America’s post-9/11 wars mark the longest period of sustained combat in the nation’s history – and never before has America waged war with so small a share of its population carrying the fight. Using Pew Research Center surveys of veterans and the general public, this series examines the rewards and burdens of military service and explores the gaps in understanding between those have who served in the armed forces and those who have not.

Dec. 22, 2011

Women in the U.S. Military: Growing Share, Distinctive Profile

The women who serve in today’s military differ from the men who serve in a number of ways.

Dec. 8, 2011

The Difficult Transition from Military to Civilian Life

Military service is difficult, demanding and dangerous. But returning to civilian life also poses challenges for the men and women who have served in the armed forces.

Nov. 23, 2011

The Military-Civilian Gap: Fewer Family Connections

Whether or not they have served, most Americans have family members who have been in the armed forces. But as the size of the military shrinks, those ties may be diminishing.

Nov. 8, 2011

For Many Injured Veterans, A Lifetime of Consequences

One out of every ten veterans alive today was seriously injured at some point while serving in the military, and three-quarters of those injuries occurred in combat.

Oct. 5, 2011

War and Sacrifice in the Post-9/11 Era

As the U.S. marks the 10th anniversary of the longest period of sustained warfare in its history, the vast majority of veterans of the post-9/11 era are proud of their military service and say it has helped them mature as human beings.