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Strategic Mobility: 1965-1980

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During the past five years the Department of Defense DoD has placed a disproportionate emphasis on the qualitative and quantitative improvement of the national military strategic airlift capability. But no real attempt has been made to develop a modern sealift capability to complement the strategic aircraft being procured under the comprehensive airlift modernization program initiated in 1961. As a consequence, a progressive lack of balance is emerging between the quality of the strategic airlift capacity and that of the strategic sealift fleet. To attain balance in its strategic mobility posture during the 1965-1980 period, the DoD should implement a long-range MSTS modernization program to replace the fractional effort presently programmed. In addition, a Presidential Commission should be appointed to make appropriate recommendations with respect to improving the capability of the U.S. Merchant Marine to perform its dual mission of carrying U.S. commercial cargoes and serving as an auxiliary to the MSTS fleet. If a balanced and flexible strategic mobility attitude is to be achieved, there is a requirement for an organizational structure that will plan and execute strategic deployments effectively, provide a mechanism for furnishing timely and pertinent information on strategic mobility matters to national decision-makers, and produce a competent and full-time spokesman to sell appropriate strategic mobility programs to the executive and legislative branches of the government. To date, no demonstrable operational or planning defects in the existing organization have been uncovered that would justify consequential changes in the present organizational groupings. Future stresses and strains placed upon the organization for strategic mobility may disclose major deficiencies that will make it imperative that a mechanism be created for more centralized control over the strategic lift capability.

Subject Categories:

  • Transport Aircraft
  • Administration and Management
  • Marine Engineering
  • Logistics, Military Facilities and Supplies

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