Force Cuts are the nature of the beast. That beast is the US Army and for those that wanted to serve after the end of the Viet Nam war, it meant a "RIF". Those that were serving at the end of the first Gulf War and Cold War it meant let Uncle Sam pay you to leave the Army. Now that the war in Iraq is over and the end is in site for Afghanistan the Army is now stuck with more Soldiers than it needs. For as long as I can remember the annual recruiting goal of the Army was 80,000 people. This current fiscal year the goal is 58,000. This is the first step in reducing the budget of the Army's and the nation's to decrease the national deficit.
Another problem faces those that decided to make the Army a carreer. That primary concern Soldiers have involves how the budget may affect their retirement. The sergeant major (Seargeant Major of the Army) said he and other leaders are committed to preserving for Soldiers what they were promised.
"The bottom line is this, the president, through the secretary of Defense, and the secretary of the Army and the chief and myself are committed to maintaining the current system of retirement for those that currently serve," Chandler said. "I meet with members of Congress ... I have yet to find a member of Congress who said that we are willing to cut retirement for those currently in uniform, because they all understand the commitment and the sacrifice that very small population of folks have paid to our nation." That number is less than 1% of the population of the US.
Retirees have a different problem. Some members of congress feel the benefits the nation gives to retired military people is to generous. Senators like the not conservative the honorable RINO John McCain want to raise costs of the most charished benefit, TRICare health insurance. It is bad enough that at age 65 military retirees are shoved, pushed or moved to Medicare. That benefit we thought was for life (what we were told when we signed up), just isn't.
So for those that are currently serving with ideas of making it a carreer, start now letting your congressional representatives (approval as a body <10%) that you are watching them and don't want any possible future benefits cut. What benefits you have now is nothing like what you will receive in the end.
Thanks for serving