Mr. Paul J Stevenson (USASAC)
Redstone Arsenal, Ala. — By all accounts 2012 was a banner year for the U.S. Army Security Assistance Command in terms of carrying out its mission of overseeing the Army’s Security Assistance Enterprise and managing its Foreign Military Sales program. In reviewing the year’s accomplishments by USASAC and the entire Security Assistance Enterprise, start by looking at the numbers.
In Fiscal Year 2012 USASAC managed and oversaw active FMS cases in 144 countries. During that time they added 620 new FMS cases with almost six-thousand lines to the workload, totaling $19.7 billion worth of new business, the second highest year ever in terms of FMS sales. At the same time, case workers closed out almost 700 cases.
Title 10 (1206/1207) program efforts, which equip and train coalition partners for theater operations, more than doubled this year, going from $100 million in FY 11, to adding almost $209 million worth of capabilities to our foreign partners this FY to support the Global Train and Equip mission.
All told, at the end of FY 12 USASAC was overseeing more than 4,500 FMS cases valued at $135 billion, including more than $58.6 billion worth of products and services yet to be delivered to foreign customers. There were an additional 136 cases worth $ 9.4 billion cases “on offer” to countries, awaiting the final agreement of terms in order to begin implementation.
But the success of the past year runs much deeper than dollar figures and case numbers.
“We all know in USASAC, and we all know in the broader Security Assistance Enterprise, that all this work is toward the end of building and maintaining strong relationships with our foreign partners and our future allies,” explained Maj. Gen. Del Turner, commanding general, U.S. Army Security Assistance Command during a recent gathering of the USASAC workforce. “The dollar amounts of these programs are not nearly as important as the strong association the United States of America enjoys with countries around the world and those countries that you work with day-in and day-out.”
USASAC is known as “The Army’s Face to the World” because its engagements with 144 countries throughout the world are many times the first or most consistent relationships they will have with the U.S. Army. During 2012, the USASAC and Security Assistance Enterprise workforce at all levels actively engaged with foreign partners and customers using the consistent themes of building partner capacity, supporting combatant commander engagement strategies and strengthening U.S. global partnerships.
While USASAC key leaders significantly increased the amount of strategic engagements with senior U.S. and foreign military officials within the separate Combatant Command (COCOM) areas of responsibility, country program managers and case managers conducted approximately 20 program reviews with FMS customers each month to ensure implemented sales were keeping on track with requirements, and in the process, developing and cultivating strong relationships with those customers.
“These program management reviews are critical to our CH47 acquisition in that it allows us to go over our case line by line to verify requirements and sync our efforts,” Lt. Col. Tyron de Boer, Australian Defense Force (ADF) CH-47 project manager, said during a July program management review in Dallas, Texas. “Because we have an established working relationship with the people at AMCOM SAMD (Security Assistance Management Directorate) and USASAC, I have no problem picking up the phone and calling whoever I need to speak with in order to get answers when there are questions about the case.”
If USASAC is “The Army’s Face to the World,” then the face of USASAC is the Soldier of its Security Assistance Training Management Organization (SATMO), USASAC’s subordinate organization located at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina.
During the past year SATMO deployed 45 teams to 29 different countries providing tailored training to FMS customers. The instruction provided to foreign customers ranged from small unit tactics, to major systems fielding, operation and maintenance. During FY 12 SATMO Soldiers and civilians trained more than 11,000 students.
Some of the SATMO’s engagement and training highlights were:
• Established and conducted the first rotary wing flight and logistics training for Afghan pilots and support staff held in that country in more than 30 years.
• Provided technical assistance to the Swedish military during its procurement of 15 UH-60M helicopters in preparation for the Swedish Air Force deployment of the aircraft to Afghanistan in 2013.
• Oversaw the training and mentoring of a select group of non-commissioned officers of the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL) as they set up and conducted the first ever AFL warrior leadership course run solely by AFL NCOs.
• Conducted training in Kosovo to prepare Kosovo Security Force Soldiers to attend the U.S. Army Ranger Course.
Additionally, SATMO reached a significant “building partner capacity” milestone on July 29, when the M1A1 Technical Assistance Field Team (TAFT) concluded its mission in Egypt. One of the longest continuous SATMO missions, the M1A1 TAFT had served continuously in Cairo, Egypt since October 1989, when the Egyptian government took delivery of its first M1A1 Abrams Main Battle Tank. Throughout the 23-year history of the TAFT, the team trained thousands of Egyptian military personnel in the operation, implementation, and maintenance of the M1A1 Abrams Main Battle Tank and the M88A2 Hercules Recovery Vehicle.
In addition to all of the successes executing the security assistance mission around the world in 2012, there were also a number of significant events which took place within the organization.
On March 2, Col. Joseph Bovy assumed command of SATMO from Col. Pete Aubrey, who retired after 34 years of military service.
In August, USASAC initiated a Security Assistance Enterprise developmental assignment program. The program, which allows employees to travel to other organizations within the enterprise, provides opportunities to broaden the participant’s knowledge and understanding of the roles and functions of other organizations throughout enterprise.
On Aug. 24, USASAC welcomed Command Sgt. Maj. Roger Mansker as the first ever command sergeant major to serve as the senior enlisted advisor to the commander.
2012 was truly a tremendous year for USASAC and the entire Security Assistance Enterprise. Heading into 2013, USASAC is dedicated to building on the accomplishments achieved over the past year, and focused on continuing its strategic mission in support of the Department of the Army, the Department of Defense and the National Security Strategy.