Odierno repeats Pentagon warnings against sequestration

By Sara Sorcher

November 11, 2011

Army chief of staff Gen. Ray Odierno on Friday reiterated the Pentagon's warnings against the so-called "sequestration" mechanism triggering hundreds of billions of dollars in cuts to the defense budget if the super committee fails to agree on a plan to reduce the deficit by $1.2 trillion.

The Pentagon is already on the hook to cut $450 billion, but faces up to $600 billion more in reduction to its budget if the committee can't reach a deal. These cuts "would be devastating to the military," Odierno said on Fox News.

"The Army's about soldiers, and so what [sequestration] would result in is us significantly reducing the size of the Army, both the active and National Guard and Reserve component," Odierno said. "It would result in affecting our modernization, our ability to bring in weapons so we can have the dominant edge. And it would affect our readiness; if we were asked to deploy, we'd be ready as you've seen us do for the last 10 years."

Odierno also appeared on MSNBC's Morning Joe.

A day earlier, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta played the last -- and strongest -- card in his deck to warn against this sequestration mechanism, arguing that the mandatory cuts would directly imperil U.S. national security.


By Sara Sorcher

November 11, 2011

http://www.govexec.com/defense/2011/11/odierno-repeats-pentagon-warnings-against-sequestration/35394/