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Smarter

I beat up on the House yesterday, so let me give credit where it is due today:

WASHINGTON (AP) — A House of Representatives panel presented on Tuesday a $649 billion defense spending bill for next year's Pentagon budget that would pay for wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and wade into the long-running fight over a multibillion-dollar next-generation jet fighter.

 

The House Appropriations Committee bill would provide $119 billion for the two wars, $841 million more than President Barack Obama sought but $39 billion below the current amount. American combat forces are scheduled to leave Iraq at the end of the year and Obama is weighing the first round in the drawdown of the 100,000 troops in Afghanistan in July, with all combat forces scheduled to be out by 2014.

 

The legislation would provide $13 billion to train and equip Afghan security forces and $1.1 billion for the Pakistan Counterinsurgency Capability Fund, although 75 percent of the money would be withheld until the defense secretary reports to Congress on how the money would be spent in Pakistan.

I would crow that folks on Capitol Hill must be reading our new report (.pdf), but honestly, thinking more critically about the money we give to Pakistan's military and security services is just common sense. Anyway, well done.

Update: It has been called to my attention the language in this legislation borrows heavily from a very similar ammendment from the HASC.

Pakistan

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