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REPORT OF THE SECRETARY OF THE ARMY
In FY 1998, the United States Army accomplished an unprecedented amount of work for and on behalf of America. The soldiers and civilians of America’s Army provided the core contribution to ongoing operations in the Balkans while enhancing security and stability worldwide. From the Korean Peninsula to the sands of Kuwait, the Army deterred aggression and reassured our allies. From Macedonia and the Sinai to Haiti and Peru, our soldiers and civilians were actively engaged in promoting peace. The Army played a major role in responding to a number of natural disasters last year by supporting relief operations for hurricanes, floods, and wildfires at home and disasters overseas. Around the world, around the clock, America’s Army was busy supporting the National Military Strategy (NMS) and building a better tomorrow.
THE ARMY AND THE NATIONAL MILITARY STRATEGY
America’s Army is well-suited to execute the pillars of the NMS: shaping, responding, and preparing. In a world that confronts us with a full spectrum of challenges and opportunities, Army forces are the most cost-effective of the U.S. armed forces; they provide more capability per dollar invested and can be used more effectively in a much broader range of circumstances than other forces. The application of ground combat power remains the most decisive way to secure our national interests because it provides direct and continuing control over land, resources, and people. Because of its unique capabilities, the Army has been called upon to be the principal engine for executing the National Military Strategy. America’s Army has provided more than 60 percent of the people who have participated in 32 of the 36 major military operations since 1989—this fact underscores the Army’s role as the indispensable element of America’s military might.
Putting Army boots on the ground is the surest way to shape the international security environment in ways favorable to U.S. interests. Bombs and missiles can destroy targets and temporarily deny an enemy control of a piece of strategic terrain, but they cannot provide the continuous presence required to guarantee peace and stability. Only by putting soldiers on the ground can we hope to guide the development of infrastructure, mold the character of institutions, and ensure compliance with the processes of peace that can nurture the fledgling democracies that are key to long-term international stability and prosperity. America’s Army is the only force that provides the continuous presence essential to meeting the global requirements of shaping operations.
Putting Army boots on the ground is also the most decisive response to deter potential adversaries from employing force to threaten our national security interests. Technology can facilitate but cannot replace the commitment of people to secure the frontiers of freedom. Today’s Army has an unprecedented capability of projecting ground combat power on short notice to achieve this end. In February 1998, for example, American soldiers deployed from the United States and were manning tanks and fighting vehicles on the Iraqi border within 96 hours. As it has been throughout history, the commitment of soldiers on the ground is the crucible in which freedom is won or lost.
As we prepare for an uncertain future, the undeniable trends of population growth, urbanization, and competition for scarce resources ensure that the central role of America’s Army in the execution of the National Military Strategy will persist. Our comprehensive modernization strategy employs aggressive experimentation to develop and integrate capabilities that will ensure our dominance on the battlefields of the 21st century. Then, as now, the ability to commit American soldiers to secure our interests will remain the foundation of American military readiness.
SHAPING THE INTERNATIONAL ENVIRONMENT
American soldiers are conducting shaping operations 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The Army shapes the international environment through the presence of forward-deployed forces around the world, robust programs of nation-building and military-to-military activities, and support of arms control initiatives.
Although most Army forces are based in the continental United States (CONUS), over 122,000 soldiers are stationed overseas, and many more are deployed for specific operations each day. Most soldiers assigned to overseas bases serve in the U.S. Army Europe (USAREUR) or the 8th U.S. Army in Korea, where they provide the critical nucleus of the U.S. contribution to key alliances in these vital regions. The enduring commitment to NATO represented by USAREUR has been a key factor in providing essential stability for managing the turbulence associated with the breakup of the Warsaw Pact. In addition to their contribution to the Partnership for Peace (PfP) Program and the associated enlargement of NATO, the presence of these American soldiers is a key enabler to ongoing international efforts to ensure peace in the Balkans. In Korea, the presence of American soldiers reassures our allies and provides a potent, necessary deterrent to the unpredictable North Korean regime. Other soldiers stationed in the United States Pacific Command and the United States Southern Command areas of operation contribute to engagement activities in the countries of the Pacific Rim and throughout Central and South America. In sum, our substantial forward-deployed forces shape the international environment by deterring aggression, enhancing our ability to respond to global threats, and promoting stability by their presence and through military- to-military contacts in key regions.
In addition to soldiers stationed overseas, more than 28,000 soldiers were deployed away from their home stations to more than 70 countries around the world on an average day in FY 1998. Some of these soldiers contributed to shaping the international environment by conducting a number of missions which provided medical assistance and infrastructure improvements for the host nation while allowing our soldiers to practice necessary skills. For example, U.S. Army Reserve and Army National Guard soldiers provided medical care for over 116,000 host nation civilians while deployed on medical readiness training exercises in five different countries in Central and South America. Operations such as these support stability and build friends in fragile societies which might otherwise breed enemies.
At the same time, our soldiers were deployed on other important missions overseas. FY 1998 marked the sixteenth year of U.S. Army support for the Multinational Force and Observer Mission in the Sinai, which verifies compliance with the treaty of peace between Egypt and Israel. Army soldiers serving in similar observer and peacekeeping missions from the border between Ecuador and Peru to the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia helped foster peace in troubled regions around the world.
Total Army participation in PfP and associated exchanges and exercises in FY 1998 helped set the stage for the peaceful enlargement of NATO while building the foundation for cooperative efforts with non-NATO forces as well. During Exercise Peace Shield 98 in September, for instance, active and reserve soldiers worked with soldiers from the Ukraine and 13 other eastern European countries in a multinational brigade-level command post exercise designed to improve interoperability in peace support operations. For the second year, our soldiers also participated in a PfP-related training exercise with the Central Asian Peacekeeping Battalion.
In addition to operations and exercises, the Army also conducts numerous day-to-day foreign interactions that contribute to shaping goals. Army-to-Army contacts constitute the majority of all contacts between the armed forces of the United States and the armed forces of other nations. In FY 1998, these Army-to-Army activities ranged from senior-level contacts with the leaders of other armies to the training of 5,980 foreign military personnel under the International Military Education and Training (IMET) program. The reserve components play a critical role in these ongoing programs as well. The National Guard State Partnership Program, for example, has been instrumental in forging close ties with the armies and governments of the former Warsaw Pact. Besides helping to shape the international environment in line with U.S. interests, these continuing contacts with foreign armies enhance the Army’s ability to participate in coalition operations today and in the future.
Other Army shaping operations promote American interests abroad by training foreign militaries and by supporting our government’s arms control initiatives. In FY 1998, American soldiers trained the soldiers of other nations on the tactics, techniques, and procedures of humanitarian demining, counterdrug, and peacekeeping operations. Under the African Crisis Response Initiative, American soldiers provided peacekeeping training to soldiers of several African nations. In support of the Chemical Demilitarization Program, the Army is the DoD Executive Agent for the destruction of the U.S. lethal chemical weapons stockpile and related non-stockpile warfare materiel in compliance with the worldwide Chemical Weapons Convention. Through these and similar efforts, the Army is making the world a safer place.
RESPONDING TO CRISES ABROAD AND AT HOME
While the Army’s principal mission is to fight and win our nation’s wars, the National Military Strategy demands that we stand ready to conduct a full spectrum of military operations to protect American interests around the world. America’s Army demonstrated this capability in FY 1998 not only through its shaping operations, but also by deploying a heavy brigade to Kuwait in 96 hours, conducting a relief in place of forces supporting the stability operations in Bosnia, and responding to a wide range of domestic support requirements. These successes validate the Army’s commitment to full-spectrum readiness, strategic mobility, and active and reserve component integration.
The capability to respond anywhere in the world on short notice comes from our sustained commitment to the complex requirements of full-spectrum readiness. This readiness comes from the unmatched capabilities of American soldiers and the rigorous training that prepares them for military operations. The readiness of soldiers today is the product of many years’ investment in the imperatives of quality people, training, doctrine, force mix, modern equipment, and leader development.
Tough training on the fundamentals of warfighting is essential to maintain current readiness and to prepare the leaders of tomorrow. The Total Army executed a robust program of training deployments in FY 1998 designed to validate and improve our ability to deploy rapidly, fight, and win. Exercise Bright Star, for instance, allowed us to evaluate and practice our ability to deploy rapidly, as well as to exercise our ability to conduct combined operations with the Egyptian military. Last August, soldiers from Alaska conducted a combined training exercise with the Thai Army that featured the largest airborne insertion ever conducted in Thailand.
Deployments to Army combat training centers (CTC) provide our soldiers with the best training in the world. Periodic rotations at these first-class facilities hone essential warfighting skills. At the National Training Center in California, the Joint Readiness Training Center in Louisiana, and the Combined Maneuver Training Center in Germany, units conduct prolonged operations against a highly skilled opposing force and are observed by a professional cadre fully versed in the latest doctrine. Units complete these rotations at their highest levels of readiness, and are provided a comprehensive assessment to guide their future training.
The superior training environment of the CTC is also helping the Army manage the challenge of training units for nontraditional missions such as the stability operations in Bosnia. Training for these missions generally occurs on an arduous timeline compressed by the requirements of other readiness training, shipping essential equipment, and in-country familiarization. The combat training centers provide an ideal setting for replicating the conditions of any mission, even Bosnia. Units deploy to a CTC to conduct a mission rehearsal exercise at the end of their home station preparation. The mission rehearsal exercise provides all the benefits of a traditional CTC rotation tailored to the specific mission requirements of Bosnia, and is an efficient mechanism for ensuring that units learn the lessons of units previously deployed to Bosnia.
As part of our ongoing efforts to increase the efficiency of the Army, we are incorporating a wide variety of Training Aids, Devices, Simulators, and Simulations (TADSS) to achieve realistic training at the lowest cost. TADSS refers to a wide range of equipment and software, from the simple laser that replicates the firing of a rifle or machine gun to the complex computer programs that drive command post exercises to help train staff officers and noncommissioned officers at battalion and higher levels. The Battle Command Training Program (BCTP) extends the CTC experience to corps, division, and reserve brigade staffs. The BCTP subjects staffs to fast-paced virtual combat operations and generates the associated information flow to test the staff’s ability to command and control subordinate units and plan future operations around the clock for several days. Perhaps the clearest illustration of the efficiencies possible through the appropriate use of TADSS is the ability to achieve air crew training proficiency on certain tasks by using a simulator, thus reducing the actual helicopter flying hours required for training. The Army is developing a suite of TADSS to achieve similar efficiencies on virtually all of the systems we are acquiring.
The deployment of the 1st Brigade (-) of 3d Infantry Division (Mechanized) to Kuwait in February 1998 demonstrated our capability to respond to threats anywhere in the world on short notice. This deployment also reflects the success of the Army Strategic Mobility Program (ASMP) as well as the readiness of American soldiers. The ASMP is a comprehensive program that addresses infrastructure requirements, such as rail, highway, port, and airfield improvements, to facilitate movement of personnel and equipment from bases in CONUS to air and seaports of embarkation. The Army Corps of Engineers’ Civil Works program supports this effort by maintaining channels for navigation through the strategic ports of the United States. The Global Prepositioning Strategy, a component of ASMP, strengthens rapid deployment capabilities by prepositioning heavy brigade sets of unit equipment in different strategic regions of the world. There are currently seven such sets, with an eighth planned.
The deployment of the 1st Cavalry Division (-) to assume responsibility for the U.S. portion of the NATO mission in Bosnia offers another example of our capability to project combat power and our commitment to the imperatives of full-spectrum readiness. The Europe-based 1st Armored Division, augmented by a substantial number of individuals and units from both active and reserve forces in the United States, provided the U.S. contingent to NATO forces in Bosnia for most of FY 1998. With the announcement that American support for NATO operations in Bosnia would continue, the 1st Cavalry Division, based in CONUS, was ordered to assume the U.S. contingent’s mission beginning in October 1998. The use of a CONUS-based unit helped stabilize some Europe-based units for required readiness training and reduced their time spent away from home station, or PERSTEMPO. The professional execution of this relief in place allowed the transition to occur without reducing our commitment to supporting U.S. goals in the Balkans.
Total Army Integration
The requirements for supporting the Bosnia mission highlight the importance of reserve component participation in Army operations. Since 54 percent of Total Army strength resides in the Army National Guard and Army Reserve, the Army has relied extensively on the reserve components to support our operational requirements in Bosnia and other contingency operations in recent years. A total of 16,024 reserve personnel, including 570 RC units, have been mobilized under Presidential Selected Reserve Call-up (PSRC) authority to support and execute Army operations in Bosnia. These RC soldiers have performed a wide variety of missions, including civil affairs, public affairs, military police, and logistical support. Some have supported operations in Bosnia by serving elsewhere to augment units supporting the operation, replace deployed active component (AC) soldiers, or support the deployment and redeployment of RC soldiers. Most of these soldiers, who balance their military service to America with full-time civilian careers, were mobilized for the full 270 days allowed under the PSRC authority. Concurrently, RC soldiers were mobilized to support operations in Southwest Asia, and many participated in shaping operations at other places around the world.
The reality that the support of RC forces is essential for sustained Army operations has led to a renewed emphasis on the integration of AC and RC forces. Last year, the Army published a White Paper outlining a series of comprehensive initiatives that will embed AC/RC integration into our force structure. These initiatives include the creation of divisions comprised of Army National Guard enhanced Separate Brigades under an AC headquarters. In FY 2000, the 49th Division (ARNG) headquarters will team up with selected AC and RC units and assume responsibility for the U.S. portion of the NATO mission in Bosnia. AC/RC integration is thus not only a critical element in the Army’s ability to support ongoing contingencies, but is also an important part of how we are preparing for the future.
Responding at Home
The Total Army provided substantial support to federal, state, and local authorities responding to natural disasters in the United States and its territories in FY 1998. Active, Reserve, and National Guard soldiers and Army civilians supported Federal Emergency Management Agency disaster relief efforts for Typhoon Paka (Guam), Hurricanes Bonnie (North Carolina) and Georges (U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Florida, and the Gulf Coast), the Northeast Ice Storms (New York, Maine), and the National Interagency Fire Coordination Center for fighting fires in Florida. The Army Corps of Engineers contributed greatly to this effort. Total Army support included (but was not limited to) providing and operating power generators, flying helicopters for missions ranging from medical evacuation to damage assessment, and providing emergency shelter, water, ice, and rations. Additionally, on numerous occasions in FY 1998, the Army provided Emergency Ordnance Disposal or Technical Escort Unit personnel in response to requests from federal, state, and local authorities. Operations such as these validate the ability of the Total Army, in accordance with the law and at the request of local authorities, to respond rapidly to domestic emergencies as required.
PREPARING FOR AN UNCERTAIN FUTURE
The requirement to prepare for the future entails both preparing to execute our traditional mission of fighting and winning the nation’s wars with information age technology, as well as preparing to counter the nontraditional threats that may arise from non-state actors and from rogue states. The Army is executing a comprehensive strategy for fielding the world’s first information age force. We are also taking steps to counter the rising threats posed by information technology and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD). Finally, the Army is conducting a comprehensive review of its information systems to ensure they are not disrupted by the Year 2000 (Y2K) computer problem.
Experimentation and the Heavy Division Redesign
The Army has institutionalized a process of experimentation to identify technologies with promising military applications and to develop and field systems which enhance warfighting capabilities. Army Battle Laboratories focus on the implications of new technologies for the different functional areas affecting land combat power. Each year, these battle laboratories team with industry to evaluate mature technologies from industrial research and development centers. Since their inception in 1992, the battle laboratories have been the focal points for six Advanced Warfighting Experiments (AWE). AWE are large-scale, force-on-force training exercises conducted by actual units either live at maneuver training centers or with computer-driven simulations. These experiments provide the critical analysis essential to synchronizing doctrine, force structure, equipment, and training.
Based on lessons learned from recent AWE, the Army has developed and begun implementation of a new design for heavy divisions. This new heavy division design, known as Division XXI (DXXI), is a heavy force design optimized for operations into the 21st century. A reduction in the number of tanks and infantry fighting vehicles from 58 to 44 per battalion, the integration of 513 RC personnel into the divisions’ authorized strength, and a 50 percent increase in the number of infantrymen in mechanized infantry platoons are among the numerous innovations featured by DXXI. The new design creates a more deployable force that employs emerging technology to achieve enhanced lethality, survivability, sustainability, and operating tempo.
The Army Modernization Plan
The Army Modernization Plan describes our strategy to generate the capabilities we will need to maintain readiness in the near- and mid-terms. It is rooted in Joint Vision 2010, the conceptual template that addresses the requirements for America’s armed forces on future battlefields. Based on this template, Army Vision 2010 defines the patterns of operation which the Total Army must be able to execute to function effectively as part of tomorrow’s joint team.
To acquire the capabilities required by Army Vision 2010, the Army’s number one modernization priority is to achieve information dominance in the near- and mid-terms. Information dominance stems from superior information systems and the mindset and training that ensure soldiers are prepared to win on the complex battlefields of the future. It results in a significant operational advantage over any adversary. Digitization is a component of modernization, and is the means by which we will achieve information dominance. Digitization involves the use of modern communications capabilities and computers to enable commanders, planners, and shooters to rapidly acquire and share information. The Army will equip the 4th Infantry Division (Mechanized) at Fort Hood with digital capability by the end of FY 2000, and will equip III Corps by the end of FY 2004. It is difficult to overstate the importance of the initial goal of digitization; timely investment in this technology is essential to maintain our status as the world’s preeminent land combat force in the information age.
Other priorities identified in the Army Modernization Plan are maintaining combat overmatch, sustaining essential research and development while focusing science and technology on leap-ahead capabilities, recapitalizing the force, and integrating the active and reserve components. We maintain combat overmatch by making periodic focused technology insertions to improve combat effectiveness through preplanned product improvements programs, thus keeping our current systems more capable than those of our adversaries. At the same time, we focus resources on development of technologies and systems that promise truly revolutionary, or leap-ahead, capabilities. Recapitalization keeps our force viable and avoids block obsolescence through extended service plans, depot rebuild programs, and selective replacement of important assets, such as our truck fleet. As we approach this process of modernization, we must also ensure that our active and reserve components are fully integrated to ensure new capabilities are spread throughout the Army.
The best way to illustrate the gains in warfighting effectiveness that we will achieve through this program is to consider a few of the key pieces of equipment in our modernization strategy. One of our highest modernization priorities is the procurement and fielding of the RAH-66 Comanche helicopter. The leap-ahead capabilities of this aerial reconnaissance and light attack helicopter enhance the Army’s information dominance and combat overmatch objectives. This system incorporates major technological advances in the acquisition and processing of battlefield information, signature reduction, and logistical support features. The Crusader howitzer is being developed to replace the Paladin howitzer and will restore the combat overmatch in cannon artillery. When fielded, it will be the premier cannon in the world, with significantly greater range, rate of fire, and survivability than any other cannon system. The capability increase per cannon achieved with the Crusader will dramatically reduce strategic lift requirements for cannon systems. The digitization embedded in both the Comanche and Crusader enables them to share information with each other and with other Army and joint assets in near real-time. The net effect of these complementary systems is that the digitized division will be able to detect and destroy far more targets, far faster than possible today. The Army supports the development of a third key system, the Theater High Altitude Area Defense System (THAAD). THAAD, in conjunction with the Patriot Advanced Capability-3 system, will protect forward-deployed troops and power projection assets in a theater of operations from ballistic missile attack. This capability is especially critical given the increasing threat posed by weapons of mass destruction delivered by ballistic missiles.
The Army is engaged in a number of forums designed to ensure that we achieve multinational force compatibility with our allies and likely coalition partners. Cooperative research and development efforts with our NATO allies to field interoperable information systems are supplementing our own modernization efforts. Today the United States is not the only source of advanced technology; cooperative efforts with allies can help America gain access to advanced foreign technologies while at the same time enhancing the interoperability and effectiveness of future coalitions.
Countering Emerging Threats and Vulnerabilities
Preparing now means more than preparing to execute our traditional missions; it means preparing for the requirements of the new global security environment. Protecting Information Operations is one such requirement. The global explosion of information technology and access has generated new opportunities to affect the information systems and decision making processes of others. Since others may seek to exploit vulnerabilities in information systems, the Army is implementing a comprehensive defense in depth architecture to protect against the emerging cyber threat.
The Army is preparing to counter threats to the United States posed by terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. Our participation as the DoD Executive Agent for the Weapons of Mass Destruction Domestic Preparedness Program, for example, improves the ability of communities to respond to WMD emergencies. Under this program, initial visits to cities across the country are followed by a week of training for local officials, emergency managers, first responders, hazardous materiel personnel, and emergency medical providers. As of the end of FY 1998, a total of 9,950 people in 32 cities had received the training.
Managing the Year 2000 Problem
The Army is implementing comprehensive testing of its information systems to ensure our critical systems are not affected by the Y2K problem (the possibility that the once-common practice of referencing dates in computer software using only two digits could disrupt computer-based systems in the year 2000). We have identified at-risk systems, classified them according to their criticality, and are carefully managing the renovation of these systems using an Army-wide database and monthly reports. For key activities that involve the integration of multiple systems, the Army is conducting end-to-end tests to ensure full system functionality. The Army is confident that its critical systems will not be affected by the Y2K problem.
RESOURCING THE ARMY
The Army maintained its capabilities to support and execute the NMS throughout FY 1998 by careful stewardship of people and resources. We continue to carefully monitor both of these areas to ensure that we recruit and retain the quality people we need for America’s Army and that we provide those quality people with the skills and tools necessary to perform the full spectrum of military operations. Additionally, the Army’s emphasis on becoming more efficient has helped to get the most military capability for the U.S. taxpayer dollar.
Recruiting And Retention
Recruiting and retaining the quality soldiers needed to maintain readiness have become more challenging. The active component fell about 800 soldiers short of its recruiting goal for FY 1998, but met all of its quality goals. USAR and ARNG recruiters also fell short of recruiting targets. The USAR met its quality goals, while the ARNG met one of three. The Army is assigning additional recruiters and updating its advertising campaign to address the challenges we face in recruiting and retaining quality soldiers.
The Army’s Total Obligation Authority for FY 1998 was $60.4 billion dollars. Of this amount, the Army received $26.1 billion for the Military Personnel account, $20.7 billion for the Operation and Maintenance accounts and $11.2 billion for the modernization accounts, while the remainder was applied to other accounts, such as Military Construction, Army Family Housing, and Environmental Restoration. In order to fully fund operating tempo for priority units, the Army funded Base Operations and Real Property Maintenance below desired levels. FY 1998 marked the first time the Army received non-offsetting supplemental funds for the extension of the Bosnia mission and for the buildup of forces in Southwest Asia. The supplemental funds amounted to just over $1.1 billion for contingency operations and $56.4 million for disaster relief activities. The Army reprogrammed $195.1 million in FY 1998, mostly to address unit readiness issues. The money for this reprogramming came from revised economic assumptions and Army Research, Development, and Acquisition accounts.
Becoming A More Efficient Force
The Army has achieved substantial savings through efficiencies in order to help fund critical requirements. The closing of certain Army bases under the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process is one success story in this regard; 755 of the 780 bases scheduled for closing have been closed, and the Army BRAC program is now yielding more in savings than it costs to execute. More savings are possible and desirable with additional base closures. Other infrastructure-related initiatives include the privatization of utilities and housing at Army installations and the elimination of unneeded buildings in order to free up resources to maintain needed facilities. The Army disposed of over 47 million square feet (MSF) of unusable infrastructure between FY 1992 and FY 1997, and has programmed almost $100 million per year to dispose of an additional 53 MSF by the end of FY 2003.
The Army is pursuing a number of logistics initiatives which offer potential savings of over $2 billion during the period FY 1998 to FY 2003. The initiatives follow three strategies to achieve cost savings: inventory reductions through better management and faster deliveries, demand reductions through increased reliability of selected components, and cost reductions. Army Total Asset Visibility (ATAV) offers one example of a comprehensive initiative that will both make the Army a more efficient organization and enhance joint warfighting capabilities. ATAV employs existing and emerging information technologies to furnish managers and leaders throughout the Army with information on the location, quantity, condition, and movement of assets worldwide. Radio Frequency technology, laser optical technology, and bar coding are examples of technologies that allow Army logisticians to monitor cargo movements, redirect crucial shipments, and locate critical supplies. Current capability provides visibility of more than three million types of equipment and supplies for managers throughout the Army and DoD.
These and other programs, including DoD-wide programs for streamlining acquisition procedures, have allowed the Army to achieve efficiencies that will continue to yield benefits in the years ahead.
QUALITY PEOPLE AND ARMY VALUES
Today’s Total Army is one-third smaller than the Cold War Army, yet it conducts many times the number of major operations per year as that larger Cold War force. Changes such as those entailed by the Army Modernization Plan, Total Army Integration, and our numerous efficiency initiatives are truly revolutionary. As we implement these initiatives, it is important to balance our desire to make the changes necessary to maintain readiness with the need to preserve the fundamental qualities that have been and remain the bedrock for the Army’s success in battle. We must continue to recruit and retain the quality soldiers required to execute the increasingly complex tasks essential to protecting and promoting our national security interests. We must continue to ensure that these soldiers embrace the essential values that have been the soul of our Army since its birth.
On a daily basis, individual American soldiers are interacting with host nation soldiers, officials, and civilians; implementing treaty requirements; following rules of engagement; and putting a human face on the image of America held by people all over the world. The National Military Strategy requires American soldiers to perform demanding tasks at a challenging pace. Demanding tasks, from mastering the latest technology to resolving a tense confrontation in a peace enforcement role, demand quality soldiers. To sustain this essential readiness imperative, we are doing everything possible to take care of the quality men and women in our ranks. Ongoing initiatives to refurbish or replace aging barracks, and to improve housing through privatization, will improve quality of life for soldiers and their families.
Many of the demands placed on our soldiers are new, but the values we charge them to live by are timeless. Loyalty, duty, respect for others, selfless service, honor, integrity, and personal courage are the Army’s core values. While these values are not new, competing values in our society can obscure and dilute them. The Total Army has renewed its commitment to preserving these values within the framework of our Human Relations Action Plan. Under this plan, Character Development XXI initiatives have formalized a more rigorous indoctrination to the core values in our basic training and have reemphasized their place as part of recurring training throughout the Army. The Human Relations Action Plan has also reinforced the Army’s Equal Opportunity program and implemented the Consideration of Others program. These and other complementary initiatives ensure that the Army will carry into the future those values that will always be the foundation of teamwork and success on the battlefield.
As the 21st century approaches, America’s Army is building on a proud history of service to our nation to forge the world’s first—and preeminent—information age Army. This commitment to building the force of tomorrow is grounded in our mission to fight and win the nation’s wars by ensuring our soldiers are the best trained, best equipped, and best led forces in the world. This same requirement has guided our evolution from the ill-equipped band of patriots at Valley Forge to the peerless Army of today. Strengthened by time-tested values, our quality soldiers and civilians stand ready to do what America’s Army has done for over 223 years. They stand ready to go where the nation calls, when the nation calls, and to preserve the liberties that our predecessors earned for us.
Secretary of the Army
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