Pentagon in Afghan Budget Crisis, Seeks to Shift $10 Billion in Funds

Needs Congressional Approval for Such a Large Move

by Jason Ditz, May 17, 2013

The Pentagon has announced today that it is seeking Congressional approval for a “shift” of $9.6 billion in approved spending, with most of the changes going to cope with the increased costs of the Afghan War.

The Pentagon has reportedly already been shifting money into the various “contingency funds” related to the war, but it convinced it will rapidly exceed the $7.5 billion cap on such transfers as the crisis worsens. Beyond this level they would need Congress to sign off.

Recent reports have indicated that the Pentagon’s “placeholder” estimates for Afghan War costs in upcoming years are much higher than expected, and Pentagon Comptroller Robert Hale has warned the costs may continue to rise “substantially.”

Though the per year appropriations for Afghanistan are still down from the levels spent at the peak of the surge, but previous estimates of savings from the drawdown have not panned out nearly to the level expected, with analysts saying that the military has yet to fully explain why the war is still so costly.

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