ASAALT

Paratroopers from 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, use Joint Tactical Radio System radios to communicate during a field exercise at Fort Bragg, N.C., in March.

As the Army prepares to choose the new builder of its handheld digital radios, the incumbent contractors are tryiing to convince Congress to keep other companies out. The incumbents are General Dynamics, which publicly apologized to the Army over its half of the program last year, and Rockwell Collins. The Army’s own chief of acquisitions,… Keep reading →

WASHINGTON: The current fiscal crisis slams the entire military, keeping aircraft carriers in port and fighter pilots on the ground for lack of funds, but of all the services, said Pentagon comptroller Robert Hale today, “the Army has by far the worst problem.”

That’s because the Army faces a unique triple-barreled budget problem, known with grim humor as “6-6-6″ because each part takes $6 billion out of Army readiness accounts: the automatic cuts known as the sequester, which began March 1st; the Continuing Resolution now funding the government, which continues spending at 2012 levels without any flexibility to start new programs or even adjust existing ones; and the shortfall in wartime supplemental funding (called OCO, for Overseas Contingency Operations) caused by unexpectedly high costs in Afghanistan. Keep reading →

AUSA: To guide the Army through the coming budget crunch, the service’s acquisition agencies are putting together an unprecedentedly comprehensive 30-year modernization plan. By coming up with a single road map that integrates research, development, procurement, as well as equipment sustainment, they hope to protect the investments they believe are critical to the Army’s long-term future.

[More on this story: Humvees, M1 tanks, and the Army’s 30-Year Problem] Keep reading →