Security cooperation for the 21st century

By | Acquisition, Army ALT Magazine

Strengthening allied nations’ defense abilities through training, equipment sales and other forms of cooperation is a vital part of U.S. national security. The FY17 NDAA was the first NDAA to recognize this, reorganizing and reforming the security cooperation enterprise.

 by Mr. Jim Stocks and Mr. Adam Genest

Security cooperation—the United States government’s effort to build partner capacity through the provision of defense articles, military training and other defense services—has been a critical component of U.S. national security policy for decades. In recent years, people within and outside DOD have studied how to better organize and execute the government’s security cooperation mission in the 21st century. As a result of these efforts, Congress has recognized the strategic importance of security cooperation and has introduced a once-in-a-generation reform effort to equip the department with the tools for operating in today’s dynamic and challenging environment.

The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2017, signed by President Barack Obama on Dec. 23, 2016, contains far-reaching reforms for security cooperation authorities. These reforms represent a significant opportunity to restructure security cooperation throughout DOD and will have wide-ranging impacts across the Army. In aggregate, the statute will reform the security cooperation workforce; enhance the flexibility, transparency and oversight of security cooperation authorities and resources; and improve the alignment of security cooperation activities with defense strategy.

The changes with the biggest impact will likely be those related to the security cooperation workforce. The establishment of a distinct security cooperation workforce called for in the FY17 NDAA is the equivalent of the Defense Acquisition Workforce Improvement Act (DAWIA) for the security cooperation community. The FY17 NDAA directs workforce changes that are very much modeled on the success that DAWIA has had in establishing education and training standards and requirements for the acquisition workforce. When fully implemented, we will have clearly identified the security cooperation workforce, established career development and certification requirements and linked those requirements to staffing for key DOD and Army security cooperation-related positions.

The legacy of this legislation will be the establishment of a well-defined workforce, capable of fostering an entire career within security cooperation. Professionals in the field will have wide-ranging career-enhancing opportunities that will provide the opportunity to grow and lead within the security cooperation enterprise. These changes will establish a pool of talented and experienced employees from which future senior leaders in security cooperation will be selected, mentored and given an opportunity to guide the enterprise.


Thirty-two OH-58D Kiowa Warriors with the 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade conduct a farewell flight over Fort Bragg, North Carolina, in April 2016. Croatia received the first of 16 surplus OH-58Ds in August 2016 through the Excess Defense Articles and FMS programs. The FY17 NDAA places some new restrictions on foreign military sales FMS contracting. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Michael Cox)

Another important change includes the requirement to assign responsibility for security cooperation policy, oversight and allocation of resources to a single official within the Office of the Secretary of Defense. This will streamline oversight of programs, activities and resource planning and allocation responsibilities that are currently scattered across DOD. The secretary of defense has designated the undersecretary of defense for policy as the responsible official for security cooperation. In addition, the law also consolidates management responsibilities within the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, supporting the development of a single security cooperation budget and facilitating greater integration of planning and implementing the new train-and-equip authority discussed below. This consolidation and streamlining will enable a more coordinated approach to security cooperation that is aligned with national security and foreign policy objectives.

The law also makes dramatic changes in the authorities for DOD to conduct training-and-equipping programs in support of the combatant commanders. The previous hodgepodge of narrow and targeted train-and-equip authorities were consolidated to create a flexible tool for combatant commanders to build partner capacity. These changes broaden the scope of the mission and expand the types of partner forces eligible for participation beyond just traditional defense forces, to include not just military but also police and other non-military security forces. In addition, funding duration was increased to enable development of holistic and structured solutions to partner needs.


Georgian soldiers stand in formation July 29 at Vaziani Military Base, Georgia, during the opening ceremony of Exercise Noble Partner, an exercise of Georgia’s light infantry company contribution to the NATO Response Force. The FY17 NDAA makes major changes to U.S. efforts to build partner capacity by providing training, defense articles and other defense services. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. David Vermilyea, 173rd Airborne Brigade)

The NDAA included a few provisions whose impacts were not quite as positive. Most notable was what—according to congressional staffers and written comments from the committee—was a seemingly unintended negative impact on the Special Defense Acquisition Fund (SDAF). The SDAF is a revolving fund that provides a method for effecting advance procurements to reduce international customer waiting time as well as a source of urgently needed articles. In an effort to bolster the SDAF program, the FY17 NDAA increased the authorization for the program to $2.5 billion. However, the increase came with a caveat that a significant portion of the authorization be spent on procuring and stocking precision guided munitions (PGM). The DOD interpretation of this requirement has led to challenges in using SDAF for non-PGM acquisitions, which has hampered the effectiveness of the overall program.

The NDAA also placed some restrictions on foreign military sales (FMS) contracting that may negatively impact program execution. The law requires the use of firm fixed-price contracts for FMS (with some provisions for exceptions), which limits a contracting officer’s ability to choose the appropriate contract type to deliver best value to the FMS customer. In addition, limitations were placed on the use of undefinitized contract actions (UCAs) for FMS. (UCAs are contract actions for which the contract terms, specifications or price are not agreed upon before performance commences.) Pricing goods and services for FMS is often complex and challenging, largely because of variations in terms of allowable costs such as sales promotions, demonstrations and related travel for sales to foreign governments, and offset costs. The NDAA limitations effectively eliminate the use of UCAs for FMS because of the difficulty in meeting the new timeline restrictions to define and finalize the terms of the contract. These limitations reduce needed flexibility in FMS and have the potential to increase costs for both international partners and the U.S. In addition, this NDAA provision breaks with a fundamental tenet of the FMS program, in that our international partners are no longer afforded the same acquisition process we use for our own procurements.


Personnel from the Combined Security Transition Command – Afghanistan’s Security Assistance Office inventory cargo with representatives from the Afghan National Army at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul. The FY17 NDAA streamlines oversight of programs, activities and resource planning, and allocation responsibilities that are currently scattered across DOD. (U.S. Army photo by Lt. Christopher Hanson, Resolute Support Headquarters)

The FY17NDAA makes major changes to how security cooperation is conducted in DOD. These changes will have lasting impacts on the security cooperation community, and create conditions to ensure improved responsiveness to combatant commander requirements. This comprehensive reform demonstrates a recognition of the importance of security cooperation in advancing national security. In the aggregate, this legislation made positive, far-reaching changes that will improve security cooperation throughout DOD.

For more information, contact Jim Stocks at james.a.stocks.civ@mail.mil.

MR. JIM STOCKS is a strategic planner for the deputy assistant secretary of the Army for defense exports and cooperation (DASA(DE&C)). He is a distinguished graduate of the Industrial College of the Armed Forces with an M.S. in national resource strategy; he also holds a master of science in business analytics from Boston University and a B.A. in management from Guilford College. He is Level I certified in program management and holds an International Affairs Tier II certification. He retired at the rank of colonel from the U.S. Marine Corps in 2014.

MR. ADAM GENEST is a strategic communications contractor for Booz Allen Hamilton, providing contract support to DASA(DE&C). He holds a master of forensic science from George Washington University and a B.A. in homeland security and emergency preparedness from Virginia Commonwealth University.

[rule type=”basic”] This article will be published in the October – December 2017 Army AL&T magazine.

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Unintended Benefits

By | Army ALT Magazine
USASAC’s FMS efforts around the world benefit warfighters, industry and the defense acquisition community closer to home.

Ms. Adriane Elliot, USASAC Public Affairs

Like its embattled cousin acquisition reform, strategic acquisition faces long-standing challenges, among them navigating a complex, billion-dollar bureaucracy. As experts debate ways to perfect the defense acquisition process, one Alabama-based command is making an impact close to home with an international approach.

The U.S. Army Security Assistance Command (USASAC) at Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, manages security assistance programs and $176 billion in foreign military sales (FMS) cases. With support from DOD agencies, American industry and its higher headquarters, the U.S. Army Materiel Command, USASAC provides materiel, training and other services to help 150 allied nations and organizations strengthen their defense capabilities. Those efforts help achieve regional stability and international security—and also bolster the acquisition community through partner nation investments.

“Take, for example, a partner nation that is funding an FMS case. If they discover they need a technology augmented because they’re fighting in a certain terrain or under particular circumstances, they may request we enhance a piece of equipment or technology,” said Sean Hicks, a USASAC country program manager who oversees cases for several Middle Eastern nations. At the country’s request, a portion of its FMS funds is diverted to help fund the research and development (R&D) of the desired enhancement, Hicks explained.

“Now we have this upgrade that, in some cases, the United States would have developed sooner or later, but it wasn’t a driving force at that moment,” he said. “The partner nation is now a co-investor in the new technology, and we both win because we are fielding a technology much sooner than expected, at a much lower cost due to the shared investment, and it is a technology that will improve the U.S. mission and the safety of our warfighters.” And, although the U.S. government and partner nation share the R&D costs, Hicks noted, both the original and upgraded technology remain the intellectual property of the United States.

Partner nations can also benefit, said Hicks, in one of two ways: The United States can reimburse them for their investment, or other nations may offer to pay for use of the new technology.

Additionally, partner-invested enhancements can mitigate workload shortages and sustain the expertise of industry workers during peacetime across the 23 depots, arsenals and ammunition plants that make up the Army’s organic industrial base (OIB).

The Army’s OIB is vital to Soldier readiness, said Maj. Gen. Stephen E. Farmen, the USASAC commander. “It is a national security readiness insurance policy and has to be there—up and running—the moment we need it.” The OIB allows the United States to build and reset weapon systems quickly and decisively, not at the civilian sector’s pace, which is hindered by a sometimes sluggish contracting process. During Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom, the OIB reset nearly 4 million items, a workload three times that of the Vietnam War. Since 2003, the reset workload has constituted more than $29 billion in Army equipment and more than $5.7 billion in equipment for the Air Force, Marine Corps and Navy.

FMS also benefits Army acquisition through economies of scale: The United States is able to purchase equipment at lower per-unit cost as the order size increases. “It costs less and less to produce more and more,” said Hicks, adding, “At the end of the day, the positive impact of FMS has a wide reach—and not only from a national security and partner nation standpoint, but also from an OIB, industry, fiscal and acquisition standpoint.

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This article will be published in the January – March 2017 issue of Army AL&T Magazine.

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Lessons learned in FMS

By | Army ALT Magazine

By Col. Michael E. Sloane and Mr. Charles Meixner

Foreign military sales (FMS) are a team sport. Success requires a great deal of coordination and contributions from the Army acquisition enterprise and other Army-specific agencies that participate in the FMS process with partner nations, including the U.S. Army Security Assistance Command (USASAC), the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command and the U.S. Department of State, among others. FMS cases require the support of life-cycle management commands; research, development and engineering commands; and program executive offices (PEOs).

One of the primary reasons that FMS is a team sport, and a vigorous one at that, is that the process is far from elegant; it is complex and multifaceted, sometimes presenting questions with no easy answers. In some instances, the decision to sell U.S. military equipment is relatively straightforward, such as with close allies like many nations in Europe. With other nations, the decision-making process may have considerably more layers and nuances.

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FMS is a complex ‘team sport’ with a lot of players, and a vital means to help partner nations reach their security goals, as well as to help keep the U.S. Army’s industrial base warm and support program management goals and the principles of better buying power. PM SSL’s efforts in sales to many different countries have yielded useful insights in overcoming challenges.

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As the Project Manager for Soldier Sensors and Lasers (PM SSL) has learned, program management offices must be heavily involved. Contributing organizations work together to plan, program, budget and execute FMS cases with the same high degree of attention to detail and efficiency as other DOD procurement activities.

Essentially, every request that PM SSL, assigned to PEO Soldier, gets for an FMS case is a surprise, but the surprises are ones that PM SSL has come to expect over 12 years of involvement in FMS. PM SSL has garnered considerable experience and gathered lessons learned in various aspects of FMS, including advance planning and detailed discussion, data disclosure, contracting approaches and follow-on supply issues.


Spc. Rumaldo Hinojosa, right, of 3rd Squadron, 124th Cavalry Regiment, and a soldier of the Djiboutian Army conduct training on the AN/PVS-7 NVG provided by PM SSL through FMS, in Arta, Djibouti, in March 2012. (Photo by TSgt Daniel St. Pierre, 4th Combat Camera Squadron)

All orders for FMS products come through USASAC, which works with the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Defense Exports and Cooperation (DASA(DE&C)). The DASA(DE&C), in concert with other organizations such as the Department of State, decides what the Army can sell and to whom. Then, the DASA(DE&C) works within the network of stakeholders to put together the sale, while the program management office works to integrate FMS efforts into its planning.

PM SSL’s first responsibility is to equip U.S. Soldiers with sensors, lasers and precision targeting devices to dominate the battlefield through improved lethality, mobility, situational awareness and survivability in all operational environments. PEO Soldier and the DASA(DE&C) work hard to get the FMS customer the best possible equipment, given current export regulations and limitations on advanced technology approved by DOD. PM SSL works with industry partners and relies on the Night Vision and Electronic Sensors Directorate (NVESD) of the U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center to develop and improve advanced electro-optical, night vision and sensor devices. Thus the Army can be ready to respond when necessary to supply needed items at the right time to U.S. Soldiers and partner nations.

The mission of supporting national FMS goals is work that PM SSL does while it is performing its core mission. As of August 2015, PM SSL was supporting more than 35 FMS cases. These efforts involve the sale of more than 11,000 night vision goggles (NVGs) and image intensifiers, valued at more than $10 million, to 17 different countries.

PM SSL’s FMS efforts have yielded several useful insights for overcoming challenges to capitalizing on FMS opportunities while protecting the flow of equipment to U.S. Soldiers. Among the most important lessons learned is the necessity for program managers to understand early on the factors involved in supporting FMS goals. For instance, given that PM SSL cannot predict when an FMS case might arise nor what it might look like except in the most general terms, it’s important to coordinate up front with industry to be prepared with measures that can mitigate risks to program cost, schedule, sustainment and quality assurance in supporting U.S. Soldiers. Successful program managers understand that FMS success resides largely with the strength of the professionals within their office, coupled with strong, continuous relationships with other U.S. government organizations supporting FMS cases.

Accurate forecasting and coordination of potential and emerging FMS requirements can dramatically improve the chances for FMS success by allowing all stakeholders to plan and budget for sufficient financial and human resources. Advance planning and detailed discussions between the United States and a purchasing country also play a key role in the ultimate success or failure of an arms transfer program. The importance of conducting these activities before consummating a sale increases proportionately with the complexity and sensitivity of the system involved. Before finalizing selection decisions, country requirements should be well-defined and the ability by DOD and a contractor to satisfy those needs clearly understood. Thus, a purchasing country can make a fully informed decision and the United States will be able to validate that the country’s requirements are being fully met. (See “The Requirements Question” on Page 150.)

A potentially problematic aspect of FMS is data disclosure. What technical data will or will not be released, and at what cost, should be clearly defined up front, not in the middle of the FMS case. The purchasing country may firmly believe that pertinent sections of the contract ensure the transfer of technical data needed to properly absorb and independently maintain the product being sold to them, whereas the documents do not, in fact, guarantee that degree of support. This can become the topic of high-level discussions and recriminations, making data disclosure a potentially worrisome issue. Many such concerns can be avoided in advance of the sale, however, with a thorough examination of the disclosure policy affecting the product technology.


Members of the Djiboutian army receive instruction on NVGs from Soldiers of the U.S. Army’s 3rd Squadron, 124th Cavalry Regiment in Arta, Djibouti, in March 2012. The instruction was in support of an FMS case supporting border security force training. (Photo by TSgt Daniel St. Pierre, 4th Combat Camera Squadron)

Another area of potential misunderstanding is that, after delivery of a product or weapon system, many countries that possess the requisite skills and supporting logistics infrastructure find it advantageous to procure follow-on supply directly from U.S. contractors. However, the purchase of a major weapon system with all necessary support elements takes a degree of program management experience and system integration expertise that the purchasing country may not possess. That depends on several factors, including the sophistication and sensitivity of the weapon system, the system’s maturity and configuration stability and the degree to which the U.S. government owns the system’s components.

PM SSL has developed the following specific approaches to help bring FMS cases to completion:

1.    Control cost with consolidated procurements and quantity price points. Providing cost-effective contracts to FMS customers using the PM’s base contracts can be complex. Equipping requirements for U.S. forces are most often authorized far in advance of FMS requests. Adding to the complexity, FMS quantities can be less certain than equipping projections for DOD, which tends to lead to requirements for separate delivery orders. PM SSL has successfully combined several limited-quantity procurements from various requirements into single-vendor delivery orders to secure NVGs for coalition partners at affordable costs. Additionally, the PM establishes contractual volume-based price points to achieve cost advantages for the increased quantities associated with consolidated orders. This supports the Better Buying Power (BBP) 3.0 focus on promoting effective competition.

2.     Support FMS schedule requirements using the Special Defense Acquisition Fund (SDAF). Another focus area for the program management office is production lead time. It’s often not enough to simply wait for a cost-effective order quantity, as this may not align with FMS delivery requirements. One way to address this potential issue is to use the Defense Security Cooperation Agency’s SDAF, which provides a way to finance the acquisition of defense articles in anticipation of their sale and transfer, resulting in quicker responses to FMS requests. SDAF is a revolving fund used to purchase and store high-demand items that typically have a long production lead time. Ultimately, FMS case money is used to pay for the items, which keeps the SDAF functioning. In other words, SDAF money enables the procurement of systems in advance of FMS requests. This proactive step supports the BBP 3.0 focus on incentivizing productivity in industry and government.

3.     Capitalize on FMS opportunities to preserve critical industrial capabilities. During recent global conflicts, the U.S. military’s NVGs have proven themselves as combat multipliers; therefore, demand has increased significantly from the United States and foreign nations. After years of peak production, however, U.S. military demand for new NVGs has begun to slow with the scaling down of operations in Southwest Asia and the resulting reduction in requirements. By keeping industrial production lines open and sustaining critical manufacturing skills through FMS, the United States can preserve a knowledgeable workforce and reduce the cost to taxpayers of having to restart cold production lines later in response to an increase in demand. This also supports BBP 3.0’s focus on incentivizing productivity in industry and government.

4.     Plan for FMS after U.S. production, manufacturing and quality assurance are complete. FMS procurements are to receive the same high level of quality control that U.S. products receive, and program managers must conduct FMS product verification procedures using the same production testing as for equipment fielded to U.S. forces. However, FMS requirements may arise after production for U.S. equipping is complete, which can present significant challenges of production and quality testing. For products likely to become FMS items of interest, program managers should assess, plan and prepare as best as possible to preserve or restart manufacturing capabilities and quality testing.

This process may be complicated by potential design changes made in line with export controls on system capabilities, and program managers should remain alert for such changes. Keeping other U.S. government shareholders informed as production and test capacity and their related resources change is vital to ensure that expectations are consistent with current and forecast capabilities. This forward-looking approach supports the BBP 3.0 focus on improving tradecraft in acquisition services.


Slovenian Pvt. Ales Simenko looks through a night vision device during training at Hohenfels Training Area, Germany, in September 2014. The training was part of Exercise Saber Junction 2014, in which participants from the United States, NATO allies and European security partners conducted unified land operations combining offensive, defensive and stability operations. NVGs are a mainstay of FMS for PEO Soldier. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Christina M. Dion, 319th ­Mobile Public Affairs Detachment)

From a program manager’s perspective, succeeding at FMS takes an enterprise of the right people and skills, a flexible industry, proper oversight and strict cost management. Program management offices with long-term vision identify risks early to ensure that partner nations receive U.S.-developed technology and equipment at an affordable cost, on schedule and within performance and quality assurance guidelines.

In its FMS endeavors, PM SSL achieved success by combining limited-quantity procurements to establish better price points based on larger total unit quantities, in addition to using a variety of funding streams, which together can result in more rapid responses to FMS requests. Additionally, PM SSL has maintained productive relationships with U.S. government agencies, teaming on FMS cases for their products and with their industrial base partners.

Peacetime military engagement has become a key component of U.S. defense strategy to shape the international environment in ways that will favor U.S. interests. FMS achieves several important U.S. goals by creating and reinforcing international partnerships and building strong and capable allies to meet the global challenges of an uncertain and complex security environment.

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For more information, go to the PEO Soldier websites www.peosoldier.army.mil and http://www.peosoldier.army.mil/portfolio/#1; DASA(DE&C)’s website, https://asc.army.mil/web/tag/dasa-dec/; USASAC’s website, http://www.army.mil/info/organization/usasac/; and DSCA’s website, http://www.dsca.mil/.

COL. MICHAEL E. SLOANE is the PM SSL. He holds an MBA from Webster University, an M.S. in national resource strategy from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces and a B.S. in business administration from Columbus State University. He is Level III certified in program management and has completed the Defense Acquisition University’s Senior Acquisition Course. He is a member of the Army Acquisition Corps.

MR. CHARLES MEIXNER was until recently a security assistance specialist in the Policy, Strategy and Resources Directorate of DASA(DE&C). A retired Navy officer with an engineering background, Meixner has 25 years’ experience in international affairs and security cooperation with the Air Force and the Army. He holds an M.S. in information systems from Strayer University and a B.S. in industrial studies from Moorhead State University.

Alison Vuille, PM SSL director for quality-test; Wayde W. Thomka, PM SSL operations and technology management director; and Erik Uribe, international programs lead for PEO Soldier.

This article was originally published in the October – December 2015 issue of Army AL&T magazine.

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Army AL&T magazine explores innovation

By | Army ALT Magazine, General

By Steve Stark

FORT BELVOIR, Va. (Sept. 28, 2015) – Innovation is often assumed to be the next big thing, but more often, it’s incremental upgrades to the way things are done, built or contracted. That’s why Army AL&T’s Editorial Advisory Board wanted us to focus on innovative approaches to acquisition. We made it the theme for the October – December edition of Army AL&T, which is online now and will be available in hard copy at the Association of the United States Army Annual Meeting & Exposition.

This newest edition of Army AL&T is packed with ways that organizations have innovated to make processes work more smoothly, from acquiring ammunition to fielding capability sets to making logistics go like clockwork. Articles discuss innovations such as simultaneously building and integrating prototypes; a multiyear effort to change from a performance specification to a technical data package; red-teaming product development and making Soldiers a part of the process, to name just a few.

Readers will also find a moving tribute to the Hon. Claude M. Bolton Jr., former assistant secretary of the Army for acquisition, logistics and technology, whose sudden passing in July was a blow to his many friends and former colleagues across the services.

The new edition also has a special section on foreign military sales (FMS), an important tool for the government and the Army in promoting U.S. interests abroad and at home. FMS cases have accelerated recently—a good thing for the taxpayer, the Army and the United States’ allies and partner nations. For the taxpayer, FMS helps to avoid the cost of mothballing, demilitarizing or otherwise disposing of vast stores of unneeded materiel. For the Army, FMS helps keep the industrial base warm, retains much-needed talent and furthers good relations with partner nations. For U.S. allies and partner nations, it provides the possibility of greater security at home, not to mention gaining potential capabilities that many nations can only dream of acquiring.

Even if you’re a die-hard hard copy reader, there are many reasons to take a sneak peek online. Read the interactive e-magazine, or visit the archives to download the PDF version.

For more information on how to publish an article in Army AL&T magazine, visit https://asc.army.mil/web/publications/ to check out our writers’ guidelines, upcoming deadlines and themes.

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Army AL&T magazine focuses on the Army industrial base

By | Career Development

By Steve Stark

FORT BELVOIR, Va. – MoBs, FaCs, STEM and FMS—these are just a few of the ways that the U.S. Army, along with DOD and others, is working to preserve the knowledge, skills and capabilities that make up its industrial base. You can read about them all in the new edition of Army AL&T magazine, available online now.

Keeping the industrial base healthy—the theme of the January – March issue of Army AL&T magazine—is crucial to keeping the Army healthy: maintaining its superiority, its overmatch, its edge. Keeping that base “warm” means that the Army has to understand where the must-have capabilities lie—no small task, given its size and complexity. Read how the Army is working with DOD to establish the “big picture” clearly in “Layers of Concern” on Page 8.

One of the specific ways the Army is grasping the industrial base is through fragility and criticality, or FaC, assessments. How critical is a capability, and how fragile is it? Learn all about this approach in “FaC-torial Analysis” on Page 42.

Keeping the industrial base healthy is also about dollars and cents—how the Army marches into the future even as a drawdown in Afghanistan is underway and shrinking budgets are projected to shrink even further. Partnerships with private industry and foreign military sales (FMS) are two ways to support the base economically. (See the articles on Pages 36 and 32, respectively. Learn about how the Army is continually improving its decision-making processes with respect to acquisition in “ ‘MoB’ Rules” on Page 102 in our BBP 2.0 section. “ ‘MoB’ Rules” is all about how Product Manager Sets, Kits, Outfits and Tools developed rigorous metrics for make-or-buy (MoB) capability decisions.

Even as the Army recovers from more than 12 years of war, it must also prepare for future conflicts, and a healthy industrial base is crucial to those eventualities. Learn how the Army is planning for the future, not only by preserving existing capabilities in the industrial base, but also by growing the next generation of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) professionals (Page 72).

Last but hardly least, what does the Army industrial base think about how best to preserve the Army industrial base? In “Critical Thinking,” 10 industrial base stakeholders—executives of major defense firms, small-business owners, leaders of key trade associations and national security scholars—offer their views on what the base most needs from the Army in order to withstand the multiple challenges of today.

Army AL&T magazine is available in hard copy, online in our e-version, and as an app for your mobile device:

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Mr. Keith B. Webster, Hon. Heidi Shyu, LTG William Phillips, and Mr. Gabriel Camarillo

Award winning Army SES, international expert, moves to OSD

By | General

Kris Osborn


WASHINGTON – Award-winning former Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Defense Exports and Cooperation, Mr. Keith B. Webster, will build upon his many successes as he transitions to a new role with the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD).

Webster, who now serves as Director, International Cooperation, OSD, is in charge of managing a host of key issues for Mr. Frank Kendall, the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics. Issues within his purview include international partnerships with key global allies, significant acquisition and technology-related matters affecting U.S. global military development and coordination with OSD policy personnel.

“Inside Mr. Kendall’s portfolio of AT&L and inside the broader context of OSD, we will decide our priority activities and examine how we should be organized and engaged globally. Within AT&L, we are here to inform the requirements process with the J8 and ensure timely consideration of foreign technology opportunities and foreign product opportunities. We want to make sure that the JCIDS [Joint Capabilities Integration Development System] process is well-informed—to include international cooperation,” said Webster, while expressing enthusiasm for his new role.

In particular, Webster’s role will call upon his considerable expertise in technology- and acquisition-specific international cooperation issues, Foreign Military Sales, Direct Commercial Sales and international policy issues, among other things.

“I am chartered to advise him [Kendall] on all international matters and to be knowledgeable of global political military events–and to be in contact and in touch with those in OSD policy who have a pre-eminent role in international policy formulation here in the Pentagon,” Webster added.

That means advising Kendall on the international aspects of key programs like the multinational Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) effort and the acquisition of the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle. In many instances such as these, Webster will examine the possibility of connecting with foreign research and development during the developmental process to further collaborate with allies and improve the development of next-generation capabilities.

In fact, international developmental partnerships can be a key to sustaining production capacity for significant U.S. programs and technologies, Webster added. Along these lines, Webster’s duties will include research and academic pursuits aimed at examining industrial base issues in partnership with those in AT&L chartered with working industrial base matters.

“FMS and Direct Commercial Sales programs are critical as they address potential gaps in production. How do we appropriately generate international interest in a product so that we don’t have a break in production? We will partner with our OSD policy colleagues to see where we can leverage engagement to help Mr. Kendall and help the industrial base,” Webster added.

Webster’s expertise is informed by a distinguished career, spanning a range of high-profile, high-responsibility assignments. Most recently, he managed the Army’s Security Cooperation programs as the DASA (DE&C), the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology’s deputy for international acquisition. This involved policy generation and execution oversight of Army security assistance, direct commercial sales, and international armaments cooperation. In this role, Webster supervised more than $18 billion in annual sales, managed programs that involved more than 2000 Army civilian and military personnel, and worked to identify those critical capabilities which will need to be sustained into the future.

In addition, Webster oversaw the development and maturation of significant large-scale U.S. Army Foreign Military Sales cases, many of which helped build partner capacity and solidify important relationships with important international coalition members—to include sales of CH-47 Chinook cargo helicopters, AH-64 Apache attack helicopters, Patriot missiles, Excalibur 155mm precision artillery shells and Guided Multiple Launch Rocket Systems, among others.

These efforts were recognized by some of his foreign counterparts, and Webster was awarded the rank of Chevalier (Knight) in the French Order National du Merite. The ceremony took place June 8, 2012, and was officiated by the Ambassador of France to the United States, Francois Delattre.

On Tuesday, Jan. 22, Director General Lena Erixon presented the Swedish Defense Materiel Administration’s Medal of Merit (Silver), specifically recognizing Webster’s efforts on behalf of Sweden in acquiring UH-60M Blackhawk helicopters through FMS, and for being instrumental in obtaining training seats for Swedish pilots and maintainers. The entire process from Sweden’s submission of a formal Letter of Requirement to initial operating capability was completed in record time, resulting in the helicopters being deployed to Afghanistan. His continued efforts to develop strong relationships and support the overall mission will continue to be remembered.

Before joining ASA(ALT), Webster held several positions with the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), including Principal Director for Business Operations and head of the agency’s Policy, Plans and Programs Directorate.

Webster has an MA in International Relations from Catholic University, a BS in Business/Finance from Towson State University, is a Level 3 Certified Acquisition Professional and is a Fellow of the Center for International Studies, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.