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The US Department of the Army has its marching orders. One of the three military departments (along with the Air Force and Navy) of the US Department of Defense, the Army provides ground-based military forces to deter and fight wars and protect the security of the US. The army has more than 675,000 soldiers, including active duty soldiers (nearly 75%) and reservists (Army National Guard and Army Reserves). Army personnel are deployed in about 80 countries. The Army operates about 40 forts throughout the US and has bases in Africa, Europe, Japan, the Middle East, and South Korea.
No matter how you measure it, by aircraft, ships, or active-duty military personnel, the US Department of Defense (DoD) is big. Except for Social Security, the Department of Defense -- comprising the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, National Guard, Reserves, and more than a dozen defense agencies -- is the largest component of US government spending. The 2012 budget for the Department of Defense is more than $670 billion, 18% of which will be used to fund the ongoing military engagements in Afghanistan and Iraq. The DoD maintains a force of about 1.4 million active duty service members and operates thousands of facilities around the world.