The Defense Department could shed 60,000 more troops than planned and 50,000 civilian employees without hurting U.S. fighting power, four former members of the Pentagon’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a new report on military strategy and spending.
Nearly $50 billion in budget cuts are recommended in the report released Tuesday and authored by a 17-member panel including two former vice chairmen of the joint chiefs, a former Air Force chief and former Navy chief. Writing for the Stimson Center think tank, the authors suggested cuts would replace future rounds of automatic, across-the-board cuts in the Pentagon’s budget called for in a deficit reduction deal two years ago. The Stimson Center is a nonpartisan global security group in Washington.
The biggest proposed saving — $22.4 billion in the fiscal year starting October next year— would come in cutting overhead such as civilian employees, headquarters staff and contractors as well as reforming pension and health programs, the report said.
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