About POGO

Dan Grazier

Jack Shanahan Military Fellow

dgrazier@pogo.org |

Areas of Expertise: National Security, Pentagon Reform

Mr. Grazier, a former Marine Corps captain, served tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan during the War on Terror. His various assignments in uniform included tours with 2nd Tank Battalion in Camp Lejeune, NC, and 1st Tank Battalion in Twentynine Palms, CA. Prior to his time in the Marine Corps he worked as a television journalist in Maryland and Missouri. He covered nearly every type of story imaginable, from breaking news to long-form investigative pieces.

He has written extensively and lectured on matters of military reform and Manœuvre Warfare. His work has appeared in the Marine Corps Gazette, Fires Bulletin, and Small Wars Journal.

He is a 2000 graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University and a 2012 graduate of the Marine Corps Expeditionary Warfare School.

Abrams M1A2 SEP V3 Battle Tank

Dodging the Formal Acquisition Process

January 5, 2018

Pentagon leaders find creative ways to avoid oversight

Seabees assigned to a Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) exit a transport aircraft after arriving in Afghanistan.

It’s Time for a New War Vote

October 30, 2017

A Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter production facility in Fort Worth, Texas.

$21 Billion Worth of F-35 Concurrency Orphans?

October 12, 2017

If all older model F-35s are included, costs could rise to $40 billion

US Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh retires

The Military’s Leadership Problem

September 5, 2017

Leadership, not technology failures, are at the root of most wasteful Pentagon programs

Light attack aircraft

The Light Attack Trickery?

August 3, 2017

Yet Another Air Force Effort to Kill the A-10?

F-35 on Tarmac

Congress Greases Flightpath for the F-35 Boondoggle

July 11, 2017

Politicians bedazzled by fighter plane that can’t fight.

F-35 Continues to Stumble

March 30, 2017

An F-35A parks for the night under the sunshades at Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho.

The F-35 Is Not Too Big to Fail

January 12, 2017

Other Viable Options Do Exist

The F-35 in an airplane hangar

F-35 May Never Be Ready for Combat

September 9, 2016

Testing Report Contradicts Air Force Leadership’s Rosy Pronouncements

The Unconsidered Option

August 22, 2016

How performance bonds could change the way we buy weapons

Photo of Secretary Gates giving remarks at the change of command ceremony.

The Pentagon’s Pricey Culture of Mediocrity

January 27, 2016

A revolving door keeps military brass beholden to contractors.

POGO Urges House Armed Services Committee to Pursue Reforms to Increase Military Effectiveness and Reduce Costs

May 3, 2018

The Project On Government Oversight sent a letter commenting on reforms proposed in the Comprehensive Pentagon Bureaucracy Reform and Reduction Act and the Accelerating the Pace of Acquisitions Reform Act of 2018. While some proposals could increase oversight and reduce costs, many others would reduce the effectiveness of weapon systems, increase wasteful spending, and make it more difficult for the Department of Defense to identify and enact significant cost savings.

Bipartisan coalition: Congress should not authorize a F-35 block buy

June 26, 2017

The Project On Government Oversight (POGO) joined a bipartisan coalition of organizations urging the House and Senate Armed Services committees to reject a proposal to authorize a block buy--called an economic order quantity--for the F-35. Authorizing an economic order quantity for the F-35 before testing is complete is likely to increase costs to taxpayers and put the Department on the hook for costly retrofits.

Safe and Effective Operation of Carriers Depends on Shock Trials

June 22, 2017

The Project On Government Oversight sent a letter to the members of the House and Senate Armed Services committees urging them to preserve a requirement for the Ford aircraft carrier to undergo full ship shock trial testing before deployment. Waiving this requirement for the Ford would endanger the lives of the 4,300 sailors of the ship’s complement and risk massive cost overruns in the years ahead as the Navy continues building what will continue to be an untested design.

Fly Before You Buy: Tom Christie on Realistic Combat Testing

June 28, 2016

The Project On Government Oversight's Dan Grazier recently sat down with Tom Christie, a former Director of Operational Test & Evaluation at the DoD from 2001-2005, to talk about the critical need for realistic combat testing before the Pentagon buys new weapons.

USMC Case Method Project

May 23, 2016

Maj. Scott Helminski USMC and historian Damien O'Connell explain how a training method adapted from Harvard Business School is preparing the newest generation of combat leaders to be more effective decision makers on May 23, 2016.

The Pentagon’s Pricey Culture of Mediocrity

January 27, 2016

The military’s current personnel policies contributes to bloated Pentagon budgets and ineffective weapons programs.

Pentagon’s “Force of the Future” Report a Near Miss

January 14, 2016

A leaked document obtained by the Project On Government Oversight reveals just how much was left out of Secretary Carter's recent reforms to the military's personnel system. POGO breaks down the changes so far.

The JLENS: A Soaring Beacon for Military Reform

November 19, 2015

The military balloon floating freely over rural Pennsylvania drew a great deal of attention to a flawed weapons program. A closer look demonstrates that problems with the JLENS program are systemic and hardly unique.

President Obama Vetoes the NDAA over Slush Fund

October 26, 2015

President Obama made good on his promise to veto the National Defense Authorization Act, largely because of the use of the Overseas Contingency Operations account as a Pentagon slush fund.

Lt. Gen. Bogdan Hedges on Operational Testing

October 23, 2015

Air Force officials are reluctant to subject the F-35 to realistic close air support testing because they admit it will not perform as well as existing aircraft.

Military Reform Begins With Personnel Reform

August 25, 2015

Personnel reform is the single most important military reform issue.

GAO Slams Air Force’s A-10 Divestment Plan

June 26, 2015

GAO report confirms that Air Force efforts to retire the A-10 could create a critical support gap for American ground troops.

Navy Myopia Forces Marines to Hitch a Ride

June 25, 2015

The Marine Corps is currently exploring options to use foreign naval shipping to fulfill one of its key missions because the Navy is no longer capable of providing the necessary support.

F-35 No-Show at a Premier European Airshow—Again

June 19, 2015

The DoD decided not to show off the F-35 at the 2015 Paris Airshow, but that fact didn't prevent it from being the talk of the town.

May 21, 2018

Navy’s Top-Dollar Stealth Fighter May Not Go the Distance

Roll Call | By John M. Donnelly

May 3, 2018

How the F-35 Could Be Shot Down by a Big 'Gun'

The National Interest | By Michael Peck

April 17, 2018

The Strange Saga of the World's Most Expensive Weapon

Playboy | By Kevin Knodell

April 15, 2018

USAF Moving Quickly To Mothball A-10, Public Misled

Arizona Daily Independent |

April 13, 2018

A Coordinated Attack on Syria

The New York Times | By Editorial Board

April 10, 2018

Wright-Patt a contender to manage stealth fighter program

Dayton Daily News | By Barrie Barber

April 9, 2018

U.S. Navy Workers Are Sleeping on the Job—on Your Dime

The Daily Beast | By David Axe

April 9, 2018

Mattis: What DoD Readiness Problems? (Shush: Bad Guys Are Listening!)

Task & Purpose | By Jeff Schogol

April 7, 2018

Spending plan could give boost to Wright-Patt

Dayton Daily News | By Barrie Barber

March 27, 2018

As Lockheed celebrates, F-35 critics retool for lonely fight

McClatchy | Stars & Stripes | By Andrea Drusch

March 26, 2018

US shows off new F-35 fighter jets ahead of US-South Korea drills

CNN | By Rebecca Wright, Ivan Watson

March 19, 2018

Aviation mishap rate increasing (Video)

DefenseNews | By Tara Copp, Jeff Martin, Dustin Q. Diaz

March 8, 2018

Lockheed Asks Pentagon to Pay More Now to Save More Later on F-35 Jets

The Wall Street Journal | By Doug Cameron

March 2, 2018

The Scam Artist Who Sold Fake Armored Trucks to U.S. Army

The Daily Beast | By David Axe

February 28, 2018

Deal finalized: $3.9B price tag for two Air Force One airplanes

Dayton Daily News | By Barrie Barber

February 20, 2018

F-35 takes flak, but still flying high

The Washington Examiner | By Jamie McIntyre

February 10, 2018

Cutting defense will improve efficiency

LancasterOnline | By Harold A. Penner (Letter to the Editor)

February 4, 2018

Trump calls for end of military budget sequester

Dayton Daily News | By Barrie Barber

January 22, 2018

SitRep: U.S. Govt. Shuts Down; Defense Strategy Unveiled; Nuclear Torpedo

Foreign Policy | By Elias Groll

January 22, 2018

110 A-10s in jeopardy of extinction if Air Force can’t pay for new wings

American Military News | By Peter Reid

January 19, 2018

Air Force Will Lose More Than a Third of A-10s If the Planes Don't Get New Wings

Popular Mechanics | By Kyle Mizokami

January 19, 2018

A-10 Wing Replacements Depend on Budget, Air Force Says

Military.com | By Oriana Pawlyk

January 18, 2018

Is The Air Force Still Secretly Plotting To Kill The A-10 Warthog?

Task & Purpose | By Jared Keller

January 18, 2018

USAF Official in Charge of A-10s Says Re-Wing Program Is "Not Going to Happen"

The Drive - The War Zone | By Joseph Trevithick

January 8, 2018

Low expectations for high-level Korea talks this week

The Washington Examiner | By Jamie McIntyre and Travis Tritten

January 7, 2018

Can the Pentagon actually figure out how it spends its money?

The Washington Examiner | By Travis J. Tritten

December 31, 2017

The ‘Merchants Of Death’ Survive And Prosper

HuffPost | By Lawrence Wittner

December 22, 2017

Dan Grazier: Survey of maintenance contract requirements reveals surprising facts

Federal News Radio | By Tom Temin

December 19, 2017

What’s in store for personnel and readiness in 2018?

Federal News Radio | By Scott Maucione

December 13, 2017

Pentagon OKs limited F-35 testing before modifying jets

FlightGlobal | By Leigh Giangreco

December 1, 2017

Rex Tillerson’s shaky status throws US diplomacy into question

The Washington Examiner | By Jamie McIntyre, Travis Tritten

November 17, 2017

F-35 Strike Fighter Success: Real or Simulated?

The American Conservative | By Kelley Beaucar Vlahos

October 30, 2017

Northrop Dinged by Both Army and Air Force on Quality Concerns

Bloomberg Politics | By Anthony Carpaccio

October 18, 2017

Nearly 200 of America's F-35s May Remain Indefinitely Unfit for Combat (Updated)

Popular Mechanics | By Kyle Mizokami

October 16, 2017

Pentagon Eyes Leaving Many F-35s for Combat

Newsmax | By James Morrison

October 15, 2017

The Air Force Just Bought 100 Stealth Fighters That Can’t Fight

The Daily Beast | By David Axe

October 8, 2017

Pentagon Takes Control of F-35 Cost-Cutting Push -- Update

Wall Street Journal | By Doug Cameron

September 29, 2017

How lawmakers exploit tragedy to demand bigger defense budgets

Business Insider |

September 22, 2017

US stealth fighter jets adding more firepower

CNN | By Zachary Cohen

September 14, 2017

Did the Marines’ 40-Year-Old ‘Amphibious Tractor’ Just Strike Again?

The Daily Beast | By David Axe

September 8, 2017

Blame Bad Leaders For Military Waste

War Is Boring |

September 6, 2017

Let’s Talk About The USAF's Claim Of 'Fully Combat Capable' F-35s

The Drive - The War Zone | By Joe Trevithick

August 4, 2017

The U.S. Air Force Is Still Quietly Killing Off the A-10

War Is Boring | By Dan Grazier

July 30, 2017

Navy seeks culture change after bribery scandal

The Wichita Eagle | By Carl Prine via the San Diego Union-Tribune

July 29, 2017

Has Navy culture truly changed after Fat Leonard corruption crisis?

The San Diego Union-Tribune | By Carl Prine

July 11, 2017

Congress Greases Flightpath for the F-35 Boondoggle

The American Conservative | By POGO's Dan Grazier

June 29, 2017

F-35 unreliability risks strain on Pentagon budget, tester says

The Virginian-Pilot via Bloomberg | By Tony Capaccio

June 27, 2017

The U.S. Navy Wants to Deploy Its New Flattop Without Vital Testing

War Is Boring | By POGO's Dan Grazier

June 12, 2017

Air Force extends F-35 stand-down due to oxygen system failures

Stars and Stripes | By Tara Copp

June 12, 2017

POGO Statement on F-35 Economic Order Quantity (Block Buy) Legislative Proposal

defense-aerospace.com | By POGO's Dan Grazier

June 9, 2017

Podcast: How the Pentagon’s wasteful budget hurts the military

Reuters | By Matthew Gault

June 7, 2017

How not to build a ship: the USS Ford

The San Diego Union-Tribune | By Dan Grazier and Pierre Sprey

April 4, 2017

The Art of an F-35 Deal: Did Trump Engineer a Lockheed-Boeing Pact?

Yahoo! Finance | By Ciro Scotti

April 4, 2017

Is the F-35 a Trillion-Dollar Mistake?

Bloomberg Businessweek | By Paul Barrett

March 30, 2017

'Price tag is the only thing stealthy about the F-35': scathing new report tears the F-35 to shreds

Business Insider; Military & Defense | By Alex Lackie

March 21, 2017

If Trump wants to rebuild military, he should actually slash budget

The San Diego Union-Tribune | By Dan Grazier

March 8, 2017

Reagan Redux at the Pentagon

The American Conservative | By Kelley Beaucar Vlahos

February 28, 2017

Can the Pentagon Get By on Just $603 Billion?

The Daily Beast | By David Axe and Tim Mak

February 28, 2017

What does a boost in military spending mean for SOCAL?

89.3 KPCC | Take Two | By Dorian Merina and A Martínez

February 9, 2017

Trump’s boasts aside, here’s the real reason those F-35s wound up costing less

Idaho Statesman | By Alex Daugherty

January 27, 2017

U.S. defense secretary orders review of F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program

San Diego Union Tribune | By Carl Prine

January 3, 2017

Donald Trump blasts defense contracting titans for overpriced weapons

The Washington Times | By Rowan Scarborough

December 12, 2016

Donald Trump Takes Aim at F-35, the ‘Plane That Ate the Pentagon’

Newsweek | By Max Kutner

December 12, 2016

Trump’s tweets that F-35 program is costly has implications for Utah and Lockheed

The Salt Lake Tribune | By Nate Carlisle and Thomas Burr

December 12, 2016

Trump says F-35 costs ‘out of control,’ vows changes

Dayton Daily News | By Barrie Barber

December 12, 2016

Donald Trump Presses Fight Over F-35 Jet Costs

The Wall Street Journal | By Doug.Cameron and Andrew Tangel

November 30, 2016

Israel Buys 17 More F-35 Fighter Jets from US; Most Powerful MidEast Deterrent

The Jewish Voice | By Ariella Haviv

November 28, 2016

Trump Could Pump Tens of Billions Into the Army, Only to Make It Worse

Motherboard | By David Axe

November 20, 2016

Navy won't buy more $800,000 shells for ships

USA Today | By Bartholomew D Sullivan

November 17, 2016

Navy says it won't buy any more $800,000 shells for new destroyer

USA Today | By Bartholomew Sullivan

October 22, 2016

New jet will likely change how America fights wars

The San Diego Union-Tribune | By Carl Prine

October 4, 2016

Air Force concerned over delays in tanker contract

Dayton Daily News | By Barrie Barber

September 9, 2016

America's F-35 Stealth Fighter May Never Be Ready for Combat

The National Interest; The Buzz | By by POGO Dan Grazier and Mandy Smithberger

August 2, 2016

F-35 fighters combat ready, Air Force says

CNN | By Zachary Cohen

August 2, 2016

Air Force declares F-35A Joint Strike Fighter ready for combat

Stars and Stripes | By Tara Copp

August 2, 2016

U.S. Air Force declares first squadron of F-35 jets combat-ready

Reuters | By Idrees Ali