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Newly released budget documents have revealed that the Pentagon wants to increase spending for underwater drones and surveillance technology. According to USA Today, the budget for DARPA research into the Hydra program — an underwater “truck” which would carry unmanned submarines and drones — will rise from $14.9 million in this fiscal year to $29.9 million next year.

That’s not the only program getting a budget increase. DARPA’s Upward Falling Payloads program, which “will develop forward-deployed (drones) that can provide non-lethal effects or situational awareness over large maritime areas,” will also receive a 59% budget increase, from $11.9 million to nearly $19 million.

As the USA Today points out, the Obama administration is shifting military planning away from the Middle East toward the Pacific, to counter the influence of China in the region.

Read more: http://www.usatoday.com/story/nation/2014/03/13/pentagon-upward-falling-payloads/6371505

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