President Bush has signed a $400 billion defense spending bill
for the current fiscal year, saying that at a time of conflict
and challenge, America stands with its military.
Mr. Bush says the massive new defense spending bill sends
an important message at a time when U.S. troops are deployed
in Iraq and Afghanistan and engaged in fighting a global
war on terrorism.
"We face enemies that measure their progress by the chaos
they inflict, the fear they spread and the innocent lives
they destroy," he said. "America's military is standing between
our country and grave danger."
Speaking at a Pentagon signing ceremony for the legislation,
the president described America's enemies as "cunning and
ruthless and dangerous."
But he said the United States and its coalition partners
will ultimately prevail.
"Yet these killers are now facing the United States of America
and a great coalition of responsible nations and this threat
to civilization will be defeated," said Mr. Bush.
The defense bill totals just over $400 billion. It includes
a pay increase for military personnel as well as other benefits
and reforms the defense department's civilian personnel system.
It also includes funds for new aircraft, ships and ground
combat equipment. In addition, the legislation provides just
over $9 billion for ballistic missile defense.