US budget cuts threaten military missions: Hagel
WASHINGTON (AFP) - Looming budget cuts that will hit the United States (US) Defense Department from Friday will endanger the military's ability to conduct its missions, Pentagon chief Chuck Hagel warned.
"Let me make it clear that this uncertainty puts at risk our ability to effectively fulfill all of our missions," said Mr Hagel, whose agency's budget is set to be slashed by roughly US$46 billion (S$60 billion).
In contrast with his predecessor Leon Panetta, who branded the cuts a "doomsday mechanism" and "fiscal castration", Mr Hagel was more measured two days after taking office as defense secretary.
But he made clear what he thought would be the consequences of the so-called "sequester" on the military.