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Military Capabilities

Pentagon budget 2018: White House requests supplemental USD6 billion to cover missile defence, Afghanistan

07 November 2017

The White House on 6 November sent Congress a nearly USD6 billion supplement budget request to cover new ‘emergency’ funding for missile defence and additional troops for Afghanistan.A GMD Ground-Based Interceptor being lowered into a silo at Fort Greely, Alaska. The Trump administration has asked for 20 more GBIs and a new missile field at Fort Greely. (Boeing)A GMD Ground-Based Interceptor being lowered into a silo at Fort Greely, Alaska. The Trump administration has asked for 20 more GBIs and a new missile field at Fort Greely. (Boeing)

Under an emergency requirement, the request proposed USD2.1 billion for construction of another Ground-Based Interceptor (GBI) field at Ft Greely in Alaska, initial procurement for another 20 GBIs, procurement of 16 Standard Missile 3 (SM-3) Block IIA interceptors used with the US Navy’s Aegis ballistic missile defence (BMD) system, procurement of 50 interceptors for the US Army’s Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (THAAD) defence system, and “other discrimination and shooter capabilities”, according to a copy of the funding package viewed by Jane's .

It also asked for USD839 million for “combined missile detection, disrupt/defeat, and defense”, including the procurement of 147 Patriot Advanced Capability 3 Missile Segment Enhancement (PAC-3 MSE) air and missile defence interceptors.

It requested USD674 million to repair the USS John S McCain (DDG 56) and USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62) guided-missile destroyers – both are equipped with the Aegis BMD systems – that collided with merchant ships in the Pacific.

The move comes after a flurry of North Korean missile tests, including of its Hwasong-14 (KN-20) intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

For additional overseas contingency operations (OCO) funding, Trump requested USD985 million for US operations in Afghanistan, which he said an attached letter would cover an additional 3,500 US troops to Afghanistan. Trump in August announced the United States would add troops there.

The US Department of Defense, like the rest of the federal government, is operating on a stop-gap budget that funds departments at last year's levels in lieu of appropriation legislation for fiscal year 2018, which began on 1 October.

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