Obama’s Pentagon Waste and Outsourcing: $125 billion in waste, F-16 production moved to India. By Lewis Morris.
An in-depth exposé in the Washington Post explains how the Pentagon commissioned a study in 2014 to look for ways to make its “enormous back-office bureaucracy more efficient and reinvest any savings in combat power.”
The study was conducted by the Defense Business Board, a federal advisory panel made up of corporate executives and consultants from McKinsey and Company. The final report identified $125 billion in wasteful spending to be cut over five years by streamlining bureaucracy through attrition, early retirements, and curtailing high-priced contractors.
Top brass, however, were terrifically embarrassed by such a large amount of waste in the Defense Department. To give some life to their concern, consider the fact that $125 billion represents about 20% of the Pentagon’s annual budget. On top of that, the number of back-office civilian and military personnel is roughly equal to the total number of troops on active duty, a one-to-one ratio. And if that isn’t enough to shock you, 298,000 of those back-office personnel are military, not civilians or contractors.
It’s little wonder that the Pentagon wanted to bury this report, and Barack Obama was no doubt a big supporter — if not instigator — of that decision.
Manufacturing iconic US fighter jets in India?
With Obama’s blessing, Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James and Defense Secretary Ashton Carter are working out a deal to build Lockheed Martin’s F-16 and Boeing’s F/A-18 fighter jets in India.
The F-16 is being phased out by the U.S. military, but the aircraft is still popular in other countries. There are still a lot of jobs to be had for building and servicing the aircraft, though both the administration and the two companies insist American jobs will be repurposed, not lost.