The U.S. House approves a bigger Defense budget, but expresses concern about the stress our military is under. $418-Billion to be spent in 2005 on Defense, just about what President George W. Bush requested. Included is $25-Billion for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, viewed as a first installment with more to be requested next year. How much more? West-Central Missouri Congressman Ike Skelton says Congress doesn’t know. Skelton is the top Democrat on the House Armed Services Committee. He agrees with a statement made by the House Appropriations Committee that “It is becoming clearer with each passing day that these operations are generating great strains on the current force.” Skelton notes his committee has called for an immediate increase of 10,000 troops to the Army, eventually adding 30,000. Skelton says the best aspect of Defense budget is an increase in the money that actually goes to the troops.