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Feb. 2, 2010—The Defense Department is asking Congress for $708 billion in Fiscal 2011, a base budget of $548.9 billion and $159.3 to fund military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq next fiscal year.

Added to this record-high total is a Fiscal 2010 supplemental request for $33 billion to cover the costs of the ongoing troop surge in Afghanistan. Defense Secretary Robert

Gates told reporters Monday in the Pentagon that the new spending proposal builds on the reforms that he instituted in the Fiscal 2010 spending plan to reshape the US defense establishment with an emphasis on institutionalizing and enhancing the US ability to fight and prevail in the current wars in Southwest Asia. This includes reinforcing realism in how the DOD approaches risk and how it uses its resources, he said.

The base budget request represents an increase of $18.2 billion over the enacted defense appropriations in Fiscal 2010. This is a real increase of 1.8 percent after factoring for inflation, said Gates.

Broken down by service, the request contains: $160.6 billion for the Navy, $150 billion for the Air Force (including $30.4 billion for non-Air Force-specific defense activities that the service manages), $143.4 billion for the Army, and $94.9 billion for defense-wide accounts.

Among the main funding categories, DOD seeks $200.2 billion for operations and maintenance (up $15.7 billion from Fiscal 2010), $138.5 billion for military personnel (up $3.5 billion), $112.9 billion for procurement ($8.1 billion more), $76.1 billion for research, development, test, and evaluation activities (minus $4 billion), and $16.9 billion for military construction ($4.1 billion less).

Among the highlight for major programs across the defense enterprise, DOD would like to spend $10.7 billion on the F-35 strike fighter program, both to stabilize its cost and schedule and to procure 43 aircraft in Fiscal 2011, said Gates.

More than $25 billion is programmed to support a realistic and sustainable Navy shipbuilding program, while more than $3 billion is allotted in Fiscal 2011 to modernize ground forces, including a new ground combat vehicle.

The spending proposal includes $6.3 billion for special operations forces, about percent higher than in Fiscal 2010. Among its applications, this funding would add 2,800 SOF personnel in Fiscal 2011.

The request also supports bolstering helicopter fleets and adding two new Army combat aviation brigades. And it continues efforts to provide greater intelligence-surveillance-reconnaissance support to ground troops in Afghanistan and Iraq, Gates said.

The spending proposal also continues to strengthen US capabilities in space and it supports the standup of US Cyber Command.

It also provides more than $2 billion for wounded warriors and it continues efforts to add more than 20,000 acquisition professionals to supervise or replace contractors by 2015.

Gates noted that some $4 billion is earmarked from Fiscal 2011 to Fiscal 2015 for long-range strike programs, including developing a conventional LRS capability and upgrading and modernizing the Air Force's bomber fleet.

Gates' office seeks to cancel C-17 aircraft procurement, the F-136 engine for the F-35, the Navy's CG(X) cruiser and EP(X) surveillance aircraft, and the Air Force's Third Generation Infrared Surveillance program. 

Also see Modest Growth for coverage of the Air Force budget.

DOD Fiscal 2011 budget briefing slides

DOD Fiscal 2011 budget overview