From the Summary: "The military retirement system is a government-funded, noncontributory, defined benefit system that has historically been viewed as a significant incentive in retaining a career military force. The system currently includes monthly compensation for qualified active and reserve retirees, disability benefits for those deemed medically unfit to serve, and a survivor annuity program for the eligible survivors of deceased retirees. The amount of compensation is dependent on time served, basic pay at retirement, and annual Cost-of-Living-Adjustments (COLAs). Military retirees are also entitled to nonmonetary benefits including exchange and commissary privileges, medical care through TRICARE, and access to Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) facilities and programs. [...] When considering alternatives to the current system, Congress may choose to consider the balance among (1) the benefits of the military retirement system as a retention incentive, (2) budget constraints, and (3) the needs and concerns of constituents."
CRS Report for Congress, RL34751
Congressional Research Service: https://crsreports.congress.gov/