Chief of Naval Operations ADM Gary Roughead delivered the opening remarks at the 2010 Current Strategy Forum at the Naval War College in Rhode Island.
Before heading to Hawaii to meet his Japanese counterpart, Roughead addressed the current status of Naval operations and future issues to come. He explained the current global partnerships at sea are as strong as ever. These relationships present a strong outlook for the future of collaboration between international Naval operations.
“The Navy is on every continent and in every ocean reassuring, strengthening and developing old partnerships and new and emerging partners in this effort to look to a more cooperative and collaborative global maritime partnership,” said the U.S. CNO.
In regards to the future of the Navy, Roughead said, “Finances available for that military power for at home and around the world are changing.” He added, “The strength of our nations defense is predicated on the strength of our nation’s economy.” He explained his concerns that budgets may not support the size and capabilities that the Navy needs to build a strong future fleet.
Despite the downturn in available finances, Roughead described the Navy as strong as ever. The entire naval fleet is the smallest it has been in all of U.S. history, but he explained his confidence in the current service members and described them as the “best sailors” in all of history.
Before he left, he offered a few questions he believed the nation needs to address for upcoming future naval endeavors.
“We must ask about the potential for procurement squeeze, for growing operations and maintenance costs and an unsustainable rate of increase in personnel costs are going to continue to squeeze us,” he said. “We must ask if our personnel policies are sufficient.”
He added, “We have to ask if we believe that our Naval forces today are and will remain sufficient to maintain the emerging world order.”