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“Modest reforms to pay and compensation will improve readiness and modernization. It will help keep our all-volunteer force sustainable and strong. Keeping faith also means investing sufficient resources so that we can uphold our sacred obligations to defend the nation and to send our sons and daughters to war with only the best training, leadership and equipment. We can’t shrink from our obligations to one another. The stakes are too high.”

Gen. Martin E. Dempsey

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Unreality of Sequester

At a Stimson event yesterday, the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force, Dr. Jamie Morin, echoed what Pentagon leadership has said about the unreality of preparing for sequester:

I will apply the law. The challenge is not mine. The challenge is the personnellists who have to figure out who to [lay off] or furlough. The challenge is the operational folks, the wing commanders and squadron commanders who have to figure out who doesn't get the flying hours they need to be mission-ready. The challenge is for the folks who are running a medical clinic who have to figure out whether they are going to cut their hours in the morning or the evening.

Dr. Morin’s comments illustrate with operational details what we have already said—that sequester isn’t supposed to be a policy choice, it’s a budget enforcement mechanism.  And a mechanism that will be turned off when the actual policy choices are made.