Sunday, January 3, 1999 Published at 04:31 GMT
Billions more for US military
President Clinton wants US forces to be able to deploy rapidly
President Clinton has announced plans to increase the military spending of the United States by more than $12bn in the next budget.
Mr Clinton said the new money would help pay for the next generation of ships, planes and weapons systems.
The plans would also finance the biggest pay rise for the military since 1982, and allow the replacement of ageing equipment, barracks and family housing for the 1.4 million Americans on active duty.
"We want our Armed Forces to remain ready to deploy rapidly in any crisis, and that is what this effort will assure," said President Clinton.
Mr Clinton is expected to submit the proposal to Congress next month.
The president's initiative comes at a time when the US military is deployed in the Gulf and in Bosnia - a total of 250,000 soldiers outside the United States.
Senior serving officers are reported to be worried about decreasing readiness levels, insufficient funds for training and shortages of spare parts.
A recent issue of Aviation Week and Space Technology reported that the air strikes launched against Iraq in December had reduced the stockpile of US cruise missiles to a point where the Pentagon feared a shortage.