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consolidation of our staffs. The Army secretariat now has about 370 members. Consequently, while some further consolidation may be possible, I do not recommend merger of the staffs.
Regarding defense agencies, it is important to note that they have developed largely as a result of efforts to improve management and to improve program as well as budget visibility over functional activities, this also assists in wartime support of the CINC's. While these functional activities, such as communications or logistics could be split among the service departments, or could be given to a single service department as executive agent, it is not clear that management efficiency would be better than exists with the current defense agencies. Several of the real benefits of defense agencies lies in their jointness which derives in part from manning with personnel from the services, and from the fact that the agencies must participate fully in the defense resources board process which assures solid program visibility in terms of balance, support to the service and CINC's, and efficiency.
All of this is not to say, however, that further efficiencies cannot be made in existing defense agencies. Just as we have done with cuts in the Army staff over the past two years, some consolidation of effort and further manpower efficiencies probably could be made. I do not support the House bill that would eliminate the Defense Logistics Agency and Defense Contract Auditing Agency, both of which achieve efficiencies in performing needed common functions for the services. It would be particularly harmful to disestablish these agencies and cause the services to reassure their functions with no increase in manpower.
I also do not support the proposal to create a new special operations agency. Great progress has been made in recent years in strengthening the special operation forces. Army SOF (total Army) have grown from a strength of 19,500 in 1982 to 24,200 in the 1987 budget, and resource allocations have grown from $254 million dollars in 1982 to $552 million dollars in the 1987 budget. We have organized a special operations command under a major general to assure solid oversight to SOF programs and operational activities. Thus a new agency is not needed given the initiatives taken within DOD in recent years to improve special operations capabilities. The creation of such an agency, in my view, could complicate SOF wartime support to the CINC's and detract from service responsibilities as well as accountability for strengthening SOF capabilities.
I have shared my views on the SASC draft reorganization bill in a letter which I would be happy to provide for the record. The draft bill was an improvement on the extensive report published by the SASC staff last October, particularly with regard to the JCS provisions. However, the bill contained a number of provisions that I believe would be less than helpful. For example, while enhancing the role of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, which I support, it did not sufficiently provide for the retention of the corporate nature of the JCS or of their advice. I would hope that the final bill would make clear the Chairman's responsibility to consult with the JCS and to carry out his duties on behalf of the corporate body
The final bill also should permit the JCS to retain the current practice of quarterly rotation among the chiefs of the role of Acting Chairman. I have worked with other practices when I was director of the Joint Staff and Senior Military Executive to the Secretary of Defense. The Acting Chairman's role requires that the service chiefs become more deeply involved in joint affairs and the national security decision making process. Fulfilling this important responsibility has made me a better service chief and a better member of the JCS, leading I believe to providing better military advice for our superiors, to support better the CINC's, and to more "jointness." if we are serious about making the JCS more joint, and I know we are, then the Acting Chairman's role is a crucial element in the maturation process.
Increased duties of the Chairman may make it advisable to assign him a Vice Chairman. I supported this concept six years ago during my tenure as director of the Joint Staff, but I did not then, nor do I now, advocate that the Vice Chairman replace the CJCS during his absence. A Vice Chairman, for the reasons cited above, should not become Acting Chairman in the Chairman's absence, but he could aid very considerably the Chairman in such areas as enhancing the Joint Staff's capabilities to review contingency planning; to perform resource analysis; to formulate planning, programming, and budgeting recommendations; and to work with the CINC's staffs on their resource priorities, additionally. He could head the joint requirements and management board and oversee major mobilization exercises such as “Nifty Nugget” conducted in 1979 and periodically since then.
My previous comments indicate my key concerns regarding the draft SASC bill's provisions for the combatant commands and military departments. I would be glad to address specific questions you may have today. I would also like to offer to you my full cooperation and that of the Army staff in the important work you are undertaking over the coming weeks. Thank you.
I have carefully studied the committee staff's report, with its far-reaching proposals, as well as the House bill. They both merit serious consideration. As your letter requested, my remarks will focus on the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the unified and specified commands, and the service secretariat.
Overall, the report presents constructive criticism on the entire defense organization. There are a number of positive recommendations that I can support. Also, the report is forthright in recognizing that the methods and nature of congressional oversight have a major bearing on the way we conduct our business.
The report unfortunately contains some nearsightedness. Based on my experience, I can find little basis for the report's sweeping generalizations about service parochialism or “log rolling,” which undercuts the authority of the Secretary of Defense. Furthermore, the report fails to give adequate credit to how the current JCS system has been changing to respond to today's conditions and to correct identified problems. These hearings must take cognizance of these ongoing internal reforms if we are to adopt further changes that make sense.
For example, DOD has modified significantly the defense resources board to consider better the CINC requirements and priorities in strategic planning and in service programs. Moreover, each service has established formal procedures for reviewing CINC priorities during the programming process and for keeping the CINC's informed.
The joint requirements and management board brings together service vice chiefs to examine joint requirements and coordinate system development to avoid duplication. We have initiated a joint force development program anchored on 35 joint Army-Air Force points of agreement and now including four-service participation. A key element of this participation is cross-service involvement in programming developments. The joint doctrine pilot program, with four major projects involving the CINC's to improve interoperability, further reflects our sustained effort to improve joint thinking and operations.
Now, in addition to these ongoing initiatives, let me outline those areas where I believe improvements could be considered.
I agree generally with strengthening the role of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Thus, I could support legislation which, while retaining the corporate JCS as military advisers, would make the Chairman the principal military adviser. I also believe the law could assign to the Chairman certain "title 10” JCS responsibilities, such as joint training and military education of the Armed Forces. Additionally, the Chairman could assume two new responsibilities: the development of joint doctrine and formulation of recommendations on strategic priorities, defense programs and military budgets.
However, I believe that the Chairman should continue to consult, time and circumstances permitting, with the JCS in fulfilling these responsibilities. The Chiefs, in turn, would be able to forward dissenting views to the Secretary of Defense or even the President should they think their concerns were inadequately addressed within the JCS Councils. Thus, the system would contain the "checks and balances” needed to maintain a healthy joint perspective in national security decision making.
Current law and ongoing JCS initiatives provide for substantial improvements in the Joint Staff. The Chairman should be able to specify the staff procedures and tasks. It makes sense to remove the limits on the size and tenure of the Joint Staff, as it does to do away with the distinction between the Joint Staff and other OJCS officers.
The quality of the Joint Staff has been improving. The Army has always tried to provide officers of recognized competence to the Joint Staff, frequently exceeding the norms found inside our own service. For example, this year 100 percent of the eligible Army majors on the Joint Staff were selected for promotion to lieutenant colonel. Toward the goal of upgrading Joint Staff quality, I support the granting of authority to the Chairman to specify the qualifications needed by the officers on the Joint Staff.
The net result of the foregoing proposals would be to increase the authority of the Chairman and, I would expect, that of the entire JCS as well. There is a potential danger that, over time and with different personalities, such an increase in authority could lead to less consultation and might result in less service chief involvement in, and sense of responsibility for, joint affairs. I believe carefully crafted legislation which retains language expressing corporate responsibilities, consultation among the Chiefs and the Chairman's action “on behalf of the JCS will assure solid involvement of the Chiefs in joint affairs.
There is one other measure which I strongly recommend. We should retain the current practice of quarterly rotation among the Chiefs of the Role of Acting Chairman. The Acting Chairman's role requires that the service chiefs become more deeply involved in joint affairs and the national security decision making process. Fulfilling this important responsibility has made me a better service chief and a better member of the JCS, leading, I believe, to providing better military advice for our superiors and better support for the CINC's. If we are serious about making the JCS more joint, and I know we are, then the Acting Chairman's role is clearly a key element in the maturation process.
Increased duties of the Chairman may make it advisable to assign him a Vice Chairman. I don't advocate that the Vice Chairman replace the Chairman during his absence for the reasons cited above. However, the Vice Chairman could enhance the Joint Staff's capabilities to review contingency planning; to perform resource analysis; to formulate planning, programming, and bugeting recommendations; and to work with the CINC's staffs on their resource priorities. Additionally, he could head the joint requirements and management board and oversee major mobilization exercises.
As you can see from these comments, I strongly support retention of the basic Joint Chiefs of Staff concept rather than replacing it with a body of military advisers. While I recognize that the "dual hat” responsibilities of JCS members are comprehensive, my experience leads me to believe they are not a serious impediment to providing sound, joint advice on operational as well as policy matters. To the contrary, I believe the "dual hat” concept is a valuable source of strength for several
First is that the quality of advice to the national command authorities in peace, crisis, or war is enhanced by Chiefs who can meld their advice from service and joint perspectives. Who else but the Chiefs are the most knowledgeable of, and accountable for, their statutory obligation of preparing forces for prompt and sustained combat operations?
Second, and the other side of the coin, is that service programs are more solidly focused to support operational forces by Chiefs whose perspectives are shaped by participating in the joint decision process, and by interacting routinely with the CINC's.
Third, and related to the first two, is that no single military officer, no matter how competent, dedicated, or experienced can know enough about all aspects of our Armed Forces to render complete military advice or counsel. The Chairman needs all the help he can get to function as the principal military adviser. This advice will be authoritative and sound when it is derived from knowledge and judgement garnered from personal relationships and consultations with service chiefs.
Let me turn now to the unified and specified commands. As you know, the chain of command to the CINC's runs from the President to the Secretary of Defense to the CINC's. By DOD directive the chain runs through the JCS. The Chairman in practice exercises this function on behalf of the JCS, and I could support codification of that practice. The Chairman also could be authorized to supervise CINC implementation of NCA directives. These measures should not and would not make the Chairman a commander in his own right.
The staff report makes recommendations regarding unification of the command structure at CINC level and below. These require more detailed study, and the JCS are already examining these issues as part of the review of JCS publication 2, "unified action armed forces."
I already have noted some of the many actions we have taken to improve CINC involvement in the resource allocation process. In this regard, I could support the report's recommendations to establish the CINC readiness fund and to strengthen the capability of the OJCS to analyze resources and to assess new requirements.
Regarding the military departments, let me make several comments. Secretary Marsh tomorrow will provide this committee a detailed statement on this subject, and I fully support his views. The Secretary of the Army and I share a very close working relationship, consulting daily on key departmental matters. I also keep him informed on JCS actions which impact on the Army. I do not see confusion in the role of the Secretary or in my responsibilities to him under statute and DOD directives.
Secretary Weinberger has strengthened the role of the service Secretary, particularly in the resource and policy areas by increasing his participation in the deliberations of the defense resources board. Based on my 14 years of joint duty, the current DRB process involves the most comprehensive review of programmatic and policy issues I have witnessed. The roles of the service secretaries, the Chairman of the JCS, and of the CINC's have been strengthened significantly in recent years. Thus I believe the statutory authorities are adequate and structural changes basically are not necessary with regard to the Army secretariat.
Mr. Chairman, three years ago, in undertaking our own study of the military command structure, the Joint Chiefs, working with the Secretary of Defense, estab lished five criteria for evaluating proposals for change: Would the change improve our ability to wage war? Would it provide the President and Secretary of Defense better and more timely advise? Would it better insure that the needs of the unified and specified commanders are met? Would it improve the ability to allocate national security resources more wisely and efficiently? Would it maintain our national legacy of civilian control of the military?
In my view, those criteria remain valid today, and they should be used to measure the merits of proposed changes. We should also keep in mind the importance of the human dimension. The effectiveness of reform is less a function of organizational structure and change, than a function of the quality of people in the organization, their relationships, and their commitment to and understanding of the purpose at hand.
In conclusion, let me again express my full willingness to work closely with the Congress in this important review of our defense organization.
Letter to Senator Goldwater, dated 4 February 1986, subject: DOD reorganization.
The following information is submitted for the record by Gen. John A. Wickham, Chief of Staff, U.S. Army.
The Chief of Staff Hon. BARRY GOLDWATER, Chairman, Committee on Armed Services, U.S. Senate, Washington, DC.
DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: This letter addresses your Committee's staff proposal for Defense Reorganization, dated 27 January 1986. I am taking the liberty of providing personal comments which I shared with you yesterday. I recognize that your Committee already has heard testimony by the Service Chiefs as well as other witnesses.
The staff proposal makes sweeping changes to the Law with the potential for reducing not only the quality of military advice based on the corporate experience of the Service Chiefs, but also incentives for joint cooperation. Moreover, the changes would complicate execution of the Service Chiefs' and Service Secretaries' stewardship responsibilities. Let me explain.
a. Throughout the staff proposal, the Chairman of the JCS, and in his absence the Vice Chairman, functions as the principal military advisor. There is no mention anywhere of the concept that advice is given on behalf of the corporate body of Service Chiefs, although the CJCS is encouraged to consult with them as appropriate. Moreover, the corporate body of Service Chiefs may give advice only if requested. The enlarged and strengthened Joint Staff would work solely for the CJSC/ VCJCS who no longer manage the staff on behalf of the JCS. Thus, for advice on joint matters the Service Chiefs would have to rely completely on their service staffs.
b. The staff proposal strengthens the role of the Service Secretary at the expense of the Service Chief. The bill removes the statutory responsibilities of the Chief of Staff for operation of the Army and as head of the Army Staff. Furthermore the Service staff would be consolidated with the Secretariat into a single integrated staff with the Chief of Staff subordinate to the Undersecretary and Assistant Secretaries. Additionally, the staff proposal requires the Secretary of Defense and the Service Chiefs to keep the Service Secretaries fully informed on operational, as well as service related matters. While the intent may be to equip the Service Secretary so that he can fulfill the broad responsibilities for functioning of the Service department, the potential also would exist to leave uncertain who within the Army would be responsible to give advice on operational matters such as warfighting doctrine or organization and missions of combatant commands. The Service Chief, in a less influential role, may find it awkward to give military advice in a separate capacity, such as with the JCS, when his Service Secretary may disagree and provide separate advice to the Secretary of Defense.
c. The staff proposal invests combatant commanders with expanded operational command which could include logistic and administrative functions. Combatant commanders already have operational command over all forces assigned to them, just as I did during three years as a Combined and Unified Commander in Korea.
Expanding their authority into such areas as administration, logistics, programmaing and budgeting could dilute rather than strengthen their warfighting focus. Moreover, it would lead to inefficiencies and diffused responsibility for the Services in provisioning of forces, fielding of new systems, and justification of programming as well as budgeting actions to the Secretary of Defense and to the Congress. The staff proposal would split administrative and logistic responsibilities between the Services and the combatant commanders who would have to expand staffs to deal with such issues as resource priorities, long range program development and execution among components, and Service specific administrative and logistics functions. This split in responsibilities would be further complicated by the potential impact of the provision allowing the combatant commander to control communications be tween the component commanders and their Services, thus adding at least one more bureaucratic layer, and impeding the efficient flow of essential information. Finally, there would be another significant inefficiency. The Services have developed special. ized support organizations such as the Army Criminal Investigation Command (USACIDC), the Army Intelligence and Security Command (USAINSCOM) and the Army Information Systems Command (USAISC). These organizations were created to improve the quality as well as responsiveness of specialized support to component commands overseas. Giving full operational command, as defined in the proposed bill, to the combatant commanders would lead to the break up of these functional commands and loss of coherent Army-wide program development and management. The staff proposal clearly would lead to a shifting of responsibility away from the Services which are charged by law with developing and managing programs that are balanced globally, as well as among short term and long term requirements.
d. The staff proposal creates a Vice Chairman who ranks all the Service Chiefs and who would function as Acting Chairman when the CJCS is absent. This proce dure completely eliminates the opportunity for Services Chiefs to function, on a rotational basis, as Acting CJCS, which helps make them better informed joint advisers and supporters of unified/specified commanders. In short, there would be less incentive for the Service Chiefs to be joint because they would have less joint stature and would participate less in the joint process including the National Security Council decision-making process. Moreover, the fact that the enlarged joint staff would support only the CJCS and VCJCS makes these two individuals powerful fig. ures who may tend, particularly in fast moving situations, to ignore consultation with the Service Chiefs whose knowledge of joint matters would be limited to the knowledge and advice of Service staffs. While the staff proposal allows for Service Chiefs to submit their personal views, my experience as Director of the Joint Staff and Senior Military Assistant to the Secretary of Defense suggests that the Service Chiefs, unless consulted by the CJCS, may in fact not have timely or adequate knowledge so that they are in a position to submit their personal views to the National Command Authorities.
Having pointed out what I believe to be the major problems of the draft bill, I offer the following recommendations regarding which changes should or should not be approved by your committee.
As to the role of Service Secretaries I do not believe we should merge the Secretariat with the Army staff nor should the Chief of Staff be removed from his statutory responsibilities to preside over the Army staff and for efficiency of the Army, its preparedness for military operations, and plans therefor. I support the concept of keeping the Service Secretary fully informed on all matters affecting the Service just as I have tried to do during my tenure.
Moreover, I do not believe combatant commanders require that their full operational command of assigned forces include administrative, logistic and programming/budgeting functions, nor should they require all communications with their component commands to go through their headquarters. Their currently strengthened role in the Defense Resources Board process assures visibility of their resource needs. If we are serious about strong stewardship of resources then we must hold the Service Secretary and Service Chief accountable for developing coherent pro grams and managing them on a Service-wide basis, which includes Service compo nent commands overseas.
Finally, while the CJCS probably needs a four-star assistant, the Vice Chairman should not function as the Acting Chairman. If we are serious about developing more jointness among the Services, then making the Service Chiefs function periodically as Acting Chairman and strengthening the visibility of their corporate military advice, as well as interface with the combatant commanders, is essential.
To summarize, in my opinion, the changes in the staff proposal, taken together, severely denigrate the role of the corporate body of Service Chiefs, erode their organizational and statutory authority to provide military advice, and complicate effec