Odierno: New Operating Concept grounded in ‘vision of future conflicts’
By Otto Kreisher
Army Chief of Staff Gen. Raymond Odierno cited the extensive list of countries where the “trusted professionals” of the Army are deployed, responding to crises, such as the Ebola epidemic in western Africa, engaging in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan and reassuring friends and allies in Europe and Asia.
“For those who think we don’t need an Army, look around the world and see what we do every day,” Odierno said Tuesday, Oct. 14.
In his last address as chief to the Eisenhower luncheon at the Association of the United States Army’s Annual Meeting and Exposition, Odierno restated his constant view of the priority for developing leaders in both the commissioned and non-commissioned officer ranks.
He addressed briefly the new Army operating concept – “Win in a Complex World” – which he said recognizes the need for the Army to provide “the fundamental elements of the joint force,” and is “grounded in a vision of future conflicts.”
The chief also restated his deepening concern about the impact of the sequestration-driven budget cuts on the Army, noting that with the bipartisan budget agreement that increased funding in the last fiscal year, “we are able to increase training” at home stations and the combat training centers.
“From the collective level down to individual training, we are slowly improving readiness,” he said.
But for the Army to maintain the readiness it needs to meet the growing challenges “we must have consistent readiness funding every single year.”
Unfortunately, he added, “that is not going to happen.”
As a result, budget reductions through sequestration force the Army “to continue to make tough choices. We are witnessing false decisions on the need for forces,” Odierno said. “These miscalculations pose real risks” for the nation because of the decreasing size of ground forces, declining readiness, and “slashing modernization.”
“In my view, it is time we should be increasing resources. We must ensure that the Army remains postured, manned and equipped to meet the challenges of the future,” he said.
“Despite the budget challenges we face,” Odierno added, “the one thing that remains constant is our soldiers’ commitment to standards. They meet our expectations every day.”