Cleansing the Poisoned Chalice? The Obama Administration and the Challenge of National Security Planning, Programming, and Budgeting

Anthony H. Cordesman. Center for Strategic & International Studies, 21 April 2009. Posted on the Commonwealth Institute Website (printable .pdf file).


Probable Real World Program Costs of the “Poisoned Chalice”

• Funding the Afghan War, Iraq War, and GWOT in the outyears would require supplementals ranging from 5-15%.
• The real world cost of the expansion of military and civilian manpower, and sustaining the all-volunteer force structure will be at least 5-8%higher than DoD estimates.
• Future procurement costs are badly underestimated, as are the cost of reset and modernization due to program delays, cutbacks and possible cancellations.
• Program delays, cutbacks, and cancellations may limit cost growth to 10% over the DoD procurement and RDT&E estimate, but no prediction is really possible.
• O&M will probably be 5-8% higher that DoD estimates if war continues to create a major burden on O&M.
• These factors will create turmoil and instability in the National Security planning, programming, and budgeting process through the life of the coming administration.

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