difficult battle ahead for the Obama administration's plan to dramatically overhaul the nation's military, voicing opposition Tuesday to proposed cuts in benefit packages, long-standing weapons programs and bases that mean money and jobs across America.

The skepticism from both Republicans and Democrats augured poorly for Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel's vision of shrinking the Army to its smallest size in three-quarters of a century and creating a nimbler force more suited to future threats than the large land wars in Iraq and Afghanistan over the last decade. Tuesday's advance of a new veterans bill also suggested Congress may be more interested in increasing military spending in a midterm election year.

The cuts "will weaken our nation's security while the threats we face around the world are becoming more dangerous and complex," Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham, two leading GOP hawks, said in a joint statement. "Now is not the time to embrace a defense posture reminiscent of the years prior to World War II," they said, without outlining substitute cost reductions.

Although Congress has agreed on keeping next year's military budget just under $500 billion, major tradeoffs must still be made to get under the cap.



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"Now is not the time to embrace a defense posture reminiscent of the years prior to World War II,"

Really? Why?

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