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Seamus Daniels, Program Coordinator & Research Assistant for Defense Budget Analysis at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, details their budget analysis report, and why the Department Of Defense […]

Seamus Daniels, Program Coordinator & Research Assistant for Defense Budget Analysis at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, details their budget analysis report, and why the Department Of Defense is “paying more for a smaller force.”


For the first time in a decade, the Department of Defense should be fully funded on the first day of the fiscal year. The Pentagon states that the money will be used to support the national defense strategy, and accomplish Secretary Mattis’ readiness and lethality goals. A budget analysis from the Center for Strategic and International Studies, dives into what that means for the department’s plans. Seamus Daniels, program coordinator & research assistant for Defense Budget Analysis at CSIS, says that the huge cost reflects current spending trends.   “We are paying more for a smaller force. If we look at the strength of the U.S. military today, it is at the lowest levels since our peak during the Cold War. But the defense budget is respectably at one of its highest levels ever today. The trend we are seeing here is that this is driven by a number of areas.” Daniels said. “One of [those areas] is increasing costs per service member. There are a couple of factors that influence this… compensation is increasing annually per service member by roughly 2‑3 percent. And interestingly enough, we are not seeing that commensurate increase in compensation for civilian employees of DoD.”  

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