Department of the Army Historical Summary: FY 1986
Mobilizing, Deploying, and Sustaining the Army
To meet crises, the Army must be able to expand efficiently and to deploy the required personnel, supplies, and equipment. Fiscal year 1986 improvements in the area of readiness for mobilization included the widening of unit participation in the Army National Guard's mobilization exercise program and a muster of part of the Individual Ready Reserve. Strategic mobility increased through better airlift and sealift, but with very large problems remaining. The Joint Deployment System, fielded shortly before the beginning of the fiscal year, showed promise of improving the Army's ability to deploy effectively. There was also progress, in 1986, in the development of various transportation automation systems that contribute to deployment.
In planning for the sustainment of forces deployed overseas, sea-based materiel pre-positioning programs showed significant progress, while the REFORGER 86 exercise again demonstrated the effectiveness of the Army's major materiel prepositioning program in Europe. Initiatives began or continued in other areas of sustainment, including combat service support units, war reserve equipment, medical readiness, petroleum distribution equipment, and tactical water support. Particularly in regard to war reserves and medical readiness, stubborn shortfalls remained a serious concern.
To bring the active and reserve components to required wartime strength during mobilization, the personnel of the Individual Ready Reserve (IRR) are essential. The largest of the reserve categories of pretrained individual manpower, the IRR grew from a strength of 301,825 in fiscal year 1985 to 347,500 in 1986. At the direction of Congress, the Army mustered a
portion of the IRR in January 1986 to determine its availability and fitness for duty. During this voluntary assembly, the IRR personnel went to a military facility near their home, updated their personnel information, underwent physical screening, and received a briefing about reserve responsibilities and opportunities. Subsequently, the Army began to develop plans for an involuntary screening of the entire IRR during fiscal year 1987.
To offset the shortfall in pretrained individuals that would occur upon mobilization, the Army developed the retiree recall program. This program preassigns Regular Army and reserve retirees to suitable mobilization positions, including reserve training divisions and brigades. An important aspect of the program is that use of the retirees would release active component individuals for reassignment or deployment. In 1986, 130,000 retirees were preassigned to installations in the continental United States, 3,300 to U.S. Army, Europe, and 185 to Eighth Army in the Republic of Korea. Exercise CERTAIN SAGE, conducted at eight installations in October and November 1985, involved the recall of 384 volunteer retirees to active duty to test mobilization procedures at the installation level.
Another mobilization effort is the Individual Mobilization Augmentee Program, which grew out of the old Mobilization Designee Program. In October 1981 the participants were reassigned from the IRR to the Selected Reserve, where they are subject to the president's authority to call up 100,000 reservists in an emergency. Augmentees are preassigned to active component units, to the Selective Service System, and to the Federal Emergency Management Agency in peacetime in order to train for their wartime duties. Since the program's inception, approximately 27,000 augmentee positions have been identified as necessary to support the active Army. Actual augmentee strength stood at 13,315 this year-an increase of 1,393 over fiscal year 1985-but even at this level the program can provide significant mobilization assistance in the face of the continuing cap on active Army end strength.
Since 1978, the Army National Guard has had a formal, multifaceted mobilization exercise program. This program is geared to full participation in the JCS five-year exercise plan as well as participation in the actual mobilization process through unit level exercises. During this fiscal year, the program was extended to all Army National Guard units.
To be carried out successfully, mobilization requires sufficient facilities. Efforts by the Corps of Engineers to identify
mobilization facilities requirements began to come to fruition in fiscal year 1986 as mobilization master plans were prepared for most major installations in the continental United States.
Despite formal interservice commitments to define requirements for sealift and airlift resources, and to identify the programs that will most efficiently meet those requirements, progress in resolving shortfalls in strategic lift capabilities has been slow. Solutions are expensive, and there is a continuing decline in the ability of the civil sector, primarily the U.S. Merchant Marine, to meet wartime needs.
Adequate strategic airlift is particularly critical in the early days of a war or other crisis. There is a recognized long-term requirement of sixty-six million ton miles per day for inter-theater airlift. The fiscal year 1991 program will result in approximately forty-eight million ton miles per day of capability. Fielding of the C-17 Airlifter, scheduled to begin in fiscal year 1992, will reduce the deficit significantly; in addition, this versatile aircraft will provide essential outsize airlift capability, reduce the intratheater airlift shortfall, provide a needed replacement for the C-141, and augment the C-130 fleet. In the near term, airlift capability is being improved by "rewinging" the C-5A fleet, acquiring forty-eight C-5B and forty-four additional KC-10 tanker planes, improving wartime aircraft utilization rates, extending the service life of existing aircraft, and improving the capabilities of the Civil Reserve Air Fleet.
Strategic sealift is critical to the deployment of Army forces and to their resupply. The continuing decline of the Merchant Marine fleet, and the shipping industry's trend toward containerization and away from more militarily useful breakbulk shipping, require innovative approaches to the problem. With the Army's support, the Navy is attempting to meet the challenge through a combination of programmed increases to its U.S. Ready Reserve Force and programs for modification of container ships to enable them to meet unit equipment movement requirements. But even these efforts will not enable the nation to meet the total surge shipping requirement projected over the next five years. Moreover, unless the decline of the U.S. Merchant Marine fleet is halted or reversed, or other solutions are found, our sealift capability will diminish further.
Specific Army programs also aim to have a positive effect on overall mobility. Most important in this category is the light
division, which is designed to be deployable by air in far fewer C-141B-equivalent sorties than the standard infantry division. The light division's rapid deployability and high combat-to-support ratio may well preclude a later necessity to deploy a larger, more costly force. The Army also continues to be aware of the need to address transportability as a critical factor in the design of new equipment. Modernized equipment, no matter how good, is ineffective unless it can be transported to the theater efficiently.
Progress continued during the year in programs that aim to balance Navy strategic sealift and Army-Navy offload and discharge systems. Navy fielding of Fast Logistics Ships, flatracks and seasheds, the Auxiliary Crane Ships, and the Heavy Lift Pre-positioning Ship, and the expansion of the Ready Reserve Force have all contributed to reducing strategic sealift shortfalls. The Army has programmed discharge capability to match the Navy's delivery profile and satisfy the minimum logistics-over-the-shore requirement. Programs include modernization and upgrade of the Army's watercraft and tugboat fleet and the joint acquisition with the Navy of causeway systems designed to make watercraft more useful in those areas of the world where shallow beach gradients limit logistics-over-the-shore operations.
The Army's land- and sea-based pre-positioning programs serve to reduce the total lift requirement by reducing the overall quantity of materiel requiring shipment, as well as the distance to be traveled from the pre-positioning site to the area of operations. For example, the Army improved its readiness through the pre-positioning early in the fiscal year of combat service support equipment aboard a Heavy Lift Pre-positioning Ship in Southwest Asia. The 8,000 tons of equipment aboard the ship would be required to unload equipment and supplies arriving from Diego Garcia and fast sealift transports deploying from the continental United States in support of U.S. Central Command operations. This combat service support equipment would provide the logistics-over-the-shore capability necessary to unload materiel in areas where port facilities are limited or nonexistent. Most of the equipment on the Heavy Lift Pre-positioning Ship is difficult to deploy and could not be deployed by surface in time to meet an emergency properly.
A very important land-based Army pre-positioning program is the 25-year-old pre-positioning of materiel configured to unit sets (POMCUS). Under POMCUS, the Army stores organizational equipment in Europe in company- and battalion-size
packages, in a ready-for-use condition. The program's purpose is to position the majority of a unit's equipment forward, so that in time of crisis only unit personnel, with minimum equipment, would require airlift to meet the exigencies of a NATO emergency. During the REFORGER 86 exercise, POMCUS again proved its worth as participating troops drew 894 wheeled and 2,512 tracked vehicles, and 1,632 trailers from its stocks. Over 99 percent of the vehicles were operational when drawn-an essential indicator of the program's potential effectiveness.
Despite this success, a number of major mobilization and deployment exercises since 1978 have revealed critical deficiencies, particularly in centralized deployment management. In response, the Army and its sister services have developed the Joint Deployment System, a crisis execution system specifically designed to support coordinated, prompt deployment planning and execution. After a four-year development effort, the joint Deployment System became operational in September 1985. Fielding of the system provides the joint community with a powerful new capability to control and monitor the deployment of military forces; however, it also places additional manpower demands on commands and agencies involved in deployment planning and execution. Future demands for additional resources are expected as experience with the system increases.
Automation of information management systems for transportation is an area in which the Army has made much progress recently. These systems promise to be valuable aids to deployment. Systems successfully tested include the Transportation Coordinator Automated Command and Control Information System prototype, the Software Acceptance Test for the Department of the Army Standard Port System-Enhanced, and the initial capability for the Installation Transportation Office/Military Transportation Management Command interface module of that command's Crisis Action Management System. Development of the Container Management System has begun.
As a result of its Training Base Capacity Study 85, the Army was able to assess more accurately the ability of the expanded mobilization training base to meet sustainment requirements described in the Mobilization Army Program for Individual Training. Consequently, the service created, at the
Department of the Army level, a program development increment package designed to solve equipment shortages in the U.S. Army Reserve training divisions. The long-term goal of this project is to equip the training divisions with a proper mix of new and old equipment to ensure sufficient flexibility in the mobilization training base to support sustainment needs.
Congress during the year approved the purchase of the Reichel Logistics Facility in the Northern Army Group (NORTHAG) area of NATO's defense perimeter. In the late 1970s, analysis of the evolving threat to Europe's Central Region indicated that NORTHAG would have to defend against the most probable main attack by the Warsaw Pact. As a result, the United States agreed to reinforce this area outside the traditional U.S. area of operations. Concurrently, the United States made a commitment to develop the capability to reinforce NATO with ten divisions within ten days. The Reichel facility is ideally located and suited to provide an essential logistical support coordination center needed to meet the reinforcement objectives in the NORTHAG region.
The decision to provide NATO with a minimum D-day force of ten divisions, with requisite air and logistics support, was made on the condition that the United States allies would provide appropriate host nation support. In 1982 the United States and the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) signed a wartime host nation support agreement by which the FRG would supply U.S. forces with approximately 93,000 trained reservists in crisis or war (50,000 of these would support the Army). For the fourth year, unit activations of some of these FRG reservists took place in 1986; they will continue through 1988. The costs of the agreement are to be shared equitably by the two countries. A U.S.-FRG Joint Committee is developing detailed technical implementation procedures to provide, receive, and sustain agreed support. A military technical agreement that details the military support to be provided is complete and is expected to be signed in 1986. A civilian technical agreement, detailing support to be provided from the civil sector, is in draft.
Although some problems of sustainment are common to all geographical areas, the U.S. Central Command, with its responsibility for Southwest Asia, has a special concern with one difficulty-tactical water support. As the Department of Defense Executive Agent for Land Based Water Resources Management, the Army develops, in close coordination with the other services and appropriate defense agencies, concepts and
doctrine for water support. This fiscal year saw the publication of such doctrine in JCS Publication No. 3. Also during the year, in the GALLANT EAGLE exercise, Central Command employed a water detection response team. As a result of the team's work, a successful well was dug during the exercises at the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, California. In other tactical water support activities, a 150,000 gallon-a-day water purification system on a LASH barge underwent successful operational testing. Purification systems with twice that capacity were successfully mounted on three BC 231A barges, which at year's end were awaiting pre-positioning.
One of the most critical elements of sustainment is distribution of bulk petroleum. The Army is responsible for this distribution to all services in either a developed or an undeveloped theater. It is the Army's mission to maintain a flow of bulk fuels from a combination of offshore and pier-side tanker discharge systems through a network of onshore storage and distribution systems. Petroleum distribution equipment contained in the Army Facilities Component System is thirty to forty years old, labor intensive, and no longer commercially available. The Army is in the process of updating the system and has programmed funds to improve off-load and inland distribution of petroleum products through use of commercially available technology. Equipment employing this technology can be installed quickly and easily, increases unit productivity, and alleviates the consequences of manpower shortages. Procurement of lightweight aluminum pipeline, quick lock couplings, and improved storage capabilities has begun. A full system demonstration, including a timed test, of ship-to-shore undersea pipeline and commercially available single anchor leg mooring systems was successfully completed in October 1985.
Medical readiness remained an area of concern for the Army in 1986. The service's ability to provide wartime medical support has been severely limited by a shortage of the medical equipment and professional medical personnel needed to meet wartime requirements. During the fiscal year, thirty hospital sets designed to meet the new Deployable Medical Systems requirements were funded for procurement, with fielding to begin in fiscal year 1987. Funding to equip the entire medical force structure by fiscal year 1991 is programmed. Some progress was made in alleviating the critical shortage of professional personnel in certain specialties-this accomplishment the result of improved recruiting and new incentives. At present, deployable medical personnel would be adequate to
provide care on a worldwide basis, but there would be shortages of surgeons, surgical nurses, and related specialists in the continental United States. Moreover, the Army medical support base in the United States would experience shortfalls in the facilities and materiel necessary to sustain the fighting forces.
In general, there is a shortage of personnel in combat service support functions. The Army in 1986 had several initiatives under way to reduce the shortfall. Forty-one combat service support units are scheduled for activation in the reserve components between the current year and fiscal year 1990. As logistics unit productivity systems are fielded, the spaces made available by increased efficiency are being applied to raise the authorization of combat service support units.
The situation in war reserve stocks remained in flux during the year. These stocks are established in strategic locations throughout the world; during the initial days of combat, they would provide an immediate supply of munitions, fuel, and secondary items until the supply pipeline could be filled from the continental United States. Modernization and changes to the force structure cause constant adjustments to stockage levels. While modernization provides new, more effective equipment and resultant overall gains in sustainment capacity, that equipment requires different support items. The necessity of sustaining a mixed fleet of older and modern equipment results in additional resource requirements. Although there has been steady improvement in war reserves over the past several years, funding constraints, coupled with increasing and changing requirements, have prevented the Army from meeting its goals. One additional day of war reserve stocks costs about $2 billion. Putting the consideration of modernization aside, a multi-billion dollar investment over current funding would be required to achieve the Army's total war reserve stockage objectives.
A comprehensive depot maintenance program is vital to the sustainment of combat forces. The materiel maintenance element of the program provides an efficient and effective source of supply by returning serviceable major and secondary items to the central supply system. Materiel maintenance also supports foreign military sales programs and helps maintain production capability for mobilization. The maintenance support activities element provides for fielding support for new systems, maintenance engineering, new equipment training, and revision of technical publications. Although the fiscal year
1986 budget eliminated the depot maintenance backlog for overhaul and repair, the funding reduction caused by the Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Act created a backlog of $104 million.
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Last updated 17 November 2003