Obama Will Unveil $205.5 Billion War Spending Through 2010
President Barack Obama today will seek $205.5 billion more for combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, including $75.5 billion through the end of this fiscal year, according to three people familiar with the request, dpa reported.
It will be submitted later today along with the fiscal 2010 budget Obama sends to Congress. The proposal will also request $130 billion for the wars in fiscal 2010. That's in addition to a total Defense Department budget of about $534 billion, the people said.
The amounts for the wars are less than Defense Secretary Robert Gates asked for and in keeping with expectations that the president plans a major reduction of the 142,000 U.S. soldiers now in Iraq. The extra funding for fiscal 2009, which ends Sept. 30, includes money for adding 17,000 personnel to the U.S. force of 38,000 in Afghanistan.
The $534 billion represents about 2 percent real growth, when adjusted for inflation, more than the $513.3 billion Congress approved for this year's annual defense budget, said an analyst.
"The outgoing Bush administration defense plan projected essentially flat defense budgets for the next few years, apart from war-related costs," said Stephen Daggett, a defense budget analyst for the non-partisan Congressional Research Service.