“The Army must change now. The old designs won’t work on the new
battlefield.” Lieutenant General C. V. Christianson, Deputy Chief of Staff,
G–4, told an audience at a recent Association of the U.S. Army (AUSA) Logistics
Symposium that the changes he envisions are simple—
• Develop a logistics information network to connect logisticians. Sustainers
must see requirements, especially repair parts, in real time on a shared data
network. They must respond to those requirements with speed and precision.
• Develop a responsive distribution system. Distribution must begin on
1 of a deployment and continue on through the last tactical mile. The system
should be trusted by the customer and managed by a single owner.
• Develop a rapid force reception capability that will allow a quick and
seamless transition to the theater and immediately provide sustainment to the
combat force. The Army needs to develop operational concepts, but not specific
operation plans, because it will face an unknown situation and force structure
in an unexpected location.
• Develop an integrated supply chain with a single proponent to coordinate
efforts to support joint, interagency, and multinational forces. The system should
provide everything the warfighter needs, from factory to foxhole.
General Christianson said that today’s
battlefield is dispersed and consists of islands of operations
that are connected by a fragile spider web of support.
The force is no longer task organized and must be flexible to respond to rapidly
The G–4 added, “The battlefield enemy has changed. He has different
values. He places no value on life. He prefers to operate in remote areas and
is hard to target. He is not trying to occupy land; he wants our mental space.
freedom and tolerance.”
General Christianson praised the efforts of the logisticians who managed under
extremely difficult conditions in Operation Iraqi Freedom. He stated that they
were not prepared to operate in a rapidly moving environment with the equipment
and procedures they had; but because they were well trained and had a sense of
purpose, many of their individual efforts were brilliant and successful.
The AUSA Logistics Symposium took place in Richmond,
Virginia, on 6 through 8 April.
SECRETARY OF DEFENSE REPORTS
ON EXCESS INSTALLATION CAPACITY
The Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process for 2005
took a significant step forward in March when Secretary
of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld submitted
structure plan and infrastructure inventory to Congress. Based on this
report, the Secretary certified to Congress “that
the need exists for the closure or realignment of
additional military installations . . .”
In the report, the Department of Defense (DOD) estimated that 24 percent
of its infrastructure is excess capacity. Of the individual services,
the Army has the
greatest amount of excess capacity: 29 percent of its infrastructure.
The percentages of excess capacity for the other services are 21 percent
the Navy and 24
percent for the Air Force, as well as 17 percent for the Defense Logistics
Agency (DLA). The estimates of excess capacity are based on the infrastructure
of the forces identified in the force structure plan (as approved by
the Joint Chiefs of Staff for fiscal year 2009) and on base capacity
each military department and DLA.
DOD must present its BRAC recommendations to an independent commission
in May 2005. The 2005 BRAC process will be the fifth such analysis,
completed in 1988, 1991, 1993, and 1995. Based on the results of the
1993 and 1995 BRAC decisions, DOD believes that next year’s BRAC
recommendations will produce annual net savings for each military department
by fiscal year
DDOC ENJOYS EARLY SUCCESS
The U.S. Transportation Command’s (TRANS-COM’s) Deployment and
Distribution Operations Center (DDOC), which was established and deployed to
Kuwait under the tactical command of the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) earlier
this year, is helping to solve the distribution problems of U.S. military forces
deployed to Asia. The center, staffed by 63 joint logistics experts, links
strategic deployment and distribution processes to operational and tactical
functions to support the warfighter.
Within its first 2 months of operation, the DDOC synchronized strategic and
intratheater lift, achieving a cost avoidance of $268 million. It improved
readiness by diverting 494 tons of theater assets and improved strategic delivery
of critical materiel directly to forward units. The DDOC reduced operational
costs by improving in-transit visibility and total asset visibility, diverting
over 100 containers of class IX (repair parts), and stopping 1,700 containers
of class IV (construction materials) from being shipped from the continental
United States. It accelerated retrograde of depot-level reparables by 900 percent
and improved strategic delivery of critical materiel directly to forward units
by bypassing traditional chokepoints.
The DDOC has been so successful that other commands are asking for one. At
the Association of the U.S. Army Logistics Symposium in April, Major General
Robert T. Dail, Director of Operations, J–3, TRANSCOM, said about the
DDOC, “There’s good news, and there’s bad news. The good
news is that everyone wants one; the bad news is that everyone wants one.” General
Paul J. Kern, Commander of the Army Materiel Command, described the DDOC as “an
example of the innovative thinking we need in the coming years.”
The DDOC is one of several initiatives taken by TRANSCOM since its designation
as Distribution Process Owner to improve end-to-end distribution within the
Department of Defense. Combining the expertise of the Defense Logistics Agency
(DLA), TRANSCOM, the military services, and other materiel distribution stakeholders,
the CENTCOM DDOC is revamping how materiel is shipped, received, and tracked
in a theater of operations. DLA is the largest provider of sustainment materiel
and generator of sustainment movement requirements for the Department of Defense
(DOD). TRANSCOM provides air, land, and sea transportation for DOD. The partnership
of these two organizations with other logistics providers will improve ground
truth and in-transit visibility for distributors and commanders.
The DDOC identifies and manages all of the movement requirements and the large
volume of containers, pallets, and supplies coming into the theater from DLA’s
many distribution centers and vendors, the General Services Administration,
and the Army and Air Force Exchange Service.
CENTCOM expects the establishment of the DDOC to result in better logistics
support so that soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines will have whatever they
need, where and when they need it, to ensure success on the battlefield.
ARMY TO RECOGNIZE
PROFESSIONAL LOGISTICIAN CERTIFICATION
Effective 15 April 2004, Army officers and warrant officers
who have been awarded the Certified Professional Logistician
(CPL) designation by SOLE—The
International Society of Logistics are authorized to add their CPL certification
Officer Record Brief (ORB) and Official Military Personnel Folder (OMPF). Army
Regulation 600–8–104, Military Personnel Information Management/Records,
is being revised to reflect the authorized inclusion of the CPL certificate
in the OMPF. The CPL designation is one of a number of civilian-granted professional
certifications authorized for documentation and recognition as specialized
education and training. Others include the Certified Professional Engineer,
Certified Professional Accountant, and Certified Professional Contract Manager
To add the CPL certification to their ORB and OMPF, Active Army and Army Reserve
officers should submit a notarized copy of the SOLE CPL certificate to their
assignment officer in accordance with existing procedures for the documentation
of civilian education and training. Army National Guard (ARNG) CPLs can submit
their certification documentation to their state Military Personnel Offices.
Questions about the ORB and OMPF procedures should be directed to Major James
Kennedy at (703) 325–5262 or email@example.com. ARNG questions
should be directed to the appropriate state Military Personnel Office. For
assistance in replacing CPL certificates or information about the CPL program,
contact SOLE headquarters at (301) 459–8446 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
ARMY PLAN ADDS AND ENHANCES SBCTs
Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld has authorized the Army to acquisition
and field Stryker Brigade Combat Teams (SBCTs) 5 and 6 and retrofit brigades
1 through 4 with newer technology as it becomes available.
Under the approved plan, the Army will enhance the aviation, fire support,
computer networks, and sensor capabilities of new and already fielded SBCTs
at a cost of about $1.4 billion. The enhancements will begin to appear as SBCTs
5 and 6 are fielded. SBCTs 1 through 4 then will be retrofitted with the improvements
based on lessons learned from SBCTs 5 and 6.
The fifth SBCT—the 2d Brigade, 25th Infantry Division (Light), at Schofield
Barracks, Hawaii—is scheduled for fielding in 2006. The sixth—the
56th Brigade (Mechanized), 28th Infantry Division (Mechanized), of the Pennsylvania
Army National Guard—is scheduled to begin fielding in 2008.
The first Stryker brigade—the 3d Brigade, 2d Infantry Division, from
Fort Lewis, Washington—is deployed to Iraq. The second Stryker brigade—the
1st Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, also from Fort Lewis—is training
on its Stryker vehicles.
SBCT 3—the 172d Infantry Brigade at Fort Wainwright, Alaska—and
SBCT 4—the 2d Armored Cavalry Regiment at Fort Polk, Louisiana—will
be fielded over the next few years.
The first SBCT enhancement will improve satellite communications by offering
high-speed compatibility and interoperability with the joint forces. Future
Stryker brigades also will have increased command and control, communications,
logistics, target acquisition, and intelligence.
Soldiers in future SBCTs will have lighter howitzers, organic aviation elements,
and better sensor capabilities. Initially, Stryker brigades 1 through 4 will
have 12 M198 155-millimeter howitzers each. SBCTs 5 and 6 will be enhanced
with 18 new, lightweight 155-millimeter howitzers each.
The current Stryker brigades have direct aviation support. Beginning with SBCT
5, aviation elements will be organic. SBCT 5 will be equipped with RAH–66
Comanche helicopters, and the Army will use the aviation lessons learned from
that experience to equip SBCT 6 and to retrofit SBCTs 1 through 4. Until then,
SBCTs 2 through 4 will have aviation packages similar to that of the first
Stryker brigade, which includes OH–58 Kiowa and UH–60 Black Hawk
helicopters that provide direct support.
Sensor capability enhancements will include adding 10-meter masts to Stryker
vehicles so soldiers can use the sensor system from concealed positions up
to 10 kilometers away.
AUSA PANEL ADDRESSES NEED
TO BETTER CONNECT LOGISTICIANS
“Connect Logisticians,” which is one of the focus areas of Army Logistics
Transformation, was the subject of a panel chaired by Major General Mitchell
H. Stevenson, the Army Materiel Command’s Deputy Chief of Staff for Logistics
and Operations, at the Association of the U.S. Army’s (AUSA’s) 2004
Logistics Symposium. The symposium was held in Richmond, Virginia, 6 to 8 April.
Other panelists were Lieutenant General Otto J. Guenther, USA (Ret.), Vice President
and General Manager of Tactical Systems Division at Northrop Grumman Mission
Systems; Major General Conrad W. Ponder, Chief Integration Officer (CIO), Office
of the Army CIO/G–6; Ms. Modell Plummer, Director of Sustainment, Office
of the Deputy Chief of Staff, G–4; and Colonel John J. Erb, USA (Ret.),
Deputy Director of Strategic Logistics, J–4.
In spite of the great strides that have been made in Army logistics since Desert
Storm, Stevenson said that Army logisticians still cannot see requirements
on the battlefield and their customers cannot adequately see supplies coming
their way. Two systems that show great promise in connecting the logistician
are the small satellite terminals now in use in Southwest Asia, and the Movement
Tracking System (MTS), which provides a wireless, mobile, satellite-based two-way
text messaging system designed to provide command and control over transportation
assets supporting theater distribution operations. The MTS can identify current
vehicle locations and send text messages to and from MTS-equipped vehicles.
According to General Guenther, the Army rightly views logistics as a holistic
enterprise rather than as a series of stovepipe systems. This is essential
to achieving near-real-time, anticipatory logistics support for warfighters.
However, it cannot be accomplished without adequate communications bandwidth,
a capability that can only be realized if both military and commercial means
are used. Private industry has the ability today to provide the Army with an
interim communications network that could support future networks and future
force structure. This would support the Chief of Staff’s imperative to
bring future force capabilities to current forces. Further, it would connect
Army logisticians by providing end-to-end logistics situational awareness and
understanding. That, stated Guenther, should be enhanced by providing logisticians
with a similar unit tracking system that combat units possess with Force XXI
Battle Command Brigade and Below (FBCB2), a system he called Logistics Blue
Guenther pointed out that today’s logistics business systems provide
information that is as timely and relevant as the information that is necessary
for the command and control (C2) systems. Therefore, the information architecture
must support data flows that inform both the business systems from the tactical
level to the national level as well as the C2 systems from the warfighter up
to the joint C2 at the theater combatant commander or joint task force commander
level. This is critical to providing accurate sustainability assessments as
well as allowing for informed decisions on distribution priorities. The Army’s
adoption of commercial Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solutions is a major
departure from the former business practices and a significant step toward
building the required information architecture. However, to be successful the
Army must provide visionary subject-matter experts to support the process design
with expedited decisionmaking and governance by senior leaders.
As noted by Ms. Plummer, gaps in information transfer during Operation Iraqi
Freedom (OIF) occurred because initially, satellite communications were not
available at logistics nodes and continental United States-based units that
deployed to OIF were not adequately equipped and trained in the use of in-transit
visibility tools, such as radio frequency identification (RFID) read-write
capability, which made it difficult to link supplies with the units needing
them. As a result, soldiers lacked confidence that what they ordered would
get through to them.
Major General Ponder stressed the need for connectivity from factory to foxhole.
Ponder also noted the successful use of very small aperture terminals (VSATs)
and the wireless Combat Service Support Automated Information System Interface
(CAISI) to fulfill this need. VSATs allow voice, data, and video communication
at any location, including remote sites. The CAISI can function in garrison
to extend the local area network to units without connectivity and to tactical
environments without changing network addresses. With this type of “plug-and-play” communication
system, deployed units can use the same systems they use in garrison to set
up and begin operations quickly.
Colonel Erb pointed out that the Army shares the challenge of providing connectivity
to field logisticians with the Marine Corps and ground force coalition partners.
He stated that billions of dollars are being spent by the Department of Defense
to replace antiquated legacy transaction and information systems; therefore,
dedicated communication systems are required to enable these process engineering
efforts to achieve their full potential.
The Warfighter Information Network-Tactical (WIN–T), which is scheduled
for fielding in the 2008 timeframe, will exploit the Global Information Grid
to connect all users in the theater to the maneuver battalion, to joint and
elements, and to the Defense Information System Network. The WIN–T network
will provide command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance,
and reconnaissance support capabilities that are mobile, secure, survivable,
seamless, and capable of supporting multimedia tactical information systems
within the warfighters’ battlespace.
HSV DECK LANDINGS COULD INCREASE
FUTURE TRANSPORTATION CAPABILITIES
Two Army UH–60 Black Hawk helicopters landed on board
the high-speed vessel (HSV) USAV Joint Venture X1 on 25 March,
marking the first time in more
than 30 years that an Army helicopter has landed on an Army ship. After offloading
passengers onto the deck of the ship, the pilots practiced deck landings required
for deck certification.
The Black Hawks are assigned to Company B, 1st Battalion, 52d Aviation Regiment,
17th Aviation Brigade, in Yongsan, South Korea. The Joint Venture is stationed
in Hawaii under the command of U.S. Army Pacific but was in the Yellow Sea
off the coast of Korea to support a reception, staging, onward movement, and
integration exercise being conducted on the Korean peninsula.
This landing was historically significant, but future deck landings aboard
Army vessels are uncertain because the Army currently has no watercraft in
its permanent inventory capable of supporting flight operations. However, including
the Joint Venture, or other vessels like it, in the permanent Army inventory
could provide the Army with the capability to move troops and equipment quickly
into areas previously thought inaccessible.
|A UH–60 Black Hawk
helicopter makes a historic landing on the USAV
Joint Venture. (Photo courtesy of Incat Australia.)
SDDC MOVES CARIBBEAN PORT
TO JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA
In May, the 832d Transportation Battalion completed its relocation
from Fort Buchanan, Puerto Rico, to Jacksonville, Florida.
The move followed the move
of U.S. Army South from Puerto Rico to Fort Sam Houston, Texas. The Port of
Jacksonville is one of the Surface Deployment and Distribution Command’s
(SDDC’s) 18 strategic ports in the continental United States.
The 832d is now operating on the 800-acre Blount Island Marine Terminal at
Jacksonville, which has a mile of continuous berthing and is one of the largest
terminals on the east coast. The terminal has at least 75 acres of secure cargo
available at any one time. The island has an extensive rail network and large
open areas where helicopters can land. A bridge connecting the island to the
main port controls access to the terminal.
The new location will boost the battalion’s effectiveness and provide
SDDC “. . . greater synergy for our continental United States terminals
to [provide] support to other warfighters deploying elsewhere around the world—in
addition to U.S. Southern Command,” said Colonel James Chen. Chen is
the commander of the 597th Transportation Group in Sunny Point, North Carolina,
of which the 832d is a part.
SDDC will maintain a presence in Puerto Rico. A two-member office in San Juan,
under the command of the 832d, will monitor existing sustainment contracts
that support other Government agencies throughout the Caribbean.
SOLDIERS HELP WITH WEAPONS
DESTRUCTION IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA
Soldiers of the Stabilization Force (SFOR) Multinational Brigade (North) helped
approximately 1,000 weapons and 3,000 rifle magazines to the Zenica Steel Factory
in Bosnia-Herzegovina for destruction earlier this year. In 2003, more than
11,000 weapons were destroyed at the
The weapons and munitions that had been used during the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina
from 1992 to 1995 were collected in the SFOR’s Operation Harvest, during
which citizens were encouraged
to hand over their illegally held weapons, ammunition, and explosive devices
with full amnesty. The collected weapons and munitions were transported to
the steel factory, where they were loaded into long, bathtub-shaped buckets
and carried to the furnace area by crane. Soldiers transferred the weapons
to smaller cast-iron bins, which were dumped into the furnace by machine. In
a 7-hour process, the weapons were melted down at a temperature of 2,000 degrees
Fahrenheit. The molten steel was recycled into raw steel for construction use.
|Stabilization Force members
load weapons slated for meltdown into a bin at
the Zenica Steel Factory.
CAS3 MERGED WITH
OFFICER ADVANCED COURSES
The last class of the 5-week Combined Arms and Services Staff School (CAS3)
at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, graduated in May, and the responsibility for staff
officer skills training was transferred to the branch proponent schools. The
branch schools will expand their Officer Advanced Courses (OACs) by 1 week
to include a combined arms exercise to provide captains with much of the combined-arms
experience that was a critical part of CAS3.
The merger of the course curriculums resulted from approval by the Secretary
of the Army of the Army’s plan to merge CAS3 and OACs to eliminate redundant
instruction and minimize captains’ time away from operational assignments
and their families.
In the past, instruction in areas such as problem-solving and military decisionmaking
has been a part of the curriculum of both the OACs and CAS3. Decisionmaking
also is taught later in an officer’s career at the Army Command and General
Staff College. “Some repetition is good,” said Colonel David S.
Thompson, CAS3 director at Fort Leavenworth. “What we’re trying
to do is eliminate any redundancy in instruction.”
The merger, planned as part of the transformation of the Officer Education
System, was originally scheduled for fiscal year 2005 but was moved up for
operational reasons. “With the Army at war, captains need to get back
to their units,” Thompson said. The course merger will get them back
to units almost 4 weeks earlier.
Fort Leavenworth has been conducting 7 CAS3 classes per year with about 450
students each. Active-duty captains have been attending CAS3 at Leavenworth
immediately after finishing the OAC at their branch schools. In recent years,
most captains have
gone to their advanced course as a permanent change of station move. Now they
will go in a temporary duty status and return to their units.
Army National Guard and Army Reserve captains may continue to take CAS3 at
Army Reserve Forces Schools at least until the current courses finish at the
end of fiscal year 2004.
‘ AKO LITE’ AVAILABLE
Army Knowledge Online (AKO) is now available in a lighter version that permits
quicker downloading. The new version of AKO, called AKO Lite, is AKO’s
response to concerns expressed by deployed soldiers that AKO took too long
to access and use.
To reduce the time needed to download AKO, the graphics used on the AKO homepage
have been eliminated. The AKO Lite homepage does not have pictures, links to
Army senior leaders, or Army and AKO logos, nor does it have Quick Links, My
Links, What’s New at AKO, or My KCC sections. These features are still
available on the complete AKO site, however. On AKO Lite, soldiers still have
access to their email, instant messaging, and knowledge collaboration centers.
AKO Lite is part of an ongoing effort to make AKO useful and relevant. Other
initiatives that will be implemented in the near future include—
• Upgrading the server to deliver AKO and AKO Lite twice as fast as the
• Making the viewable area of the announcements section smaller by introducing
a scrolling text box.
• Updating all AKO pages with consistent colors and logos.
• Creating a new portal that allows AKO users to create their own homepages
that can be viewed by other AKO users.
• AKO Lite can be accessed through the regular AKO sign-in page at www.us.army.mil
by using a link on the left side of the page. The site responds to the same user
name and password as the regular AKO service.