Defense Acquisition: Army Transformation Faces Weapon Systems Challenges Page: 2 of 26
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Accountability * Integrity * Reliability
United States General Accounting Office
Washington, DC 20548
May 21, 2001
A decade after the Cold War, the Army recognizes that its combat force is
not well suited to perform the operations it must face today and must plan
for in the future. The Army's light force can deploy rapidly, but it lacks the
firepower, survivability, tactical mobility, and capability for sustained
operations against the full range of potential enemy capabilities.
Conversely, its heavy force-the force that includes tanks and other
armored vehicles-possesses significant firepower, survivability, tactical
mobility, and capability for sustained operations, but it, also, requires too
much time to deploy and needs extensive materiel support.
To address this mismatch, the Army has decided to radically transform its
current Cold War organization. When the transformation is completed, the
Army expects to have established a full-spectrum force-a strategically
responsive force that provides decisive combat power to operate in the
full range of military operations. The Army expects this force to have the
lethality, survivability, and tactical mobility of today's heavy force and the
responsiveness and deployability of today's light force. Further, it will be
more sustainable by requiring less in-theater logistic support than either
today's heavy or light forces.
The Army envisions its transformation as a comprehensive change that
will affect all aspects of its organizations, training, doctrine, leadership,
and strategic plans as well as the types of equipment and technology being
acquired by the Army. According to Army staff officials, the
transformation will be the most comprehensive change in the Army in over
a century. The Army expects the transformation to be a 30-year process
and has not estimated its full cost. It is undertaking an aggressive science
and technology program to develop future force capabilities. In April 2003,
it plans to decide on which enabling technologies can be incorporated into
the future force after which it believes that the cost of the transformation
can be more accurately estimated. The House Appropriations Committee
reported that the Army's transformation could cost at least $70 billion over
the next 12 to 15 years.
Given the magnitude of the transformation effort and its potential costs,
we reviewed the Army's plans for transforming its current forces to
identify major acquisition challenges that need to be addressed in order to
successfully execute the Army's transformation plans. This report is part
GAO-01-311 Army Transformation
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United States. General Accounting Office. Defense Acquisition: Army Transformation Faces Weapon Systems Challenges, report, May 21, 2001; Washington D.C.. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc293934/m1/2/: accessed March 26, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.