Tags: sequestration | cuts | army | soldiers

Sen. Jim Inhofe Slams Obama Over 'Alarming' Move to Cut Army by 1,100

By Todd Beamon   |   Saturday, 12 Jul 2014 06:00 PM

Sen. Jim Inhofe slammed President Barack Obama for putting "politics ahead of the security of our nation" over plans to cut the Army by 1,100 soldiers — including many currently serving in Afghanistan — to meet the demands brought on by sequestration.

"Our military’s readiness and war-fighting capability are clearly not the priorities of this president," the Oklahoma Republican said in a statement. "The alarming cutbacks happening with our military are a direct result of the priorities the president has set for the nation with the resources we have.

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"These pink slips are just the beginning," added Inhofe, the ranking GOP member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. "If defense sequestration continues, our Army could reach 420,000, which will lead to more troops losing their jobs while on the front lines in the coming years.

"This is devastating for morale and even worse for our national security."

The Army notified 1,100 captains last month that they would be laid off to meet sequestration goals, Stars and Stripes reports. At least 500 majors are expected to learn of their situations this month.

Army Vice Chief of Staff Gen. John Campbell told the Senate panel on Thursday that the planned cuts would be "disastrous" and will prevent the Army from conducting "defense strategic guidance" for the nation if the automatic budget cuts under sequestration continued beyond 2016.

The cuts to the Defense Department's budget were suspended for two years because of the bipartisan budget deal.

In February, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel proposed that the size of the U.S. military be reduced to its lowest level since before World War II and that a class of Air Force attack jets be scrapped.

"My heart goes out to these men and women who are risking their lives and making great sacrifices, yet are now being told they are being separated from the Army and will have no job when they return home to their families," Inhofe said.

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