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Letter to the editor: Senators should not fund OCA part of the budget

By the end of this year, the U.S. will have fewer than 10,000 troops left in Afghanistan. The U.S. will not technically be at war with any country. So why does President Barack Obama want to increase the amount of money our country allocates to war funding?

I was disturbed to learn in his budget request on March 4, the Obama administration asked Congress for $80 billion for “overseas contingency operations” that is in addition to core Pentagon spending of about $500 billion. This “overseas contingency operations” account was created to fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. With those wars over, the account should disappear. Instead, it seems to be becoming a permanent slush fund that could help the Pentagon get around the effect of budget cuts — a luxury that no other parts of the government have.

I want to encourage people to find out more about the overseas contingency operations fund at and to contact our senators to ask them not to fund this part of the budget. Let’s reinvest the money we’ve been spending on war on other priorities. We should not provide extra padding for the Pentagon’s already well-endowed budget.