"Anybody who says you can't save money at the Pentagon has never been to the Pentagon," the Mississippi governor said. "We can save money on defense and if we Republicans don't propose saving money on defense, we'll have no credibility on anything else."
"What is our mission?" Barbour said. "How many Al Qaeda are in Afghanistan. ... Is that a 100,000-man Army mission?"
"I don't think our mission should be to think we're going to make Afghanistan an Ireland or an Italy" or a Western-style democracy, he said.
"I don't think we should be talking about cutting the Pentagon's budget," the former Minnesota governor told POLITICO after a speech at the Aiken Republican Club here. "I think we should be talking about looking for those areas where we might some efficiencies or redeploying money spent on defense to higher-priority areas within defense. In other words keep the defense budget intact, but if we find some savings, some efficiencies, some ways to redeploy money we should do that."