President Barack Obama joined Defense Secretary Leon Panetta at the Pentagon Thursday to roll out a new U.S. defense strategy calling for a leaner, more agile army--in an unprecedented briefing by an American president at the Pentagon podium.
The new defense strategy document--entitled "ralph lauren sale"--calls for cutting the size of the U.S. Army over the next decade to 490,000 troops--about 10,000 more troops than the United States had at the time of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. It also reflects the Obama administration's recently announced intention to reorient America's national security focus towards Asia, while continuing to reduce its heavy post-9/11 footprint in the Middle East in the wake of the end of the ralph lauren ukIraq war and the planned draw-down of U.S. forces in Afghanistan by 2014.
"The question that this strategy answers is what kind of military will we need long after the wars of the last decade are over," Obama said at the Pentagon Thursday.
"As we look beyond the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan -- and the end of long-term nation-building with large military footprints -- we'll be able to ensure our security with smaller conventional ground forces," he continued. "We'll continue to get rid of outdated Cold War-era systems," while investing in "intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, counterterrorism, countering weapons ralph lauren ukof mass destruction" and means to operate in difficult environments.
"Our military will be leaner," Obama continued, "but the world must know the United States is going to maintain our military superiority with armed forces that are agile, flexible and ready for the full range of contingencies and threats."
Military analysts said the proposal to cut the overall size of the Army is unsurprising in the current budget environment. But some conservatives were critical of the proposed cuts, while advocates countered maintaining the current posture and force size poses other risks.
"The budget math is pretty unforgiving," Tom Donnelly,ralph lauren polo uk military analyst at the conservative American Enterprise Institute, told Yahoo News Wednesday by email. "But strategically speaking, it's as though we learned nothing from what's happened since 9/11; it's one thing to have made the mistake the first time, quite another and more serious to make it a second time."
"Even if we didn't have a financial crisis, we would redo the strategy," countered Larry Korb, former Reagan administration Pentagon assistant secretary and a national security expert at the progressive Center for American Progressive, in an interview with Yahoo News Thursday.
The strategy review reflects former Defense Secretary Bob Gates' comment last year that any Defense Secretary who again recommends sending ground forces inralph tletlauren ou another land invasion of choice ought to have his head examined, Korb noted.