Army 2015 Budget Kills GCV, Cuts Readiness

Army 2015 Budget Kills GCV, Cuts Readiness

Army budget officials presented the service’s fiscal 2015 budget today, a spending plan that cuts readiness, kills the Ground Combat Vehicle and places a new priority on replacing obsolete vehicles such as the Humvee and the M113 armored personnel carrier.

Steep defense spending cuts under sequestration have forced the Army to adopt strategy that focuses on near-term readiness, a move that will restrict training for many combat units, shrink aviation assets and delay high-priority modernization efforts, Army Maj. Gen. Karen Dyson, director of the Army budget office, said during a March 4 Pentagon briefing.

The $120.5 billion base budget request does not yet include Overseas Contingency Operations budget and funds active force of 490,000, a National Guard of 350,000 and a Reserve of 202,000. The Pentagon’s fiscal 2015 defense budget calls for more cuts to Army end strength, reducing the active force to a size of 440,000 to 450,000 by 2019.


Priority will be given to units serving in Korea and rapid-deployment brigade combat teams in the Army “contingency force,” which would likely be made up of have two armor BCTs, two Stryker BCTs, two infantry BCTs, one aviation brigade and combat support units, according to Army officials.

“The Army is building readiness at higher levels inside of a contingency force, while all other units not designated into the contingency force will not be funded to achieve full readiness,” Dyson said. “For those units who are not assigned to one of these categories … training is intended to reach only to company level and in some cases to battalion level.”

A recent aviation review will result in the Army in restructuring its aviation formations into leaner and more efficient forces, budget officials said.

The service plans to cut three aviation brigades from the active force by 2019.  Reserve components will retain their12 aviation brigades but will be restructured for assault, lift and medevac missions, budget officials say. The National Guard will get another 111 UH-60s to enhance its medial-lift capability and retain its CH-47s and UH-72A helicopters. But all National Guard AH– 64 Apache helicopters will be transferred to the active component, budget officials said.

The budget also officially kills the Ground Combat Vehicle, the Army’s high-priority modernization program to replace the M2 Bradley fighting vehicle. Lawmakers in January cut GCV funding by $492 million, or 83 percent. The move left the Army with $100 million instead of the $592 million it had requested to continue developing the program in fiscal 2014.

Budget officials have shifted the priority to the new Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle as a replacement for the Vietnam-War-era M113 armored personnel carrier. Budget officials said the service will likely to award an engineering, manufacturing and development contract in 2015.

The Army budget plan also funds a low-rate initial production contract for 176 Joint Light Tactical Vehicles as part of a joint Army-Marine program to replace the Humvee.

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I feel kinda bad for the Army right now. They are practically getting gutted for cuts so the funds can be sent to big ticket weapons platforms. The GCV, which I despised and am glad was killed, was their only big ticket platform. Now it looks like they are just going to take cuts in the force structure and lose a ton of experienced personnel.

It would have probably helped GCV’s prospects if the Army could have better defined what they were looking for. If they had it probably wouldn’t look like the above concept.

What are the plans for the OH-58 Kiowa? Retirement? Is the Armed Aerial Scout dead too?

Classic contractor arse covering — create rubbish and claim they didn’t know what the customer wanted all along. For shills like Bill this behavior is instinctive.

Good that the GCV is being killed. It was a testament to the extreme incompetence of BAE/US land systems contractors. What an abomination. Anyway, the army is being cut and it should be cut, not that I hate soldiers, but because long large land wars are a thing of the past. It’s too costly, people around the world won’t stand for it anymore. It’s now air/sea and spec ops/marine punches. No longer mass occupation. So yes, the force needs to be cut in size.

What I do think is that the pentagon SHOULD spend money on developing better body armor etc, so that the soldiers that DO have to fight, have the very best protection etc.

“forced the Army to adopt strategy that focuses on near-term readiness…“
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Incorrect. This is the strategy they *chose* to adopt, which retains size and reduces readiness. When the Brits downsized, they opted to keep their forces lean, mean, heavily armed, well trained, and at a very high state of readiness. When the Germans were downsized at the end of WWI, they focused on keeping the most experienced structure possible, so that when it was time to rebuild, they could do so efficiently and have their new soldiers serving with those that were highly experienced (needless to say — that worked out very well).

This seems to indicate that either the army hasn’t bothered to research what other nations did when they had to downsize, or, they are holding out hope/praying than an emasculated army will be rescued from itself by our do-nothing House of Representatives. Nor do they seem terribly interested in shedding itself of its over-bloated general staff, which at last look had a nauseating ratio one (1) general for every 600 soldiers. The Army (and other service branches) could easily shed 75% of the general/flag-rank staff and *still* look like a ridiculously top-heavy organization.

We should look at the Cold War downsizing as an example of how things will go. Divisions cased their colors and disappeared, but how many of their officers survived somewhere in the puzzle palace doing other things?

Like any other business, the benefits are expensive for the guys who make it to the top, and are terrible for the people at the bottom. But all cost-cutting moves are made with respect to eliminating the ranks at the bottom.

They are indeed costly, but we should be prepared nontheless to fight them /if need be/. Mandatory conscription like South Korea, Israel and Switzerland would not be a bad idea. The ability to rapidly train an untrained populace is usually a technical hurdle in total war. And on the plus side, a large reserve need not be paid for all year round.

You still need an active duty military, of course.

I’m reading this, well, differently. Turning away from maintaining high readiness levels is a reflection on the quality of both DoD and Army leadership. It is as if the “multi-echelon sustainment training” that Odierno and Dempsey were brought up on — never existed. Now, that we’re “bringing the boys home” the Army is being reacquainted with the limits of stateside base maneuver areas. Simulation capabilities notwithstanding, are we really going to tail off on NTC/JRTC rotations ? And if we do that, what is Plan B ? Now, don’t be telling me that you can’t even afford to do command post exercises, terrain walks, and the like. The one think I really hate about this generation of Army generals — my contemporaries — is how unimaginative they are. And they have no excuse, since we all went through this as junior officers. My point is that it has been a long, long time since REFORGER when we could deploy an entire corps at a time out in the countryside. Fort Hood — maybe you can get a division deployed on old-timey frontages, now more like a brigade. Just look at the situation in Ukraine and Russia — and witness how the adversary moves to get their forces out of hock. We can do better that. Because we must.

Not happening OH-58 is staying for some time. Never needed to be replaced for now.

Some good news GCV is going to be killed it wasted BILLIONS on a vehicle so BIG and heavy it made it a easy target even for Iran in combat. I don’t see there M-113 as totally obsolete for base security and for a mobile Ambulance/ Mortar carrier its worked fine. So I know Gen Oredenaro who a maroon/idiot has to replace on vehicle to get him happy so he looks to waste billions replacing a vehicle meant for behind the lines use anyway.

Sad to see JLTV not dead yet this is another waste and I see Oredenaro wanting to save more of his pet projects at the expense of our fighting men’s vet benefits.

Sure. But conscription isn’t really feasible any more in the West (europa and north america). The people just won’t stand for it, and really, there is no short term enemy to make it necessary. In my anti American ways, I’d have to also point out the US population is quite very heavy, and conscription of hippo’s isn’t really feasible. (or would it actually be good as a 18 month fitness course?).

But joking aside, large invasions won’t happen again, conscription is dead. The people just don’t want to pay the price. In democratic societies that is. Look at all the wars from ww2 up. Only dictatorships did the heavy lifting (US was peanuts compared to the Soviets and the Germans etc etc). Regarding democracies, only when physically attacked themselves, will there be political will to draft the population. Switserland has a purely DEFENCE force, and their draft is constitutional. The US is purely Offensive. Maybe when aliens invade the US, there’ll be another draft:P

Why does everybody cry about this nonsensical and NOT tangible word ‘readiness’. WTF does that mean? And why should it be hurting readiness? Why would it be impossible to cut the SIZE of the armed forces, without hurting readiness? It’s been done by dozens of armies in all of history. Did the US suddenly go LIMP after cutting 12 million troops after 1945? Were they suddenly weaker than Canada? And what after the cold war in the early 90’s? There are no excuses.

And your source for this bit of “wisdom” is what? Did you read the requirement spec? Are you a systems engineer with military requirements experience, or just a know-it-all?

I’d feel worse for the Army if this weren’t a self-inflicted wound. If they hadn’t pissed all of that money away on FCS, JTRS, Comanche, Crusader, WIN-T, ACS, ARH, etc. (and then thrown $40B at disposable MRAPs) they wouldn’t be stuck unmodernized during a downturn. The taxpayers gave them more than enough funds; they just wasted them.

Readiness is independent of force size. Small forces within a military are easier to keep at high readiness (e.g counter-terror units and special forces).

It’s just the nature of things that a military “Learning By Doing” is expensive: and because it is expensive, it does not practice what it is supposed to be doing unless it goes to NTC or JRTC. Keeping troops and equipment in garrison is not “readiness” in the firefighter-police-EMT-sense of ready-to-go-anywhere-at-a-moments-notice sense.

For example, at a hospital, if people come to work but there are no patients to see, their skills degrade, moreso if they are specialists like surgeons and pathologists. But for obvious reasons, exercising a military is expensive and you can’t sic them on your neighbors unless you are bad.

It’s also one reason why nations stage joint exercises so frequently. And of course, some types of forces can be more easily exercised than others. Difficult to train for driving tanks in urban areas unless you…find an urban area you can drive tanks in. Which isn’t cheap.

Our pre-WW2 military was relatively large in terms of manpower, but it was poorly equipped. There were a lot of things it could not do and a number of things it could do.

Moving forward to WW2. We land in Tunisia with a reasonably well-equipped army with fuel, tanks and ammunition. The army is not trained to actually fight and is routed at Kasserine Pass. Does this qualify as an army at readiness? Probably not.

Conscription is feasible, it is just not politically palatable…there is a difference. I’d also point out that Europeans are “quite very heavy” as well and when coupled with complete lack of military training make for poor allies. We’ve provided you with defense welfare for far too long.

Large invasions are held in check by a nuclear deterrent not by any altruistic notions held by populations. But believing that wars of aggression are no longer feasible, desirable or “are a thing of the past” is euro-wishful-thinking in the extreme. China and Russia are testing the waters everyday.

Readiness is not intangible. It is a quantifiable variable based on personnel fills, training levels, equipment on hand, and that equipment’s maintenance status. We give each unit a grade for each category and in aggregate each month. When the Chief said last year that only a couple noncommitted BCTs were ready he wasn’t using hyperbole, he was probably looking at that month’s Army-wide report card.

“Did the US suddenly go LIMP after cutting 12 million troops after 1945?”

To a degree yes we did. We sacrificed all other services to beef up the nuclear Air Force because we believed our new nukes would fix everything. We discovered in the summer of 1950 that strategic bombers couldn’t stop tank divisions nor could skeleton divisions with broken WWII equipment. I can’t speak for the Cold War periods, but from 1991 to 2001 our missions went up while personnel strength and training dollars went down. We did more partnership exercises, more humanitarian ops, and a few violent skuffles with a smaller bottom line. For good or bad, we’ve always prioritized procurement over training because it’s easier to recruit and train a few thousand soldiers in a pinch than it is to fund an entire fleet of new vehicles.

correct to the letter

They aren’t making parts for them anymore last I heard.

I understand, and thanks for the military basics 101 (I’m not a military professional), but I just don’t see the ‘mutual exclusivity’ of cutting size and impeding readiness. If anything, I would believe the US military has too much waste and bureaucracy in it, and it could easily be cut.

For example: the thousands of m1 tanks that are sitting in the drive in movie in the desert, if we cut all those, does that impede readiness? Or cutting 1 aircraft carrier. Or cutting the a10 after the withdrawal from Afghanistan. Why should the US be the only military in the world that can NOT cut anything without going limp?

Russia just cut it’s poorly equipped huge army to a smaller and actually competent force. I’m not comparing the us to russia, but I’m saying what they did was even more difficult. The US already has a large AND competent force, so cutting it a bit should be easier.

IF anything, I would think the US military would be left stronger after cutting some fat. For example the army, during the height of the stupid Iraq and Afg wars, I saw a low of tiny (greencard seekers) who barely spoke english and were far under 6 ft in height fighting in Iraq and Afgh. And many FAT american soldiers also:(. I would think cutting the army in size would flush THEM away, and keep actual strong and fit soldiers IN. Why would that be a bad thing? A good fit size of about 400-420k soldiers, with actual strong soldiers?

I understand. But what I’m trying to get across here, is that what you described as the 1991–2001 period, is just what awaits the US. Small peacekeeping ops here and there, small Libya style ops etc. No future or current US president is foolish enough to go and do a large scale invasion anymore, unless the US is frontally attacked (which won’t ever happen, how the F do you get millions of troops to the US? Telepathy?). US intervention is only really thinkable in Iran. And if Obama is succesful, that won’t happen. And if it won’t happen in his term, the door he’s opening won’t be closed again. So no low life neo-con can come in in 2016 and just start a war with Iran.

“Russia just cut it’s poorly equipped huge army to a smaller and actually competent force”

They are indeed a much smaller military with less conscripts and theoretically better wages to retain people past the mandatory but most of the gains in equipment and training (that translate into readiness) come from energy sector funds. Contrast the improved turnout at Chechenya II to the successful operation against Georgia.

Like any human organization, I’m skeptical of the military’s ability to downsize in a smart manner.

You are correct in that terrorists are not stopped at home with a tank, they are stopped overseas in their home countries aided by NSA intercepts to pick up and stack them in naked pyramids.

Stepping up clandestine activities would probably reduce the need for foreign interventions.

There will be no replacement for the Kiowa and the Army is closing the Scout Branch.

The down sizing of our Army is creating a power vacuum through out the world. Russia has moved into bordering provices of neighboring countries just as Hitler did in Europe prior to WWII when he took control of Austria, then Czechoslovakia. Russia has gone into Georgia & now the Crimeia. With the USA down sizing its military, where will they go next to retore the Russian Empire? Alaska?

Tru Dat…

Are you SERIOUS? 600 flags for every soldier and NO ONE in Congress are asking the questions?

Yes, we’ve seen in the past how US overseas clandestine and military operations reduce how much people hate us. <rolls eyes>

The bottom line is that terrorism is not any kind of threat to the US or our way of life unless we choose to make it one. The carnage on our highways dwarfs the total harm done to Americans by terrorists over any time horizon you care to look at. This is not a military issue — especially not if what you’re complaining about is a reduction in force size.

The clandestine model is Israel, go isolationist with Mossad assassins everywhere with the occasional air force strike on essential targets. Everyone seems to hate that. They also hate occupations.

No matter how we intervene, people hate our intervening. It’s the reality of things.

It is as if someone from the outside is saying, “In order to make the USA weak, what do we have to do. Let’s start with…”

Where have you been Lance? All of the Kiowas are going away in the next year or so to be replaced on a 1:3 ratio by Apaches.

Terrorists indeed need to be taken by technology. Intercept communications etc etc. But what’s also quite VERY necessary, is that Western nations PRESSURE and FINANCE middle eastern governments, to do ‘our dirty work for us’. That’s not to say we need to outsource warfighting, but we those governments are just there. It’s their nation, their culture, their responsibility also. So ask yourself, what can’t the government of Iraq do, that we as western nations need to travel thousands of miles to do? We need to arm them, finance them and support them. Not INVADE them.

Now what I’d like to see is the West pressure those incredibly rich oil sheiks to invest in Western nations, and not spend like crazy sailors financing islamic terrorists. If that money hose is shut down, I think we’ll see a lot more peace in the middle east.

Or even better, we pressure those sheiks to invest a bit in their countries (tourism, infrastructure, education etc) instead of buying the 300th ferrari for their stable. If you create jobs in the middle east, you decrease terrorism. Arab normal folks aren’t animals, they want jobs and a house and a car just like we do.

No but I meant Russia had millions of troops (after the break up of the Soviet Union). Those millions had the fighting spirit of a camel. They had the most equipment, but the poorest and junkiest. So at the end, they didn’t pack much punch. Now, after cutting it in less than half, they have a more formidable force, better equipped, better MANNED, and more powerful. So their less than half force is more powerful than their double as big force before.

The US is different, it needn’t cut to increase punch, it has the most punch already. But hey, it could do with a little LESS punch. So why shouldn’t the US be able to cut 10% and lose 10% punch? Why is everybody afraid that cutting 10% will result in losing 50% punch? I don’t get it.

A drop from 550k to 490k is a drop of 10% of total personnel, but represents a 30% drop in deployable combat power. We’re cutting brigades, not school house instructors.

You can’t really compare the Soviet Army to ours because while their military was huge, much of it was less trained and less maintained while we strive to keep everyone at the same qualitative level. They got rid of poorly trained conscripts and instead spent the money on giving the volunteer force equipment that actually worked. For the most part we’ve never had that problem so any reduction is a reduction in quality.

I have yet to see a straight answer as to how many brigade flags get taken down at the 440K active force level. I gather that what Odierno is doing is trading off active force readiness for retaining some additional active force structure, but my whiz wheel tells me that a 15% drop in force structure amounts to something like 5 brigades. More importantly, this drops us below the 10 division equivalent threshold established in the 1992/93 time frame, with no real plan for remobilization — while at the same time Russia is sabre rattling and Chinese defense spending is going up 14% this year alone. The whole thing really looks shabby.

Now you’re an expert on the United States, Europe, AND the Middle East! Bravo! What, pray tell, is your worship’s solution to the rising threat in China, the proliferation of nuclear technology in the Iran-Pakistan axis, and the recent unpleasantness in the Crimea? Hint: I.D.G.A.S.…

600 SOLDIERS for every FLAG. Not that that’s a whole lot better, relatively speaking…used to be a division of 15,000 = 17,000 had 6 flags. Way better math, even accounting for TRADOC, Corps, theater, and Pentagon types…

I missed that news. The OH-58 has had a pretty successful career and represented some 350 helicopters in the Army’s inventory. Yet even despite Putin’s latest adventure, Russia isn’t the same threat they were when there were hordes of Soviet armored ready to charge into Germany. We also have all sorts of UAVs that can work very closely with the AH-64E.

If the Army continued with the OH-58F upgrade the design could have served another decade but otherwise I think the Army would just be cannibalizing older airframes until retirement.

I think we can go without the OH-58 or any of the other current scout helo offerings. Yet I am very interested in Sikorsky’s S-97 Raider or a similar design using that same X2 configuration. I hope work on that continues.

Keep this rule in mind: “Tommy ain’t no bloomin’ fool, you bet that Tommy sees”. By which I mean this…I recall back in the late 90s John Feffer of Foreign Policy in Focus, big leftist think tanker, was castigating the US Army for not being agile enough. Then Shineski brought in his “reform” program — Army of One, everyone wears the ranger beret, Stryker vehicles, Stryker brigades. Not much later, I worked an assignment where I had a look at the Stryker brigade O&O Plan. Had a huge HUMINT cell. This was before Bush, before 9/11 And I had to ask myself — why does this brigade headquarters need a HUMINT cell, that large. And there could be only one answer. We were getting back in the counterinsurgency business. Now, I am far from a pacifist, much less an isolationist. But I do believe in decisive battle and wars fought with sufficient intensity to win fast and win clean. If Feffer’s idea was to strip down the US Army to a multilateral police force that would use minimum force at all times — that notion didn’t quite work out, even with the finest intelligence analysis and counterinsurgency tactics money can by. Tommy ain’t no bloomin’ fool.

About China, if you know your history, you know that ‘containing’ rising nations almost never works. And won’t work. Lets just say that as a nation’s economy becomes bigger and bigger, so does their interests in the world, and their rightful place in the world. Just like the US passed Britain many decades ago, the Chinese are going to pass you, and there isn’t much to do about it. You can’t militarily contain a rising economy (who’s military is also rising). And we’re all the better for it. It’s righteous.

Iran is made up nonsense by Aipac. Let them fight. Why send poor little American GI’s?

Crima is also a done deal. It’s the Russian’s garage. No meddling necessary by the US, and just a little slap on the fingers by the EU. Think about it: we Europeans ‘gained’ the entire Ukraine, which used to be a lot more in the pro-Russia camp, yet we lost the little Crimea. I guess Putin is the loser when you look at the big picture, and we’re the winners. Why be mad? Can’t have everything, weren’t you taught that when you were little?

Yeah true, but I meant you should be able to cut the US force proportionally, and not impact readiness DISproportionally. And you have to remember, and be intelectually honest, that the US ARMY became a lot BIGGER during the 2000’s, because of the 2 ground wars you have. The biggest one of which, has been ENDED (iraq) and the other has just 30.000 troops in it, slated to be brought down to at most 10.000 by the end of the year. So, your increased army size may decrease accordingly. You haven’t 160k troops in Iraq anymore. So why not cut it back to 2003 levels? You had 200.000 troops in Iraq and Afg, you’ll soon have only 10.000 in Afg. That’s a bigger reduction than 30% deployable/deployed troops?

What you need to understand is that in the 21st century ‘pacifying’ nations is near impossible. Sure the vast majority of an occupied country won’t fight. But that small minority of insurgents will suck the political will out of the occupier, just like it happened in Iraq and now Afg. See, unless you are advocating the US to become a dictatorship, public opinion will in the end win or lose wars. It’s just the way it is, END of subject. You aren’t Nazi Germany, that could fight on till the last single male alive in the country, or the Soviet Union under stalin, who’d send men, boys, grandpas, women and DOGS into war. It’s just not how it works. So you shouldn’t even be prepared for large occupations and nation building.

As for tanks, I believe anti tank missiles are now far better to use, and Apaches etc can know out tanks like it’s a child’s play. So Strykers are indeed much better for taking cities and protecting infantry. But hey I’m not a military expert, but you see many smaller armed forces cutting tanks completely, but you don’t see them cutting their armed choppers, or armored infantry fighting vehicles.

Yeah, but you forget that even after cutting the US is the strongest, and that before you ‘became weaker’, your ‘enemies’ became MUCH weaker (russia etc), and that your economy is weaker than it was a few decades ago. So it’s only right you became ‘weaker’ (which is only relatively so).

The BAE GCV was a 80 tonnes inanity. US Army would have to construct new bridges everywhere in the world to use this heavy monster, even within the US. The Stryker is also far to heavy. The original Swiss model never exceeded 4 tonnes per axle and Switzerland has better cart tracks than most countries highways in 3rd world. According to range the old M113 is better. What about a new Mercedes-Benz OM 470 engine for M113? Oh, no — NIH! Not Invented Here! Like the Swedish CV90, Korean K21 or German Puma as a Bradley replacement.

I think there needs to be a public debate and perhaps some facilitated self-criticism sessions among former Army leaders (e.g. Casey, Chiarelli, McHugh) on how they got to the GCV requirements they had, and what went wrong with those requirements and those designs. These people were convinced that they had overcome the legacy of the FCS MGV program — whose approach was 180 degrees in the opposite direction — and Crusader, and AGS, and Grizzly, need I go on ? Now, I do accept the notion that they were screwed no matter what they did, because OSD leadership is guilty of leading the Army astray. That alone does not make GCV a good or an affordable design. At some level, the green eyeshade folks in CAPE and GAO need to understand that we are working at snake belly low economies of scale, and their work is not helping.

There’s a tremendous support infrastructure that would probably survive any paredown in end strength…to the point where there are no brigades left, but support personnel the world over, ready to support global projection of an army of none.

We’re at the point where the numerous generals in the Pentagon should be thought of as civilian employees. When are they ever going to leave Arlington?

At that point, they should just be converted to civilian government workers. Perhaps they will be cheaper that way.

The GCV didn’t even have TOWs, it would have been defenseless against tanks.

Why don’t they re-use the existing bradley’s turrets, sensors and electronics to save money and combine it with a more armored vehicle, something not overly complicated?

Every time they want too much in the end they get nothing.

I’m not passing judgement on what was done; I’m just reporting it. And the fact is that the extreme left was complicit it pushing the US Army towards operations other than war, stabilization ops, and “small wars” missions under the rubric of the “responsibility to protect”. And the US Army responded by creating the Stryker brigade. And no — you are not a military expert. The Israelis made the same mistake in their last incursion into Lebanon. Having learned their lesson, they went back to basic combined arms tactics when they went into Gaza, with better results from their point of view.

This is flatly untrue.

I’m 21 weeks too late here, but let’s clarify some things as you’re clearly ignorant. To join the US Military, you already need to have a greencard, or rather you must already be a lawful resident. If you join the military, and you do not already show competency in the English language, you get sent to Lackland AFB, TX for a crash course in the English language. Furthermore, just because a service member may have a thicker accent than your privileged self, does not mean he “barely speaks” the language. If that were the case, the Puerto Rican National Guard would be composed of the most inept soldiers in the US Military, when that award clearly goes to any strategic rather than tactical unit. In short, you’re clearly a xenophobic civilian who likely holds an account on the Stormfront forums.

Now about the FAT soldiers… since you earlier mentioned that you aren’t a military professional, we can already tell that you’re woefully ignorant, but what constitutes FAT? I can’t tell you how many soldiers I’ve come across who can absolutely murder a PT test, but gets flagged for being overweight and busting tape. These are the same guys who score expert consistently at the qualification ranges for their weapon, AND they’re the same guys who can carry an 80–90 lb ruck and keep on trucking for days… but we should flush them away because they don’t meet your visual standards for fitness. And don’t even get me started on the absurd weight requirements for women in the Army…

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