Defense Plan Would Cut US Forces by 100,000

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Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta has proposed cutting $487 billion from the defense budget over the next decade, as well as 100,000 U.S. ground forces.

Panetta outlined his defense spending plan at the Pentagon Thursday. The plan is scheduled to be submitted to Congress on Feb. 13 as part of the administration's full 2013 budget.

The proposed plan would also limit military pay raises and terminate dozens of weapons programs.

In a bid to pre-empt election-year Republican criticism, Panetta said the plan shifts the Pentagon's focus from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to future challenges in Asia, the Mideast, and in cyberspace.

Click play for more on the defense budget proposal with CBN News Military Correspondent Chuck Holton.

"Our approach was to use this as an opportunity to maintain the strongest military in the world, to not hollow out the force," he said.

Republicans were not pleased with Panetta's proposal, saying the plan will leave the Pentagon stretched too thin to handle potential security threats.

"Taking us back to a pre-9/11 military force structure places our country in grave danger," said Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, which will hold hearings on the Pentagon budget plan.

President Obama will also ask Congress to approve a new round of domestic base closures. However, the timing of the closures was vague and there is little chance that lawmakers would agree to them during a presidential election year.

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