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Obama's Military Budget

While media plays up program cuts, total defense budget surpasses Bush by $20 B

WASHINGTON - On
Wednesday
the U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates presented his
departments base budget proposal for the fiscal year of 2010.  Although
some are claiming that the proposal has left expensive weapons programs
with little funding, the SPADE Index which is composed of stock prices
from 55 of the largest defense contractors, increased by 3.4%.  The
Real News spoke to Miriam Pemberton, a military analyst at the
Institute for Policy Studies to discuss this proposal.

Pemberton
says this proposed budget represents an increase in military spending when
compared to the Bush administrations, a fact that isn't being reported
by many of the mainstream media outlets, "despite the fact that they
have made some proposed cuts in a number of weapons systems, this
budget is actually larger than any budget that the Bush administration
ever proposed by about 20 billion dollars or about 4%."

Although a number of high profile programs were cut most notably
the F-22 fighter jet, a plane that has been in development since 1986
and was put in to production in 2003, new contract recommendations were
made which would ultimately result in an increase in military spending.

According to Pemberton they had no choice but to finally cut the
F-22 program, "it's so complicated, so expensive, about
330 million dollars per plane, (and) it's never been used in Iraq or
Afghanistan because it's really inappropriate for those conflicts". 
She notes that they've essential swapped the F-22 for the F-35,
"Lockheed Martin...assuming this all goes through is going to be losing
the F-22 contracts but the Obama administration is talking about
accelerating production on the joint strike fighter (F-35) which is the
alternative next generation fighter to the F-22." 

For complete coverage of this interview visit our website:

http://therealnews.com/t/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=3543&updaterx=2009-04-08+17%3A40%3A17

 

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