The Secretary of the Army is expected to recommend that retired U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Philip Kensinger be demoted for his role in covering up the cause of death Army Ranger and former NFL player Pat Tillman. The article notes that if the Army Secretary “does recommend to Defense Secretary Robert Gates that Kensinger lose a star and be demoted to major general, that would trigger a decrease in his retirement pension and benefits.”
Other general and ranking officers are expected to get reprimands, which will be a severe black mark on their career records, but not lose them rank or pay.
How does the Defense Department go about simply demoting a retired general? My understanding is that, in general, service members cannot be demoted without a court martial. Moreover, in the civilian world at least, companies cannot just reduce the benefits of retirees.
How does it work in this case?