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article imageTrump asks U.S. Congress for $5.9 billion more for the military

By Ken Hanly     Nov 8, 2017 in Politics
On Monday just as President Donald Trump was leaving Japan for South Korea on a trip that he claimed was aimed at countering what he called the "North Korean menace", he announced that he would request another $5.9 billion for the military.
The U.S. is installing an anti-missile defense system in South Korea known as THAAD.
Trump's request includes:
$4 billion for a missile defense and detection system on the Korean peninsula.
$1.2 billion to fund his request for 3,500 additional U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
$700 million to repair two Navy ships.
Adding funds for the Missile Defense Agency
Three months ago Trump had expressed doubts about his proposal to cut the Missile Defense Agency's budget and had promised he would add billions back to the program.
Trump boasted on Sunday:"We make the best military equipment in the world. A shot was just taken by Iran, at my opinion, at Saudi Arabia. You know about that, right? You saw the missile that went out? And our system knocked the missile out of the air. That’s how good we are. Nobody makes what we make, and now we’re selling it all over the world."
The missile was launched from Yemen, probably by Houthi rebels who are supported by Iran.
There have been protests in South Korea over the THAAD installation and South Korea has been reluctant to add even more THAAD installations as the US wants.
More Funds for Afghanistan
In the past Trump had been a vehement critic of the Afghan war with his tirades against it going back as far as 2012: “I think the same as what I’ve been thinking for the past couple of years: What are we doing there? These people hate us,” Trump said in a 2012 Fox News appearance. “We’re spending hundreds of billions of dollars, trillions of dollars, on this nonsense — and the minute we leave, everything blows up, and the worst guy gets it. The one who hates this country the most will end up taking over Afghanistan.”
Trump also spoke against sending U.S. troops into battle unless absolutely necessary during his campaign for president. In April 2016 he said: “I will never send our finest into battle unless necessary, and I mean absolutely necessary, and will only do so if we have a plan for victory with a capital V,” he thundered. “The world must know that we do not go abroad in search of enemies.”
Trump has changed his tune entirely. Not only did Trump approve sending thousands of more U.S. troops to Afghanistan, he also announced last August that the U.S. troops would stay in Afghanistan indefinitely. Trump said: "Conditions on the ground, not arbitrary timetables, will guide our strategies from now on." No plan has been outlined for victory.
Funding for the repair of damaged U.S. destroyers.
The collision of the USS John S. McCain is discussed in a recent Digital Journal article. Another DJ article discussed the collision damaging the USS Fitzgerald.
In both collisions failures on the part of some commanding officers and the crew contributed to the collisions, although in the McCain case technology was also a factor. The two collisions plus others ultimately led to the 7th fleet commander being relieved of his duty.
However there is no relief to the U.S. taxpayer who has to pay for these military expenditures. All of this new spending will be off-budget so that there will be no worries about exceeding budget caps on military spending.
More about Donald Trum, US military spending, North korea
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