Defense News Interviews the Commandant

DefenseNews.Com just posted a three part video interview with the Commandant. Each segment is five to ten minutes in length.

Impact of Sequestration: http://www.defensenews.com/videos/defense-news/2015/03/01/24221471/

The Commandant notes, in the first two months of 2015 we have seized more drugs than we seized in all of 2013. He talks about establishing priorities and specifically mentions the Arctic and Western Hemisphere Drug enforcement.  He did not say what will drop out.

Capability vs Affordability http://www.defensenews.com/videos/defense-news/2015/03/01/24221423/

The Commandant has quite properly put emphasis on the OPC, and he has hit the point that spreading out procurement will cost more in the long run. He talked about icebreakers and discussed how we will need help funding them. He is pushing the results of the previous High Latitude study, saying the US needs three heavy and three medium icebreakers.

Coast Guard Modernization http://www.defensenews.com/videos/defense-news/2015/03/01/24221467/

Here he repeated themes from the State of the Coast Guard address. The importance of defending against Cyber attacks both within the Coast Guard and in the larger Maritime Transportation industry, the formation of an Arctic CG forum, and making the Coast Guard a hostile environment for those that might attempt sexual assault.

Observations

Seems the Commandant has recognized the need to sell the service and push for more funding, particularly for AC&I. It would not hurt to see the rest of the Coast Guard repeating the themes that he seems to have focused on, to make sure the message gets delivered.

The Commandant will continue to focus on the six major topics he highlighted in the State of the Coast Guard Address. Specifically I expect to see a lot more Coast Guard effort in the Eastern Pacific Transit Zone; we will continue to hear that the US needs three heavy and three medium icebreakers as the Commandant pushes for supplemental icebreaker funding; less obvious, but I think he is laying the ground work for an attempt to speed up the OPC construction schedule which would require at least another $500M annually in the AC&I account. There will be a lot more emphasis on cyber and tougher action on sexual assault. In terms of the objective of “maximizing return on investment,” I think we will see closer examination of fuel efficiency, manning, and other operating economies as a basis for where to invest modernization dollars.

7 thoughts on “Defense News Interviews the Commandant

  1. I wish the TV news was done as well as that podcast. Intelligent questions, articulate answers, really well done interview.

    One thing I kind of inferred from the interview is that he thinks they might need more than 58 FRC’s.

    • Yes, it was obvious the interviewer had done his homework and knew the issues.

      About the time we reach 58 Webber class, we are going to need to start replacing the 87 footers.

  2. Definitely a good interview that is well worth watching.

    I know we all get tired of the funding issues and the most frustrating part is that in the big picture of things, the amount of money we really need isn’t all that much.

    I can only imagine just how much more effective we would be if we had the 25 new OPC’s and all 58 Weber Class added to the fleet tomorrow……

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