The Biden administration introduced Friday that it returned greater than $2 billion in navy funds that former President Donald Trump had diverted to the development of the U.S.-Mexico border barrier, whereas the Division of Protection (DOD) concurrently introduced that these funds might be used for abroad navy development initiatives.
As a substitute of border wall development, the DOD said Friday that the $2.2 billion might be used for 66 initiatives throughout 16 international locations, three U.S. territories, and 11 states.
A memo (pdf) launched by the Pentagon reveals that almost all of the funds, or round $1.26 billion, might be spent abroad in locations together with Hungary, Japan, Italy, Bulgaria, Slovakia, Germany, Romania, Spain, and different international locations.
Based on the memo, in a single occasion, about 59 million might be spent on a regional munitions storage facility in Slovakia. In Jordan, $18 million might be spent by the Pentagon on an air site visitors management tower and about $34 million might be doled out for a munitions storage space.
Almost $10 million might be spent on the U.S. navy base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, for the substitute of a “working canine therapy facility,” it confirmed. The Navy will spend about $53 million, in the meantime, on an “electrical system improve” in Bahrain.
About $608 million might be spent on navy initiatives within the U.S. territories of Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Inside the USA, about $300 million might be spent on navy initiatives in Alaska, Florida, Indiana, Maryland, and several other different states.
DOD press secretary John Kirby advised reporters that the division accepted a $150 million navy package deal for Ukraine, together with programs to counter artillery radar and drones.
“The hassle diverted crucial assets away from navy coaching amenities and colleges, and brought on critical dangers to life, security, and the setting,” the White Home mentioned in an announcement Friday in regards to the launch of funds again to the DOD. “It additionally took consideration away from real safety challenges, like drug smuggling and human trafficking.”
In late April, the DOD introduced that it canceled all border barrier development initiatives that had been initially appropriated for different navy initiatives. Throughout President Joe Biden’s first day in workplace on Jan. 20, he issued an order that terminated the development of the border wall.
A further $1.4 billion in border wall funds had been appropriated by Congress for the fiscal yr 2021 as a part of a December 2020 COVID-19 reduction measure. The Biden administration on Friday known as on Congress to rescind the funds to assemble the wall.
Republicans are nearly sure to pounce on Friday’s announcement. Following Biden’s January government order and a surge in unlawful immigration, GOP lawmakers and governors have known as on the administration to re-start development of the wall. The Biden administration, nonetheless, described the wall development as a “waste of cash” that doesn’t curb unlawful immigration.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, a Republican, mentioned Thursday that he’ll direct Texas to assemble a wall alongside the state’s border with Mexico, arguing that it’s wanted to cease the surge of individuals illegally crossing the border into the USA.
“It would assist all of us to work on methods to stem the movement of illegal immigration and to stem the movement of unlawful contraband,” Abbott said throughout an occasion.
In April, Arizona Legal professional Common Mark Brnovich filed a lawsuit towards the Biden administration over his order rescinding the wall’s development, alleging the transfer violates the Nationwide Environmental Safety Act.
The border wall was considered one of Trump’s key marketing campaign guarantees when he was a candidate in 2016. Throughout his administration, greater than 450 miles of the barrier had been constructed, based on Customs and Border Safety.