Official: DOD can no longer solve problems with money as cuts loom

By Published: July 19, 2011

The Pentagon’s top weapons buyer is touting a post-9/11 era wherein government and industry officials no longer throw money at problems, according to a story in Defense News.

“They could always reach for more money when they encountered a managerial or technical problem or a difficult choice,” said Ashton Carter, undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics.

"Those days are over," said Carter, who could replace outgoing Deputy Defense Secretary William Lynn.

The Defense Department is expected to offer a laundry list of potential cuts by the end of summer to drastically reduce military spending.

Carter also said the Pentagon spends more on support services and maintaining weapons than it does on actual weapons.

For every 45 cents spent on weapons, another 55 cents is spent on services, he said. And for every 30 cents spent developing and acquiring weapon systems, another 70 cents is spent maintaining them.

Here’s a breakdown of other annual costs Carter noted at Brookings:

$200 billion – support services
$200 billion – logistics
$100 billion – maintenance-related costs
$80 billion – supplies
$20 billion – transportation

Read more on Carter's speech at Brookings from Defense News.

Ashton Carter, U.S. undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics


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