$146 Billion Military Spending Bill Looms In Congress

A tense vote in Congress on the proposed $146 billion military spending bill is approaching, and Bush warns that there will probably be a sharp increase in violent casualties in Iraq. Iraqi insurgents and Al Qaeda will attempt to influence the debate on the war by launching spectacular attacks in advance of the US military’s assessment of its progress in September.

There is a compromise in this bill, but it is not the compromise that Democrats had hoped for. Non-military reconstruction aid will be conditional on the Iraqi Government’s successful containment of violence in the country, which does move towards placing more responsibility in the hands of Iraqis, true; but it contains no plan or funding for a redeployment of the troops, and certainly no assurance of a troop withdrawal timetable.

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