US to Cut Troops, Defense Funds

Washington, Jan 27. -US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta has announced that the US will cut to 92,000 the number of active duty Army and Marine Corps soldiers in the next five years and make cuts of millions of dollars in its budget.The country will have less soldiers, reducing the current number of 562,000 to 490,000 while the amount of marines will be cut from 202,000 to 182,000, said Panetta.

The pentagon plans to cut $259 billion USD in its expenditures over the next five years, and about $487 billion USD over the next decade, said the secretary of Defense in a press conference when unveiling part of the plans aimed at restructuring the military sector.

Panetta said that despite the cuts, the US would boost special forces and retain the ability to defeat any enemy on land.

He also said the US would continue buying F-35 jets, but would slow down its purchase of the stealth fighter planes.

The final US Defense plan will be officially announced next month, with a budget put at $525 billion USD for the fiscal year 2013. (Prensa Latina)