Pentagon Not a Debt Ceiling Loser After All

| Mon Aug. 1, 2011 11:07 PM EDT

I've been reading all day that the Pentagon is the big loser from today's debt ceiling deal, and I just sort of vaguely accepted that as true. They're getting socked with a pretty big chunk of the initial $1 trillion in cuts, after all. But McClatchy's Nancy Youssef sets the record straight:

Rather than cutting $400 billion in defense spending through 2023, as President Barack Obama had proposed in April, the current debt proposal trims $350 billion through 2024, effectively giving the Pentagon $50 billion more than it had been expecting over the next decade.

...."This is a good deal for defense when you probe under the numbers," said Lawrence Korb, a defense expert at the Center for American Progress, a left-leaning research center. "It's better than what the Defense Department was expecting."

Now, if the follow-on deal includes lots of additional defense cuts, then the Pentagon might actually come out of this with some serious scars. But for now, apparently they're doing OK.