Deeper US defense cuts could be "tragic" - Gates

US Defense Secretary Robert Gates warned Congress on Wednesday against pursuing even deeper spending cuts than those already proposed, warning "we still live in a very dangerous and often unstable world."

"We shrink from our global security responsibilities at our peril," Gates said in prepared remarks, justifying the Obama administration's fiscal year 2012 budget request.

"Retrenchment brought about by short-sighted cuts could well lead to costlier and more tragic consequences later -- indeed as they have in the past."

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