Pentagon to propose shrinking Army, scrapping some jets: report

WASHINGTON Sun Feb 23, 2014 11:10pm EST

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel attends at the annual Munich Security Conference February 1, 2014. REUTERS/Lukas Barth

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel attends at the annual Munich Security Conference February 1, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/Lukas Barth

Related Topics

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will propose on Monday a reduction in the size of the U.S. Army to its smallest size since before World War Two and scrapping a class of Air Force attack jets, the New York Times reported on Sunday.

The plans, which the paper said were outlined by several Pentagon officials on condition of anonymity, would be aimed at reducing defense spending in the face of government austerity after a pledge by President Barack Obama to end U.S. involvement in wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

It would leave the military capable of defeating any enemy but too small for long foreign occupations, and would involve greater risk if U.S. forces were asked to carry out two large-scale military actions at the same time.

"You have to always keep your institution prepared, but you can't carry a large land-war Defense Department when there is no large land war," the Times quoted a senior Pentagon official as saying.

It added that some of the plans may face political opposition in Congress, but quoted the officials as saying that they had the endorsement of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

(Writing by Eric Walsh)

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see
Comments (25)
Trichiurus wrote:
This administration will not be happy until we are reduced to a third-world military and economy. All in the name of “progressivism” which is veiled socialism.

Feb 23, 2014 11:24pm EST  --  Report as abuse
2Borknot2B wrote:
Good News.

Feb 23, 2014 11:51pm EST  --  Report as abuse
WhyMeLord wrote:
Get rid of all the armed forces except for “the drone brigade”.
The next wars will be fought by remote control from recliners.
It would be nice if there weren’t any more wars; however, the GOP….
@Trichiurus, it’s easy to have a third-world and have a first-world economy; just look at Switzerland, Sweden, Japan, etc. You’re nuts.

Feb 24, 2014 12:14am EST  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.