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The size of the United States military has declined more than 60% since the Korean War, but the cost of military personnel has doubled. Can the Defense Department afford a military force big enough to address current and future threats?

  • Seamus Daniels, associate director and associate fellow for Defense Budget Analysis at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, said the department should take a holistic look at compensation structure, personnel requirements for different platforms and numbers of people needed for various missions.
  • Daniels said the department has cut the size of the force in response to rising personnel costs, which reduces active duty end strength.
  • The National Defense Strategy and emerging technology are garnering a lot of attention right now, but it is also important to focus on modernizing personnel management, Daniels said.

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