DoD requested $549 billion, while the proposed continuing resolution, which funds the government through March 4, is set for $526 billion.
That $23 billion shortfall represents the âworst of all possible kinds of reductions,â because the cuts would come halfway through the fiscal year, Gates told reporters before a meeting with Canadian officials.
To offset that shortfall, he added, DoD will use operations and maintenance accounts in addition to stretching out programs and cutting training, according to an American Forces Press Service report.
âFrankly thatâs how you hollow out a military, even in wartime,âGates said. âIt means fewer flying hours, fewer steaming days, cuts in training for home-stationed ground forces, cuts in maintenance and so on.â
War funding, amounting to $159 billion for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, will not be affected by a continuing resolution shortfall.
Gates âquestioned the seriousnessâ of some Congress members, per the AFPS, who are âup in armsâ about Gatesâ proposed cuts to DoDâs 2012 budget, but are apparently sitting on their hands in terms of not passing a full funding bill for this year.
If Congress doesnât pass a funding bill by the beginning of March, Gates said, âthis new Congress would be responsible for a cut thatâs nearly twice the size of our fiscal â12 proposal, and much, much more damaging.â