Army chief issues his ‘Marching Orders’ for decisive force 




The Army chief of staff released "Marching Orders – America’s Force of Decisive Action" Jan. 30 to the worldwide force.

"My intent," Gen. Raymond T. Odieno said in the Army publication, "is to sustain a high-quality All-Volunteer Army that remains the most decisive, responsive and effective land force in the world."

According to Odierno, the Army must provide depth and versatility to the joint force, and is agile, responsive and effective for the combatant commanders while ensuring the necessary "flexibility for national security decision-makers in defense of the nation at home and abroad."

Ensuring and sustaining a high-quality All-Volunteer Army – soldiers, civilians and families in both the active and reserve components – is one of Odierno’s priorities that is essential in developing a force "to win the current fight while maintaining responsiveness for unforeseen contingencies."

For over 236 years, the Army has been marked with "decisive action" in a variety of missions – including regular and irregular warfare, humanitarian assistance operations, engagement with allies to form meaningful partnerships and support to civil authorities.

The Army must continue to ensure "mission accomplishment" and must be "ready today and prepared for tomorrow."

This "is what the American people expect and what our freedom demands," he said.

He also stressed the need to foster a continued commitment to the Army profession – as a "noble and selfless calling" founded on trust.

Trust," he said, "is the bedrock of our profession. Trust between soldiers; trust between soldiers and leaders; trust between soldiers, their families and the Army; trust between the Army and the American people."

"Marching Orders" also discusses Odierno’s "Guiding Principles," Leader Expectations," the "Characteristics of the Future Force," "The Role of the Army," and his "Thoughts on the Way Forward."

In addressing the Army, Odierno said, "I am humbled by your steadfast dedication, outstanding professionalism, and incredible esprit de corps. Respect our traditions as you achieve excellence.

"It is an honor to serve in your ranks – you have my absolute trust and confidence. Thank you for willingly serving our nation.

"Army Strong!"

(Editor’s note: "Marching Orders – America’s Force of Decisive Action" by the 38th Army chief of staff, can be found in the "Of Interest" block at