Kudos to the Financial Times (subscription may be required) for figuring out what most other journalists and editorial writers haven't seemed to grasp concerning Robert Gates's economy initiative at the Pentagon.
[H]is aim is not to cut the overall budget radically; it is merely to achieve savings in the military bureaucracy and thus, against a background of broader fiscal constraint, protect spending on new weapons and other outlays. (my emphasis)
The reforms in and of themselves are "commendable," the FT notes, but they don't amount to very much in the grand scheme, and they therefore do not go nearly far enough. Indeed, as I and others have noted, U.S. military spending will continue to rise if Bob Gates gets his way. This isn't good enough.
The FT editors agree:
The US needs a much more searching review of its military spending, one that aims to do more than merely curb its growth.
Anyone interested in a comprehensive proposal (three, actually) for substantially reducing U.S. military spending by revisiting the roles, responsibilities, and missions that are currently assigned to Gates's department can find it here.