Tuesday, July 12, 2016

The Rise of the Home Defense-Only Army

An admirable desire not to abandon soldiers wounded (physically or mentally) in our nation's wars over the last 15 years by finding state-side assignments for them is causing a warfighting problem for our Army:

Medical problems are keeping too many US Army soldiers from deployment and, as the overall force shrinks, the numbers are beginning to affect unit manning levels, a top service official said.

There are about 100,000 soldiers in the roughly million-man total Army (active, National Guard, and Reserves) who are not deployable overseas. How many are in the active force is not stated.

We should be able to cope, I should think, since even in peacetime a lot of troops aren't deployable because of training, health, pregnancy, or discipline. Note that 20% of the non-deployables are not health-related.

And a large chunk of the Army is actually the training and generation base that doesn't deploy but which is vital to building, arming, and maintaining the deployable Army.

It will cost money, but we may have to spend more effort in changing the MOS of soldiers not-deployable by reason of health issues in order to move enough of them from the deployable Army to the non-deployable base Army where even soldiers in top health aren't deployed.