...Gates is preparing the most far-reaching changes in the Pentagon's weapons portfolio since the end of the Cold War, according to aides.
Two defense officials who were not authorized to speak publicly said Gates will announce up to a half-dozen major weapons cancellations later this month. Candidates include a new Navy destroyer, the Air Force's F-22 fighter jet, and Army ground-combat vehicles, the officials said.
More cuts are planned for later this year after a review that could lead to reductions in programs such as aircraft carriers and nuclear arms, the officials said.
Looking out to 2012, so much will hinge on how the economy fares over the next few years, but beyond that the Obama administration seems intent on helping Republicans regain their reputation as the party of strong national defense. It just strikes me as bad politics -- especially when many of the administration's cuts may be reinstated by Congressmen whose districts will be hardest hit. Obama will be tarred for cutting critical defense programs, painted as weak on national security, but might well have nothing to show for it in the way of reduced spending. Or he could be successful in putting people out of work and weakening the country. It seems like a lose-lose proposition.