US Committed to Indo-Pacific Region Despite Budget Constraints

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Washington, DC – The United States top defense official is keeping his focus on all the challenges around the world and some of them are in the Indo-Pacific area, according to John Kirby, the Pentagon Press Secretary.

Answering a question from IAT, the press secretary told the Department of Defense regular press briefing, “You’re going to continue to see (Defense) Secretary Austin (Lloyd J. Austin III) focused keenly on the Indo-Pacific area.”

With a moderate increase in the Pentagon budget for this coming year, doubts arise about its impact on the Pentagon’s commitments towards its alliances in the Indo-Pacific area.

Pointing journalists back to what the secretary said when he was testifying in front of the Senate Armed Services Committee before his confirmation that “he believes that the PRC is the pacing challenge for this department.”

“He believes we do need to make sure we’re ready for great power competition and for the threats and challenges that many nation states pose to our national security. And a lot of that exists,” continued Kirby.

“A lot of those threats and challenges exist in the Indo-Pacific area of responsibility, which is, again, why that was the first geographic area outside the country that he visited after becoming the secretary of defense,” said Kirby, thus highlighting the importance of the Indo-Pacific region.

Press Secretary Kirby noted the budget allotment is still developing, adding, “I won’t get into details of the program. You will see that develop in the appropriate time.”

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Tejinder Singh, Editor, India America Today & White House Correspondent

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