Defense Spending

Dubious Weapons


The Pentagon stands to absorb a disproportionate share of automatic budget cuts—known in Washington as sequestration—scheduled to start March 1. With officials warning the reductions would devastate national defense, Bloomberg launched a four-part series to examine billions of dollars of weapons that include tanks the Army doesn't want, a fighter jet seven years behind schedule and 70 percent over budget and a troubled Navy ship whose costs are ballooning. The series illustrates how an alliance of uniformed services, military contractors and members of Congress protecting hometown jobs supports dubious arms designed for the last century's wars.

Bloomberg Exclusives

  • Flawed F-35 Fighter Too Big to Kill as Lockheed Hooks 45 States

    The Pentagon envisioned the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter as an affordable, state-of-the-art stealth jet serving three military branches and U.S. allies.

  • Pentagon Budget Stuck in Last Century as Warfare Changes

    The Obama administration foresees 21st century wars fought with fewer boots on the ground and more drones in the air, while the Pentagon continues buying weapons from the last century. Nevertheless, the defense budget contains hundreds of billions of dollars for new generations of weapons.

  • Defense-Cut Hypocrisy Makes GOP Converge With Democrats

    He’s an anti-tax Republican representative from Ohio. She’s an anti-war Democratic senator from Washington state. Jim Jordan and Patty Murray have little in common, save this: Protecting multibillion-dollar defense projects in their states from budget cuts.

  • Ships Leaking $37 Billion Reflect Eisenhower's Warning

    As the Pentagon faces $500 billion in spending cuts over a decade that are set to begin March 1, the $37 billion program to design and build Littoral Combat Ships may become a target for reductions that would take business from Lockheed and Austal.

  • SLIDE SHOW: Ten Giant Weapons in the Pentagon's Shrinking Budget

    Congress approaches a March 1 deadline to avert spending cuts of $1.2 trillion over nine years, half from defense. Here, in ascending order by price, are 10 of the military's most expensive weapons programs that could draw fire.


Bloomberg Pursuits

Super-Sized Military

Defense Budget at Center of Spending War

Bloomberg Pursuits

Different Ideologies

Defense Cuts Elusive as Lawmakers Protect Local Projects

Bloomberg Pursuits

Littoral Combat Ships

A Rough Start for Navy's Newest Vessel

Bloomberg Pursuits

Too Big to Kill Fighter

No Program Left Behind

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