De­fense bud­get work

The Washington Times Weekly - - National Security -

Pen­tagon of­fi­cials are work­ing be­hind the scenes to fin­ish the lat­est an­nual de­fense bud­get to be sent to Congress in the next sev­eral weeks. Bud­get of­fi­cials have been asked by the new ad­min­is­tra­tion to fit all pro­grams into a to­tal spending re­quest of about $527 bil­lion.

Bud­get cuts are ex­pected to in­clude sharp re­duc­tions in num­bers of tac­ti­cal mil­i­tary air­craft and per­haps scal­ing back plans for build­ing three of the Navy’s new high-tech $3.3 bil­lion war­ships known as DDX. Also on the chop­ping block are num­bers of F22 jets.

Air Force Gen. Nor­ton A. Schwartz, the chief of staff, told re­porters Feb. 17 that the ser­vice is un­likely to seek to buy the 381 jets it once said were needed. Gen. Schwartz said he will be dis­cussing plans to buy F-22s with De­fense Sec­re­tary Robert M. Gates in the near fu­ture.

Asked about com­ments by Adm. Mike Mullen, the chair-

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