Pentagon Trims Top Brass Nearly 30 positions gone, rivaling post-Cold-War reductions By John Johnson, Newser Staff Posted Dec 28, 2011 6:38 PM CST 8 comments Comments The US is thinning its military ranks at the top. (Shutterstock) (Newser) – The Pentagon is thinning its ranks from the top down: It has cut 27 positions for generals and admirals since March, which the Washington Post calls the biggest such reduction since the end of the Cold War. Military leaders are taking advantage of the end of the war in Iraq and the winding down of the war in Afghanistan to push toward a goal of reducing the upper ranks by 10% over five years. It dovetails with a larger mission of creating a smaller, nimbler fighting force. “If 10 years of combat have taught us anything, it’s that flat is faster," says a vice admiral involved with implementing the plan.