The Department of Defense (DoD) is a department of the federal government and has three main components: The departments of the Army, Navy, and Air Force. The DoD is housed in the Pentagon building. The department's roles and limits are contained in Title 10 of the US Code. This section of the law has five components: Subtitle A refers to General Military Law, Subtitle B to the Army, Subtitle C to the Navy and the Marine Corps, Subtitle D to the Air Force and Subtitle E to Military Reserves. Important agencies within the DoD include the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA), National Security Agency (NSA), the Missile Defense Agency, and the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA). The DoD receives the largest portion of each year's federal discretionary spending budget. 

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Cyber stands to make gains in national defense bill, but Obama threatens veto

To help bolster U.S. cyber defense, the bill calls for authorizing the president to use military cyber action in response to an attack on the nation, additional funding to the Defense Innovation Initiative for increased investment in various technologies, and more cyber procurement funding.

IG: DoD footed the bill for nearly $1M of employees' personal casino and strip club purchases

Defense Department employees and military members used their government-issued charge cards to spend more than $1 million in personal expenses at casinos and strip clubs, says a May 19 DoD inspector general report.

Report: Federal R&D funding was slashed in fiscal 2013

Federal funding for research and development fell dramatically in fiscal 2013 compared to the previous fiscal year, which includes about $10 billion in cuts to the Defense Department, says the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics.

Army, Air Force face challenges in completing training requirements for drone pilots, GAO says

The Defense Department has acquired more than 10,000 drones and training pilots is an integral part of its plans. However, the Army and Air Force in recent years have faced several challenges in getting that pilot training completed.

New report argues for narrowing role of nuclear weapons in US policies, diplomacy and forces

The report recognizes that nuclear weapons are "indispensable" to deter other nations from attacking the U.S. and allies with such weapons, but offer no other advantage over U.S. conventional military superiority.

SASC approves bill to overhaul military retirement plan

The Senate Armed Services Committee advanced a bill May 14 that would fundamentally change the way the Defense Department handles military retirement. Part of the 2015 National Defense Authorization Act outlines the provision, which would change the military's retirement plan from a defined benefit structure to a defined contribution, or 401k-style, plan.

China views offensive cyber capabilities as key during warfare, annual DoD report says

In such circumstances, the People's Liberation Army would use cyberspace operations to not only achieve "information dominance," but disable an enemy's operations.

GAO: DoD moves too slowly on whistleblower investigations

The Defense Department is not moving quickly enough on whistleblower retaliation investigations, says a May 7 Government Accountability Office report.

GAO: Signs of success for DoD innovative tech transition program, but improvements needed

RIP, one of several DoD programs that's intended to accelerate the development and use of cutting-edge technologies as efficiently as possible, has gotten about $1.3 billion in congressional funding between fiscal years 2011 and 2015.

Defense Secretary comes out against Republican budget proposal

The head of the Defense Department rebuffed Republican lawmakers' attempt to use Overseas Contingency funding to bolster the DoD budget while still reducing spending for non-defense agencies.