Leon Panetta

In divided vote, Senate panel approves Hagel for Defense Secretary

In divided vote, Senate panel approves Hagel for Defense Secretary

A bitterly divided Senate panel has voted to approve the nomination of Chuck Hagel to be the nation’s defense secretary. The Armed Services Committee voted 14-11 to send the nomination to the full Senate. Tuesday’s vote broke along party lines with all 14 Democrats backing President Barack Obama’s choice. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is […]

Panetta bids farewell, gets salute from Obama

Panetta bids farewell, gets salute from Obama

Calling it “the honor of my life,” Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said farewell to the U.S. military Friday, capping a venerated public service career that spanned four decades and included stints as a lawmaker, a top White House official and the spy chief who oversaw the killing of Osama bin Laden. President Barack Obama, honoring […]

Panetta: America could become ‘second rate’ power

Panetta: America could become ‘second rate’ power

The United States is at risk of becoming a second-rate power if automatic budget cuts go into effect, plunging the U.S. armed forces into the most significant readiness crisis they’ve faced in more than a decade, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta warned Thursday. Panetta, who is retiring soon from his post, told the Senate Armed Services […]

Pentagon admits backing plan to arm Syrian rebels

Pentagon admits backing plan to arm Syrian rebels

Pentagon leaders told Congress on Thursday that they had supported a recommendation to arm Syrian rebels promoted by the State Department and CIA but which President Barack Obama ultimately decided against. Obama’s government has limited its support to non-lethal aid for the rebels who, despite receiving weapons from countries like Qatar and Saudi Arabia, are […]

Republicans come up with plans to cut the budget

Republicans come up with plans to cut the budget

A group of GOP lawmakers from House and Senate on Wednesday offered a plan to cut the federal workforce and use the savings to replace some $85 billion in across-the-board budget cuts to the Pentagon and domestic programs. The legislation reprises a plan offered last year that failed to advance. House Armed Services Committee Chairman […]

New Pentagon challenge: Where to put women in battle

New Pentagon challenge:  Where to put women in battle

The Pentagon‘s decision to lift the ban on women serving in combat presents a daunting challenge to top military leaders who now will have to decide which, if any, jobs they believe should be open only to men. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is expected to announce Thursday that more than 230,000 battlefront posts — many […]

Panetta, angry over leaks, orders Pentagon to monitor media

Panetta, angry over leaks, orders Pentagon to monitor media

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta ordered senior Pentagon officials on Thursday to begin monitoring major U.S. news media for disclosures of classified information in an effort to stop the release of government secrets after a series of high-profile leaks. The announcement came hours after Panetta and other senior defense officials appeared before a closed-door hearing of […]

U.S. military mission in Iraq declared over

U.S. military mission in Iraq declared over

Eight years after the President George W. Bush stood on an aircraft carrier deck, amid much hoopla and fanfare, under a banner declaring “Mission Accomplished” in the Iraq war, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta spoke to a much more subdued ceremony at the U.S. military mission in Baghdad and declared the American role finally at an […]

Fired intel director knew his days were numbered

Fired intel director knew his days were numbered

For months, National Intelligence Director Dennis Blair has been a dead man walking — and he knew it. So constant and vicious were the leaks from the White House and Congress of his imminent departure that he opened a recent speech on intelligence reform with a joke that his replacement would be Redskins quarterback Donovan […]