Sat, Jan 30, 2010
$4 Billion Requested For New Strategic Bombers
With the dust hardly settled on the federal government's FY2010
budget, a draft of the Obama administration's spending request for
next year shows a request nearly for $11 billion in the next budget
round for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. It also seeks $4 billion
over 4 years for development of a new long-range strategic
Defense News reports that the budget, due to be sent to Congress
by February 1st, will cut several programs as well, such as the
C-17 and the F-136 alternate engine for the F-35. But the budget
nearly doubles the purchase of the MQ-9 Reaper UAS.
The draft calls the F-35 program "most important", and asks for
$10.7 billion for continued development and the purchase of 42 of
the Joint Strike Fighters. The summary of the draft document also
says that $4 billion will be requested for "a portfolio of
initiatives to improve long-range strike capabilities." Those
include both efforts to upgrade both the B-2 and B-52 fleets and
"Later in this [2011-2015] time frame, funds are available to begin
developing a new bomber and cruise missile."
In addition, the summary says the budget will ask Congress for
$9.6 billion "for the acquisition of a variety of modern rotary
wing aircraft." The list includes:
- $1.4 billion for Army UH-60 Black Hawks.
- $1.2 billion for Army CH-47 Chinooks.
- $2.7 billion for V-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraft.
- $1.7 billion MH-60R/S Seahawks for the Navy.
There will also be a request for funds to stand up two "combat
aviation brigades" creating a 12th active duty brigade next fiscal
year, and put the initial funding in place for a 13th brigade in
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