pentagon seeks authority over training foreign militaries

pentagon seeks authority over training foreign militariesfrom afp: The Pentagon asked Congress Tuesday to give it permanent authority over training and equipping foreign militaries, in a shifting of roles from the State Department.

Both Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice sought Congressional approval for the change, as well as authorization for the Pentagon to spend 750 million dollars in 2009 in helping foreign militaries…

Rice also said the State Department is prepared to launch a “civilian response corps” this year if the Congress approves its request for a 248.6 million dollars to build it… A reserve force of 1,500 civilians would be formed, providing a pool of expertise that could be tapped for these nation-building missions, they said.