France: Combat Rations

FRANCE Combat Rations Furor over defense cuts

First came an extraordinary confidential letter from the top army commander to France's military leadership, leaked last week to Le Matin, a usually pro-government daily. Proposed cuts in defense spending by Francois Mitterrand's Socialist government, wrote General Jean Delaunay, would eliminate more than 30,000 troops from the 314,000-man army, leading to a force "weakened in its structure, aging in its equipment and wounded in its morale." Then came other leaked statements by the air force and navy chiefs of staff, revealing what they said were still secret government studies of making major cutbacks in military...

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