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Defense panel: Obama administration defense strategy ‘dangerously’ underfunded

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A U.S. F18 Hornet fighter attack aircraft is launched off the deck of the U.S. nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, USS George Washington during a military exercise off South Korea's West Sea, Wednesday, July 16, 2014. (AP)

The Obama administration’s four-year defense strategy lacks funding needed for fulfilling global military missions and the U.S. military faces “high risk” in the world unless changes are made, according to a bipartisan report by a congressionally backed panel of defense experts.

The report by the National Defense Panel, led by former Defense Secretary William Perry and retired Marine Corps Gen. John Abizaid, criticized the Pentagon’s Quadrennial Defense Review for outlining military responsibilities that cannot be met because of sharp defense funding cuts.

The report concluded that the capabilities called for in the QDR “clearly exceed the budget resources made available to the department.”

“This gap is disturbing if not dangerous in light of the fact that global threats and challenges are rising, including a troubling pattern of territorial assertiveness and regional intimidation on China’s part, [and] the recent aggression of Russia in Ukraine.”

Other threats include nuclear proliferation by North Korea and Iran, the ultra-violent Islamist insurgency in Iraq and civil war in Syria, along with growing unrest throughout the Middle East and North Africa.

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