Thursday, April 26, 2007

Guess who came to dinner?

Chief of Staff of the Army, Four Banger Casey. Another short dood, surprising. Thirty six years of service and two weeks on the job.

Quick impressions:

  • He wants to continue transitioning the Army. Planning to the outyear 2020. Talked about the future combat system, but more in terms of how R&D from the FCS is being pushed to the Iraq Theatre. Things like UAV's and UMGVs
  • Army needs to get better at growing strategic leaders. Good at tactical and operational, but need strategic (which is why I think career progressions are being elongated. An intentional aging of the force).
  • Sees war lasting at least a decade. Iraq style conflict an outlier, but not pushing for a strict counter insurgency force. Need a strategic force to fight.
  • Modularity works, need some tweaks, so make them and set the force.
  • Army readiness. Doesn't apply to Army in the field. Units prepping to deploy have equipment shortages, but they are due to lack of capital investment in the nineties and acquisition cost in building modularity. BLUF: fighting forces fully enabled.
  • Asked if the Army could ditch the beret and go back to patrol caps. Received the second largest applause.
  • Stated he was pursuing a policy of free two week leave for Soldiers on second deployment. Largest applause.
  • Asked some questions about healthcare. Whatevs. The question was an obvious set up, IMHO.
  • Asked about media relations. Basically said, well, "what are you going to do?" Army needs to improve strategic communications, but recognizes all the impediments aren't in the corporation.
Just my impressions. No direct quotes.

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