Procurement: February 11, 2005


The new U.S. defense budget appears to announce the end of the F-22, C-130J and new navy destroyer (or cruiser) projects. All three are seeing their budgets heavily cut back next year, with more cuts after that. These expensive projects are not seen as urgent, at least not compared to many other needs. Over thirty major projects are similarly threatened, with potential savings of over $100 billion. The contractors, and their politician and military allies will fight on. But its been a losing battle for the last five years. Why are so many high tech projects up for big cuts?  First, there is the belief in the military that new technology is transforming warfare, and the equipment used. Second, there is the resistance to change once a major weapons project gets underway. Since it takes 10-20 years for these projects to go from idea to something the troops can use, theres plenty of time to politicians, contractors and military personnel to fall in love with the project. Saying goodbye is hard to do. 


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