WASHINGTON (March 25, 2014) ― The National Guard Association of the United States today released the following statement by retired Maj. Gen. Gus Hargett, the NGAUS president:
“This morning, the senior leaders of our Army will likely offer a variety of opinions with the House Armed Services Committee with which every member of the National Guard Association of the United States can agree.
“Army Secretary John M. McHugh and Army Chief of Staff Gen. Raymond T. Odierno will undoubtedly say that threats to our nation from around the world remain, with many more just over the horizon. We agree.
“They will add that the Army must retain significant ground forces to serve in continuing operations, to be a deterrent to potential aggressors, and to be readily available for unforeseen contingencies. We agree.
“They will say that continued modernization is essential to preserve this nation’s technological advantage on the battlefield. We agree.
“They will suggest that sequestration is sapping readiness and causing unnecessary hardship on soldiers and family members across the force. We agree.
“They will stress that the proper balance must be struck among the active-component Army, the Army National Guard and the Army Reserve. And they will say decisions about that balance can and should be worked out by the leaders of the components. We couldn’t agree more.
“The problem is, the give and take that is an essential part of such an effort never occurred in the development of the fiscal 2015 Army budget request now before Congress, which is why there is so much public disagreement between Guard and Army leaders today.”
Reporters, Editors & Producers: Retired Maj. Gen. Gus Hargett is available for interviews or to appear as a subject matter expert on defense issues related to the National Guard. Contact John Goheen at 202-789-0031 or firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule an interview or appearance.
About NGAUS: The association includes nearly 45,000 current or former Guard officers. It was created in 1878 to provide unified National Guard representation in Washington. In their first productive meeting after Reconstruction, militia officers from the North and South formed the association with the goal of obtaining better equipment and training by petitioning Congress for more resources. Today, 136 years later, NGAUS has the same mission.