Rumsfeld Urges Base Closures, B-1 Cuts

From Staff and Wire Reports

Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, facing resistance from lawmakers protecting local military programs, argued for closing bases and slashing the B-1 bomber force to save money.

Rumsfeld told lawmakers that failure to reduce Cold War-era bomber fleets and close bases would "send a damaging signal" as the military looks for savings.

Rumsfeld said the bombers are 20 years old, not stealthy, intended for a fight the nation is no longer fighting and "not viable in a conflict today."

He also called for another round of base closings, saying, "As little stomach as I have for it, we're going to come at you."

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