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Next U.S. president to face defense budget quagmire: experts
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08:16, July 07, 2007

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The next U.S. president will face a defense-budget quagmire, with one estimate the Pentagon may need up to 100 billion U.S. dollars for repairing and replacing war-worn equipment, experts said.

The U.S. military has already spent billions of dollars, but ground vehicles and other military equipment will require more maintenance work than initially planned, Jeffrey Bialos of Johns Hopkins University was quoted by the Defense News as saying on Friday.

Moreover, the Pentagon could face a bill of up to 100 billion dollars for additional reset costs, dollars that are still unplanned, said the former deputy undersecretary of defense.

That will make things difficult for the next president, he said.

Gordon Adams, a Clinton-era official, painted a bleak picture for defense budgets in the future.

Adams said Washington needs to be talking about what kind of fighting force America will need, and what it can afford.

Another factor that will squeeze defense spending is the Bush administration's plan to swell the Army and Marine Corps by 92,000 troops over the next decade.

Adding 70,000 soldiers to the Army's ranks could cost up to 25 billion dollars in 2013 alone.

Former administration officials and military experts agree all these problems will be up to the next president to deal with.

Source: Xinhua

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