By Mr. Darryl Howlett (First Army)September 2, 2015
ROCK ISLAND ARSENAL, Ill. -- The new FORSCOM commander came to First Army headquarters in his first 30 days on the job to better understand First Army's mission.
First Army's leadership briefed Gen. Robert B. "Abe" Abrams, here on September 2.
Lt. Gen. Michael S. Tucker, First Army commanding general, explained First Army's unique mission and footprint.
"Sir, our intent is to provide you with an overview of First Army's mission, processes and priorities, including Operation Bold Shift updates," he said.
Tucker pointed out the relationship First Army has with the reserve component.
"We have a saying, we are partners with the Army National Guard and Army Reserve and we don't let our partners fail. We have not failed yet (in training requirements)."
Abrams acknowledged the unique mission First Army conducts in partnering with reserve components. He also spoke on FORSCOM undergoing an internal review of its processes.
"Right now, I'm taking a relook at (FORSCOM's) mission statement. That could possibly change some of the things in your mission statement. For this job, I'm challenging every assumption I run into," Abrams said. "Some of our assumptions are no longer valid or necessary. In our current world climate, you must go back and look back at these assumptions."
Along with Tucker, other briefers included Maj. Gen. Jeffrey N. Colt, commanding general, First Army Division West; Maj. Gen. Brian J. McKiernan, commanding general, First Army Division East; and Maj. Gen. James K. "Red" Brown, former First Army deputy commanding general for operations and current FORSCOM deputy commanding general, Army National Guard.
Abrams received updates on Operation Bold Shift, the operational construct of the first multi-echelon integrated brigade training, or MIBT, held in June at Fort Drum, New York, and equipment, training and funding challenges with reserve component units.
According to Abrams, First Army was successful in explaining its vital mission.
"When I learned I would be leading FORSCOM, some of the first advice I received was you need to go out (to First Army) within your first 30 days. You need to understand First Army's mission," he said. "I now have a much better understanding of First Army's mission and role."
Abrams became the 22nd commander of FORSCOM on August 10. Abrams is the son of Gen. Creighton W. Abrams, Jr., former commander of U.S. forces during the Vietnam War and later, Army Chief of Staff. Two of Gen. Robert Abrams' brothers, Gen. John N. Abrams and Brig. Gen. Creighton W. Abrams III, both retired from the Army.