U.S. Army Reserve 1908-1998

Army Reserve Magazine, Summer 1998 | Go to article overview

U.S. Army Reserve 1908-1998


A FEDERAL FORCE

Today's Army Reserve is a network of units and individuals in communities throughout our country. Rooted in the tradition of American offering the Army greater flexibility and capability. In recent years, the Army Reserve has reorganized and restructured to become the main provider of combat support and combat service support for the Army. Moreover, as a federal force, Army Reserve soldiers can be activated quickly without involving multiple levels of government.

The Army Reserve has about 461,000 soldiers in an active or participatory status, and another 651,700 in a retired status. It makes up 20 percent of the Army's organized units, but provides 46 percent of the Army's combat service support and 27 percent of the Army's combat support at about 5.3 percent of the Army's budge The Army Reserve is a cost-effective solution to the n to maintain military strength and preparedness in a tim changing priorities and fiscal constraints.

From World War I through World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Panama, the Cold War, the Persian Gulf, Somalia, Haiti, and now Bosnia, Army Reservists have answered call to duty. In 1990-1991, more than 84,000 Army Reserve soldiers contributed to the Army's success in Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm in the Persian Gulf.

Army Reservists also contribute to national security through humanitarian and nation-building actions both overseas and at home. Actions have included aid to Somalia and Bangladesh, Kurdish relief efforts in Iraq and medical aid in Latin America.

In 1995-1996, the Army Reserve helped to restore democracy in Haiti, providing more than 70 percent of all Reserve Component forces for Operation Uphold Democracy. In Bosnia, more than 70 percent of the Reserve soldiers mobilized since 1995 for Operation Joint Endeavor/ Joint Guard in Bosnia have been Army Reservists.

CORE COMPETENCES

The foundation of the Army Reserve's core competencies rests on its ability to perform the combat support and combat service support missions for America`s Army and on its status as a federal force. The Army Reserve's core competencies fall into three broad areas:

* Soldiers trained and ready for deployment and powwr projection. Army Reserve units are prepared to perform the combat support and combat service support missions, particularly at the echelons above division and above coprs. Other Army Reserve units such as garrison support units, installation management and terminal transportation units are essential for America'S Army to deploy.

* Training Readiness. The Army Reserve's training divisions (institutional training), exercise divisions. the regional training centers and ROTC support are the keys to expanding the training base of the Army.

* Integration of trained and ready individuals. The Army Reserve prepares for the seamless integration of Individual Mobilization Augmentees into their assigned agencies and members of the Individual Ready ReServe into active Army or Reserve Component units. In many cases, the civilian skills of these individuals will be the key factor in their mobilization.

HISTORY

1783 - President Washington recommends that U.S. defense be based primarily on a national militia (army reserve) under federal supervision and that federal military academies be established for training citizensoldiers.

1819 - First private military academy, Norwich University, Conn., founded. Reserve officer training begins.

1862 - Morrill Act provides for state land-grant colleges where military tactics, agriculture and mechanical arts are taught; a long-range program to train military officers.

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