OCO Approach Bad for Nukes

The Republican approach of making up sequester-driven funding shortfalls largely through overseas contingency operations funding doesn’t really work for the nuclear enterprise, the Pentagon’s nuclear re-invigoration guru said Thursday. Yisroel Brumer, of the Pentagon’s Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation shop, told a House Armed Services Committee panel that revitalizing the nuke enterprise “requires enduring, sustained attention,” and the OCO approach is too short-term for that to work properly. Short-term funding also puts the gains made in morale “at risk,” he said, because the workforce will sense an ambivalence and lack of commitment to the mission’s priority. Among troops in the field, “this comes up a lot,” he said, and they ask, “will this be sustainable?” Maj. Gen. Jack Weinstein, 20th Air Force commander, told the panel he really needs “funding consistency,” and noted that things like a new missile transporter and especially a replacement helicopter is hard to buy one year at a time.