GATES FAILS... TO DISAPPOINT!

Much analysis remains, but Secretary of Defense Robert Gates has struck a staggering blow to a number of defense programs. The exciting details:

1. No more F-22s.
2. Replacement Air Force bomber delayed indefinitely.
3. Ballistic missile defense funding leans toward the Navy.
4. Aircraft carrier acquisition slowed, with the fleet eventually dropping to 10 carriers.
5. Next generation cruiser (CGX) delayed indefinitely.
6. VH-71 Presidential helicopter dead.
7. No more than three DDG-1000, and maybe only one.
8. Future Combat Systems funding slashed.

This is why Bob Gates is still secretary of defense; Obama didn't believe that such cuts would be possible under a Democratic secretary. Noah Shachtman has some analysis; see also Spencer. Much more should be coming in the next day or so.

--Robert Farley