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» Student Handout:

Understanding the Department of Defense

The Department of Defense was created under the National Security Act in 1947 to unify the nation's armed forces. The name Pentagon was given to the five-sided building that houses the Department of Defense. This building is located in Virginia, just across the Potomac River from the United States Capitol. A picture of the Pentagon can be seen at:

To better understand the Defense Department go to:

Answer the following questions using the information found in the dialogue under each slide:

When did the U.S. military first develop?

What are the military's five branches?

How many people are on active duty?

How many military sites are there?

Why is protecting U.S. resources very important today?

In how many countries does the U.S. military have a presence?

What percentage of the Army has high school diplomas?

What are the military's core values?

The Department of Defense has a $371 billion budget. What business has the closest budget/revenue to this?

Who are the stockholders in this company?

Summarize the chain of command. (Note: JCS stands for Joint Chiefs of Staff)

What departments are in the Office of the Secretary of Defense?

What do the four undersecretaries manage?

What is the Senior Administrator most concerned about?

What are the responsibilities for the three remaining undersecretaries?

What department is in charge of the U.S. Coast Guard?

In how many countries is the U.S. Army presently stationed?

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