The Pentagon announced a diversion of military funds to the extent of $3.6-billion to finance the Mexico Border Wall. It was a promise President Donald Trump made during his 2016 election campaign and it has not yet materialized. He said Mexico would pay for it but that is not likely to happen and taxpayers will have to shoulder the burden. There will be a diversion of funds from a number of military projects spread over a number of states and US territories.

That has not gone down well with lawmakers.

CNN explains that the much-needed $3.6-billion would consist of under $1.8 billion from projects in 23 states and three US territories. The balance of more than $1.8 billion would come from deferment of military construction projects overseas. This fund of $3.6 billion would cover the cost of the 11 wall projects on the southern border with Mexico. The cuts would affect 127 domestic and overseas projects.

The effect will be on a variety of projects

Puerto Rico will be a major loser. It could face the ax of more than $400 million allotted for funding of planned military construction projects.

Don’t miss the latest news!
Click on the topic you interest most. We'll keep you updated with all the news you shouldn't miss.
Donald Trump

The fund would go towards the wall under the Pentagon's plan. Overseas spending would also reduce. Nearly $771 million earmarked for projects in Europe will feel the pinch. Some of these relate to upgrades for airfield and staging areas in Eastern Europe to improve the defense of US allies vis-a-vis Russian threats.

CNN says a senior US defense official admits the importance of all projects but adds, “we also have to respond to the emergency we've been directed to respond to on the southwest border." There are 127 military construction projects on the anvil and the funds generated to the tune of $3.6 billion would be used to build 175 miles of the southern border wall.

The breakup of the 175 miles is 94.5 miles in federal property and 81 miles in non-federal property. Six of the projects approved by the Secretary of Defense fall in the category of federal property and construction of the border wall could begin in about 135 days in these areas.

Funds to fight wildfires in California will be a casualty

In order to generate funds for the Mexico border wall, California will have to forgo funds to fight wildfires.

The state has seen a rise in incidents of this nature. Last year, it witnessed the deadliest Wildfire in Paradise. The tragedy left 85 people dead with unaccountable loss of properties. Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) criticized the Trump administration’s plan to divert billions of dollars in funding away from military projects to pay for the wall. He described it as a “giant vanity project that will not make anyone safer.” The plan envisages diverting $8 million in funds for an “Airlift Wing” simulator for the California National Guard.

This imparts training to pilots to fly planes that provide assistance during wildfires and other emergencies and would be useful in places where these are on the rise.

Don't miss our page on Facebook!
Click to read more