By Claudette Roulo
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON October 10, 2012 – While the Navy’s aircraft carrier fleet is sized correctly to carry out its mission, land forces are facing “significant changes,” Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said here today.
“At this point in time, I believe we’ve got what we need,” Dempsey said in response to questions following his speech at a National Press Club luncheon.
After the Budget Control Act of 2011 imposed about $500 billion in defense spending cuts over 10 years, he said, the Defense Department had to examine its strategic positions.
“Strategy that’s not sensitive to resources is nothing more than rhetoric,” he said. “There’s always this balance between ends, ways and means. So the means changed. We had to take a look at the ends and the ways.”
Phi Beta Iota: The Chairman is on to something huge, the idea of building the Army from a bottom up. This is a return to Field Marshall Rommel’s concept of the “strategic corporal” and General Al Gray’s view that the force that succeeds is the force that BOTH trains the lead corporal to know commander’s intent AND puts the full power of the inverted force directly behind whichever corporal finds the gap in the enemy lines and leads the break-through. Sadly, the rest of us, led by the US Army Strategic Studies Institute, have been saying this for the last two decades, but the arrogance and insularity of the service force structure working groups has been thick. We need a 450-ship Navy, a long-haul Air Force, an air-deliverable Army, and a Coast Guard that shares 25 Expediters and 75 properly-designed patrol craft and littoral small ships (no service today is able to acquire anything with applied intelligence and integrity). To rebuild DoD requires two things: a) a President that is smart enough to eliminate ALL taxes in favor of the tiny Automated Payment Transaction (APT) Tax that doubles the available disposable income; and b) a Secretary of Defense willing to clean house, cut the flags and senior executives in half, and demand intelligence with integrity at every level from threat analysis to strategic formulation to force structure composition to day to day operations.