Army Aviation and Tactical Wheeled Vehicles: A Systemic Relationship
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLL FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MILITARY STUDIES
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The Army is currently in the process of reducing its entire tactical wheeled vehicle fleet by approximately 50,000. These reductions include the tactical wheeled fleet of Army aviation. Although the number of vehicles will be reduced, the mobility and transportability sustainment requirements that these vehicles fulfill will remain unchanged. This means that units will no longer receive the number of vehicles required for sustainment in terms of logistics and maintenance. These reductions represent an attempt by the Army to improve fleet efficiencies by removing vehicles beyond their total life cycle utility and focusing on sustaining the remaining viable fleet. What are the implications of the reduction of tactical wheel vehicles for Army aviation This monograph posits that there will be an overall decline in Army aviation organic readiness, capability, and capacity, and ultimately the ability to support Army and Joint Forces ground commanders. Section 1 discusses the contributions of the tactical wheeled vehicle fleet to Army aviation. Section 2 describes the methodology behind the reduction in the Army aviation tactical wheeled fleet. Section 3 presents current and possible future implications of the fleet reductions as expressed in interviews with senior Army aviation sustainers with diverse backgrounds. The interviewees provide expert opinions and firsthand insights into the positive and negative effects of tactical wheeled vehicle reductions for Army aviation. Section 4 presents two historical case studies that illustrate the results of poorly sustained forces in the face of conflict. The first case study traces the defense of Burma during World War II, and the second case study discusses the plight of Task Force Smith during the Korean War. Both serve as poignant warnings of the potential consequence of ill-sustained units. The monograph concludes that operational defeat and catastrophic failure are the ultimate systemic effects of degraded sustainment.
- Military Aircraft Operations
- Surface Transportation and Equipment
- Logistics, Military Facilities and Supplies