Maj. Gen. Dave Halverson, the director of force development, discussed the new strategy in an interview with on-line journalists. He provided information about the survey and how it supports the Army’s goals to provide the best equipment and capabilities to Soldiers.
Specifically, Halverson focused on how the modernization strategy offered an actionable way ahead for today’s Army.
“Many times, with a modernization strategy, everyone’s so focused on ‘here’s a weapons system’ or ‘here’s a certain thing and here’s what it can do; here’s what it can’t do’…and it’s like a catalog of performance measures,” said Halverson. “This strategy that we’ve worked very hard with is much shorter, much better – because it actually explains why we have modernization and why we modernize within the forces – especially in persistent conflicts.”
Halverson also pointed out how the modernization strategy is linked to the recently released FM 3-0, and how the modernization strategy supports the overall Army objective of dominance as a landpower.
In outlining Army progress in modernization, Halverson noted the need to continue to field talented scientists and engineers to build and create new equipment.
As a member of the Army Science and Technology Board, Halverson said he is frequently involved in discussions as to how science and technology investments today can pay off for Soldiers tomorrow.
“Within the Defense Department, and obviously within the Army, we are pushing those things because I think it’s very important,” said Halverson, “because our Soldiers deserve the best, as they’re fighting on foreign soil, and we have to have that so we can quickly give them the best advantage over the enemy.”
One of the ways to provide that best advantage, according to Halverson, is through the fielding and acceleration of Future Combat Systems technologies into the battlefield.
“The reality is that it’s just not future anymore,” said Halverson. It’s going on now, and we’re giving capabilities to the Soldier…we’re testing it now at Fort Bliss.
“As soon as we see things that we like, we can bring it up to the senior leaders and say, ‘yes, this is where our investment needs to be.'”
One of the key components of today’s modernization strategy, said Halverson, is that it isn’t just focused on where we want to be in the future. In this era of persistent conflict, it is also fielding technologies today and continuing to modernize for tomorrow.
“We need to sit there and modernize to the next iteration,” said Halverson, “because we have a learning enemy in this persistent conflict. He’s trying to pull new things out there. We’re seeing new threats…so we have to learn with that. And we have to do it with those Soldiers in contact – we have to give them the best and the most, so they can defeat this enemy and come home with their heads held high in victory.”
You can find a copy of the 2008 Army Modernization Strategy at www.g8.army.mil/.