Free story: 'Slush fund': How the Pentagon's war chest became a Washington budget gimmick

By Tony Bertuca / April 4, 2019 at 12:58 PM

The Overseas Contingency Operations account was introduced in 2009 to fund wars abroad, meant to give the Pentagon greater flexibility to pay for unexpected costs.

While this account has long been criticized as a "slush fund," this year marks a startling departure. The Trump administration's OCO request amounts to 150 percent more than sought the year before, and the Pentagon freely admits it's not to cover direct war requirements. Instead, the White House is seeking to use the war account to finance a $34 billion increase to the defense budget.

How did the Pentagon end up here?

Read the inside story here for free.