Politics

Debt panel considers military budget cuts

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U.S. Soldiers depart Forward Operating Base Baylough, Afghanistan, June 16, 2010 (Photo: U.S. Army, Flickr)

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Tasked with fixing the nation’s economic problems, the bipartisan "super committee" of 12 Congressional members may be leading some politically sacred cows to slaughter. In the halls of Congress, there is now discussion of making cuts in defense, intelligence and military spending, including pensions for retirees with 20 years of military service.

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said deep cuts in the defense budget would hollow out the U.S. military and "terribly weaken our ability to respond to threats from the world."

Speaking alongside Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Panetta said the Pentagon is prepared to make $350 billion in cuts over the next decade. The problem, he says, are the $500 billion cuts that are triggered if Congress can't reach a deal to lower the deficit.

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