Over this past year, The Army made great progress toward realizing the goals of all three components of the Vision we articulated over two years agoPeople, Readiness, Transformation.
Soldiers remain on pointas they have for over 226 years. Strong in will and unyielding in spirit, they are key to providing decisive victory as part of the joint team. These soldiers are supported by dedicated, professional Department of the Army civilians and wonderful families. Our greatest strength lies in our peoplethey are central to everything we do.
Readiness remains The Army's top priority and the enduring focus in fulfilling our non-negotiable contract with the American peopleto fight and win the Nation's wars. Today's Army has to be prepared to perform a wide range of worldwide missions and must always be ready to defend the United States and its territories; support national policies and objectives; and defeat adversaries who endanger the peace and stability of the United States and our allies. Recent events have clearly demonstrated our readiness as our current area of operations extends from Afghanistan to Washington, New York, and the rest of the United States. We are simultaneously engaged in fighting the war on terrorism, keeping the peace in the Balkans and the Sinai, deterring war in Korea and Southwest Asia, and supporting civil authorities both at home and abroad. There are over 25,000 mobilized Soldiers from the Guard and Reserve serving alongside their active duty counterparts to accomplish our missions.
The attacks of 11 September 2001 were more than just the first salvo in a new war; they validated the direction of our Vision and the need to accelerate Army Transformation. This is not business as usual. The Army must accomplish in less than ten years what traditionally has taken up to twenty years. To do this, we are reengineering the way we do business to return savings and manpower to our warfighting forces while centralizing and streamlining organizations in order to focus our efforts on Army core competencies. The Army continues to move out. We intend to achieve the Objective Forcethis decade.
Our challenge is to win this war, prepare for the next war, and garner the resources to do both. The President's Budget request supports realizing The Army Vision. This budget will allow our Soldiers to remain trained and ready, while providing the resources needed to transform The Army for it to remain a key instrument of national security policy well into the future. We have helped our people, maintained a trained and ready force, and begun preparing to fight the wars of the 21st Century, but we need to do more. We need to move faster, and with the continued support of Congress and the Administration, we will.
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