Surrounded by Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and the Joint Chiefs, President Obama has released a new defense strategy for the 21st century. Speaking for the first time from the Pentagon Briefing room, the President said that the nation is turning the page on a decade of war in Iraq and Afghanistan. Obama said that despite the envisaged cuts, there will still be moderate growth in the defense budget, which will keep it above the level at the end of the Bush era.
of the Al Quaeda leadership, the withdrawal from Iraq and the drawdown that has already started in Afghanistan, the President said that the U.S. military will be leaner but agile, making use of new technology. The reductions will in no way reduce the capabilities of the United States to maintain its interests around the globe. He said that the plan announced today would provide a smart strategic set of priorities. He insisted that the budget cuts would be done responsibly.
The estimate is that approximately $450 Billion would be cut from the defense budget over ten years. Details are to be revealed in Obama’s budget in the coming weeks.
It would appear from the briefing that there will be more emphasis on Asia and less emphasis on Europe, with the reduction of ground forces, including a smaller Marine Corps according to rumors. Reduction of the US Army and Marine Corps will approximately be 80,000 troops, from presently 570,00 to 490,000. The intent apparently to to build a more potent joint force. This new strategy abandons the Pentagon strategy of being able to fight two wars at the same time. The new strategy also sees use of advanced technology, including unmanned capability.
The Strategic Guidance can be viewed at the link below