National Guard Is Ready for More Action

National Guard Is Ready for More Action

Photo by: U.S. Army

The National Guard stands ready for more work, National Guard Bureau Chief Gen. Joseph L. Lengyel told Congress.

Testifying before the House Appropriations Committee about the 2019 budget, Lengyel said the National Guard averages 20,000 mobilized members a day, “well below our level of mobilization at the height of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. I believe we have the capacity to increase the number of mobilized Guard units over the next several years to support combatant commands around the world countering threats wherever they exist.”

There also are about 8,000 Guard soldiers or airmen conducting domestic and homeland security operations every day, he said.

He added that the Army could indefinitely maintain wider mobilization if the needs are “recurring, rotational, sustainable, predictable and resourced.”

Today’s Guard members “expect to be deployed and then employed in fighting and securing America’s national security interests,” Lengyel said. “Fighting America’s wars will always be the primary mission of the National Guard.”

“We live in an increasingly complex global security environment where the character of war is changing,” he said. “We are no longer safe at home as the current threat environment blurs the lines between domestic and overseas threats, with many of these threats transcending regions and domains of warfare.”