Soldiers Find Healing in Medal of Honor
As China’s ability to wage large-scale war grows, the U.S. military must pivot from purchasing large, expensive platforms to smaller capabilities that can deploy more quickly, according to senior defense analysts.
All the services are experimenting with innovative solutions for future warfare, but the process of moving from concept to the warfighter is cumbersome and slow and too focused on big spending when smaller, more agile technologies may be suitable more quickly.
While the Army remains busy supporting Ukraine and America’s NATO partners, the force has not let go of its focus on other hot spots around the world, Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville said.
“We’re a global organization,” McConville said Sept. 7. “We have to be able to do more than one thing at once.”
Speaking at an event hosted by Defense One, McConville said this includes boots on the ground in the Middle East, Asia, Europe and elsewhere, all while supporting defense of the homeland.
About 7,000 more American troops, including an armored brigade combat team, will deploy to Germany in the coming days as the U.S. moves to further reassure its NATO allies, the Pentagon said Feb. 24.
The announcement came as President Joe Biden announced new sanctions against Russia for launching an invasion of Ukraine with air and missile strikes, armored convoys and ground troops.
Russian President Vladimir Putin “is the aggressor,” Biden said, the Associated Press reported. “Putin chose this war, and now he and his country will bear the consequences.”
The Army is meeting 50% of the nation’s global security requirements while spending just 25% of the defense budget, Army Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Joseph Martin said.
This includes 63,000 soldiers involved in domestic operations such as border security, COVID-19 assignments and supporting law enforcement, he said. “The demand for Army capabilities by federal agencies and combatant commanders continues to exceed supply, and we do not anticipate a decrease in demand.”
Despite a host of challenges, the first major Army Reserve unit to mobilize as the COVID-19 pandemic set in recently completed a successful nine-month deployment to the Middle East, supporting operations across 13 countries while keeping soldiers safe.
Some soldiers will face fewer promotion hurdles while finishing their professional military education courses when a new Army policy takes effect Jan. 1.
Under the new policy, NCOs from sergeant to sergeant major who haven’t finished their required education may still qualify for short-term promotions, Sgt. Maj. of the Army Michael Grinston announced Nov. 24.
Grinston said the change can help soldiers who are deployed, starting a family or attending the non-resident Sergeants Major Course.
By James Stalker
Military leaders are taking on a “holistic review” of troops’ footprint around the world as the U.S. remains focused on “great-power competition,” according to the Pentagon’s top general.
“There’s a very strong argument to be made that we may have forces in places that they shouldn’t be, and we may have forces that are needed in places that they’re not right now,” Army Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said Dec. 2 while speaking with the Brookings Institution.
The Army’s 2nd Cavalry Regiment is expected to continue playing a key role in Europe even as the Pentagon carries out a plan to bring the Stryker unit home to the U.S.
Speaking Oct. 20 at the Atlantic Council, Defense Secretary Mark Esper said that after talks with his counterparts in Romania and Bulgaria as well as the Baltic States, “there is now the real opportunity of keeping the 2nd Cavalry Regiment forward in some of these countries on an enduring basis.”