Representing the largest organization in the US federal government, the Department of Defense (DoD) is responsible for protecting the United States by providing for a national defense. DoD includes all four branches of the armed services - Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines - along with multiple sub-agencies that produce everything from weapons and supplies for military units to intelligence on foreign threats. Because of the Bush administration’s Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) campaign, DoD’s budget has ballooned to its highest levels ever. Implementing GWOT also resulted in multiple controversies for the department, which was led for most of this decade by a polarizing Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld.
After winning its independence from England in the Revolutionary War, the United States government created the US Department of War in 1789, charged with organizing and maintaining the US Army to provide for the defense of the new republic. The Department of War, headed by the Secretary of War, was a cabinet level department under the command of the President that did not manage the Navy, which was transferred in 1798 to the US Department of the Navy.
Representing the largest organization in the US federal government today, with an annual budget of half a trillion dollars, the Department of Defense (DoD) is responsible for maintaining the national defense of the United States. DoD includes all four branches of the armed services - Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines - along with multiple sub-agencies that produce everything from weapons and supplies for military units to intelligence on foreign threats.
Appointed co-chair of the President’s Intelligence Advisory Board, Charles Timothy “Chuck” Hagel is best known as a maverick Republican senator from Nebraska who did not shy away from publicly criticizing President George W. Bush’s handling of the Iraq war.
Leon E. Panetta has been many things during his long career. Congressman. President’s right-hand man. Think tank founder. Professor. But none of his roles has ever taken him deep into the realm of intelligence work, which is why many inside and outside of Washington, DC, questioned his ability to take over the embattled Central Intelligence Agency. Nonetheless, he served as director of the CIA from February 13, 2009, until June 30, 2011. President Barack Obama then appointed him Secretary of Defense, a position he took over on July 1, 2011.