U.S. Army to cut 40,000 troops over next two years: USA Today

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Army to Cut 40,000 Troops, Not Including Sequestration Cuts
The U.S. Army plans to cut 40,000 troops over the next two years, affecting all its domestic and foreign posts, USA Today reported on Tuesday, saying the Army also planned to cut 17,000 civilian employees.

The cuts would reduce the active-duty Army from its current size of about 490,000 soldiers to about 450,000, its smallest number since before the United States entered World War Two.

The troop reductions were initially announced in February 2014 when then-Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel unveiled the Pentagon's budget for the 2015 fiscal year. The figures were also included in the Pentagon's four-year planning document, the Quadrennial Defense Review 2014.

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U.S. Army to cut 40,000 troops over next two years: USA Today
U.S paratrooper of the 4th Infantry Brigade, Combat team (Airborne) 25th Infantry Division, part of the NATO-led peacekeeping mission in Kosovo serving as NATO peacekeepers in Kosovo looks through his scope after parachuting down from a Hercules C-130 in a military exercise near the village of Ramjan on Wednesday, May 27, 2015. U.S Army peacekeeping force regularly conducts parachute exercises to maintain proficiency in airborne operations on this deployment in Kosovo. (AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu)
U.S paratroopers of the 4th Infantry Brigade, Combat team (Airborne) 25th Infantry Division, part of the NATO-led peacekeeping mission in Kosovo serving as NATO peacekeepers in Kosovo parachute down from a Hercules C-130 during a military exercise near the village of Ramjan on Wednesday, May 27, 2015. U.S Army peacekeeping force regularly conducts parachute exercises to maintain proficiency in airborne operations on this deployment in Kosovo. (AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu)
U.S. Army Chief of Staff Gen. Raymond Odierno, second from right, Commander of the Lithuanian Land Forces Major General Almantas Leika, left, and U.S. Army 4th Infantry Division Commander of the Mission Support Element Brigadier General Michael Tarsa,right, arrives to attend in the combined Lithuanian-U.S. training exercise at the Gaiziunai Training Area some 110 kms (69 miles) west of the capital Vilnius Lithuania, Tuesday, July 7, 2015. (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)
Members of the U.S. Army of the Mission Command Element (MCE) of the 4th Infantry Division attend a welcome ceremony upon their arrival by plane at a airport in Vilnius , Lithuania, Wednesday, July 1, 2015. (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)
U.S. Army Chief of Staff Gen. Raymond Odierno attend in the combined Lithuanian-U.S. training exercise at the Gaiziunai Training Area some 110 kms (69 miles) west of the capital Vilnius Lithuania, Tuesday, July 7, 2015. (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)
Members of the U.S. Army 173rd Airborne Brigade practice during the combined Lithuanian-U.S. training exercise at the Gaiziunai Training Area some 110 kms (69 miles) west of the capital Vilnius, Lithuania, Tuesday, July 7, 2015. (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)
U.S. Army Lieutenant General Joseph Anderson stands on the field before a baseball game between the Washington Nationals and the Atlanta Braves at Nationals Park, Thursday, June 25, 2015, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
An army honor guard folds the flag over the casket containing the remains of four soldiers missing from Vietnam War: Army Chief Warrant Officer 3 James L. Phipps, Army Chief Warrant Officer 3 Rainer S. Ramos, Army Staff Sgt. Warren Newton, Army Spc. Fred J. Secrist, during a group burial services, Wednesday, June 17, 2015. at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)
U.S. soldiers attend an opening ceremony of military exercise 'Saber Strike 2015', at the Gaiziunu Training Range in Pabrade some 60km.(38 miles) north of the capital Vilnius, Lithuania, Monday, June 8, 2015. The annual multinational Exercise Saber Strike 2015 organized by the U. S. Army in Europe (USAREUR) on June 1 through 19 comprises brigade-level command post exercise held concurrently in all the three Baltic States and Poland. This year the exercise will train the record number of 6,000 troops from 13 NATO member and partner states - Denmark, Estonia, U.S.A., UK, Canada, Latvia, Poland, Lithuania, Norway, Germany, Portugal, Slovenia and Finland. (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)
U.S paratrooper of the 4th Infantry Brigade, Combat team (Airborne) 25th Infantry Division, part of the NATO-led peacekeeping mission in Kosovo serving as NATO peacekeepers in Kosovo take part in a military exercise near the village of Ramjan on Wednesday, May 27, 2015. U.S Army peacekeeping force regularly conducts parachute exercises to maintain proficiency in airborne operations on this deployment in Kosovo. (AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu)
U.S paratrooper of the 4th Infantry Brigade, Combat team (Airborne) 25th Infantry Division, part of the NATO-led peacekeeping mission in Kosovo serving as NATO peacekeepers in Kosovo packs his gear after jumping from a Hercules C-130 in a military exercise near the village of Ramjan on Wednesday, May 27, 2015. U.S Army peacekeeping force regularly conducts parachute exercises to maintain proficiency in airborne operations on this deployment in Kosovo. (AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu)
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Defense officials confirmed on Tuesday the Army was moving ahead with the plan to reduce uniformed and civilian personnel and was expected to announce details on Thursday about which units would be affected by the cuts.

The personnel cuts come as the Pentagon is attempting to absorb nearly $1 trillion in reductions to planned defense spending over a decade.

(Reporting by Sandra Maler and David Alexander; Editing by Peter Cooney)

U.S. Military Troop Strength Over Time | InsideGov

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