Rethinking Governance of the Army's Arsenals and Ammunition Plants

By W. Michael Hix; Ellen M. Pint et al. | Go to book overview

Chapter Four
A STRATEGIC VISION AND OPTIONS FOR ACHIEVING IT

The previous chapter chronicled the problems our analysis identified in the ordnance base. A major deficiency noted was the absence of a strategic vision. This chapter serves four purposes. First, it offers a strategic vision for the ordnance industrial base. Second, it describes four options that to varying degrees move from the status quo toward achieving that vision. Third, it translates the features of the vision into a set of criteria against which we shall assess the options in later chapters. Finally, it sets aside options that are considered infeasible for parts of the base at this time.


A PROPOSED VISION

Both statute and executive branch policies support, indeed require, reliance on the private sector. Specifically with regard to the technology and industrial base, 10 USC 2501 sets forth the following three objectives:

Relying to the maximum extent practicable upon the commercial national technology and industrial base that is required to meet the national security needs of the United States.

Reducing the reliance of the Department of Defense on technology and industrial base sectors that are economically dependent on Department of Defense business.

Reducing federal government barriers to the use of commercial products, processes, and standards.

10 USC 2535, which deals with the narrower issue of maintaining a reserve capacity (capacity not needed during peacetime), reinforces these goals. It states that “to the maximum extent practicable, reliance will be placed upon private industry for support of defense production,” but it allows for an “essential nucleus” of government-owned industrial reserve capabilities, warning that, “such Government-owned plants and such reserve shall not exceed in number or kind the minimum requirements for immediate use in time of national emergency.”

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