The department of degeneracy?
According to a report from NPR, the U.S. military is facing some increased scrutiny over real-money slot machines that it has on overseas military bases.
Per the report, the Department of Defense (DOD) operates more than 3,000 slots at bases around the globe. The DOD reportedly rakes in more than $100 million each year in the name of “morale, welfare, and recreation” for troops, according to a report by the Government Accountability Office.
Service members as young as 18 can play DOD slot machines, located in as many as 12 countries. With service members experiencing high rates of gambling addiction, the history of the slot machines is controversial.
Per NPR, Congress in 1951 banned slot machines from domestic military bases. About 20 years later, the the machines were removed from all foreign bases. However, in the 1980s, the one-armed bandits were brought back to the overseas bases.
Although significant, the $100 million in slot revenue each year from the DOD machines isn’t a lot by domestic standards. For example, slot machines on or around the Las Vegas Strip won about $380 million from gamblers in June alone, the most recent month of reporting.