The Fourth Estate

By Sebastian Sprenger / April 11, 2013 at 4:48 PM

Pentagon leaders are expected to study the Defense Department's support agencies, as well as the combatant commands and their service-specific outfits with an eye toward savings, according to senior officials. Referring to those organizations as "the fourth estate," Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey told lawmakers today that an ongoing strategic review commissioned by Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel would address the potential of streamlining.

During his brief time as the chief of staff of the Army, Dempsey put the brakes on a plan, proposed by his predecessor Gen. George Casey, to have one Army component command service both U.S. Northern Command and U.S. Southern Command, and one provide forces for both U.S. European Command and U.S. Africa Command, Inside the Army reported in June 2011.