UPDATE: Odierno Clarifies. It May Be Three Brigades WASHINGTON: The Army has had to cancel so much training that only two of its 42 combat brigades are ready for combat, Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno told reporters at the Association of the US Army conference here today. It’ll take until June to get a… Keep reading →
WASHINGTON: If “this potential operation” against Syria continues into October, when the new fiscal year begins, the Navy’s going to need more money. That, in turn, means Congress has to act. Ideally, legislators would pass a supplemental spending bill, Chief of Naval Operations, Adm. Jonathan Greenert said this morning. Failing a supplemental, though, Greenert said… Keep reading →
CAPITOL HILL: The House Armed Services Committee has scheduled its first hearing on what is arguably the Pentagon’s most important shift since the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, the strategic shift of US forces and focus to the Pacific. So far the witness list for the Wednesday morning hearing doesn’t boast a list of… Keep reading →
[updated Wednesday with remarks from Sen. Ayotte, Sen. Kyl, and James Carafano] Tomorrow morning, one of the Republican Party’s rising stars, Sen. Kelly Ayotte, will kick off a new project co-sponsored by two of its long-established institutions, the Heritage Foundation and the American Enterprise Institute. The official agenda of the “Project for the Common Defense”… Keep reading →
CAPITOL HILL: On issues from nuclear weapons to the spending cuts known as sequestration, political common ground has turned into a war-torn no-man’s-land where both sides fear to tread. That intractable divide between the parties was on full display this morning at One Constitution Avenue, across the street from the US Capitol, where Alabama Senator… Keep reading →
WASHINGTON: The Defense Department is the largest single consumer of energy in the United States. It consumes 1 percent of America’s massive demand, burning billions of gallons of fuel a year. Indeed, as Navy Secretary Ray Mabus said in a recent speech, DoD is “the largest single consumer of fossil fuels on the face of the earth.” … Keep reading →
CAPITOL HILL: Like water rushing downhill, flowing over or around or through every obstacle in its path, money in Washington will find a way. Today’s example is the newly released House Armed Services Committee’s “mark up” of the 2014 national defense authorization act. Striving to address shortfalls in military readiness created by this year’s hasty… Keep reading →
[UPDATED with details on carriers] THE CAPITOL: With the Obama Pentagon excoriating federal lawmakers for their apparent inability to avoid sequestration or to pass a defense spending bill, and the Navy going down to one carrier in the Persian Gulf for lack of funds, GOP lawmakers today defended the latest Republican proposal to stop the automatic budget cuts.
It isn’t a mere rehash of a very similar one that fizzled last year, GOP leaders insisted when Breaking Defense raised the question at a press conference in the Capitol this afternoon — although their own staff seem to disagree (click here to read why). Keep reading →
WASHINGTON: Meet the new plan, same as the old plan. Yesterday, Republicans immediately rejected President Obama’s proposal to stop sequestration — the automatic spending cuts set to kick in March 1st and hamstring Army, Air Force, and Navy readiness, according to Pentagon documents — as a retread of tax-hike proposals he’s been making since 2011. This afternoon, not to be outdone, a bicameral band of GOP legislators will re-introduce a stop-sequester bill from February 2012.
“It’s a reprise” of last year’s bill, one GOP staffer told Breaking Defense. Keep reading →
CAPITOL HILL: We have confirmed that Sen. James Inhofe, ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, will vote against the nomination of Chuck Hagel to serve as Defense Secretary.
Inhofe, a tough partisan known for his positions sometimes outside the consensus of his fellow committee members, labeled Hagel as the “wrong person to lead the Pentagon at this perilous and consequential time.,” in his opening statement at a packed hearing room this morning. Keep reading →