More soldiers. More deployments. More money. Drill sergeants in AIT and the biggest pay raise in seven years.
New body armor, guns and uniforms ― and maybe even the return of the World War II-era “pinks and greens” uniform.
Also on tap: big changes to Tricare, GI Bill benefits and your retirement options, and maybe ― finally ― a new PT test.
Soldiers can expect 2018 to bring many key, critical changes that will impact their lives at home and in uniform.
Here’s a preview of what’s in store for 2018:
Just in time for the new year, the Army has cemented its top civilian leadership with the swearing-in of Army Secretary Mark Esper.
A year in the making, the Army is preparing to make a final decision on bringing back the service’s much beloved World War-II dress uniform.
The Army is preparing for a bump in force numbers next year.
The Army wants to more qualified soldiers to make their way up the ranks, so officials are working on tweaks to the noncommissioned officer promotion system.
In 2017, both Army Training and Doctrine Command and Army Forces Command unveiled new fitness tests that could change the way the Army does PT.
The Center for Initial Military Training is several months into a complete review of how the Army makes new soldiers, and 2018 could see some big changes.
The handgun that will replace the M9 sidearm that soldiers have carried for more than 30 years will be rolling out to units in 2018.
Soldiers will receive new body armor for the first time in a decade.
Troops will have to decide to stay with the traditional military retirement system or move to the new Blended Retirement System.
Benefits will expand for post-9/11 Purple Heart recipients.
In what appears to be a bit of deja vu for America’s longest war, U.S. troops will once again be patrolling alongside their Afghan counterparts in far larger numbers and at a more tactical level than the previous years.
Less than a year since the Army unveiled the new concept of Security Force Assistance Brigades to train foreign conventional infantry, artillery and other troops, the first SFAB is preparing for an early 2018 deployment.
The Islamic State group’s physical caliphate in Iraq and Syria has been destroyed, but the group is not defeated.
As the Islamic State withers in Iraq and Syria, other, more obscure hot spots could emerge in 2018 that will require more U.S. assistance or, possibly, even the presence of more U.S. troops.
As future war planning shifts to confront near-peer threats, Army leaders are looking at their ground combat formations and seeing something missing — a light tank.
First unveiled in 2016, the Army continues to hone its concepts for multidomain battle.
Soldiers from the 25th Infantry Division will be the first to get the improved hot weather uniforms.
The Army will take soldier feedback and see if the boot needs to be tweaked further.
The Joint Effects Targeting System or JETS is scheduled for fielding to forward observers in late 2018. The system increases accuracy and speed in day, night and inclement weather conditions.
Each service was directed to provide recommendations on how to streamline training requirements.
The Pentagon will keep vetting grandfathered recruits, but MAVNI still is frozen to new applicants.
Defense officials have said plans for more ships, aircraft and ground vehicles will ramp up significantly in the fiscal 2019 budget plans.
The annual pay raise and ongoing military housing reform proposals will once again be a defense budget focus in 2018.
The Army is working out how to balance the Guardsmen's civilian jobs with the training.
The Army’s growing cyber career field will gain the service’s electronic warfare soldiers in 2018.