Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel declared Monday that the rapid technological advances of nations like China and Russia mean American military dominance “can no longer be taken for granted” — even as he outlined plans to reduce overall troops levels and investment in U.S. defense systems.
Hagel spoke about the new budget at a Pentagon briefing broadcast on C-SPAN 2, explaining the Department of Defense’s decision to draw down military spending.(RELATED: Hagel to shrink Army to pre-WWII level)
“Our reviews made two new realities very clear,” he contended. “First, the development and proliferation of more advanced military technology by other nations means we are entering an era where American dominance of the seas, in the sky and in space can no longer be taken for granted.”
“Second,” he continued, “defense spending is not expected to reach the levels expected in the 5-year budget plan submitted by the president last year.”
“Given these realities,” Hagel explained, “we must now adapt, innovate and make difficult decisions to ensure that our military remains ready and capable — maintaining its technological edge over all potential adversaries. However, as a consequence of large budget cuts, our future force will assume additional risk in certain areas.”
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