US general says military ready despite budget cuts

AP News
Posted: Mar 05, 2013 11:18 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — A senior U.S. general is urging Congress to resolve the uncertainty surrounding the military's budget, but he cautioned U.S. enemies in the Middle East against trying to take advantage of the situation.

Gen. James Mattis, the top officer at U.S. Central Command, said Tuesday the aircraft carrier USS Harry Truman is ready for action. Defense Department officials announced last month that automatic budget cuts forced them to delay deployment of the Truman to the Persian Gulf region.

Mattis told the Senate Armed Services Committee that he was on board the Truman two weeks ago and the carrier's commander assured him that the ship and its air wing would be prepared if called. Mattis tells lawmakers, "I have what it takes to make it the enemy's worst day and longest day."