USA — Transcom Stays on Schedule Through Contingencies

WASHINGTON, April 5, 2011 — U.S. Trans­porta­tion Com­mand remains on sched­ule with the draw­down in Iraq and con­tin­ued oper­a­tions in Afghanistan, despite near month­ly con­tin­gen­cies that chal­lenge the focus of its oper­a­tions, its com­man­der told a con­gres­sion­al com­mit­tee today.
“2010 was a ban­ner year,” Air Force Gen. Dun­can J. McN­abb told the House Armed Ser­vices Com­mit­tee. “Whether deliv­er­ing com­bat pow­er to Afghanistan through logis­tics, or human­i­tar­i­an relief to the peo­ple of Pak­istan, Haiti and Japan, our team kept our promis­es and deliv­ered on time, on tar­get and at the best val­ue to the tax­pay­er.”

The 145,000 peo­ple who make up Transcom “over­come colos­sal obsta­cles” to do their job, McN­abb said. “This is the best per­for­mance I’ve seen in my near­ly 37 years of service.” 

McN­abb called Transcom the U.S. military’s “great­est asym­met­ric advan­tage” in its abil­i­ty to move peo­ple and equip­ment and deliv­er sup­plies to troops any­place in the world. 

“We view our suc­cess through the eyes of the warfight­er,” the gen­er­al said, refer­ring to the Transcom’s focus on sup­port­ing the com­bat­ant commands. 

Transcom is suc­cess­ful because of “the pow­er of the total force team,” he said, not­ing the command’s joint use of active and reserve mil­i­tary mem­bers, fed­er­al civil­ians and con­trac­tors to accom­plish its missions. 

“If we do this right, our warfight­ing com­man­ders do not wor­ry about their dis­tri­b­u­tion pipeline,” he said. 

In its ser­vice to U.S. Cen­tral Com­mand, Transcom brought togeth­er part­ners through­out gov­ern­ment and indus­try “to make logis­tics mag­ic” in draw­ing down from Iraq, while surg­ing in Afghanistan, McN­abb said. 

The com­mand met Pres­i­dent Barack Obama’s Aug. 31 dead­line for hav­ing 30,000 addi­tion­al troops in place in Afghanistan, McN­abb said, while respond­ing to a “record-break­ing pace” of events last year, includ­ing dis­as­ter relief in Haiti, the Philip­pines, Indone­sia, and Pakistan. 

“Dai­ly, I’m amazed and hum­bled by what our peo­ple accom­plish,” he said. 

The com­mand met its require­ments while also sav­ing mon­ey, McN­abb said. It has saved $110 mil­lion per month by using a com­bi­na­tion of com­mer­cial sur­face and mil­i­tary air trans­port to move mine resis­tant, ambush-pro­tect­ed vehi­cles into Afghanistan, he said. 

Expand­ing capac­i­ty in sur­face net­works that sup­ply Afghanistan is a focal point, the gen­er­al said, and the North­ern Dis­tri­b­u­tion Net­work — the main artery for tra­vers­ing 30,000 con­tain­ers last year into Afghanistan through oth­er coun­tries — remains a pri­or­i­ty. Transcom added two addi­tion­al routes to the net­work last year, he added. 

Tran­som deliv­ered more than 60 mil­lion pounds of equip­ment and sup­plies into Afghanistan last year, near­ly dou­ble the amount from 2009, the gen­er­al said. 

Transcom’s “ulti­mate ace in the hole,” how­ev­er, is air, McN­abb said. About 35 per­cent of what is deliv­ered to Afghanistan — and every­thing of high val­ue — is tak­en by air, he said. 

Acquir­ing a new aer­i­al tanker, McN­abb said, is Transcom’s No. 1 acqui­si­tions pri­or­i­ty. “The faster we can get a tanker on board, the bet­ter for us,” he said. 

Transcom air assets deliv­ered 60 mil­lion pounds of sup­plies into Afghanistan last year — com­pared to 2 mil­lion in 2005 — and is on its way to drop­ping 100 mil­lion pounds there, McN­abb said. 

U.S. Depart­ment of Defense
Office of the Assis­tant Sec­re­tary of Defense (Pub­lic Affairs) 

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