Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Friday he is pleased with the military services' initial recommendations for cutting their budgets and spending the savings on weapons modernization.
Gates called the services' cuts and reinvestment priorities ambitious and aggressive.
"Because they get to reinvest savings, they're highly motivated to make it work," the Pentagon chief said.
Gates has ordered the services and the Pentagon's agencies to find $100 billion in spending cuts and savings over the next five years.
He made the comments to reporters accompanying him on a visit to San Diego's Marine recruit depot. There, he welcomed a group of 196 Marines who had just completed a 13-week basic training course.
As the new Marines stood under the bright sun with a breeze rippling palm trees behind them, Gates praised the "uncommon perseverance" they showed in making it through basic training.
Later he was flying to Whidbey Island Naval Air Station in Washington state.
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