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Iran Press TV

Gen. Milley says US cannot allow a 'hollow Army'

Iran Press TV

Sun Oct 25, 2015 2:17PM

The new chief of the US Army, General Mark Milley, says combat readiness is his No.1 priority and that the United States cannot allow "a hollow Army."

"What we cannot allow, what we must guard against, is a hollow Army," Gen. Milley said in an interview with Army Times published on Saturday.

'War is a very unforgiving business. It is a very, very deadly, unforgiving environment, and it is an environment that does not care what the patch on your shoulder is… It is a crucible of combat that is unforgiving, and if you are unready, you are going to suffer enormous casualties. I cannot allow that. None of us can," he said.

The four-star general, who assumed the top Army post on August 14, said readiness is a question of "moral" and "ethical" commitment, adding that sending soldiers to combat "undermanned, underequipped, and not properly trained" is the "greatest sin."

The US Army began slashing force size from 570,000 to the current 490,000 several years ago, making it more difficult to maintain overseas engagements.

To tackle the problem, Milley said, the Army needs more funding. "So the budget situation is very, very concerning. What we want is a predictable, steady stream of funding from which we can plan against."

The general warned that tight budgets mean the Army has to reduce readiness, modernization or end-strength.

As Army chief of staff, Milley said he has to explore what the army would need in the decades ahead and "lay down the requirements for it."

"What is that world going to look like? What is the security situation of that world 15 to 20 to 25 years from now? So you have got to figure that out first," he added.

Insecurity in Eastern Europe and the fight against Daesh (ISIL) terrorists in Iraq and Syria are both posing long-term problems for US Army, according to General Ray Odierno, Milley's predecessor.

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