ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. - The U.S. Army Test and Evaluation Command launched "Operation Solemn Promise" as part of the Army's Profession of Arms initiative this fall. In September, ATEC Soldiers and civilians reaffirmed their oaths of office to kick off the campaign, and now they are currently re-examining what the Army Values mean to the Army and to Army personnel.
The U.S. Army has a rich legacy of dedicated service to its country. Dating back to 1775 when the Army was first created by the Second Continental Congress, the Army has defended its country both domestically and abroad. Through it all, the Army's core values have sustained its fighting force during times of peace and, most importantly, while engaged in war. After a decade of fighting wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, Army personnel across the service will reaffirm their oaths and allegiance and re-examine the Army's seven core values: loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, honor, integrity and personal courage.
During the next seven months Command Sgt. Maj. Allen Fritzsching, ATEC command sergeant major, hopes that ATEC's soldiers and civilians will get a sense of renewed commitment to the Army Profession by reaffirming their commitment to serve the nation.
"Our individual effectiveness as part of the Army team comes from within, from our upbringing, our character, and our values," said Fritzsching. "The Army is an organization that is guided by values. Army values are the basic building blocks that enable us to see what is right or wrong in any situation. They build the warrior ethos and they are mutually dependent -- you can't fully follow one while ignoring another."
He added that these seven core values tell each of us what we need to be, every day, in every action we take and remind us and the world who we are and for what we stand. He went on to say that by accepting and living these values, American Soldiers fulfill their obligations, but that this is equally true for the Army's civilian cohorts. "They are a member of this team and should embrace our Core Values," said Fritzsching.
Now through April 2013, ATEC's Solemn Promise campaign will focus on training its military and civilian workforce on one Army value each month, starting with loyalty and ending with personal courage. ATEC will run a seven-part series of articles related to each Army Value that showcases what the core Army Values mean to its workforce. This affords Soldiers, civilians, and even contractors the opportunity to express their understanding of the values; explain the impact they have on their personal and professional lives; and share what these values mean to them.
Ultimately, the completion of Operation Solemn Promise will result in "increased accountability and professionalism for each member of the command," according to the ATEC operation order.