It is a process which is happening on a continuous basis and it is causing havoc with the lives of serving personnel, often while they are on the front line in Afghanistan. (Officially soldiers on operational tours are exempt from compulsory redundancies, but that does not stop the rumours.)
Last week it was revealed in the House of Lords that a swathe of experienced soldiers had been made redundant just a few weeks short of serving 16 years, at which point they would normally be eligible to receive an immediate pension of around £12,000 a year.
There have also been cases of personnel being forced to leave the army short of the agreed term of 22 years, which means that pension rights have to be deferred until they are 65.
The increases in the pace of redundancies and the uncertainty over job prospects have contributed to an alarming drop in morale. A survey conducted by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) during the summer suggested that more than half (55%) of soldiers and three-quarters of officers believe morale has dropped to its worst level since the last regimental cutbacks seven years ago.
Leaving the army can be an unnerving experience. For most of their working lives, soldiers exist in a disciplined environment in which most of their physical needs are met on a daily basis - food, clothes, lodging and transport. While pay is not extravagant it is reasonable. After training, a private is paid £17,767 a year, while a second lieutenant, the lowest officer rank, receives £30,014 a year. In both cases, charges are deducted for accommodation and food provided by the army.
Then there is the fellowship and camaraderie. Most soldiers admit they miss this most; the sense of all being in it together and the belief that you can trust your mates implicitly, whatever the circumstances.
On leaving, soldiers are encouraged to join the Territorial Army but most feel part-time soldiering does not offer the same conditions and there is little to suggest this will change when the TA becomes the Army Reserve, with a greater commitment to operational soldiering.
Many veterans who turn to services' charities for help conform to this type. Having served in the army for most of their working lives, the transition to civilian life can be difficult. They turn to alcohol or drugs (or both) and their lives rapidly spiral out of control. There has even been a small but significant rise in the number of suicides which can be attributed not just to serving in places like Iraq and Afghanistan, but also to the failure to make a successful transition back to civilian life.
The MoD does not record figures but a recent BBC Panorama investigation claimed 21 serving soldiers and 29 veterans had taken their own lives last year.