Thirty-five Percent or Bust

To maintain the US military’s historical battlefield dominance, the nation should invest 35 percent of the annual defense budget in research, development, and procurement of new systems and technology, according to an Aerospace Industries Association report released Tuesday. “We’re very concerned that research and development and procurement accounts that provide our men and women with the best technology will be disproportionately sacrificed to pay for the kind of cuts the nation is looking for,” underscored AIA President Marion Blakey at the launch event in Washington, D.C., for Defense Investment: Finding the Right Balance. “Americans want to see our troops go into battle with a distinct edge—the edge of technology,” stressed Blakey. She added that ample, consistent spending would avert the “dangerous and very costly peaks and valleys that have characterized” US weapons development and procurement since the 1950s. (Report full text; caution, large-sized file.)