06-F-01532doc20 | Military Science | Military Technology

Jan 12.

2006 Military Analysts Call Briefers MG Stephen Speakes, Director, Force Development, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, G-8, Jnited States Armu . . . . . .. MG Jeffrey Sorenson Depdy for Acauisition an0 Systems Management OKce of tne Assistant Secreta'y of me Army Acqusit on Logistics and Technoogyl host All son Barber DASD OSD P-blc Affairs Transcriber: Murphy ON THE RECORD Ms. Barber: This is Allison Barber. We have with us General Speakes and General Sorenson. Today's call and information is o n the record and we'll open it up. General Speakes, if you'd like to go ahead, and then we'll lake some questions and move forward. Thank you both for your time today. Soeakes. Sure. This is Major General Steve Soeakes. Mv iob on the Army staff is the director of force development. As thedirector of force development."&re responsibie for Army investment accounts for equipment, we're also responsible for overseeing the distribution of all O that f equipment. And so we get in the business of insunng that soldiers across the Army have the equipment they need in accordancewith the missions they are given What we would like to do is -General Sorenson and t -is talk ourway through this. What we'll do IS quickly highlight what we think some of the key issues are, and then we'll talk through what or we believe IS the appropriate -. frankly, the truth in terms of some of the issues from our perspective. The first ssue s we saw n the weekend coverage the percept on mat essent a y once again we in them la* are r e a r onary to tne deveopments that are nappen nq over on me banefiec And so wnat we l la i< a n e o I s OAF ongstanoiig comm trrent lo go ahead and f e o the r gnt stuf* and to anticipate trends on the battlefield The other thing that you saw is some discussion that said we continue to have a problem wiih various armored vehicles. And what wecan quickly summarize for you is the success story that we have had in armored vehicles, and what we continue to do to improve our overall armored vehicle posture So what we a ii<eto ao 1 rst of all is to beg n oy tali<ng a tlle b 1aooA oody armor I th na that an0 for example I saw Coonel Maginmstoe wor& that ~ O d 0 on MacNe -enrer (referencing 11 L

Integrated body armor, interceptor body armor is something that has been in the Army inventory essentially since the start of this war. We have gone from about 75,000 sets that were available and distributed in the Army at the time we crossed the line of departure in Kuwait, to now over 700,000 sets This amount is enough for all the forces operating in the Area of Operations plus the majonty of the operating force of the Army But. more imwrtantlv it has none thmudh a continuous series of imorovements,and the improvements have been a $in pull of the dynamic ofwhat we see on the battlefield and then what our various research, development and testing activities tell us back hare In the United States And so those two imperativesare then constantly giving the Army the chance to see where we ought to go to improve, and then to make those improvements The most important feedback we get always is what we call operational need statements, which are statements from the commander in the combat zone of what he needs to improve the

capability. And they are short, soecific requirements that communicate here is the need that we see andtnen heriis me quant ty that we want fielded. They are men bro~ght to the m y . they In are worked within the Army. both as a matter of strategy in terms of how test we can do it, what me technology is. and then to make SJre that we have a distribution program once we get me acual capao Ity DJI togemer So, those are the dynamics that drive i.s. Now. let's talk Soecificallv about what we have been able to field. I mentioned 700.000 sets of interceptor body armor has been provided to solaiers The next major improvement ha we caw in terms of the qually of armor was wnat we call the deltoid ax ,lary protacwr (DAP) And as many of YOJ have seen on N. whal thai nvolvesis an abmly to proteci ootn the shouder and as0 tne side of the body. Now, the issue there was that that came in (inaudible) in 2004, and essentially by January [sic,
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The sold.ers who appeared yesteroay in front of SenatorsWarner Levin and Reed capture very weU tne fact that we am at abon the point where a soldier has to make serious d m s l a b o ~how men Ins armor he or she can afford to wear consistent wnh mission, and wrtn the t operating env ronment n terms of temperature or other environmental factors And me Manne tnat appeared in front of the puoic yesterday specificaly addressed why he doesn t use DAP And nis view of DAP is that it is ~ n y restrict ve to h s abi 10 operatewitn d ~ his solders ana moer mdy, and he doesn t prefer to wear it We certainly Lnoentand that. ana that nas oeen a part of a I of this is the oes gn of all th!s Body armor, ano General Sorenson wll8 talk to mat in oeta I beca~se is critical None of mis s t ~ fs r~sned to the PO nt tnart that .f out soldiers 00% and oon't feel its t e n integrated or properly ta lore0 to tne rest of the equ Pment at they are weanng And tnat Involves sobiers who are operating n a prone position or sold e n for exftmrte who are n camhat a*çaiiH, 0, soldiere who are truck drtirfirs And Inn cai-lflhiltv has got -.- . -.- ... - - - . - . . .. -. . . . .. . . . . . . . . .. to be universal h the sense that it fits all those aper%genvironments and enables the &ldie& do his or her job

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The other thing, when we say his or her, it's an importantfactorto consider. We can be outfitting a 245 pound man, as we demonstrated yesterday, or you can be outfittinga 115 pound female military pol ceman Both of them requirethe same amomt of protection Botn of them o b v l w s l ~ have very different carry ng capabdties in terms of how much they can hob in tne way of oody armor an0 then al the rest erf the weapons ammm bon that they carry with them as a part of tneil basic load. So those are the factors that then cause implementationdecisions to not be snap decisions. It's not a maner of s mply snapping your t nger. And men the other f,na part is that all of Ins Is ngorodsly testeo as part of the oes gn process thal General Sorenson wi.1 la k about, and Is also In then a part of continuo~s SJNOlianw as we continue to buy and test as we go thro~gn 6 program. So all of this I would summarize is designed to give you the belief that the protectionof soldiers is our number one mission. Continuous evolutionof this protectionis absolutely essential, and thal we can't get by by ever saying that a solutionthat we have today is the optimum. It represents Our best at the moment, and will continuously be improved as we see the need to do it or we develop the capability to do It. So what Iwould like to do now is pause, and I will dive over to General Sorenson, who is our military deputy for acquisition.

MG Sorenson: OK, my name is Jeff Sorenson. I am the deputy for acquisition and systems management, Let me just kind of cover a couple points that I think Steve General Speakes has already mentioned, but let me just emphasize it.

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In all cases we have taken a verv rigorous aD~roach making sure that as we producethis to capability and develop it that we'aritaklng into account much'of the human factors which the soldiers have to operate within An0 l anow in some cases people think thats a very OJreaucratIc process, but as we certainly take a look at ins the last thing we want IS to pmlaci these solders from getting k lied by a oullet, and yet have them suffer wth this additional wag^ of- yo1 know. a 130 oomd female or a 140 noma mate 30 extra munds of oodv armor n 130 oearee neat and complex, as well as their ability to even move, andin some cases, get up and get down and get out of the way I d I ke to taxe this moment just tocover a couple other points which 1 think probably woub be O f

some value, because I dnnc they are important especial y in the last 24 nours with people in
different companies makingaccusations and alegations in wnat their capabilities are

But recognize as we've done this. this Is just one piece of the overallforce pr0tectiOncapability. This is the personal piece. We've done the armoring of the vehicles: we've also done and added electronic and counter measures, and we have also changed a lot of the techniques,tactics and Drocedureswith which thev ocerate. And all these are ~enerated twiw to ImDrove the soldier's to . ability to be better protected with respect to force protection

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Now one particular instance here, we had a company come up yesterday and basically allege mat they haa a capability mat quite frankly the Army has ignored an0 nas really not tenen serious#, and so I us1 want to put out some facts with respect to that The company's name Ibelieve was Pinnacle. Facts are that we did test this particular capability back in 2004, and ft failed. They have subsequentlyworked to improve their particular system, but with respect to our ability to validate with their improvements,we have not been able to do so as yet
The PEO and tne PM have disc~sseo with the CEO as of the end of December,and offered ths to procure some systems toverify manufacturer's performanceclaims but at this point n time the f-nmnanv u*in thai ftew don't m l l v haw a ndi-mion svstem available and will not have It readv have movided some dates which we havedone some initiailytesting of up at Aberdeen test cent&. And though the tests are not m a w at this point lntime repr&entative of the entire Pinnacle armor system the prel minary test data says at this point that this will not meet the Armys requirements Again I say this will not meet the Army's reqJirementa It will riot meet t i witn respect to performance wdh respect to weight It is est matedat tnis point in bme that ft wR

add 10 more pounds to just a medium size, so as opposed to a 30-pound weight, we now have 40 pounds In addition, the Initial understandingof the costs, it's about 50 Percent greater. So we are wecome at tn s DO nt n time to have them provde In s caw01 ny an0 nave -s analwe I out to oale it has not oeen anything that nas passed OJr part cb ar test nor is 11sometn ng that they are able lo proavCe at In s t me for 0-r evalm-ion n a comu ete system And with that, I think I will stop and let anybody ask any questions that they might have

Q. It may be for General Sorenson, or whichever of you gentlemen. Two questions keep coming up. Number one, is the cost en issue7 How much extra are we spending? Is there a default In the budget? And number two, I would like to know if you guys are using any special fast-track procurement methods to get this stuff bought and in the field?
MG Sorenson: Let me try to address that. With respect to cost, we do have funding to pay for this particular added capability.

Q: What is it costing per set?
MG Sorenson Tne cost ng per set. at I n s pmnt in time. all I can te 1 ~ O .s r ght now tne ent re L 0 J contract s go ng 1 oe -are ~ Otalking about the emra s o e piales now or are yo^ l a ning aoout the entire ensemble?
Q Well. let's take each. I mean. vou know, can vou oive me an idea what each costs oer soldier. what are spending on armor forthe basic vest? j e f f i n d I and a bunch of others were over in Iraq in December and we wore the basic vest whtch has the front and back plates, and some sort of a collar arrangement, and I don't know what that costs, and what do the enhanced systems cost?

the MG Sorenson OK if i aoo ãpai orfferent pieces and pans mat go to wnat yor now Know to oe y o d 1BA wn cn ,s essent a1 y your vest, w th yodr sioe p ales, it's rough y at i n s PO I t n t me aao-112 I 0 0 for tnat panic, ar piece f you ado tne DA3, its anotner $300 and yo- add the s oe pales we are pmoa2, la K nq about anotner $1 O O So add a a i togever. yoi. re arocably C t S3-iCC of sometning d ' w t Q: Right So basically everyone who's saying we're not willing to spend another $260 a soldier is full of something other than Swiss cheese. MG Sorenson: That's correct, that's correct.

Q: Last question, I'm sorry Can you tell us if you're using any of the fast-track procurement procedures to get this stuff out and in the field?
t MG Sorenson: I think at this ~ o i nin time we are. In fact the way thev basically work this particular contract is we're going to put on contract initially, if YOU will- and I don't know if you got to see yesterday what the particular soldier wearing it looked like, I mean, he had the side plates go into a pouch, the pouch is attached to the molle- if you will - vest there And what we're doing right now is accelerating the delivery of the pouches themselves. And clearly we've structured in the contract a very aggressive capability. in fact, in some cases we will be able lo oroduce and outstno what the Marines are oroducino in the time frames thev are lookina at because of access to additional contractors

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0. A couple questions. The weight of the average soldier, the weight of the average combat load. I have a picture of a Marine with all the accoutrements and it came out to 95 pounds. That's helpful in this argument. So if there are someofficial numbers we can have that would be well received.

Yesterday the representative I was debatlng was arguing that the SAP1 front plate, you k n w , shatter4 inside with one round k a m e useless. I didn't accept that. But I need and I am

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.. .. . .. .. .. . . .. . . . - ., . . . , is-o&o~them took m h t shots m the front or the back I foroet and none of themGnetrated Can you help me on any of these?

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MG Sorenson: Bob, the only thmg I can help you ~m is the f o l b l n g . All I can tell you IS the PM and the PEO have engaged that company wlth respect to dragon skin. Thafs the name of the company, ~t'scalled P~nnacle Amm. We have offered to buy some of their systems to verify then clams The answer that we got IS that they do not have a production system available for us to test So all the claims wlth respect to, you know, they took efghtshots and everybcdy's wearing it end all that k~nd stuff is Interestingand nice; however, comma, they have not come through of and not been validated by the Army with respect to test~ng our requlremenls to As I said before, to date, they failed m 2004, we brought mem back right now, we've t e s t 4 their requlred They do not plates. Their plates at this point m time do no1 satisfy the ballistic pmtect~on sat~sfy ball~stic the protection required. As well, mew plates are heavier, they would add about 10 more pounds to what we think we are currently we~ghmg, and mal's a b u t 31 Founds, and as well, the cost of it Is such is that it adds - I mean, their cost r(ght now, rve seen cost figures that $5,000, so already, you're not wen talking about the system, just to get thew plates 19at 11ke you're lust tAk~ng about the plates. Q: Wow MG Sorenson. So, all thew stuff, in terms of their discussion, IS Interestingand probably s no!ewonn, an0 newswonny out the 1 x 1 of the malbr s $1 a - yo2 <?ow we haven Iseen tne bee' new IS all, as someme NO- o say, all d w a i no a s a n YOJcan mote me on ma1one mean the lac! of me matter 8 mey haven7 bco~gnl s anythmg to bear I mea? lney , s t nave not And we continue to ask for 11,and it has rwt been available. MG Speakes: There's one other point that I would like to add without going into to much Speclfiw, and that ts when General Sorenson's guys do the testing Obviously, we are not satlsfled wlth Just one ~mpact MG Sorenson Correct MG Soeakes And so tnat gdea that becsuse the, system "as the a00 l lo repef m~'tlP1e-romd y ompacts v a t IS oeher ma, ours s just wrong Thassfwoamental to the tesmg mat tne A m y mere ooes An0 obv8c~slv we oon t want to 00 anv more s ~ e c ' clnan trat ELI mere s an S S J ~ of basic credlb~l~ty, i'ou're not going t o i i v e i s d d i e r something that is good for only one round before the plate shatters, and that was the impact that you were lefl from listen~ng the McNeilto Lehrer stuff last n~ght. That guy made that claim MG Sorenson wo- 0 s m m tnat and i forgot lo make mat statement before b-1 I com~lele~y agree N m Genera Spea~esI mean, lne fact of the mane, me pedomance of VI s caw01 lq S o m m s L exceeo no one muno And *e wcdt 00 amlo w m elner woe of romd or w a l exceeding that means But the f a d 01 the matter 19 h does not shatter wlth one round t
MG Speaks: And then there is one other issue that we probably ought to take on, whlch ISthe a fAdamenla qLes on of nave we pmvoed pmtecton 11 Imely way7 Welds1 aooressed Dotn me COSI !hat s oemg nvesleo oy the Amer can government by lne Amel wn taxpayer n proteclmg every so 3ter I s enraommary The olqer lhmg we need lo aooless IS lne fact that we are not operating on a tlmely basts.

Lecs ~ uiltin terms of comDarison. Once we a d a ~ t e d the operatlnq environment in Iraq, it to became clear that the orwnal concemthdt said ihat bodv armor wa<somethlng that was prlor~t~zed essent~aily k m o u n sold~er the mmbai iniantryman, the combat engineer, and to a ~ --

w.13 bwy armor And Inat *as a Ig-re approach ng 2CO 000 300 e And so tne erorm lq 01 , r I ool? me Deoarlment ot Defenses resmme 2-1 a150 1-e Amermr mandactLrers wno 0 ' what they were a'sked to do to produce t h ! i t o a standard And one of the other thlngs General Sorenson hasn't h~ghlightd,I guess but k the normal product that he does, IS in addltlon to the ts test~ng he's h~ghl~ghted he cwhfres, the other thing $sthe continuous testing of every iot thars to produced And so what you are talking about now IS the ab111ty properly equip every soldier in the AOR, and lo do it to a standard where we could guarantee to American taxpayers and family members that what we were gtving them met standards And so this idea that we're simply not interested, and we're not timely, and we're reactive and we only wat for press reports is just frankly offensive, And i think b a r s the other thlng we've got to refute IS somehow we are passive and uninterested in this busmess. It is a matter of passion, and every one of this who is a part of this thing feels the moral imperat(ve10do the best we can Ms. Barber: Any other quest~ons?

Q: Allison, is there someone who can give us the weight of the average soldier, and the welght of be!ween the Ma""= Corps and the Army ln the field In the combat load, ~fthere's a d~fferenm Iraq?
MG Speakes: Th~s Steve Spakes Iwould suggest thatwe not go that way. Here's why. When Is we are talking combat load, I was fascinated because what you had was two different dismounted p r o f e s s m ~ l appear m front of Congress ye?.terday s Both of them acquitted themselves very well They both exDlalned that the whde e w e of how much a soldier IS wearing, or a Marine, is dependent upon mlsslon and the operatfng environment and not upon the Service In other i s words, both of them discussed the seme bask terms -outer tactical vests, SAP1 plates, W a g~ven. After that, then, do you wear the DAP or not?An important question. I think when we get the side armor out In s m b l e quantities, lt IS golng l o be something where soldiers are once again golng to interact wlth their cha~n command and decide whether they need it and want lt, of because ( t s more poundage once aga(n.And the other thing is lt seals your body in in a way that is g m g to become very, very heat producing Because right now your body breathes essentially a the sides, In the top where you have some level of ventilation n Tne other tn ng Inat qot. trim nave #sqodr weapons and most so0 em are carrymg N o weapons an now they are carrq~ng M4 lheq me pr&m q also carry ng a n ne w4l meter Yo- re carq nq e the m a m z ne3 10, m e n Yo" r camm the a m m m i m tna. s m me maoaz nes Yo- re wrrv nq water, i n d then vou're carrvrna at lias?~robabiv one daVs wor!h of s06e kind of combat r a g o i When you put ali that loge&& thef(guies reaili becomi staggenng. Do they wear lt on a sustained basis, or do they take it on and off7 Ali of those subjects that become something that as we talked poundage yesterday, (t becamevery confusing for the civilians who were listening And so r d simply say, ~f you take a look at it right now what we're showing IS the bas~c armor that for= medium-sizesold~er,went from about 60 pounds to about 31 we are w m g a sold~er, munds. Thats m l v the start of what a soldier or Mmne is wearlna And afler that, IYS all missbn

Q. So the other take away is th~s. You have gone through three basically continuous evolutlons In the flelding of these sets Is that correct7

Q: OK, and the total is you now have enough to, you know, toequip on average a~Ul7W.OOOOr e more man (enough 7) to equip m enlire owrating force?

MG Sarenson: Oh, absolutely. No question. m m a s w h r (Dredor of ~ a t e n em y G-6) More than enough to WLIP tne s o o m a n s lmq, ndqu&e tne opemmg brce (The oprabng force o defined as w q solder n tne Asmy tnat muld pomtaliy depby ) Ms. Barber: Greal, wll w~th mat, mank you folks for calling in and for your time. Gene& Smnson, General S w k e s , h n k you f a your time.

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