Pentagon Slashing Thousands of Jobs Gates to ax Joint Forces Command By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff Posted Aug 10, 2010 1:18 AM CDT Updated Aug 10, 2010 6:16 AM CDT 18 comments Comments Secretary of Defense Robert Gates gestures during a news conference at the Pentagon yesterday. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta) (Newser) – "No sacred cows" are safe from the budget ax as the Pentagon seeks to trim spending, Defense Secretary Robert Gates warned yesterday as he announced massive cuts. Reductions include the closure of Joint Forces Command, which employs some 5,000 people, and a 10% reduction in the budget for military contractors, AP reports. Joint Forces Command, created in 1999 to help forces work together, is based in Virginia, and state lawmakers there were quick to challenge Gates' decision. He also plans to freeze the number of positions in his office, among others, to reduce "administration creep" and appoint a task force to examine reducing the number of generals and other senior officers by some 50 positions to reduce a "top-heavy hierarchy," reports the Washington Post. "The culture of endless money that has taken hold must be replaced by a culture of savings and restraint," Gates declared.