Steven Aftergood: CRS on US Army Out-Gunned & Out-Armored

Ethics, Military
Steven Aftergood

INNOVATION IN FOREIGN ARMY SYSTEMS

Several nations are independently pursuing development of ground combat weapon systems that are comparable or superior to their U.S. Army counterparts, says a new report from the Congressional Research Service.

Accordingly, there is a “possibility that in the not-too-distant future, foreign armored vehicle design and capabilities could surpass existing U.S. systems.”

See Selected Foreign Counterparts of U.S. Army Ground Combat Systems and Implications for Combat Operations and Modernization, January 18, 2017.

Phi Beta Iota: Mr. Aftergood also stated in his write-up:

Close study of those developments should help guide current U.S. modernization efforts, wrote CRS military analyst Andrew Feickert, and “may also lead to a conclusion that an entirely new combat vehicle will be required to address current and potential future threats.”

CRS did not conclude that there has been a “very sad depletion of our military,” as President Trump asserted in his inauguration speech. Nor does the CRS report present an argument that additional investment in ground combat systems would actually be the best use of defense budget dollars in particular, or of taxpayer dollars in general.

We have never thought highly of CRS products covering the US Army (in contrast to those covering the US Navy which are world-class — the Air Force products fall in between). CRS does not do holistic analytics or true cost economics. No part of DoD — least of all the Office of the Secretary of Defense as now structured and before the new Secretary of Defense takes a chain saw to the place — has the slightest interest in creating a coherent joint force structure that can achieve global objectives with local precision from home basing. The US military today — and its 1,000 bases all over the world in particular — is a cover for action for financial and political objectives that have nothing to do with US national security or prosperity. CIA’s conscription of US military aircraft, and its smuggling on behalf of the elite of drugs, guns, gold, cash, and small children, is particularly out of order.

Such innovation as may be possible under the new Secretary of Defense will have to come from outside the current ranks of the US Army and other elements of DoD. Noteworthy among these are Col Dr Doug Macgregor’s ideas for a Reconnaissance Strike Group, an idea championed by Senator John McCain, and Maj Don Vandergriff (today in Afghanistan), whose concepts of personnel reform are essential to recasting all three services. Add to these the ideas of Robert Steele proposing a grand strategy (we have not had one since 1953), a closure of all bases overseas and an end to blind military support for covert operations, and the creation of a 450-ship Navy, long-haul Air Force, and a three million solider Army with no contractors, and you get to a STRONG America in which all of the money associated with rebuilding our military is spent AT HOME.

See Also:

Grand Strategy @ Phi Beta Iota

Macgregor @ Phi Beta Iota [On Ten Year Lead & Armoring Up]

Re-Inventing National Security [Grand Strategy, Global Reality, Re-Inventing US Army]

Review: Foreign Policy @ Phi Beta Iota

Ron Paul @ Phi Beta Iota

Trump @ Phi Beta Iota

Vandergriff @ Phi Beta Iota [Flipping Leadership & Personnel Into the Future]