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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Latest Headlines

DoD ready to receive bids for electronic health record modernization program

The Defense Department Aug. 25 officially issued a final, highly anticipated solicitation for a potential $11 billion program to modernize its electronic health record system.

MSPB: Some federal workers think vets get special hiring treatment

The federal government's complex hiring rules favoring veterans have caused federal workers to think vets get unfair treatment, a recently released Merit Systems Protection Board report says. "Some of the perceptions of inappropriate favoritism may have been a result of the complex hiring process and a proliferation of hiring authorities, which can invite misunderstandings and provide opportunities for suspicion," the report says.

IG memo to FAA: Eliminate risks to air traffic control automation system deployment, rein in rising costs

The Transportation Department's inspector general recently said the implementation of an advanced system to help manage air traffic — which the watchdog warned in a previous report could fall short of capabilities, go over budget and over schedule — is still at risk.

Internal probe finds former DARPA director violated ethics rules in endorsing company product

The former director of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency violated government ethics rules by using her government position to endorse a product she developed for a company she founded, an internal Defense Department probe found.

CBO: No sequestration cuts needed for rest of fiscal year

The fiscal 2014 omnibus appropriations bill that President Obama signed in December contained enough spending cuts to avoid across-the-board sequestration cuts for the rest of the fiscal year, an Aug. 15 Congressional Budget Office report says. The CBO is required to report on sequestration cuts in January and August of each year. Minor adjustments to the budget caps have been made since the January report, but CBO says its assessment remains the same.

GAO: DoD isn't plugging cost-saving programs to reduce electricity consumption

The Defense Department isn't promoting utility programs that would reduce electricity use in its buildings during peak hours, a recently released July 11 Government Accountability Office report says. Private electric grid operators offer demand-response programs that provide customers with financial incentives to reduce power use during periods of peak demand, the report says.

GAO: Air Force capital fund below minimum cash requirement one-third of time

Balances in the Air Force Working Capital Fund fell below the minimum cash requirements one-third of the time between fiscal 2009 and 2013, a July 31 Government Accountability Office report says. The Air Force operates the AFWCF to provide certain goods and services to a variety of customers, including the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, non-Defense Department agencies and foreign countries, the report says.

GAO: DoD could save milions by cutting duplicative health plan

The Defense Department could save millions if it cut an outdated healthcare program that's already covered under its Tricare system, a July 31 Government Accountability Office report says. The U.S. Family Health Plan--an association of six health care providers that offers healthcare plans to about 134,000 active duty members--duplicates many of the services that Tricare provides, the report says.

DoD taking steps to implement new civilian performance appraisal system

The Pentagon said it will implement a new performance appraisal system for the majority of the Defense Department's 750,000 civilian employees, the department said recently.

DISA closes data center in Alabama, functions transferred to other centers

The Defense Information Systems Agency closed its Huntsville, Ala., data center on May 30, a move that is expected to save the Defense Department about $3.2 annually.