This Could Be Harder Than Winning Afghanistan

by Daniel Russ on July 2, 2010

Pentagon

Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Monday he wants to trim some of the billions of dollars the Pentagon spends on weapons systems and contractor services, part of a Pentagon-wide effort to find $100 billion in savings in the next five years

Gates, who already plans to pare down the Pentagon’s huge bureaucracy to save money, said that the Defense Department will focus on unnecessary spending by defense contractors that provide the military with everything from fighter jets to janitors.

Gates said it is “a matter of principle and political reality to make sure every taxpayer dollar counts.” His goal is to shift money from overhead expenses to supporting U.S. troops spread around the globe.

The Pentagon will spend about $400 billion of its roughly $700 billion budget on weapons and services from defense contractors.

The new plan calls for annual savings of about 2 percent to 3 percent through measures like contracts that require the defense companies to shoulder cost overruns and encouraging competition between contractors.”

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