Defense

June 6, 2018
 

Behind the 10-year plan to help the Army win today’s and tomorrow’s battles

Tags:
Daniel Torok
Army News

Secretary of the Army Dr. Mark T. Esper speaks with a Soldier while visiting an Army installation. Esper recently laid out “The Army Vision” through 2028 that will ensure America’s Soldiers are able to fight and decisively win in any future battle.

In 1973, as the draft ended and America withdrew from Vietnam, the Army made it a priority to catch and keep the technological edge in weapons and equipment — setting up the formation of Training and Doctrine Command and Forces Command.

As America’s defense policy reoriented, the Army underwent a thorough modernization of its combat arms and aviation units through training reform, weapons, equipment, and force modernization, and revising doctrine at the beginning phases of a new strategic order.

It was, and still is, imperative that the Army keep its technological edge in weapons and equipment against our near-peer competitors. “Our competitors are seeking to alter global strategic realities for their own benefit, often at the expense of the U.S. interests and those of our allies and partners,” Secretary of the Army Dr. Mark Esper said in his opening statement to the House Appropriations Committee on the posture of the U.S. Army, March 20.

The Army’s current competitive advantage is in its Soldiers’ ability to rapidly deploy anywhere, anytime, and producing a combat-credible deterrent against potential adversaries.

While a great advantage to have, Doctor Esper stated in the posture hearing that “some of the key challenges, and the Army’s in particular, is defining our requirements and then implementing them.”

Over the past 30-plus years, the M1 Abrams tank, M2 and M3 Bradley fighting vehicles, the UH-60 Blackhawk and AH-64 Apache helicopters, and the MIM-104 Patriot air defense missile were developed and fielded. But in the past quarter century, the Army ceased to innovate, and with a large decrease in readiness, this technology has become outdated and overmatched.

The defining idea of the Army Vision, as laid out by Secretary Esper in a speech at the Brookings Institute June 5, is that the Army of 2028 will be ready to deploy, fight and win decisively against any adversary, anytime and anywhere, in a joint, multi-domain, high-intensity conflict, while simultaneously deterring others and maintaining its ability to conduct irregular warfare. “Modernizing today’s equipment will align us to the future battlefield,” Esper said.

To do this, The Army cannot look back 30 years, but instead must look forward in its ability to man, organize, train, equip and lead future Soldiers. Trusting and empowering subordinate leaders will facilitate both reform and greater performance. “We need to tap the talent of all the American people,” said Doctor Esper. “We need to reach out to traditional industry and non-traditional” to forge the road ahead.

“We have to change the character of warfare in our favor,” the secretary added, outlining his six priorities for Army modernization: Long-Range Precision Fires, Next Generation Combat Vehicles, Future Vertical Lift, Network, Air and Missile Defense, and Soldier Lethality.

The current global security challenges are growing and the Army can prepare itself by increasing capacity, training, improving and correcting critical gaps resulting in a far more lethal Army, ready now and prepared for the future. As Doctor Esper said, “We must prepare for the toughest fight. We must now build the Army of 2028.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines – February 22, 2019

News White House: 200 US troops will remain in Syria – “A small peace-keeping group of about 200 will remain in Syria for a period of time,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said.   Allies decline request to stay in Syria after US troops withdraw – As the deadline approaches for the withdrawal of U.S....
 
 

News Briefs – February 22, 2019

New legislation bans Russian soldiers from using smartphones Russian lawmakers have approved a bill prohibiting military personnel from using smartphones on duty, a move intended to stop sensitive information from appearing on social media. The bill approved by the lower house Feb. 19 also forbids servicemen to post photos, videos and information about themselves, other...
 
 

Virgin Galactic reaches space for a second time

Virgin Galactic photograph SpaceShipTwo mates to the mother ship in preparation for the Feb. 22 test flight. In its fifth supersonic rocket powered test flight, Virgin Galactic reached space for the second time today in the ski...