The Gold in Fort Knox

October 02, 2012

Dear Members and Friends,

In the safeguards of one of the nation’s most secure holdings of national gold deposits is also the most valuable asset of the U.S. Army, the Human Resources Command (HRC) of the recruiting, manning, promotions, and the overall management of the United States Army’s most expensive product, the U.S. Soldiers of today’s Army, all 675,000 of them. Here, in the midst of the bluegrass thoroughbred state and amongst the rolling hills of Kentucky, Fort Knox is the home to the Army Cadet Command, the Army Human Resources Command, and the Army Recruiting Command.

Amongst the 675,000 Army personnel there are 10,193 men and women that makeup the entirety of the Army Air and Missile Defense (ADA) Branch. The ADA has 19 Battalions (15 Patriot, two training, two Indirect Fire Protection Stations (IFCS), and two attached THAAD batteries) that belong to six ADA Brigades, who support the three Army Air and Missile Defense Commands (AAMDC) in their three respective Combatant Commands of United States Central Command (USCENTCOM), United States Pacific Command (USPACOM), and United States European Command (USEUCOM). The 10,193 men and women who make up 1.51 percent of the Army require 2,099 Officers, 3,518 Non Commissioned Officers, and 4,576 soldiers with a yearly turnover of about 10 percent of their personnel.

There is considerable growth and competition, in demand, for more Army Air Defense units from the two major Combatant Commands of USPACOM and USCENTCOM as they work to assure allies from increasing threats, protect their forward operating bases, and demonstrate, by deployment, the critical need to deter and shape their enemies within their respective regions. The USEUCOM, which is responsible for Israel and Europe as well as the deployment and completion of the President Obama’s European Phased Adaptive Approach, is in need of Army ADA units. Our global response capability has the Army ADA within their capability and the IFCS ADA battalions for short range rockets and mortars are in tremendous demand for force protection of key forward combat operating bases. This overall demand for missile defense will continue to increase as an extension of our deterrence to our allies as U.S. forces reduce in keeping assurance at a minimal presence.

The Army ADA’s capability to protect our forward deployed air power and sea power is vital in preventing those threats that would deny access to international waters and air space. Missile defense, as a joint service entity, and the Army ADA will sustain through the sequestration process because of its key international and national security value.

The Army ADA is a vital branch of the future, as such, its selection and promotion process is critical for the leadership required for their growing mission. That process is being done by the best here at Fort Knox as it is with the rest of the Army’s branches to ensure that the strength and excellence of the best and the brightest are chosen for this noble mission in our changing world.

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