tv [untitled] May 25, 2012 11:00am-11:30am EDT
you know, we had great volunteerism, and our people stick with us a long time. but our retention numbers are beginning to drop. i attribute that to the air force's 13-pd. it's had a more detrimental effect on our numbers than 20 years of high operational combat has had. so i think that uncertainty is beginning to take a toll on our people wondering about their futures and do we have time to invest in a unit that may not be here next year or may be changing to a mission that we don't know what that will be. >> thank you. if i could shift to ground vehicle. the humvee was mentioned in your opening statement. 60% 20 years old or more. what's the -- what is the take on what you need? i think you mentioned modernization. some have mentioned upgrading existing fleet. others say the cost -- it's more
cost effective to just go to the more modernized vehicle. i'm not sure if general ingram, or you, general mckinley, is the best one to answer this. but that's the story on this? >> first of all, thanks for the question, senator. i'm in receipt of letters from 17age tanlts, generally in support of purchasing new humvees. i am the channel communication between the states and the department, so we have forwarded the letters of support. general ingraham can talk about the percentages. i would say strategically across both air and army guard, this generation of soldier and airmen have joined our services and joined the guard specifically to be used, to operate first-line equipment, to be part of the team that goes forward, either here at home for domestic emergencies or to support our army and our air force. and so recapitalization across
our fleet to include ground vehicles has got to be factored in. and we've got to fight hard with our services to make sure that the balance and the proportions are right or some of these young women and men who have joined us since september of 2001 are just not going to be as excited about their role in the air national guard. but i'll let bill comment specifically on your question. >> senator, we have some of the oldest humvees in the inventory for the army. and i guess the question at this moment is do we recapitalize the ones that we have or do we -- as the army buys the jltv, the next generation, we should get a proportional share of those vehicles. so the question is do we keep a number of humvees unrecapitalized to trade in or
to turn in as we gain the jltv. and it's a balance. obviously, we can -- we'd like to upgrade the fleet, but we want to be frugal with our resources and do the right thing. so at the moment there's a bit of a tradeoff there. the longer we wait, the more need for renewed recap. >> just one last question, mr. chairman, if i could. my preference has always been that we redirect money for recruiting for you and you decide how to best to utilize that money. i know you're sponsoring vehicles for nascar. you see the air guard or army guard on the side of the car. you do that in areas i think where the potential for recruiting is very high. a lot of attention to that sport.
i don't like to micromanage and tell you to spend this here and that there, but is this instilling a value to you in terms of recruiting and what gains you may get from it, or is this something that time has come and gone? >> it's really a matter of branding and being associated with a national brand. we do get recruits and we do run recruiting booths at sporting events, both motorsports and other sports. if you -- people don't necessarily buy tide laundry detergent because of the race car that sports the tide hood. but they do associate that product at a national level. and the army national guard, because of the target audience that we're looking at for our band of recruits, that is an
interest to those people, and they see -- when they watch sports on television, they see army national guard, it's a national branding opportunity that is of great value. and the fact that the teams that the army national guard sponsors do some very, very good things for the nation and are held in high esteem by that group of people, it leads to recruits for the army national guard. >> well, mr. chairman, i would hope that we wouldn't micromanage that process, let the guard decide how best to utilize whatever we give them for the branding, for the recruiting and so forth. i think attempts to say do this and put on that commercial or that commercial and pud it on v put it on this car and not that car ought to be left up to the people who are involved in that
process. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. now i would like to recognize the chairman of the senate national guard caucus, senator leahy. >> thank you. general, i noticed yesterday we saw in the news where a plane diverted had to be -- commercial jet had to land in bangor. it was on its way to charlotte. fighter jets were deployed. were those guard jets? >> yes, senator, they were. >> well, that sort of leads into a question i have. there's a couple of lesser-known cuts. not lesser cuts but lesser-known cuts proposed for the air national guard with issues that concerned we deeply with with
respect to air control alert locations. air national guard explosive ordnance. the air control alert. i think it's safe to say from everything we have learned without going into anything we have from classified briefings, it's safe to say that commercial airlines are still a target of terrorists. is that not a fair statement? >> that's correct, senator. >> and it would be one thing if we could say our threat picture or our strategy for dealing with threats to the united states have changed and that would drive reductions. but i worry that we're just seeing a budget -- i don't see the threat going down. i think we should have our air control alert locations. and for air national guard explosive ordnance disposal, and i know that falls under your
purview, it looks to me like what they did was just hand you a bill to pay and then you had to make state and local cuts, including bomb squad cuts, to meet those targets. do you think the air force considered the state and local impact of getting rid of our air bomb squads? which i know governors all over the country use when they need bomb squads. i've certainly seen it in my own state of vermont. do you think that they thought of that, that that impacts the states pretty badly? >> i'll try to address the aca question first. senator, you're correct. that threat is still there. and i think that probably the discussion was, you know, could the -- according to studies that you've referenced that are classified, you know, could the
nation assume a little additional risk. by ut kuing two of the aca units. that's a discussion i'd like to have with you in a classified -- >> what i worry about, general, is the discussion is driven more by budgetary issues and not by reality. >> certainly the budget does come into play. i mean, we have to talk about what we can afford to provide and are there opportunities or places where we could take additional risk, and whether, you know, whether this additional risk is worth the money is a debate that -- >> i think you're going to find on the question of bomb squads -- >> yes, sir. the bomb squads, what we did there was we looked at the situation in iraq and afghanistan, recognizing that we would be coming home from those wars. we did have some budget bogeys to meet. we tried to take a look at those
mission sets and capabilities that the united states needed that could be supplied by the air national guard, and certainly that's one of those capabilities that is a dual use. it has a function in title x but also for the governors. i think the issue that has been highlighted with the council of governors under the new process that we have inside the d.o.d. highlights the fact that we need to do a better job of communitying with the adjutants generals and the governors to get the effect of title x decisions on the governors' ability to respond to things like the explosive ordnance disposal. >> also, i think that the air force, special considering some of the air force has cut into the guard and reserves far more than the army or -- maybe i -- i worry that they're not listening to some of the
concerns of governors. certainly i get that from governors of both parties. senator graham, lindsey graham, does too. it makes me wonder, have you seen any analysis that persuades you that relying more on the active component is going to save money or provide the air force with more capability? >> no, sir. i've not seen that analysis. >> have you asked to see that sort of analysis? >> yes, sir, i have. >> well, that kind of bothers me. you're the air guard director. i think you should have been allowed to see the anl nis in the budget before the air force presented the budget proposal that substantially cuts your force based on the claims that they have, and they haven't shown you. >> i agree, sir.
and, you know, as we've kind of gone through this process, the thing that i've i guess come to the conclusion is that the analysis that i have been able to see, the answer is sometim sometimes -- i guess the answer is important or the conclusion is important, but as important as the answer and the conclusion are the initial going-in assumptions and the methodology used in reaching that answer and the metrics are what it is that you're trying to measure. i don't think just an answer is sufficient. i think you need to go back and take a look at the processes, the methodology, the assumptions. that's the thing that concerns me. not only is not seeing all the analysis, but how we got to some of that analysis. >> i agree with you. i don't think the cuts in the air guard and reserves is going to save us money. i think in the long run it's going to cost us a lot more. we saw how important they were to us during iraq and afghanistan. that's not a capability you can turn on and off like a switch.
that's not even going into the continental u.s. aspect of -- required by that protection. and i share the concern of a lot of the governors. they weren't listened to. but we'll talk about that more. and i should note you've always been very available to me and my staff when we have had questions. general mckinley, i thank you for your distinguished service as chief of the national guard bureau. i think this will be your last hearing before your retirement. you and i have been good friends. we visited both in vermont and here. you're going to be first chief to wear four stars. a chief who fought to get to hear folks' voice on the joint chiefs of staff. i know senator graham and i and the very large bipartisan
coalition of senators take pleasure in that along with the general, who made the history by transforming the guard to an operational force. and i just ask this. you're leaving. you're not -- you can say whatever you want to say. general ingram is kind of spying -- he probably knows what my question is going to be. do you think the guard would be in a good position if we in the congress didn't kind of keep the pressure on the way we do? >> you don't have to answer that, general, but i see the grin. go ahead. >> most of us in this room prefer not to build our own gallows, so in order not to do that, i reserve some of my comments for my meeting with you before i leave, sir.
but thanks to you and senator graham. quite frankly, 375 years of history have seen the effectiveness of the national guard ebb and flow. i can only say to you, senator, because you know it so well by visiting your members of the national guard as you all do, how capable and competent these folks are and how well led they are by their governors and state status, their adjutants general, and quite frankly the support we've had over decades from our two services, the air force and the army. what i worry about most, to get to your specific question, is will the title x world find a way, as it has not over past involvement in contingencies to include world war ii, find a way to maintain a balance to keep the national guard, and i would
add probably the reserve component in this, but they'll speak for themselves -- how do we keep this magnificent capability, this low-cost, high-impact force of citizens, soldiers, and air men in our case in the game, keep their head in the game, to keep us viable, to keep the investment in our comp sen ti at a level that the nation may need and sustain as a hedge for few you are operations? we have to find a way, all of us do, to convince our services and the department that this investment has been a wise investment and that this nation, with less than 1% of its citizens serving its united states military, deserve to have a national guard that's trained, equipped, and well led because there will be significant challenges to our nation in the future. but senator, to you and your colleagues, i can't thank you enough for what you've done to make us who we are today, and we're very proud to serve the nation. thank you.
>> i can assure you as long as i'm co-chair of the national guard caucus, you're not going to be ignored, none of you will, and i applaud all three of you for the service you've given to the country. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you, mr. chairman. and generals, i join the rest of my colleagues in thanking you for your leadership on so many different issues and different areas. general wyatt, i want to ask you about the recent air force proposal which would move the 18th squadron from isleson down to joint basel men dorf-richardson. right now this proposal looks like it will have an impact on the 168th air refueling wing. to the extent that an operation that is currently a 24-hour-a-day operation, 365
days a week, that with this proposal, it may result in operations being diminished to effectively a 12-hour day, five days a week, not necessarily bankers' hours but certainly not the kind of hours that will be required, that are required for this pretty incredible intensive refueling wing up there. at isleson. general schwartz keeps reminding me of the significance of isleson and the fact that we have 23 million gallons of gas up there. it's pretty important to the overall mission. my question to you is, how would this proposal, which would effectively reduce the operations there at isleson, how will this impact the guard's mission there? >> senator, i've asked that same question.
you know, when you stop and think about the importance of that refueling wing, the strategic location when you think about some of the activity that's happening over the arctic, and as you look westward from alaska, you can quickly recognize the strategic importance of the 168th and the role that it plays in the air control alert mission for pak-af and that theater. that's one of the first questions i asked. if the f-16s are moved and the level of support at the air base goes down, will there be sufficient capability at that air base for the air national guard to continue functioning at the level that it is now? because a lot of the dollar bills that are controlled for some of the base support that is required for my air national guard unit there are not in my budget. so i don't get to make that call. they're in the air force budget. i have been assured there will remain sufficient funds and sufficient services to keep the
168th playing the vital role that it does. the decision whether to go from a 4-hour alert, which they're currently on, to something less than that, is a call left to general north, pak-af, with norad and northcom. i can't get into the operational decisions. but my concern would be that we have in the future as competent and capable a wing as we do right now. and so i watch very closely any attempts that would diminish their ability to perform the mission. i wish i had a bert answer for you than that. >> let me perhaps rephrase it. if, in fact, you did have to go to a reduced-hours operation, 12 hours, could you do the mission that you believe you have to do or that you're required to do there in the arctic, in the north pacific? >> again, the mission requirements are set by the war fighters.
if they were to make that conclusion, the 12-hour alert would be sufficient for mission accomplishments, we could do that. but that's a judgment call, again, that will need to be made by the combatant commander that would obviously take into consideration the additional risk that not having that unit on alert for 12 hours out of the day mikt pose to the aca mission. >> let me ask you another, then. the 168th we recognize as operating at its capacity. they've reported having to decline certain missions even within the 24-hour-a-day period that they're operating now. the 168th has asked for additional aircraft and an active association. they've been doing so for several years now so that it can effectively do more for the mission. can you give me the status of any of these requests? >> ma'am, part of the recent
ck-48-a basing criteria that was released to congress evolved from what we call the fca, the forced composition analysis, for the entire refueling enterprise, not just kc-46s but kc-135s and kc-10s. one of the recommendations that came out of that study was that as we go forward in the refueling enterprise, that all of the units at some point in time transition to either active associations in the case of the 168th or classic associations where the guard or reserve would play the supporting role. so i think the future looks good for an active association. the question would be the timing and how robust that association would be. would it bring additional airplanes as part of the active association, or would it bring additional active-duty pilots, maintainers to help robust the
capabilities of the wing the existing eight airplanes? those are questions yet to be answered. >> and no -- no time line within which to that we might expect those answers? >> no time line that i'm aware of other than a push to go to active associations and classic associations across the air mobility fleet and pak-af. >> let me ask you, general ingram, about the c-23s. last year, the army proposed the elimination of the sherpas with the belief that the c-27js would replace that capability. the c-27js are now proposed to go away. are we reconsidering the future of the c-23s? >> the army has taken the funding away for the c-23, and the intent is to divest those
airplanes by the end of fy-14. and to my knowledge there's no reconsideration of that. >> what i'm told is that there's a wide number of adjutant generals that feel that the c-23 is important to the domestic missions. air force is looking at the c-130s to fill that mission. are you satisfied that in fact that mission can be served with the c-130? basically, is this the right thing to be doing? >> i feel that domestic airlift is a an that should be addressed. i'm not sure it's been adequately addresseds for the domestic mission. for the away-game mission, i know that the army has taken the
air force's position that the air force will support inner theater airlift, which is the mission that the c-23 and the c-27 airframe were designed to do. >> any ideas or suggestions as to how we can address the domestic airlift? >> northcom is in a recent discussion with general jacobey, the commander of u.s. northern commands. he views looking at the homeland as a theater of operations. and i think his perspective will be very important in determining requirements for all homeland defense or homeland operations inner theater or -- inner theater airlift in the homeland being one of those parameters. >> mr. chairman, thank you. >> thank you very much.
>> gentlemen, i thank you for your testimony this morning, and i thank you to our service to our nation. do you have further questions? >> no, mr. chairman. i have no further questions. i do want to congratulate our panel for the leadership you're providing for our armed forces. thank you very much. >> i will be submitting some questions. i ask for your response. and now the committee asks admiral dubipg, general hummer to come forward and present their testimony.
>> gentlemen, i thank you for joining us this morning. your full statements will be part of the record. shall we start with general -- admiral devinc? >> chairman, vice chairman, thank you for the privilege to speak with you this morning about the capabilities, the capacities and the readiness of our dedicated men and women who are serving in our navy reservitude. the decades since 9/11, we've performed nearly 64,000-yearlong mobilizations to active duty. truly on the front lines of
freedom. they exemplify our core values of honor, courage, and commitment. as our motto and our sailors proudly claim, we are ready now, anytime, anywhere. the admiral established three tenets for the navy -- war fighting first, operate forward, and be ready. today's navy service is fully aligned with the cno sailing directions and our sailors are eager to do their part to ensure the navy remains the world's premier maritime service. reserve sailors provide both full- and part-time operational xamts and also provide strategic depth for maritime missions to ensure the navy is already ready to respond globally while maintaining fiscal efficiency across the spectrum of operations. thanks to the work of this congress and the national defense,000 act for fiscal year 2012, service secretaries now have assured access to reserve component units.
this will allow the navy to confidently assign missions to the navy reserve from peace to war. while we'll first have the opportunity to budget for such use of assured access in fiscal year '14, i want you to know how important your efforts were to our future force. i'm also appreciative of your support for the purchase of our 14th c-40a this year for our navy, unique fleet essential airlift. congressional support for our naval reserve program is enabling our critical intratheater capability tide to be more cost-effective and flexible and thus more operationally relevant well into the future. our 2013 budget request will enable the navy reserve to support continuing operations while maximizing the strategic value of the navy reserve, valued for its readiness, agility, and accessibility. the true prize for our sailors and the navy alike will be the real and me