Friday, April 15, 2022

Increased Defense Budget Spending

     In the US, military spending is the second-largest budget item after social security after social security. Overall military spending has continued to increase and the budget for FY22 is no exception. In fact, the defense budget for FY2022 granted $715 billion to the DoD (Department of Defense) for regular military efforts, as well as some newer initiatives. On that list of new initiatives are: Nuclear Modernization at $27.7 billion, Missile Defense at $20.4 billion, and Long Range Fires at $6.6 billion. Additional funding will be distributed to each of the branches for readiness development. The breakdown for each of those is as follows:

  • Air Force- $36.5 billion

  • Navy and USMC- $48.5 billion

  • Army- $27.8 billion 

  • Spec Ops (Special Operations)- $9.4 billion

    Service members are also receiving a 2.7% pay raise and an increase in their housing allowance this fiscal year. Normally, the budget for Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) is not included in the DoD funds. However, as of 2022 the funds for (OCO) are included in the DoD budget. In 2022 the federal budget allocated $752.9 trillion to the Department of Defense, which is a 1.6% increase from the total amount allocated 2021. The DoD also used $300 million for military assistance at Ukraine's border and $150 million for border security in the Baltic countries for defense against Russia.

    U.S. military spending is greater than those of the next 10 largest government expenditures combined and it is likely that the defense budget will continue to grow little by little in the coming years. That is expected to rise significantly in the coming years due to the increase in the housing costs, medical costs, retirement, and maintenance of equipment such as planes. With the defense budget increasing that means funds for research, healthcare, construction, education, and other critical budget areas will decrease. US defense spending will also increase the national debt which as of this year, the US has surpassed $30 trillion dollars in debt. This may not seem like a big deal given that between FY2021 and FY2022, there has only been less than a 2% increase. 

However, we cannot predict what events may happen in the future. For example, the COVID 19 pandemic caused an increase in federal military spending for National Guard assistance nationwide. The war in Ukraine is also causing us to spend more from our defense budget which could either end after the war is over, or continue to rise should tensions escalate further. The addition of the Space Force is also an additional service to account for now, even though it resides under the Air Force budget. Overall, the defense budget doesn't look like it will be decreasing anytime soon.

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