Military hardware wearing faster than expected

That question by the US soldier directed to Don Rumsfeld spawned a flurry of interest by US media in the state of the campagin. MSNBC take this look at the current state of US military hardware.

The number of tanks requiring major repairs is up 600 percent. Before the war, some 300 Humvees a year would go through a major overhaul. Today that number has skyrocketed to 5,700 — a jump of nearly 2,000 percent.

“Our folks are in a constant cycle of repair, repair, repair to return this equipment to the force,” says Gary Motsek, with the U.S. Army Support Operations.

And the cost is staggering. Last year the Army got an additional $1 billion to pay for wartime repairs. This year the price tag is expected to climb to $9 billion.

Even then, it’s an increase in military spending that will extend well beyond the war.

“Should the war end today, it would take two years for the United States Army to replenish itself and bring its equipment back to proper state,” says Rep. Ike Skelton, D-Mo., and a member of the House Armed Services Committee.

Two years to replenish? Feck.