The U.S. Army plans to reduce its number of Soldiers by nearly 50,000 during a five-year span, a general said. The Army Times reported Lt. Gen. Thomas P. Bostick, service personnel chief, said the reductions would begin in March. The Army will cut forces in various ways, including buyouts, voluntary and involuntary separations and retirements, to bring the total to 520,400 active-dutySoldiers by Sept. 30, 2016, the report said.
“We feel that with the demand going down in Iraq and Afghanistan, and given the time to conduct a reasonable drawdown, we can manage [the force reduction] just as we have managed drawdowns in the past,” Bostick said.
“We are currently reviewing the lessons drawn from the 1990s as captured in reports by the Army, Congressional Budget Office and the other services to ensure that we retain as much experience as possible from the ongoing conflicts [in Iraq and Afghanistan],” a member of Bostick’s staff said.
“As in the 1990s, the Army may need to conduct involuntary separations to meet mandated end-strength, but we will do everything we can to shape the force through competitive promotions, reclassifications and voluntary separations before we take harsher measures,” the official said.