From Peter to Paul

The Pentagon does plan to rob Peter to pay Paul—taking money from the Air Force and Navy to fund Army war operations. A senior Air Force official suggested as much earlier this week when he explained on background to reporters just how USAF plans to cover its own shortfalls if the war supplemental remains in limbo between the Administration and Congress. Megan Scully of CongressDaily reports that Defense Secretary Robert Gates has written to Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.), head of the Senate Appropriations Committee, expressing his intention to move funds from here to there. Gates also discounts recent claims by some defense analysts, including the Congressional Research Service, that the Army could keep operating for longer than the Administration has indicated.