The Defense Department will submit a five-year budget to Congress in February that includes $250 to $260 billion in cuts, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Thursday according to a report from Reuters.
The debt ceiling agreement reached in August calls for $450 billion in cuts to defense spending over 10 years.
During a trip to South Korea, Panetta said the Pentagon would not hesitate to make aggressive cuts during the first half of that period.
“It would involve a 5-year budget, which is normally what we would present,” Panetta said. “But that would represent probably somewhere around $250 or $260 billion of the $450 billion that we’re required to reduce.”
The Reuters report cites Pentagon officials as saying the $450 billion in cuts would not jeopardize security. Panetta has previously warned against sequestration if the deficit reduction supercommittee can not submit a proposal to Congress by Nov. 23, saying it would “hollow out” the armed forces.
Previous coverage of Pentagon budget:
- Panetta Instructs No. 2 to Cut âWasteful Spendingâ
- Panetta, Dempsey Talk Defense Budget at House Hearing
- Pentagon Review: Defense Cuts $100B Greater than Advertised