WASHINGTON — President Donald J. Trump told a joint session of Congress
Tuesday night that the United States will work with a coalition to “extinguish” the
Islamic State of Iraq and Syria from the planet.
Trump also told Congress he will forward a fiscal 2018 budget request that will
increase defense spending by $54 billion and eliminate sequestration.
In his address, Trump listed actions he has taken since taking office just over a
month ago, including directing the Defense Department to work with other agencies
to develop a plan to destroy ISIS. Defense officials delivered that plan to the White
House this week.
The president also imposed new sanctions on entities and individuals who support
Iran’s ballistic missile program, ordered a review of military readiness and pledged
to rebuild the armed forces.
“To keep America safe we must provide the men and women of the United States
military with the tools they need to prevent war and — if they must — to fight and to
win,” Trump said.
The fiscal 2018 defense budget request will rebuild the military and eliminate
sequester, he said, and it will contain one of the largest defense spending increases
in American history.
“The challenges we face as a nation are great, but our people are even greater,” he
said. “And none are greater or braver than those who fight for America in uniform.
To those allies who wonder what kind of friend America will be, look no further than
the heroes who wear our uniform.”
America will lead based on the vital national interests of the United States and its
partners around the world, Trump said.
“Our foreign policy calls for a direct, robust and meaningful engagement with the
world,” he said.
The United States strongly supports the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and
other allies in the Middle East and the Pacific, the president said.
“But our partners must meet their financial obligations,” he added.
“We expect our partners … to take a direct and meaningful role in both strategic and
military operations, and pay their fair share of the cost,” Trump said. “We will respect
historic institutions, but we will also respect the sovereign rights of nations.”
The United States will reach out to other nations to find new friends and forge new
partnerships, the president said. “We want harmony and stability, not war and
conflict,” he said. “We want peace, wherever peace can be found.” the president
said. “Hopefully, the 250th year for America will see a world that is more peaceful,
more just, and more free.” See also 2017 Military Pay Charts