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The 2010 Defense Budget: The Pentagon formally announced the Fiscal 2010 defense budget proposal with a round of briefings that began early Thursday afternoon. The Administration is asking for $533.8 billion in budget authority for base defense programs and another $130 billion to support ongoing overseas contingency operations. According to a Pentagon release, the budget reflects a 2.1 percent inflation-adjusted increase over the 2009 enacted budget of $513.3 billion. Defense Secretary Robert Gates on April 6 already had announced major weapons systems cuts, including a proposal to end F-22 Raptor production at 187 aircraft, which would leave USAF  with 186 Raptors. (DOD 2010 budget overview; DOD 2010 budget summary charts) (More budget coverage ahead.)