Two Marines walked away from a fighter jet crash thanks to a quick-thinking ejection maneuver over Beaufort, South Carolina.
The Marines were operating their F/A-18D Hornet on a routine flight Thursday afternoon when something went wrong. Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort said in a statement that smoke was billowing from the crash site and that a brushfire was ignited due to the explosion. Ironically enough, the jet crashed on the family plantation of South Carolina’s former governor Mark Sanford.
Sanford said the jet crashed near his late father’s burial plot on Coosaw Plantation, part of the Sanford family’s property. The former governor and his siblings all grew up on the land, he said. His sister, Sarah Sanford Rauch, said she actually saw the engine catch on fire in the sky and plummet to the ground.
“I said to my [other] brother, ‘No, no, no, this is bad,’ ” Rauch said to local media. “And then about a second later there was a colossal explosion.”
Rauch and her brother, John, ran towards the wreckage expecting to find two bodies. Instead, they found the two Marines walking upright, unharmed and happy to be alive. Both Marines could walk on their own, according to Rauch.
The aircraft carried a value of $34 million and costs the military around $6.5 million annually to operate.
The Marines survived the fighter jet crash, but can taxpayers survive Biden’s next round of spending increases?
Speaking of high military costs, sources around Washington say that President Biden will ask Congress for upwards of $770 billion in funding; with options to add on up to $800 billion. Without a doubt, exorbitant military costs are nothing new and help protect this great nation. But taxpayers will have to bear the brunt of this expense despite the fact that the government just finished printing over $15 trillion during the pandemic.
Comparatively, President Trump requested $752.9 billion in defense spending during his final year in office. Congress bumped that figure by $25 billion to $778 billion for this fiscal year, the first under Biden’s leadership.
The Pentagon reportedly wants to modernize the military by investing in sustainable outposts, climate-change measures, and electric vehicles.
The $778 billion defense budget for the fiscal year 2022 accounts for around 3.7 percent of U.S. gross domestic product. This country’s defense spending accounts for 39 percent of all military spending globally. Currently, China spends the second-most on defense at $252 billion, or roughly 1.7 percent of its GDP.
All signs point toward approval in Congress, as well. Apparently, the White House and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin are “more or less on par” with the requested amount. This means the figure will undergo some further analysis, but will likely pass, and might even receive a bump. Sources also said the budget “would benefit the biggest U.S. defense contractors including Lockheed, Northrup Grumman Corp, and General Dynamics Corp.”