Here and Now with Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson
Public radio's live
midday news program
With sponsorship from
Mathworks - Accelerating the pace of engineering and science
Accelerating the pace
of engineering and science
Thursday, January 5, 2012

Obama Outlines Military Strategy Going Forward

President Barack Obama, followed by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta arrive for a news briefing on the defense strategic guidance at the Pentagon, Thursday. (AP)

With the war in Iraq over, and the Afghanistan War winding down, President Obama Thursday spelled out his vision of the military in the years ahead, driven by the push to cut Pentagon spending by at least $450 billion dollars over the next decade.

Speaking in a rare appearance in the Pentagon briefing room, Obama said the U.S. military will be smaller with fewer ground troops, and there will be more focus on bolstering an American presence in Asia and the Middle East.

He said that the U.S. will be able to confront more than one enemy and defeat them.

“In no small measure, that’s because we’ve built the best trained, the best led, best equipped military in history and I intend to keep it that way,” he said.

But expensive weapons systems will only be delayed, not cut, and a commission is expected to study the sensitive issue of reductions in costly benefits for troops.

The new strategy is designed to refocus the United States’ national security priorities after a decade dominated by the post.-Sept. 11 wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The Associated Press contributed reporting.


  • Greg Jaffe, military reporter for the Washington Post

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.

Experts share a range of perspectives on how to combat the Islamic State militant group, and the role the U.S. should play.

Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

November 30 5 Comments

Fighting To Get The Story Out In ‘Dateline – Saigon’

The film tells the story of five journalists who fought to reveal the truth about the Vietnam War. They all went on to win Pulitzer Prizes.

November 30 14 Comments

EmiSunshine: A Country Music Star At Age 11

The Nashville singer-songwriter talks about her music and what it's like to be a kid on tour with her family.

November 27 Comment

Books To Give As Gifts This Year

If you're looking to give a book to a friend or family member this holiday, NPR Books editor Petra Mayer shares her picks.

November 26 9 Comments

Arlo Guthrie Celebrates 50 Years Of ‘Alice’s Restaurant’

Listening to the 18-minute musical monologue has been a Thanksgiving tradition among folk music fans for decades.