Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Another conservative sickened by this Administration's policies, part VI

MSNBC reports that the military forces in the field have some ten billion dollars in unfunded ongoing needs.

Rep. Curt Weldon (R-Pa.), vice chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, charged that the president is playing political games by postponing further funding requests until after the election, to try to avoid reopening debate on the war's cost and future.

Weldon described the administration's current defense budget request as "outrageous" and "immoral" and said that at least $10 billion is needed for Iraqi operations over the next five months.

"There needs to be a supplemental, whether it's a presidential election year or not," he said. "The support of our troops has to be the number one priority of this country. . . . Somebody's got to get serious about this." [emphasis in italics and bold added]

These supplies aren't for big ticket items either. Most of them are for basic items that would save soldier's lives including:

Army Needs
- $132 million for bolt-on vehicle armor
- $879 million for combat helmets, silk-weight underwear, boots and other clothing
- $21.5 million for M249 squad automatic weapon
- $27 million for ammunition magazines, night sights and ammo packs.
- $956 million for repairing desert-damaged equipment
- $102 million to replace equipment lost in combat.

Marine Corps Needs
- $40 million for body armor, lightweight helmets and other equipment
- 1,800 squad automatic weapons
- 5,400 M4 carbine rifles.

You know if Bush and co. are going to ask our soldiers to die for us they might want to give them things like armor, guns, and bullets. Usually you are going to need that sort of thing if you want to do other than shout and shake your fist strongly at an opponent.


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