Unless they’re strictly for transport, military vehicles are not worth much unless they’re lethal to the enemy. That’s one reason the Navy is moving to improve the lethalness of its littoral combat ships. The Navy’s surface warfare chief has ordered the ships equipped with so-called over-the-horizon missiles. Bryan Clark, senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, joined Federal Drive with Tom Temin to discuss this and other naval matters in this week’s edition of Pentagon Solutions.
President Barack Obama’s administration continues to work toward his goal of U.S. energy independence by 2018. Meeting that goal may be good policy, but it may not be good military strategy. Lt. Cmdr. Scott Bennie of the Navy Reserve joined In Depth with Francis Rose on Pentagon Solutions. He explained the strategy problem in a piece for the U.S. Naval Institute. His views are his own and not the views of the Navy or the Naval Institute. He said walking away from our relationships with oil producing countries could leave us in a precarious situation militarily.
One of the fastest growing areas of fraud in the health care system is in the area of compounding pharmacies. James Burch, deputy inspector general for investigations in the Defense Criminal Investigative Service in the Office of the Inspector General of the Department of Defense, joined In Depth with Francis Rose on Pentagon Solutions. He discussed what led to the growing problem of compounding pharmacies.
The Air Force awarded a contract worth nearly half a billion dollars to 22 companies under its Agile Acquisition program. The work is based at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida. Jonathan Cansdale and Capt. Toshiro Toyama are contracting officers in the Air Force Lifecycle Management Center at Eglin. As part of Pentagon Solutions, they told In Depth with Francis Rose about the details of the contract. Cansdale described the parameters of the contract that make it agile
The Information Technology Box is the Army’s new method of procuring cyber solutions quickly. The Army will use it to procure tools to support defensive cyber operations like sensors and analytics. But the box itself isn’t new. Kevin Fahey, executive director of the System of Systems Engineering and Integration Directorate in the office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology, joined In Depth with Francis Rose on Pentagon Solutions. Fahey said DoD first used the IT box construct around 2008.
The Army is instituting a new evaluation system for determining who gets promoted. It will start to use its new non-commmissioned officer evaluation report in 2016. The Army is fine-tuning the NCOER and training personnel on how to use it. Sgt. Maj. of the Army Dan Dailey joined In Depth with Francis Rose on Pentagon Solutions today. He explains why the Army decided the new evaluation system was necessary and why the new one will bring the Army better leadership.
The Department of Defense has a list of exceptions it wants Congress to consider if, or when, it passes a continuing resolution for the beginning of fiscal year 2016, Oct. 1. Bob Hale is a fellow at Booz Allen Hamilton and former undersecretary of defense comptroller. He dealt with several of the department’s requests for changes to previous-year budgets in his time there. He is out with a new publication through the Brookings Institution, called Budgetary turmoil at the Department of Defense from 2010 to 2014. On In Depth with Francis Rose, he explains why he wanted to write it.
The National Security Agency’s leader — Adm.l Mike Rogers — now has a senior adviser for equality. Debora Plunkett holds that position and has been in that role for about almost a year. She tells In Depth with Francis Rose about her office’s mission and the responsibilities she was given when the office was created.
The NSA’s adviser on equality says workforce diversity is improving as the agency attempts to balance its mission with the men and women hired to help it succeed.
The Army plans on requesting proposals for the third iterations of its ITES and ADMC contracts by next January. New proposals will likely tackle target areas such as mobility, cloud integration and cybersecurity, but CHESS wants to make sure small businesses are in the running for contracts.
The Army is reviewing information it got from industry after its industry days for its new Information Technology Enterprise Solutions 3 Services and Army Desktop and Mobile Computing 3 Contracts. Tom Neff is project director for Computer Hardware and Enterprise Software Solutions at PEO Enterprise Information Systems. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose about the new contracts, what Army users will buy from them, what industry should do to get on them and what the Army hopes the contract will achieve.
Semper fidelis or always faithful applies to the Marine Corps in more ways than one. Colonel Keil Gentry is the director of the Marine Corps War College. Charles Neimeyer is the director and chief of Marines Corps History at the Marine Corps University in Quantico Virginia. The tell In Depth with Francis Rose about some leadership lessons they teach their students that can apply to almost anyone.
After nearly 20 years of development, the Marine Corps said its first squadron of F35B joint strike fighters is just about ready for combat. It’s the first joint strike fighter model to reach initial operational capability and the Defense Department spends nearly $100 billion in the process so far. Jim Hasik is a senior fellow at the Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security at the Atlantic Council. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose what the Pentagon could have spent its money on instead.
Jointness is all over the new National Military Strategy. Outgoing Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey describes how each armed service will contribute equally to national security. Jim Holmes is a professor of strategy at the US Naval War College. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose that he has little sense of what the U.S. maritime strategy will look like and how it function with land and air forces.
The military lacks the resources it needs for nearly every one of its forces. The Marines are running with two-thirds of the number of battalions it has needed in the past to meet its daily operational needs. The Army is losing 40,000 active duty troops in the next two years. And advanced missile defense programs are underfunded and behind schedule. Michaela Dodge is a senior analyst for defense and strategic policy at the Heritage Foundation. She tells In Depth with Francis Rose that DoD and the next administration are in desperate need of a new nuclear game plan.