Definition of the Department of Defense from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

 

the Department of Defense

 
BrE
 
; NAmE
 
(abbreviation the DOD)
 
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the US government department in charge of the country's military forces. It is the government's largest department and receives the most money. The Secretary of Defense is never a military person. The Secretary's assistants include the military Joint Chiefs of Staff and three who are not in the armed forces, the Secretary of the Army, the Secretary of the Navy and the Secretary of the Air Force.