The military has more than enough large transport planes, and the appropriation of any more in the next budget year will force some into premature retirement, Defense Department officials told a congressional panel today. The military’s current fleet numbers 223 C-17s and 111 C-5s. A DoD study that concluded in February was consistent with two other studies that found that the current fleet is sufficient.

The department has not requested C-17s, built by Boeing, since the fiscal 2007 budget, yet Congress has added them every year since, spending about $1.25 billion on C-17s “that we don’t want or need,” said Mike McCord, principal deputy undersecretary of defense.

Any additional appropriation for C-17s will have to be offset by retiring some of the military’s older – but still viable — transport planes, the defense officials said…American Forces Press Service

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