The Military Must Do What it Needs to Do Using What it Has

January 25, 2012
By Robert K. Ackerman
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The U.S. military is at a crossroads in which it must expand its capabilities while dealing with fiscal limitations that leave little if any room for growth. So, it must do more with its existing assets and capabilities, according to a high-ranking member of the Joint Staff. Lt. Gen. George J. Flynn, USMC, director, J-7, the Joint Staff, told the Wednesday luncheon audience at West 2012 in San Diego that new era will not be about doing more with less, but instead doing more with what the military already has. "We've entered a new budget environment where you can have anything you want, but you can't have everything. You have to make the choices," he stated. Adversaries may have the most cost-effective approach as they seek an adaptive advantage through asymmetry, the general warned. Some vulnerabilities in the U.S. military may lie in its processes, which an enemy will exploit. The proliferation of weapons of mass destruction will continue, as will that of area denial weapons. To adjust accordingly, the United States must take a fresh look at which and how capabilities will be used. Special operations types of capabilities will be important, Gen. Flynn said. Precision battlefield weapons also are game changers.

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