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Posture statement sets out Army's needs, goals

By Eric W. Cramer

WASHINGTON (Army News Service, Feb. 15, 2005) -- The U.S. Army's Posture statement, which informs the Congress about the status of the U.S. Army, was released Feb. 9 and is available at the Army's Web page.

The statement, which focuses on transformation, creating a campaign quality Army with joint and expeditionary capabilities, is the centerpiece of the Posture of the United States Army 2005 presented to the Congress by Secretary of the Army Francis J. Harvey and Army Chief of Staff Gen. Peter J. Schoomaker.

The annual statement is an unclassified summary of the Army's mission, roles, accomplishments plans and programs published to provide information to members of the U.S. Senate and House.

Col. Eric Ashworth, who helped write the document, said this year's posture statement focuses on four overarching an interrelated strategies: relevant, ready landpower to support combatant commanders; well-trained and equipped Soldiers serving as warriors led by adaptive leaders; quality of life and wellbeing for the Army's people to match the quality of their service; and infrastructure to enable the force to fulfill its strategic roles and mission.

Near the beginning of the statement is a chart, showing how these strategies relate to the Army's goals.

"The reason we put that diagram in there is to answer the question 'How does transformation fit into our strategic goals. All these strategies are important as we move deeper into the 21st century," Ashworth said.

He said the posture statement also includes a new area, not included in previous years.

"This year's posture statement includes a risk statement. We try to provide the reader with the consequences if, say, we don't get funding for some of the things we need, what that risk is to the force," Ashworth said.

Last year's statement focused on the Army's core competencies, Ashworth said. This year, the posture statement examines changing the Army to meet its goals and missions.

The posture statement provides a detailed description of the restructuring from a division-based to a brigade-based, modular force consisting of standardized Brigade Combat Teams. Called "modularity" the plan will increase the combat power of the active-duty component 30 percent, and increase the size of the Arm's overall pool of available forces by 60 percent. The Army will increase the total number of available brigades from 48 to 77, with 10 active brigades being added by the end of 2006.

The posture puts forward the Army's goal of rotating units -- with two years at home following each deployed year for active-component units, and four years at home for each year of deployment for Reserve units, and five years at home following each deployed year for National Guard forces.

The posture statement also discusses changing the balance of the active and reserve components, and realigning the specialties of more than 100,000 Soldiers to increase infantry capabilities by 50 percent. The plan calls for a similar increase in military police, civil affairs, intelligence and other critical areas. The army has already converted more than 34,000 spaces.

It also discusses stabilizing Soldiers in one unit for longer periods of time, and re-engineering the Army's business processes to better support combatant commanders.

The statement says it is necessary to balance the Army's future and current demands in order to:

Recruit and retain the All-volunteer force and its families;

Generate a force that is properly manned, trained and led in order to fight the Global War on Terror and other missions;

Enhance Soldiers ability to fight by rapidly fielding promising technologies that are ready now.

Repair and recapitalize equipment that is aging rapidly because of sustained combat operations in severe environmental conditions.

"One of the key things, obviously, is that the Soldier remains our the centerpiece. The Soldier is the resource that allows us to do our mission. The Secretary and the Chief of Staff believe in improving the Soldier's quality of life," Ashworth said.

He said the statement gets limited distribution Army-wide.

"I think the thing most Soldiers in the field can take away from reading the posture statement is how they fit in to the big Army -how their hard work on deployments or how what they do in the motor pool, or wherever they work, is important to the Army in general," Ashworth said.

The postures statement is available on the Army's homepage at OCPA Public Affairs Home OCPA Public Affairs Home


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