Reducing the U.S. military. Not by choice, but to survive #military

The Annual List

I really didn’t know what else to call it. That will do.

The U.S. budget is going to get beaten down. The following is only one opinion of what can stay and what has to go for the U.S. military to even consider surviving in a grave budget climate.

The U.S. Navy

Park two carriers and stop production on current carriers.

Keep building Burkes at a low rate.

End the LCS. Existing LCS contracts will go until completed. All existing LCS will be transfered to the U.S. Coast Guard where they will patrol in the Carribean and out of San Diego.

R&D for a nuclear destroyer. The goal is to have a all nuclear powered carrier battle group.

Scrap the DDX.

The submarine program will continue as-is.

The carrier air wing plan will continue minus the F-35 as this program will be cancelled.

The USMC. It will be retired with whatever manpower slots are needed, transfered over into the U.S. Army.

The U.S. Air Force. It will cease to exist in its present form. All flying units will be transfered into the Air National Guard. The U.S. Air Force such as it is, will be nothing more than a management function at the DOD level to see that the Air National Guard functions. It will go by the name; Air National Guard Headquarters. The current U.S. Federal budget used on today’s Air Force (significantly reduced) will feed into their own seperate color of money at the Guard units.

A sample of some of the airframes allowed to exist will be the F-22, the F-15E, the A-10, the C-130, the C-17, the C-5 and the B-2. The B-2 nuclear mission will end. The B-1, B-52 and F-16 will be retired. As the KC-X comes online, half of them will be managed by the U.S. Navy.

ICBMs will be managed as a separate DOD command yet to be named.

Military space systems will be managed under their own command reporting to the DOD.

The U.S. Army. Any kind of manpower asset that exists in the current wars today that is doing ground missions will have those slots moved into the U.S. Army. We do not need 4 land Armies. Large portions of infantry, engineer and aviation skills will be put into the National Guard with Regiments being the prime organic unit.

Keep a watchful eye on Army Aviation to make sure it gets funded and properly sustained.

There will be two types of basic training centers. One for the Army and Air National Guard and the other for the Navy. The USAF Academy will be closed.

Half of all flag ranks will be retired immediately.

The U.S. is running out of time to fix DOD budget thinking #military

Nunn-McCurdy is about as useful as a speed bump. The DOD does not know how to procure major weapons systems.

Rather than press ahead with more mistakes, it would be good if the DOD stopped all major weapons procurement programs for a whole fiscal year while senior DOD project managers and law-makers come up with tougher guidelines that bring sanity to the process.

When the DOD proves that it can estimate costs on large projects, then it can continue. We do not have the money to waste on stupid decisions that have produced $400B in cost blow-outs.

“These trends in Nunn-McCurdy breaches tell us that too many of our weapon systems have costs that are spiraling out of control,” declared Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), chairman of the Senate federal financial management subcommittee.

Or, just pretend the little tire-patch efforts will work and watch the whole mess come to a dramatic halt when Congress says; “Surprise, your DOD budget for this year is $200B; if it ever gets approved.”

The current system is a disease that can be fixed by amputation. If not, the patient dies

U.S. high-tech military parts made by convicts #military

How low can the defense industry in the U.S. go? Various high-tech major weapons systems components are built with U.S. prison labor. Advocates of this claim that it lowers costs. I doubt that any of those “savings” are realized by the customer and instead just help profit.

So, with record unemployment, U.S. industry and lawmakers who approved this, prefer convicts to build things instead of citizens who have not broken the law that are out of work. Interesting too, a U.S. taxpayer hands over the money to keep a prison running just so a corrupt defense industry can skim the manpower without having to pay any work benefits other than sub-minimum wage.

Maybe if all American workers were in prison, it would be good for industry.

H/T-Wired

Some in Israel want to rob an additional $20B from the U.S. #military

The U.S. is flat-broke and some want more money from us. Amazing.

In communities across the U.S., police officers are being let go in droves, services are cut off, even more industries are failing and yet the taxpayer has to cough up $20B dollars. Amazing.

The number one grave threat to the U.S. is spending. It alone can make the break up of Yugoslavia, look like a pillow fight.

But I guess we got to do what AIPAC says.

Is it difficult to cut money from the federal budget?

Operation: USELESS DIRT and other things provide waste on the defense side. Let us take a look at the domestic part of the fed budget.

Fifteen different agencies oversee food-safety laws, more than 20 separate programs assist the homeless, 82 federal programs improve teacher quality, 80 programs help disadvantaged people with transportation, 47 programs help job training and employment, 56 programs help people understand finances, and there are 80 programs for economic development, just as examples. The sum totals of these inefficiencies are between $100-$200 Billion.

From the nutty ideas crew; We could solve the Libyan issue if only we had the F-35B #military

Suggestions pushed forth from various camps on how to solve the Libya crisis can be pretty incredible. If only the President had more options from the military.

What makes any senior leadership decision difficult is that the DOD has had to rob resources from various locations around the globe to support Operation: USELESS DIRT 1 and Operation: USELESS DIRT 2. Yes, we already have a “hollow force” in the area of full spectrum operations. For instance; we have large numbers of Marines that have never been on-board ship or participated in amphibious operations.

Back to those incredible suggestions for the President and Libya. Second Line of Defense, an industry cheerleader; an F-35 cheerleader is sad because if only we had the F-35B with a Marine amphib force, we could solve Libyan problems. They even suggest that the F-35B could replace an AWACS. Hint to the Second Line of Defense; the AWACS can stay up for hours and has a lot of crew that can be slotted in by the needs of the specific operation. This includes accessory air traffic control and a number of joint command and control and deconflict tasks. Second Line of Defense even has the brass to suggest that the F-35B could do the electronic attack effort when no such product for the aircraft is likely to exist. In its present form, the F-35–especially an aircraft that will engage in short take-off and vertical landing operations–is weight-challenged and thermal management challenged making it a poor candidate for upgrades. That and the “why can’t daddy program manage?” crew is years away from having the mountains of software and other engineering kit figured out for the basic aircraft. Some additional amusement is provided by Second Line of Defense in their suggestion of great value of the disastrous Littoral Combat Ship Gyp.

The suggestions of Second Line of Defense (on many issues) are those of the hobby shop patron who has indulged in too much sniffing of model airplane glue. Their answer is gold-plated and faulty future hardware and not hard work in the present day.

The U.S. has enough kinds of military resources to do the Libyan operation if that is what is decided. Well, we would have the right amount of resources if management would put effort into refurbishing land vehicles we have and not giving them away in-theater for pennies on the dollar. We would have the right hardware if we would invest more in repairing ships we currently have as a matter of routine. For instance, every dollar wasted on the Littoral Combat Ship is money that could be invested into day-to-day ship repair. We would have the right balance of manpower if the Air Force wasn’t using their people as a Luftwaffe ground army. We would have the right balance of manpower if the Marines were not used like a second land army. Air Force and the Marine issues point toward moving ground mission slots into the U.S. Army.

What the U.S. does not have is the kind of leadership expertise that puts stress on having continuous capability across all of our military forces. This takes good old Operations and Sustainment (O&S) funding and daily sweat by the troops and their leaders. When we have the will to follow this path for all operations and support communities, the President will have more options for world contingencies. Until then, expect more unworkable solutions from the Second Line of Defense and their kind.

Update-Gates to announce $100B defense savings plan as early as Thursday.

As early as Thursday–according to Reuters–U.S. Secretary of Defense Gates is expected to make an announcement of plan to remove $100B in Pentagon spending. This during a time when the nation is approaching a $14T debt with the federal budget.

Sources say that the Marine’s troubled EFV and a “medium air-to-air missile developed by Raytheon,” * may be cancelled.

*Update-This source says “ground-launched”.