he US Army announced a plan to cut 40,000 troops that would impact nearly every Army installation, warning that the reductions could grow if Congress cannot reach a deal to avert sequestration budget cuts.
The Army detailed plans to cut the active-duty force from 490,000 to 450,000 within two years. The end-strength target was made public months ago, but members of Congress were briefed Thursday on the specific bases and units impacted.
Army Director of Force Management Brig. Gen. Randy George, at a press conference Thursday, attributed the decision to fiscal constraints resulting from the Budget Control Act of 2011 and sequestration.
"As you know, these are incredibly difficult choices," he said.
The cuts land hardest in Georgia, Alaska and Hawaii, though George said they affect troops ranging from the infantry, signal, logistics, civil affairs, and military police and trainees.
Big cuts come from restructuring the 3rd Brigade Combat Team (BCT), 3rd Infantry Division, at Fort Benning Georgia, followed by the 4th BCT (Airborne), 25th Infantry Division, at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska. Each would each shrink from a 4,000-person brigade to a 1,000-person task force.
The 2nd Stryker BCT, 25th Infantry Division, at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, will convert to an infantry BCT, and the 81st BCT, a National Guard unit on the West Coast, would take over the Stryker equipment.