June 25th, 2013
11:08 PM ET

U.S. Army to reduce combat brigades

By CNN Staff

The U.S. Army announced on Tuesday it plans to cut 12 combat brigades as part of steep budget austerity and other planned military changes associated with the ending of two wars and a sweeping military restructuring.

Additionally, the Army plans to cut roughly 14 percent or 80,000 troops mainly from its peak Iraq-war active-duty total. The National Guard will take a slight hit and the Army reserve will actually add 1,000 troops, according to Gen. Ray Odierno.

After the reductions are in place, the Army will field 490,000 active-duty forces, 350,000 National Guard troops and 205,000 reserves. Most of the cuts have come through attrition and the overall total was previously known.

The Pentagon is implementing planned budget cuts of nearly $500 billion over 10 years. But Odierno warned that more force reductions would be coming if separate, forced government spending cuts that took effect in March and hit the Pentagon hard were to continue into next year.

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Filed under: Army • Budget • Military
North Korea, China want to resume nuclear talks
June 19th, 2013
11:41 AM ET

North Korea, China want to resume nuclear talks

North Korean and Chinese officials have called for the resumption of six-party talks on Pyongyang's nuclear program, Chinese authorities said Wednesday.

The announcement came as North Korea's chief nuclear negotiator, Kim Kye Gwan, was in Beijing for bilateral talks.

Kim and China's Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Yesui issued statements Wednesday calling for the resumption of the talks to "peacefully solve nuclear issues through dialogue" with all relevant parties.

North Korea, South Korea, China, Japan, the United States and Russia met last decade to deal with North Korea's nuclear weapons program but those meetings had been discontinued.

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Filed under: China • North Korea • Nuclear
January 25th, 2013
05:38 AM ET

By the numbers: Women in the U.S. military

More than 200,000 women are in the active-duty military, including 69 generals and admirals. A quick look at women in the military, according to Pentagon figures:

Total numbers:

- About 203,000 in 2011, or 14.5% of the active-duty force of nearly 1.4 million.

- That number comprises about 74,000 in the Army, 53,000 in the Navy, 62,000 in the Air Force and 14,000 in the Marine Corps.

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January 25th, 2013
05:29 AM ET

The Syrian crisis: Where's U.S. aid going?

It has been more than a year since the United States government withdrew its ambassador to Syria and closed its embassy in Damascus.

On Thursday, that ambassador returned to the region along with a U.S. delegation, touring a Syrian refugee camp in Turkey to bring more attention to the growing humanitarian crisis. As the civil war has intensified in Syria, hundreds of thousands of people have sought refuge in Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and other neighboring countries.

Ambassador Robert Ford gave an exclusive interview to CNN's Ivan Watson and described what the U.S. is doing to help the refugees and the Syrian opposition.

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Filed under: Foreign Aid • Robert Ford • Syria • US Ambassador
United States to send troops and Patriot missiles to Turkey
December 14th, 2012
06:53 AM ET

United States to send troops and Patriot missiles to Turkey

The United States is to deploy 400 troops and two Patriot air-defense missile batteries to Turkey in the coming weeks to defend against potential threats from Syria, defense officials said Friday.

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta signed the order en route to Turkey, where he is visiting Incirlik Air Base, Pentagon spokesman George Little told reporters.

Little declined to give details of where the two batteries would be located, or to specify how long the deployment would last.

"The purpose of this deployment is to signal very strongly that the United States, working closely with our NATO allies is going to support the defense of Turkey, especially with potential threats emanating from Syria," he said.

Turkey and NATO insist the Patriot missile deployment would be used only for defense.

CNN's Laura Smith-Spark contributed to this report.

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Filed under: Missile Defense • NATO • Panetta • Syria • Turkey
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