The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Defense Dept. seeks additional $50 billion for war

With several hundred billion dollars wasted on Iraq alone, justifying something like a new $50 billion spending package would be pretty tough. If you had to deal with pesky things like oversight and accountability, that is. If this article is correct, White House officials are getting around that with their usual flair.

The U.S. Air Force is asking the Pentagon's leadership for a staggering $50 billion in emergency funding for fiscal 2007 -- an amount equal to nearly half its annual budget, defense analyst Loren Thompson of the Lexington Institute said on Tuesday.

The request is expected to draw criticism on Capitol Hill, where lawmakers are increasingly worried about the huge sums being sought "off budget" to fund wars, escaping the more rigorous congressional oversight of regular budgets. (. . .)

Another source familiar with the Air Force plans said the extra funds would help pay to transport growing numbers of U.S. soldiers being killed and wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Thompson, who has close ties to U.S. military officials, said the big funding request was fueled by Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England. England told the services in a October 25 memo to include the "longer war on terror," not just the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, in their emergency requests.