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Dec 08, 2004



Currently serving in the military. This vehicle has saved my fellow soldiers' lives (which places it several steps above most of the Army equipment we have), regardless of how you feel about the politics of it's production.


Beth at POGO points out a very real problem. One I pointed out regarding the F-22 debate. For this country to maintain its greatness we need men up and down the chain of command who will speak freely, honestly and critically about our country's national interest. Unfortunately too many men are concerned about their next job and not doing their current one as they should.

Beth at POGO

Unfortunately, our leaders at the Pentagon have usually come from a defense contractor or are on their way out the door to their next lucrative defense contractor job. So, their "reality" might really be shaded by green (for money). For example, Army Lt. General David K. Heebner landed a nice juicy job at General Dynamics after he helped the company land the Stryker. See this link. Or just tune in to the growing list of casualties in the Darleen Druyun Boeing tanker lease scandal in today's Washington Post.
Are these just isolated incidents, not indicative of a broader problem at the Pentagon? You decide. Here's the report POGO did on the revolving door, see The Politics of Contracting.

pete keating

Too the last poster how about reading the Testimony of the Army Chief of Staff to the House Armed Services Committee yesterday.

Here is how Defense Daily reported it.
"Defense Daily
Feb. 10, 2005
Story on Army Secretary and Chief of Staff testimony before the House Armed Services Committee on February 9, 2005.

[Gen.] Schoomaker also had words of praise for another vehicle system, the Stryker wheeled armored vehicle made by General Dynamics [GD].
Stryker debuted in combat with the deployment of the first Stryker Brigade Combat Team to Iraq in late 2003; the Army chief said he was
"absolutely enthusiastic" about the eight-wheeled vehicle, which has in the past been a lightning rod for criticism from proponents of tracked
"I would say that we're absolutely enthusiastic about what the Stryker has done and its performance," Schoomaker said. "Not just as a
vehicle--but as a system. The Stryker Brigade Combat Team as a system is a very good view into the brigade combat team unit of action."
Schoomaker described an operation last year where the Stryker Brigade based in northern Iraq dispatched a battalion combat team on a
420 mile move."
The battalion, Schoomaker said, "Entered battle on that move at one place, won, and moved to another battle, and did all of this in 48
hours. And did it with planning on the move, great blue-force situational awareness, great joint interconnectivity, and exactly the
kind of leadership, exactly the kind of combat capability we're looking for as we move toward our Future Combat System."
The Stryker, the general added, also has "the highest operational readiness of any system that we've had over there."
In fact, the vehicle may have new potential customers. Schoomaker said that U.S. Special Operations Command, which oversees special
operations forces worldwide, has also taken interest in the vehicle.
"U.S. SOCOM is working with us now, and is interested in Stryker variants as perhaps part of their solution for special operations
forces," he said.
Stryker remains a top acquisition priority for the service. Less certain, however, is the way ahead for a more ambitious program, the
Future Combat System, the Army's transformation centerpiece."

That's the opinion of a someone who knows the "reality of war" first hand. As opposed to an internet posting defense pundit.

Karl Vietmeier

To the last poster - Take a look at this analysis of the Stryker and come back with your point-by-point criticism:

I can't imagine how anyone could seriously consider this vehicle for use in urban combat.

peter keating

I do not know why POGO asked a military "expert" who has never been on a Stryker to comment when there are over 1,000 combat veterans from the Stryker Brgade in Washington state available? Or Chris Gilbert a Seattle Times reporter who was embedded with the unit in Iraq?

From the first note by your expert his analysis did not add up. 300+ Strykers in Iraq driving 9,000 miles each equals nearly 3 million miles. I've never heard of a Ford surviving a car bomb explosion, rolling over and all passengers walking away alive. The soldiers in Strykers survived IED and multiple RPG attacks routinely in Iraq.

The photos of the one Stryker engulfed in flames is horrific. The story is the soldiers in that vehicle walked away alive. And they learned not to hang extra fuel cans and motor oil containers on top of their Stryker where enemy fire can ignite them.

I could attack every error in your military experts analysis but your readers get the point.

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