Magazine article National Defense

Progress Report: NDIA's Top Issues of 2001

Magazine article National Defense

Progress Report: NDIA's Top Issues of 2001

Article excerpt

Next month, the National Defense Industrial Association will publish its list of "Top Issues" for 2002, representing the broad concerns of the defense industrial base for the year ahead. Theses issues will guide NDIA's educational and lobbying efforts during that period. With 2001 closing, below is a summary of progress made in support of this year's issues.

Issue 1: A National Security Strategy

for the 21st Century

A decade of downsizing, decreased investments and increased commitments has taken its toll on the nation's military forces, resulting in a decided mismatch between their capability and the national-security strategy.

Challenges: Advocate to the new administration and Congress the necessity of achieving a balance between national-security strategy and resources needed to meet commitments. Increase funding for missile defense, but not at the expense of other defense priorities.

Actions: Provided NDIA's "Top Issues" for 2001 to the presidential transition team, every member of Congress and the Pentagon leadership. Co-sponsored a speaker series with the National Defense University Foundation to discuss issues-including funding-facing the missile-defense community.

Results: The 2001 Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) outlines a new defense strategy designed to match potential threats with U.S. capabilities and resources. A $3.8 billion increase for missile defense for 2002. A 2002 defense top-line budget increase of more than $30 billion.

Issue 2: Sustaining Modernization

Resource constraints have made it difficult to embark on a significant transformation and recapitalization program.

Challenges: Increase the research and development budget, especially the science and technology component. Generate additional modernization funds through elimination of excess infrastructure. Build stability into acquisition-program funding to allow industry to better anticipate demands and needs.

Actions: Encouraged grassroots campaign to accelerate long-term transformation efforts by focusing on increases in science and technology. Strongly supported the department's request for an additional round of base realignment and closure (BRAC). Advocated lengthening multi-year contracts from 5 to 10 years.

Results: The QDR established a baseline for science and technology funding of 3 percent for future defense standing. An additional BRAC round authorized in the Senate-passed 2002 defense authorization bill. The undersecretary secretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics' major goals highlighted achieving stability in defense programs and multi-year procurement as a method of accomplishing this goal.

Issue 3: Ensuring Readiness

Intense, frequent and realistic training, as well as efficient and well-managed logistics, are necessary to ensure readiness.

Challenges: Joint operations, new technology and frequent deployments all contribute to increased training complexity. Growing constraints on live-fire training place a premium on enhancing simulation-based training. The logistics-support system is not as responsive to the warfighter as it could be.

Actions: Devoted an entire issue of NDIA's monthly magazine to training, with a focus on simulation. Advocated an increased emphasis on logistics support in acquisition.

Results: The QDR emphasizes the importance of joint wargaming and simulation-based training and establishes minimum training requirements for joint operations. …

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