One of the first casualties was the Crusader artillery program, which was canceled after the Pentagon spent more than $2 billion on it. Then there was the Comanche helicopter debacle, which got the ax after $8 billion. More than twice that amount had been sunk into the Army’s Future Combat System, but that program got killed, too.
In all, between 2001 and 2011 the Defense Department spent $46 billion on at least a dozen programs — including a new version of the president’s helicopter — that never became operational, according to an analysis by the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments.
But for evidence of a procurement system that’s broken, critics say look no further than the major programs that are moving forward. They’ve grown half a trillion dollars over their initial price tags and have schedule delays of more than two years, according to the Government Accountability Office.
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