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Working Together for Defense Transportation System 2010
Prepared statement of Gen. Robert L. Rutherford, USAF, commander in chief, U.S. Transportation Command, the Senate Armed Services Committee, Thursday, February 23, 1995

Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, since the fall of the Berlin Wall America's role in the world has changed significantly. The U.S. military has been involved across a wide spectrum of missions from the war in the Persian Gulf to our most recent experience in Operations Support Hope (Rwanda), Uphold Democracy (Haiti), Sapphire (the recent airlift of highly enriched uranium from Kazakhstan to the United States in support of U.S. government nonproliferation efforts), and Safe Passage (return of Cuban migrants to Guantanamo Bay).

While our military force structure is shrinking, our global involvement has expanded. Our nation's leadership clearly recognizes that the United States is more dependent than ever on strategic mobility to protect America's interests. The United States Transportation Command and our transportation component commands -- Military Traffic Management Command, Military Sealift Command and Air Mobility Command -- are responsible for maintaining a defense transportation system ready and capable of meeting the nation's needs.

The men and women of USTRANSCOM, active, Guard, Reserve and civilian, together with their partners in the commercial transportation industry, eagerly accept this challenge. On their behalf I'd like to present the USCinCTRANS [commander in chief, U.S. Transportation Command] Annual Report to Congress. It outlines our vision, provides our view of the DTS role in supporting national security strategy, assesses the health of the DTS and highlights our near- and long-term efforts to correct the shortfalls in our nation's defense transportation capability.

The performance of the DTS had been hampered by fragmentation along service and modal lines. The creation of USTRANSCOM eight years ago was a major step toward repairing this fragmentation. Three years ago the secretary of defense assigned USTRANSCOM combatant command over common-user transportation resources and designated USTRANSCOM as the single manager for defense transportation in peace and war. This action properly aligned authority with responsibility and is now paying off.

As a result of this realignment USTRANSCOM undertook a study to determine the future path for the DTS. We've completed this study and established our vision. The DTS 2010 Action Plan, as it is called, has seven major end-state objectives:


  • Empowered DTS agents to service customers at the point of origin;
  • A Joint Mobility Control Group that integrates common-user traffic management to include both organic and commercial lift;
  • A seamless, or transparent, handoff of information, passengers and cargo at the theater port of debarkation or staging area to the theater commander;
  • A global information system that integrates traffic management processes and data bases in peace and war;
  • A single, integrated financial management system for DTS common-user transportation assets and operations;
  • A single, integrated procurement system for USTRANSCOM;
  • A joint transportation technology focal point for transportation engineering and the development and application of transportation technologies.

Our goal is to maximize the effectiveness of the DTS and support for our customers. We have begun the process of incorporating these objectives into our long-term planning and programing efforts and are on our way toward achieving our vision for the DTS. All of our efforts are focused on ensuring the DTS will meet its responsibilities within the framework of the National Security Strategy.

As DTS 2010 now guides our future business processes, the primary tool for guiding our force structure and modernization efforts has been the 1992 Mobility Requirements Study. It identified our mobility requirements and recommended ways to improve our airlift, sealift and surface capabilities.

The 1994 draft Mobility Requirements Study Bottom-up Review Update revised and updated the strategic mobility requirements for the next century. It validates the sealift recommendations of the original MRS and revises the requirement for airlift. Achieving these recommendations is essential to our ability to meet our strategic lift requirements.

Our ability to meet the MRS BURU requirements of dual, nearly simultaneous major regional conflicts is a function of assumptions, force requirements and delivery timelines. It should be remembered that MRS BURU is a planning tool helping to guide the debate on the kind and amounts of strategic mobility assets our nation should possess at the turn of the century.

The MRS BURU scenario depicts an MRC closely followed by a second MRC where the enemies' attacks are stopped prior to achieving essential objectives. The attacks are stopped by the rapid delivery of halting forces composed of in-place, pre-positioned and airlifted forces.

In order to stop the enemy and then counterattack it is essential to rapidly deploy reinforcing units to the theaters. The heavy equipment and supplies for these forces must be moved by sea and the soldiers, Marines and critical and high-value material by air. This concept provides the basis for sizing the strategic mobility force -- how much and what mix of lift we require to deliver the halting forces, reinforcing units, sustainment supplies and the overwhelming force required for decisive offensive action.

The assumptions used in the studies, modeling simulations and ultimately the decisions derived from such work are often not widely understood. Yet it is the assumptions used in our models that can ultimately influence the size and structure of our mobility forces. These assumptions include warning times, presidential Selected Reserve call-up, Civil Reserve Air Fleet activation, access to ports and available enroute infrastructure.

While recognizing the limitations inherent in models and simulations, we must make judgments on the criticality of certain unique military capabilities. The deterrent effects derived from the possession of a large number of mobility aircraft which are able to move outsize cargo quickly or execute a large-scale airborne assault is hard to quantify. Yet there is little doubt that this capability does have a deterrent effect. As we debate the risks associated with future operations, we must also remember that we are structuring the strategic mobility force for the next century. That force must retain the flexibility to meet yet unforeseen threats to our nation's interests.

Today's DTS is ready to support the war-fighting CinCs' war plans assigned by the Joint Strategic Capabilities Plan and the requirements outlined by the NCA [National Command Authorities]. Maintaining this readiness is USTRANSCOM's top priority. I want to share with you my concerns about the continuous high operations and personnel tempo (optempo, perstempo) and the need to maintain the high priority of DoD strategic mobility modernization programs.

Today's high optempo is particularly challenging to our active duty forces. Two-thirds of our lift capability is in the reserve components and commercial sector. We have limited access to these resources during peacetime. The Air Mobility Command is acutely aware of this problem. The temporary duty burden required by this high optempo is highlighted by operations in Somalia, Rwanda, Kenya, Haiti, Panama, as well as support for disaster relief efforts.

Current operations deployments, along with routine permanent-change-of-station travel and individual training, cause extensive duty away from home for AMC personnel. Tanker Airlift Control Element and aerial port personnel averaged over 154 and 175 days TDY, respectively, last year. We have set a goal of no more than 120 days TDY per year for all air and ground personnel supporting air mobility operations. Our efforts to limit the deployed days for aircrews have been relatively successful, but require intensive management.

Since the fall of the Berlin Wall the number of potential worldwide crises points has doubled to nearly 70. USTRANSCOM must respond quickly in support of U.S. objectives in these areas, delivering forces when and where needed. Therefore, the command must focus its attention on the entire world and the full spectrum of support from humanitarian operations to contingencies.

The people and equipment of USTRANSCOM have had little rest since Operation Just Cause (Panama) in 1989. The continued support of peacekeeping activities, humanitarian missions, ongoing contingencies and Joint Chiefs of Staff exercises have strained resources. There is a point where peacetime optempo and perstempo will begin to impact on USTRANSCOM'S ability to support an MRC.

To reduce the optempo we must efficiently utilize our organic transportation resources while leveraging commercial industry capabilities. We support a strong U.S. commercial transportation industry. We want to maintain access to commercial lift during this period of Department of Defense and commercial downsizing and restructuring. In the past DoD relied on the excess capacity in the commercial transportation industry to move our forces and materiel during a crisis. To survive in today's competitive environment commercial operators are eliminating excess capacity. This impacts how DoD conducts business with our partners in the transportation industry. To ensure access to commercial transportation during a contingency we are working to channel the government's transportation business to those commercial operators committing their assets to support operations in peace and war.

The foundation of our readiness and war-fighting capability is our people -- the 118,000 dedicated men and women of USTRANSCOM who provide a responsive DTS for America everyday. We are blessed with the brightest, most dedicated force I've seen in 33 years of service. In this period of reduced defense budgets we must remain sensitive to our people's needs -- to ensure every member of every branch of service is treated like a true professional.

My primary quality of life concern is attractive compensation levels to support our more frequently used, smaller force. The combined direct (pay/allowances) and indirect (housing, health, other installation support) benefits must compensate for the high perstempo.

To attract and retain an all-volunteer force we need to provide pay and benefits that are competitive with the civilian sector. The actual and perceived erosion of benefits experienced during the 1970s taught us piecemeal budgetary "savings" are outweighed by the devastating impact on retention and readiness. From attractive pay to quality medical care; a stable, inflation-protected retirement program; housing and family support programs, we must ensure we continue to adequately fund these QOL programs through the Future Years Defense Plan.

Another area of concern is early access to reserve forces. These forces augment our active duty forces daily and provide more than 50 percent of our military capability during a mobilization. We require early and assured access to large numbers of reserve forces to support immediate crises response and to "prime the transportation pipeline."

Approximately 10,500 reservists are required to support strategic mobility -- to put in place the infrastructure required to prepare units for movement, to open seaports of embarkation, to provide aircrews, aerial port and maintenance support for CONUS [continental United States] aerial ports of embarkation and OCONUS [outside CONUS] en route support. Over 55 percent of our strategic airlift crews, 45 percent of our air refueling crews and 66 percent of aerial port personnel are in the Air Reserve component. The preponderance of the Navy's cargo handling and port groups are also within the reserves. Approximately 88 percent of MSC's military shore support and most of MTMC's transportation terminal brigades/battalions, deployment support brigades, port security companies and railway operating battalion are in the reserves.

The context of involuntary recall is changing from rare and massive to frequent and tailored. During Operation Uphold Democracy (Haiti), a limited presidential Selected Reserve call-up of 5,700 was authorized, emphasizing the use of volunteers.

Unless a major contingency triggers some level of mobilization, volunteerism is the current methodology for responding to crises before resorting to involuntary call-up. This creates a reliance on troops and skills that may not match the scenario. Availability and tailoring of the right skills is essential to USTRANSCOM getting the job done. We continue to work with the assistant secretary of defense for reserve affairs in exploring alternate methods to ensure reserve forces are available to meet our mobility requirements.

Our current capability is approximately 49 MTM/D [million ton miles per day]. The 49 MTM/D is achieved through full mobilization. This includes all Air Reserve component and Civil Reserve Air Fleet assets. Active duty forces, augmented with 25 percent ARC volunteers, provide a daily peacetime airlift capability of 18 MTM/D, the capability to support an airlift operation like Vigilant Warrior (Saudi Arabia/Kuwait) without activating the reserves. The fully mobilized military airlift fleet provides 31 MTM/D with the remaining 18 MTM/D coming from CRAF.

Modernization of the air mobility fleet is USTRANSCOM's No. 1 equipment priority. Without a robust and long-term commitment to modernization our air mobility forces will become the weak link in the DTS. To sustain and improve our use of nonlethal air power as the first weapon of choice we should make a definitive decision on the modernization of the airlift fleet this year.

We have stated the problem before. Our current workhorse, the C-141 Starlifter, is rapidly reaching the end of its life. We rely on its capabilities to meet current DoD requirements. The C-141 weep-hole situation clearly demonstrated the potential for the next inspection to identify a problem that could permanently ground or drastically restrict our aging Starlifter fleet. We have attempted to reduce flying hours and extend its life; however, day-to-day mission taskings remain high, and its retirement is quickly approaching.

Beyond the issue of a tired airframe, Army and Marine Corps modernization efforts limit the effectiveness of the C-141. Combat systems (M-1 tank, Multiple Launch Rocket System, Patriot missile launcher) have grown bigger and heavier. Today's outsize equipment will not fit into the C-141. As a result we are putting additional resources into our other primary airlifter, the C-5 Galaxy, to improve its reliability and increase mission-capable rates.

The C-5 is limited by its 1960s technology in avionics, engines, instrumentation and flight controls, all expensive to maintain. We have achieved some success in raising the C-5 mission-capable rates. However, it is expensive to upgrade the dated technology.

Also, we have reached the limit on modifying and utilizing the cargo carrying capability of our tanker fleet to reduce the demands on our airlifter fleet. To enhance our global operations we must continue to ensure the availability of the KC-135 for both air refueling and airlift support.

The 1993 Defense Acquisition Board review placed the C-17 in a provisional status until November of this year. During this probationary period it appears McDonnell Douglas has made significant improvements to get the program back on track. Deliveries are ahead of schedule and show dramatic improvements in quality. During developmental testing the aircraft showed it is well on its way toward meeting our demanding requirements.

As planned and with all conditions met, on Jan. 17, 1995, I declared initial operational capability for the C-17. We are currently operating 14 aircraft at Charleston AFB [Air Force Base S.C.].

The next major test is the 30-day reliability, maintainability and availability evaluation this summer. We are committed to a vigorous RM&A evaluation to ensure the C-17 meets the nation's needs and will serve as a reliable replacement for the C-141. The results of this evaluation will aid our decision in November 1995 at the Milestone IIIB DAB. Our preliminary evaluation has shown the program on track for this summer's events.

In preparation for the November decision AMC is participating in the strategic airlift force mix analysis, an evaluation of several combinations of C-17s and/or nondevelopmental aircraft, to determine the most cost-effective force to meet our military requirements. SAFMA utilizes the same assumptions as MRS BURU to assess air mobility capability to meet requirements in support of the National Security Strategy. SAFMA results will be integral to the C-17 decision and determining the number of nondevelopmental airlift aircraft in source selection.

The NDAA, in the form of a wide-body commercial derivative or other military aircraft, can potentially be procured to augment the C-17. Although the NDAA offers the potential for a less costly option for general airlift, the design of commercial aircraft prevents them from fully meeting the nation's militarily unique air mobility requirements. Therefore, as USCinCTRANS, I must emphasize while I fully support the analytical efforts of MRS BURU and SAFMA to quantify the most cost-effective solution to the airlift force mix, we cannot forget the flexibility afforded this nation by those unique military characteristics only certain aircraft provide. Air refueling, austere field operations, limited ramp space operations and airdrop are capabilities that will prove critical in military operations of the future just as they have in the past.

An airlift system is only as capable as the materials handling equipment supporting it. The backbone of our current MHE fleet is the 40K [40,000-pound] loader. It is increasingly unreliable due to age and condition. The present inventory fills only 77 percent of that required to meet defense plans. In addition to the 40K loader wide-body elevator loaders are necessary for reaching the high cargo floors on commercial wide-body cargo aircraft and our KC-10s. The current inventory of WBELs is limited.

The prognosis for the MHE is good -- but funding must remain intact. The new 60K loader is our second highest air mobility acquisition priority. It is slated to replace the 40K loader and many of the WBELs. The 60K loader, which can be airlifted by C-141s, C-5s and C-17s, will meet MHE requirements for the 21st century. The 60K production contract was awarded in April 1994. The acquisition strategy requires two five-year buys to meet the requirement of 318 loaders. Protecting airlifters from the infrared, surface-to-air missile threat is essential to performing our global mission while minimizing risks to crew and aircraft. The proliferation of these mobile IR SAMs makes airfields susceptible to terrorist threat or enemy activities. The initial effort to protect airlifters was a program called Snowstorm. It provided defensive capability against IR-guided threats to 18 C-130s, 13 C-141s and four C-5s and a prototype for the larger Airlift Defensive System program. The current ADS program includes missile warning and countermeasure dispensing systems for 83 C-141s, 28 C-5s and up to 120 C-17s.

A Global Positioning System modification will provide our air mobility fleet with a more precise, worldwide navigation capability. Our goal, in complying with congressional guidance, is to provide aircrews the best GPS system integrated into other cockpit modernization efforts by the end of fiscal year 2000. Our plan is to integrate installations with inertial navigation, communications and flight instrumentation systems to complement the overall cockpit modernization process.

The assured readiness of our airlift and tanker crew force requires high-quality flight and simulator training. The increased use of high-fidelity flight simulators, similar to those used by the commercial sector, will provide a cost-effective training system, reducing the demands on our aircraft fleet.

Acquiring these systems requires a commercial off-the-shelf hardware and software upgrade to our existing simulators. This avoids an expensive research and development program. This upgrade will allow us to transfer proficiency training requirements from the aircraft to the simulator with no reduction of aircrew readiness. These simulators will result in direct savings, increase the operational availability of airlift and tanker fleets and extend their useful service life.

A critical piece of our strategic airlift capability is the CRAF program. For our most demanding scenarios commercial air carriers will provide over 90 percent of our long-range passenger capability and more than 30 percent of our long-range cargo capability. Commercial carriers volunteer to participate in the program in exchange for access to government airlift business. Congress has supported this program in the past, and I ask your continued support.

Current commitments to the CRAF program meet DoD cargo requirements, and based upon draft MRS BURU analysis, approximate total passenger augmentation needs. However, a significant shortfall remains in the aeromedical airlift segment. Currently only 46 percent of the B-767 aircraft needed for aeromedical airlift requirements are enrolled in the program. This year we will focus on closing the gap by attracting more aircraft into the program and by modifying aeromedical configuration kits so they can be used on other types of aircraft.

To sustain and stimulate the CRAF program we must work both current and new initiatives. We expanded the CRAF business base by approximately $1 billion by working with the General Services Administration to link award of the GSA city-pair contract to CRAF participation. This addressed concerns raised by scheduled passenger carriers and induced two major carriers to return to the CRAF program after a one-year absence. We also plan to work with GSA to link their award of GSA small package contracts (several of which will be up for renewal in FY [fiscal year] 96) to CRAF participation.

The Federal Acquisition Streamlining Act allows DoD to open its military airfields to commercial carriers participating in CRAF. This, coupled with access to military airfields as weather alternates, will provide direct economic benefits to our CRAF partners.

Today we have approximately 6.5 million square feet of capacity in our organic fleet -- MSC's fast sealift ships and the Maritime Administration's Ready Reserve Force -- of which 5 million square feet is currently available in time to meet surge lift requirements. To meet the total MRS surge requirement of 10 million square feet of capacity we plan to acquire the recommended 11 surge LMSRs [large, medium-speed roll-on/roll-off] ships and seven additional RRF roll-on/roll-off (RO/RO) ships and restore the readiness of selected RRF ships currently in reduced readiness. Additionally, eight LMSRs are planned for acquisition for pre-positioning. Critical to the whole concept of 10 million square feet of surge capability is continued adequate operations and maintenance for our organic surge vessels.

The acquisition strategy for the 19 LMSRs is conversion of five existing ships and new construction of the remaining 14. Currently three ships are being converted at the National Steel and Shipbuilding Co. in California, and two ships are being converted at the Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry-dock Company in Virginia. Estimated delivery for the lead ship from both the NASSCO and Newport News yards is December 1995.

Avondale Industries, Inc., in Louisiana and NASSCO were awarded contracts in September 1993 for the design and construction of new LMSRs. The contract with each shipyard was for one ship with options for up to five additional ships, for a total of 12 new construction LMSRs. New construction LMSRs under contract now total six. The acquisition strategy for the remaining two LMSRs has not yet been determined, but we anticipate contract award in FY 99. We need your continued support to keep this program on schedule.

The RRF is a critical component of our sealift fleet, comprising 40 percent of our total organic capability. It provides over one-half of the total sealift capability necessary to deploy the two Army heavy divisions and Marine Corps amphibious task force assault follow-on echelon forces required to halt an enemy attack and then build up for the counterattack.

Some question the need to maintain the RRF in the high readiness status established in the original MRS. We re-examined our requirements for this force as part of the MRS BURU effort. The draft MRS BURU validated the requirement to reduce the size and readiness of the RRF in FY 01, but only after we complete the LMSR and remaining RRF RO/RO acquisitions and achieve 80 percent containerization. Today, the RRF is the most cost-effective source of surge sealift and coupled with our eight FSSs represents our only source of organic surge sealift capability.

In FY 95, RRF O&M funding was reduced by $100 million from the president's budget. This forced us to make significant changes in force size, maintenance and readiness status in order to focus limited funds on our most capable and critical ships. Specifically, while maintaining our RO/RO ships at four-day readiness, we reduced the readiness and maintenance on 26 vessels, placed 29 vessels in a minimal-maintenance 30-day readiness status and transferred 16 vessels to the National Defense Reserve Fleet.

Although $43 million was appropriated to DoD in FY 95 for RRF RO/RO acquisition, $158 million previously appropriated to MARAD in FY 94 was rescinded. As a result, instead of completing acquisition of all seven additional RO/ROs required by MRS analysis, we will only acquire one to two ships.

The shortfall in RRF O&M and acquisition funds have the potential to derail our sealift program. Specifically, if these funding trends continue, we will fall short of our 10 million square feet of organic surge sealift capacity goal by 1 million square feet (the capacity necessary to move approximately two combat brigades) and realize lower overall force readiness in FY 01 and beyond.

Reductions in RRF funding have pushed MARAD to propose a number of new steps to improve the program and maintain the necessary 10 million square feet of organic surge capacity. In particular we believe it appropriate to shift funding responsibility for the program from DOT [Department of Transportation] to DoD. This shift, especially in light of strategic lift's high priority in our overall defense program, ensures RRF funding can be appropriately and sufficiently considered by the congressional committees having oversight of defense related programs.

Second, we must restore and sustain O&M funding through FY 00. This will permit us to restore maintenance and readiness levels consistent with MRS BURU recommendations. Furthermore, in addition to the RO/RO ship we plan to acquire this fiscal year we are requesting the acquisition of two RO/ROs in FY 96.

While we pursue the essential modernization of our organic sealift fleet, we have not forgotten the importance of the U.S. maritime industry to our overall sealift capabilities. Just as we did in the gulf war, Somalia and most recently, back to the Persian Gulf, we rely extensively on our commercial partners to support our worldwide commitments.

In peacetime we ship over 16 million tons of DoD cargo using privately owned U.S.-flag ships manned by U.S. mariners, spending over $1.7 billion annually within the maritime industry. In wartime we depend upon the U.S. merchant fleet to support the flow of sustainment and ammunition cargoes and to provide the mariners necessary to man our organic ships.

To ensure continued availability of this critical capability we support the proposal for a Maritime Security Program funded by DOT, which furthers national economic and security objectives. We will be working closely with DoD and the MARAD to ensure that military sealift requirements are met at best value to the American taxpayer. We must emphasize that the MSP is not a substitute for the unique RO/RO military capabilities of DoD's programs, which are specifically designed for rapid deployment of the full range of military equipment.

Increased productivity of modern containerships has resulted in shrinking numbers of qualified seafarers in the commercial seagoing industry. In the worst-case scenario, when trying to crew DoD surge sealift ships rapidly in a crisis this reduced availability of U.S. merchant mariners could delay the availability of surge sealift. However, additional study is required to quantify the availability of mariners from the inland waterways, Great Lakes, domestic offshore industries and other sources before an accurate assessment of any potential shortfall is known.

One initiative to help maximize the number of crews available in a war or other national emergency would be a legislative provision extending re-employment rights for certain merchant seaman employed in shore-based industries but holding active U.S. Coast Guard certificates and licenses to serve aboard activated surge sealift assets. These mariners represent a large pool of labor that was willing to volunteer during the Persian Gulf war, but could not due to lack of re-employment rights.

This provision would be similar to the re-employment rights guaranteed for reserve military personnel. Several bills were introduced during the last Congress which included such a provision, but none passed. Such a measure is necessary and prudent to improve the availability of merchant seamen during a time of crisis.

Pre-positioning of equipment afloat is key to our flexibility in responding to contingencies in widely separated theaters. Currently we pre-position afloat Army and Marine Corps combat forces and general equipment, supplies and ammunition of all the services.

Central to the effectiveness of the APF [afloat pre-positioning force] is the acquisition of the vessels designed to carry the Army brigade and support package. Both MRS and MRS BURU validated the requirement for LMSRs with a total capacity of 2 million square feet to support pre-positioning and early closure of the Army brigade.

Based on this our APF will increase by eight LMSRs, one heavy-lift pre-positioned ship and two container ships to support an Army heavy brigade (afloat) with 30 days of sustainment. These pre-positioning LMSRs are currently under conversion or construction with all scheduled for delivery by FY 01.

To ensure the current readiness of our APF, since the first LMSR will not be delivered until late FY 95, interim afloat pre-positioning capability is being met using seven RO/RO ships from the RRF. Pre-positioning will also be enhanced with the addition of one ship to a maritime pre-positioning squadron. Funding for this ship was provided for in the FY 95 budget.

As previously stated, much of the commercial transportation surge capability that existed is being trimmed through restructuring. The commercial transportation industry has become more efficient and divested itself of excess capacity.

For example, rail is much more efficient today. Railroads have 700,000 fewer rail cars, 550,000 fewer employees and 10,000 fewer locomotives than in 1960. The commercial rail industry cannot provide sufficient heavy-lift flatcars to meet current Army Strategic Mobility Program time lines.

The importance of these rail cars was highlighted during Desert Storm when the average wait for access to commercial rail cars was five to seven days. This situation, along with the limited number of commercially available heavy-lift flatcars, has forced the Army to initiate a program to procure flatcars and position them at installations to meet early deploying time lines.

The Army budgeted $11.8 million in FY 96 for rail car procurement. The need for this program was revalidated during Uphold Democracy (Haiti), where we again experienced as much as a seven-day response time for access to commercial rail cars.

The deregulation of the 1980s has compelled structural changes in the railroad and trucking industries. As entry barriers dropped more carriers have entered the trucking industry while forcing many inefficient companies out of business. Railroads have cut costs, and gains in efficiency have added pressure on the trucking industry as more companies gained access to intrastate/interstate markets.

In addition to the rightsizing of the industry trucking firms, railroads and steamship companies are entering into intermodal and long-term partnerships with vendors/shippers to respond to the needs of the marketplace and provide better overall service. More domestic freight is being carried intermodally as truckers use more rail piggyback for long hauls.

Intermodalism and information technology have expanded service and blurred the lines between markets. Intermodal traffic is the fastest growing area of the transportation industry, and USTRANSCOM is committed to ensuring we take advantage of it.

The goal of the Joint Container Exercise Program is to improve the readiness and responsiveness of DoD to deploy, sustain, employ and redeploy forces using the intermodal transportation systems. It provides an opportunity to stress in-place infrastructure which supports modern transportation systems. Exercises such as Team Spirit 93 (Korea) and Turbo CADS (Containerized Ammunition Distribution System) 94, have demonstrated the effectiveness of containerization, intransit visibility and intermodalism.

Future exercises are designed to build upon these successes. Our goal is to promote an effective and efficient intermodal container transportation system by increasing DoD's use of intermodal systems, ensuring interoperability between DoD and commercial systems and maximizing use of intermodal assets and infrastructure.

Based on the MRS and the ASMP, there is a requirement for 2,027 rail cars to support the movement of equipment for the Army and Marine Corps. This total includes 397 heavy-lift cars pre-positioned at Army and Marine installations to support the early deployment of lead brigades until commercial rail cars become available on or about day seven. Sufficient heavy-lift rail cars are available to move all of the M-1 tanks assigned to these early deploying units. We currently have 718 rail cars on hand with 53 new rail cars under contract and project buying 241 in FY 95 and 238 in FY 96.

Base realignment and closure actions, deteriorating facilities at existing bases and lack of funding for infrastructure upgrades also concern me. From my perspective as USCinCTRANS, mission requirements must be the driver behind downsizing. As DoD downsizes it is reducing its infrastructure and capacity to deploy, support and sustain forces. The remaining capacity must be managed to make it more efficient to ensure the right things move to the right places at the right times. With fewer military bases and depots the remaining bases must be world class launching platforms from which we can project and sustain power.

USTRANSCOM is involved with studying the effects on en route infrastructure due to closure of overseas bases and development of our Global Reach Laydown packages. We are involved with the BRAC 95 process to ensure our stateside transportation infrastructure is correctly identified, protected and enhanced to meet the deployment needs of our CONUS-based forces. Other initiatives are the West Coast ammunition port, Joint Logistics Over the Shore and programs funded through the Mobility Enhancement Fund.

Since December 1992 we have reduced air mobility en route infrastructure from 39 locations outside the U.S. to 13 key locations (six PACOM [U.S. Pacific Command], six EUCOM [U.S. European Command] and one SOUTHCOM [U.S. Southern Command]). We are working an ongoing effort with the war-fighting CinCs and the Joint Staff to validate key en route infrastructure requirements which must be considered during downsizing. This is tied to the Joint Requirements Oversight Council process through the overseas presence, joint war-fighting capabilities assessment work group.

As an example of the success of these readiness efforts, working with the Joint Staff we have analyzed the requirement for Spanish facilities from a strategic air mobility perspective in a major contingency. The Joint Staff has incorporated the analysis into the JROC process and is now beginning to query the CinCs on their needs for the Spanish bases to formulate a DoD strategy for future deliberations between U.S. and Spanish officials.

It is critical to have a containerized ammunition capability on the West Coast to effectively support dual, nearly simultaneous MRCs. Without a West Coast facility ammunition for an Asian MRC would have to be shipped to Sunny Point, N.C., our East Coast ammunition port. This adds 12 days to the transit time due to the East Coast to West Coast sail and Panama Canal transit.

We currently have enhancement projects funded by the Army Strategic Mobility Program under way at Port Hadlock, Wash., and Concord Naval Weapons Station, Calif., that will increase our West Coast throughput capability to 720 20-foot ammunition containers per day, as recommended in the MRS. The project is planned to be completed by FY 99.

All of the war-fighting CinCs with regional responsibilities have identified JLOTS as a required capability to support their operations and contingency plans. In fact as recently as Operation Uphold Democracy (Haiti), we were prepared to use JLOTS capabilities had the Haitian military closed Port-au-Prince's seaport facility. We did use selected pieces of this capability to increase port capacity -- tugs, cranes and landing craft.

JLOTS exercises, culminating in Ocean Venture 93 (Onslow Beach, N.C.), demonstrated low operational proficiency due to lack of training was the foremost JLOTS problem. In response USTRANSCOM has proposed a five-year JLOTS training plan. USTRANSCOM has advocated one dry cargo and one liquid cargo JLOTS exercise be conducted each year in each CinC area of responsibility.

The proposed exercises were approved by the CinCs and incorporated into the joint master training schedule. The Joint Staff JLOTS Exercise Initiative has allocated to USTRANSCOM $15 million each year through FY 01 to pay for JLOTS-related strategic lift and port handling and inland transportation costs.

The FY 95 MEF is a special $50 million authorization provided by Congress to enhance the readiness of strategic mobility infrastructure. In November 1994 USTRANSCOM submitted a list of projects to the Joint Staff, and in December 1994 OSD [Office of the Secretary of Defense] sent Congress the list of recommended projects.

USTRANSCOM's proposal allocated $25 million for military rail repair, $4 million for port and pier improvements, $16 million for runway and ramp maintenance, $1 million to support joint mobilization exercises and approximately $4 million for other infrastructure improvements. This fund has provided an outstanding opportunity to quick-fix some pressing infrastructure problems.

As our nation moved from the industrial age into the information age the importance of command and control systems for the DTS increased. The proper management of large-scale deployment and sustainment operations increases the capabilities of America's combat forces.

Ensuring the right forces arrive at the right location at the right time; integrating air, sea and surface assets; and enabling commanders to divert shipments while en route are critical capabilities that USTRANSCOM must provide the nation's war-fighting CinCs. In the past USTRANSCOM has focused its attention on moving people and cargo. Today our focus is on moving people, cargo, and information with a stronger sense of synchronization.

Our current systems and processes are marginally adequate to support our mission. However, based on our DTS 2010 vision of truly integrating the nation's DTS, fielding a state-of-the-art, customer-focused command and control system will likely be the greatest force multiplier we have to offer the war-fighting CinCs.

USTRANSCOM has embarked on a multitude of programs to make this happen. Through our Joint Transportation Corporate Information Management Center we have developed a migration strategy to eliminate or consolidate the large number of legacy and duplicate transportation information systems. We are applying functional, technical and programmatic criteria developed by the joint transportation community in our analysis of these systems. The result of our efforts -- a strategy to decrease the number of systems from 120 to about 25 -- has been delivered to the assistant deputy under secretary of defense [for] transportation policy for approval.

Another initiative moving us into the 21st century is DoD's downward-directed secure successor to the Worldwide Military Command and Control System -- the Global Command and Control System.

The GCCS is a Joint Staff initiative designated and certified to replace the WWMCCS and the Joint Operation Planning and Execution System. GCCS will take advantage of rapidly developing technology to produce a single modern, joint command, control, communications and computer system for our war fighters. This single modern system for controlling and coordinating military operations will give us a significant advantage in moving required forces, cargo and information to the right place at the right time and in the proper quantity.

This system will provide the connectivity and a variety of software applications and tools used by the war-fighting CinCs. One of the programs in this system for which USTRANSCOM is responsible is the Global Transportation Network.

Intransit visibility is information on the location of deploying units' personnel and equipment, patients and sustainment cargo, and other vital resources while they are in the DTS. GTN provides this service while tying together transportation data from AMC, MTMC, MSC and other DoD agencies. This information will provide the combatant commanders critical information about the location of personnel and materials throughout the DTS. This will significantly improve the capability of the combatant commander to respond to rapidly changing priorities.

GTN is a software- rather than hardware-intensive system. In other words, instead of becoming obsolete it will be routinely enhanced with software upgrades. Access will be available to any authorized user who has a laptop computer, modem, access to a military or commercial phone line and is cleared to enter the network. Information from GTN will be available to any registered user from the origination of a movement until delivery in theater. A GTN intransit visibility prototype is on-line now, providing intransit visibility of air and sealift movements from APOEs/SPOEs [aerial/sea ports of embarkation] to APODs/SPODs [aerial/sea ports of deembarkation].

When GCCS and GTN are fully matured they will provide planning support enabling USTRANSCOM to analyze transportation options, forecast total DoD requirements, determine the best mix of lift modes and identify potential resource shortfalls.

Our global transportation mission demands global awareness. In 1994 USTRANSCOM established Joint Intelligence Center, Transportation to lead DoD in production of relevant transportation intelligence. Renewed emphasis on timely, accurate information, reflecting the status of worldwide transportation infrastructure, to include vulnerability to weapons of mass destruction, is necessary to support USTRANSCOM, other war-fighting CinCs and mission planners at all levels. A quick global response capability requires swift and prudent operational decisions supported by quality intelligence services. JICTRANS will provide this service for mobility forces.

USTRANSCOM's Regulating and Command and Control Evacuation System is the product of a 1993 DoD directive tasking USCinCTRANS to consolidate and control the separate processes of medical evacuation and medical regulating under a single unified command. TRAC2ES is a decision support system being developed to integrate worldwide medical regulation and aeromedical evacuation activities. We anticipate initial operational capability by the end of 1997.

Advanced artificial intelligence technologies form the core of TRAC2ES' unique, enabling decision support capabilities. Those capabilities include forecasting for operations two to five days into the future, as well as reactive replanning for forecasted changes to today's and tomorrow's current operations. The integration of long-range planning, short-range forecasting, and near-real time decision-making makes TRAC2ES a revolutionary "state of the practice" command and control tool.

TRAC2ES development has been in concert with the deputy assistant secretary of defense for information management and a joint services Corporate Information Management business process improvement team. The success of this developmental effort was highlighted at the National Business Process Re-engineering Conference when USTRANSCOM's project received the prestigious Award of Recognition for its significant contributions to improved federal government service and efficiency through the exemplary practice of business process reengineering.

Future capabilities of TRAC2ES will include support for intratheater patient movements (wholly within a theater), the National Disaster Medical System, the Department of Veterans Affairs and deployable medical regulating teams which quickly respond to all contingency scenarios.

In partnership with our components, the services and the Office of Assistant Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Transportation Policy we are developing the Defense Transportation Regulation. We plan to consolidate 38 existing transportation publications into one comprehensive DTR derived from DoD Directive 4500.9, Transportation and Traffic Management.

This regulation will standardize transportation operations for the movement of passengers, freight, personal property and units from origin to destination. With the strong support of our components and the services, and consistent with the intent of Vice President [Albert] Gore's National Performance Review, our goal in drafting the DTR is to reduce the volume of the original regulations by at least 50 percent.

Today USTRANSCOM is ready to successfully conduct the strategic mobility missions assigned by the NCA. For the future I have two concerns -- the cumulative effects of high optempo on our people and equipment and the need to maintain the high priority of our strategic mobility modernization programs.

There are no simple formulas for prioritizing how we spend our defense dollars. However, the single most important element in the equation is people. We ask our young men and women to make many sacrifices in defense of our nation -- we should be willing to compensate them so they can maintain a reasonable standard of living.

This nation needs to modernize its strategic mobility assets in order to meet the full range of mobility requirements of the war-fighting CinCs.


  • Airlift.

We must get on with replacing the C-141. The C-17 may be the right choice. The program is on track and the aircraft is performing well. A decision on the C-17 program and on modernization of the strategic airlift fleet will be made in November 1995.


  • Sealift.

We must continue the LMSR and RRF RO/RO acquisition programs plus the appropriation of sufficient resources to maintain our organic fleet in a prudent state of readiness.


  • Surface.

We must carry through with acquisition of heavy-lift rail cars and improve our "fort to port" capability by ensuring the maintenance of our nation's highways and railways and taking full advantage of intermodal initiatives like the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act.


  • Infrastructure.

We need a properly sized and modernized defense transportation infrastructure, leveraging the contribution of private/public sector facilities while we maintain emphasis on upgrading our militarily unique facilities identified as Strategic Mobility Enhancement Fund projects.

With emphasis in these areas, continued emphasis on partnership with industry and the internal re-engineering of our command and control and business practices, I'm confident we can ensure the future readiness of the defense transportation system.


Published for internal information use by the American Forces Information Service, a field activity of the Office of the Assistant to the Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs), Washington, D.C. Parenthetical entries are speaker/author notes; bracketed entries are editorial notes. This material is in the public domain and may be reprinted without permission