Dear Members and Friends,
Today, the Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta announced that the President of the United States, has nominated Navy Rear Admiral James D. Syring for appointment to the rank of Vice Admiral and for assignment as Director, Missile Defense Agency to replace the current Director, Lt. General Patrick O’Reilly, who is under investigation by the Defense Department’s Inspector General’s office whom have recommended the Pentagon leadership take corrective action against him.
This marks the first time in history that the United States Navy will have the Directorship and Command of the Missile Defense Agency and its predecessor organizations since the initiation of the Strategic Defense Initiative proposed by President Ronald Reagan in 1983. The United States Air Force, the United States Army, and a Presidential appointed civilian have overseen and commanded the development, acquisition, and research of missile defense since 1983.
The United States Navy is the main service and platform for U.S. sea based missile defense around the world which will have 28 current Ballistic Missile Defense Capable Aegis ships in its fleets by the end of 2012. Further, the President’s planned European Phased Adaptive Approach (EPAA) is dependent on the U.S. Navy’s Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense systems both on land and sea. The United States Navy is focusing on Directed Energy, Electronic Magnetic Force, and the Electric Rail Gun for future technologies and development, all of which are applicable to missile defense.
Rear Admiral Syring is currently serving as program executive officer for Integrated Warfare Systems, Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, D.C.