University of West Florida

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses the proposed cuts to the U.S. Department of Defense announced by Sec. of Defense Chuck Hagel. The plan asks for $522 billion. Harper says, “If you look over time the draw down is substantial and a lot of it falls on the Army. We’re looking at moving from an Army of 520,000 troops down to one of about 450,000 troops.” That would take American military forces to the lowest level since before World War II.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel’s proposed cuts to the Pentagon’s budget is aimed at reshaping the military post-Afghanistan. Many are taking a wait and see approach, while some lawmakers are gearing up to fight it.

This is the first such spending plan to fully reflect the end of the combat mission in Afghanistan, and the transition from the last 13 years of war – the longest conflict in U.S. history.