Biden proposes $715 billion defense budget, 2.7 percent pay raise for military: deter Chinese Communist Party

U.S. President Joe Biden’s 2022 budget submitted to Congress.

President Joe Biden’s proposed $715 billion Defense Department budget includes a 2.7 percent increase in military pay and shifts billions of dollars in spending away from the old system to help pay for modernizing the nuclear arsenal to deter the Chinese Communist Party.

The fiscal year 2022 defense spending budget submitted to Congress on Friday (May 28) plans to invest in military readiness, space, the Pacific Deterrence Initiative, which aims to counter the Chinese Communist Party’s military expansion in Asia, and nuclear weapons technology.

The budget request would purchase warships and warplanes and pay for maintenance and payroll, with another $38 billion earmarked for defense-related programs at the FBI, the Department of Energy and other government agencies, bringing the total national security budget to $753 billion, a 1.7 percent increase over the 2021 budget level.

In addition, funds are also being devoted to further development and testing of hypersonic weapons and other “next-generation” systems as the military aims to build capabilities to counter Russia and the Chinese Communist Party.

The president’s budget request, including the military’s budget, is usually the starting point for negotiations with Congress, which has the ultimate authority on how the funds are spent.

The proposed pay raise for DoD military and civilian personnel comes on the heels of a 3 percent increase in their salaries for fiscal year 2021, which ends Sept. 30.

More than $5 billion would go to the Pacific Deterrence Initiative. Designed to counter China and focus on Indo-Pacific competition, the initiative aims to increase U.S. readiness in the region by funding radar, satellite and missile systems. Specifically, the Pentagon plans to increase funding for missiles such as the Raytheon Tomahawk and the Standard Missile 6 to deter China.

Tensions with an increasingly aggressive China are a concern for U.S. military planners. Last week, Beijing accused the United States of threatening peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait after a U.S. warship again passed through the sensitive waters.

To address this shift and the cost of a huge research budget, among other things, the Pentagon is looking to divest some of its older equipment that has high maintenance costs.

The assets to be divested by the Army, Navy and Air Force will total $2.8 billion in fiscal year 2022.

The retired equipment includes four Littoral Combat Ships, 42 A-10 aircraft that provide close air support to ground forces, and 14 KC-10 and 18 KC-135 aircraft used for aerial refueling.

The U.S. will reduce purchases of General Dynamics-built M1 Abrams tanks, from 102 to 70 in fiscal year 2021.