By Andrei Smirnov
The US Congress has approved the Pentagon’s budget for the 2012 financial year at $662 billion which is at the level proposed by the Senate. In the beginning of the year the US administration asked the Congress to grant Pentagon $721 billion for 2012. Although this earlier variant was not approved the interests of the US armed forces will be met
The White House will be satisfied with the approved amount, Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin said. President Barack Obama is unlikely to veto it. According to Viktor Baranets, a military expert with the Komsomolskaya Pravda, the US military budget has been varying between $600 billion – $700 billion for many years.
“Now it is important to answer the question of whether America is starting disarmament or not. Having such a gigantic military budget, which is almost $700 billion (plus or minus $500 million or even $50 billion more or less) does not mean any crucial changes for the US defense policy. Recently a number of Congressmen have proposed Obama to cut the military budget almost in half which outraged Pentagon.
In the current situation it becomes difficult for the US president to choose. Obama plans to run for reelection and now he has to sit on two chairs- he should develop social programs without harming the interests of the armed forces, the expert notes. That’s why the new budget meets the Pentagon’s interest Viktor Baranets says.
“American experts have thoroughly studied all the articles of the military budget and got rid of non-core ones which concern the development of some types of weapons.”
The 2012 military budget envisages further purchases of drones and helicopters. In particular, $10 billion are to be spent on the development of anti-missile systems. At the same time slower economic growth forces the US administration to cut military spending. In the coming financial year the Pentagon plans to save more than $10 billion by abandoning the development of some types of weapons.