Think tank to Pentagon: Here's where to cut

It was prepared by Stimson’s 17-member defense advisory committee, which includes  “two former vice chairmen of the Joint Chiefs, a former Air Force chief and a former chief of naval operations.

ADVERTISEMENT
“Adopting this new strategy and making the corresponding budget adjustments we recommend makes a lot more sense than cutting blindly and causing tremendous harm,” Stimson Co-founder Barry Blechman said in a statement accompanying the report’s release.

The Pentagon’s proposed 2014 budget is $52 billion above the sequester-level caps, which means that the military would face another across-the-board cut if the budget is not lowered and sequester is not averted.

The Stimson report suggests that the Pentagon would be wise to propose making the cuts in advance, rather than holding out for a sequester fix and being subject to another across-the-board cut.

The proposed cuts from Stimson include reductions in military pay and benefits — a frequent Pentagon target opposed by Congress — and a reduction in excess personnel at headquarters and defense agencies.

The report suggests $21.4 billion can be saved through force structure changes, including reducing the Army and Marine Corps and a reduction in existing nuclear forces.

The report also calls for canceling programs like the Ground Combat Vehicle and Joint Light Tactical Vehicle, and slowing F-35 purchases.

You can read the full report, titled “Strategic Agility,” here.