Fair Specimens of Citizen Soldiers
The author thinks so, and has an interesting take on why. (Hint– it’s all about the money.)
What say thee?
Given that Jointness is required for promotion to General/Flag Officer.
Having said that the Army has never been enamored with Jointness; nor do I believe has the USAF. It is telling that the Army has not been the JCS J3 in almost twenty years.
If left to the Army they would kill Jointness with a stake through the heart.
Having experienced working directly with the Army through Joint-basing, and seeing how they handle it I can completely understand why nobody would put an Army general as JCS J3. The ones I deal with are far more "All for me, none for you" than any of the other services from my experience.
The Army also does that to its own Guard and Reserve forces. Being blue isn't anything special in that regard.
The Army should be primarily Reserve forces anyway. Just my opinion of course, but unless we're participating in ground combat (which admittedly we are right now with Iraq/Afghanistan) there is little need to actually maintain a large active Army force. Downsize the active duty Army and upsize their Reserve units and you will massively reduce their cost, thus opening up additional funding for equipment upgrades and testing.
The Marines are already smaller than the other services, and the Air Force and Navy have far reaching forces through their planes and ships so it makes sense to maintain a large force for defense of our borders and international waterways used by US-based companies.
Of course, this is just theory since I don't have access to all of the Army numbers, etc.
Hmmm. Nothing really new here–Owens' memory is selective–we went through much weeping and gnashing of teeth after first Gulf War over budgets and missions–I was on the Army Staff at the time, and all services screamed about money/primacy/next mission, etc. I can see a larger Navy and smaller Army because that's what the next set of missions look like–forward presence, power projection, anti-piracy, etc., are more Navy than Army (or AF) missions. Marines have been scared ever since Haiti, when an admiral put 10th Mountain on a carrier and the myth that somehow only Marines do ship-based assaults was shattered. They've made sure that's never happened again. We really do need to think about current arrangements–Goldwater-Nichols made the CINCs the service's customers, and that actually works pretty well, though there are lots of exceptions and caveats–real key is do we focus on turf protection and force structure preservation, or do we really look at threats?
Mike, what you highlight is the tension; that the service chiefs are not in the Chain of Command; which in 10 USC 162 runs from the President, to the Secretary of Defense, to the Combatant Commander.
My only comment to TrueBlue–actually I see no reason that we need an Air Force, their missions easily could be divided between the other services.
What's the difference between a CJ3, an N/A/G-3, and an 3-star FOGO?
Nothing, same person. But each role requires a different staff with an completely different (but miraculously interoperable) MIS.
The DoD leadership never figured that out.
I think we need an Air Force–what we probably do not need, or need less of, is strategic bombing. Often I think we look at their transport fleet and think the Army should have it, but I don't think the Army is capable of managing such a complex entity that serves the other services, too. And we wouldn't want fighters, though we might want ground support aircraft like A10, but maybe that would be a tough thing to manage–we can probably achieve the same thing via interoperability–more assignments together before wars–I had never heard of a combat cargo team until I was in Iraq in first Gulf War when I got one (I was a TC officer and DMMC chief for 1st Armored Division). They were most helpful guys–I just wished we had worked with them in peacetime so we could have made better use of their services. One small example of what real jointness means.
Another look at the same topic:
Some aspects of jointness can and should be preserved but at a much lower cost.