While the agenda's "preserving global reach by air" talks to maintaining U.S. airpower, examples given are unmanned aerial vehicles, electronic warfare, C- 17 airlift, and KC-X aerial refueling, with no mention of next-generation fighters. The sea power agenda included recapitalization of the naval forces, with the emphasis on supporting operations ashore and investment in smaller, more capable ships, "providing agility to operate close to shore and the reach to rapidly deploy Marines to global crises."
CAPITOL HILL CONNECTION CAPT MARSHALL A. HANSON, USNR (RET.) • ROA DIRECTOR OF LEGISLATION Capitol View Obama on Defense The biggest surprise in the new president’s defense agenda is that there are few surprises. D efense is one of 30 items on President Barack stumbling block for the momentum of his initiatives. Obama’s published White House agenda, with the Additionally, public opinion may weigh heavily. A Pew economy and energy and the environment featured Research Center survey taken in January showed that the on the White House website home page (www.whitehouse. public’s attention is on domestic policy, especially the econ- gov). Using verbiage that appears to have been borrowed omy, topping its list with an 85 percent rating. Jobs came in from his election campaign, the agenda includes numer- second with an 82 percent rating. While terrorism remains ous provisions that provide direction for the various federal a concern, listed in third place with a 76 percent rating, the agencies (see story below). military was 14th on the list with a 44 percent score. Never- But in many cases, President Obama can’t move unilater- theless, this was higher than the environment, which was in ally. Congress still must review, authorize, and fund many 16th place, and global warming in 20th place. of these agenda items. With the president still in his honey- It is interesting to note where the Obama agenda empha- moon period, Congress may be more cooperative, but Presi- sized rebuilding the military: special operations, civil affairs, dent Obama also heads a separate branch of government. foreign language training, and cultural awareness for coun- Both the Senate and the House are led by individuals with terinsurgency. The Obama administration supports increas- strong personalities, and either chamber could prove to be a ing the size of the Army by 65,000 and the Marine Corps by President Obama’s Agenda for Defense As issued by the White House, stabilization skill sets; and create a more Brave Troops and Their Families: The Jan. 22, 2009 robust capacity to train, equip, and ad- Obama–Biden Administration will cre- vise foreign security forces, so that local ate a Military Families Advisory Board President Barack Obama and Vice allies are better prepared to confront to provide a conduit for military fami- President Joe Biden will invest in a 21st mutual threats. lies’ concerns to be brought to the atten- century military to maintain our conven- Expand to Meet Military Needs tion of senior policymakers and the pub- tional advantage while increasing our ca- on the Ground: President Obama and lic. The president and vice president will pacity to defeat the threats of tomorrow. Vice President Biden support plans to end the stop-loss policy and establish They will ensure that our troops have the increase the size of the Army by 65,000 predictability in deployments so that Ac- training, equipment, and support that Soldiers and the Marine Corps by 27,000 tive Duty and Reserves know what they they need when they are deployed. Marines. Increasing our end-strength will can and must expect. help units retrain and re-equip properly Invest in a 21st Century Military between deployments and decrease the Build Defense Capabilities Rebuild the Military for 21st Cen- strain on military families. for the 21st Century tury Tasks: President Obama and Vice Inspire Leadership from the Top: Fully Equip Our Troops for the President Biden believe that we must President Obama and Vice President Missions They Face: President Barack build up our spe
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