Five rules for the Army’s Combat Aviation Brigades

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One year after senior leaders sounded the alarm that Army aviation was in a “deep hole” because of inconsistent funding and high demand overseas, the top general at Forces Command is continuing five rules that he hopes will provide soldiers with some relief.

Last year’s warning from Gen. Robert Abrams came as the Army saw a decrease in manpower and aviation assets.

And while the Army’s aviators are doing “tremendous work,” they also haven’t had time to prepare for a potential fight against a near-peer competitor, Abrams said at the time.

“It manifests itself in poor operational readiness rates, it manifests itself in a lack of execution on our flying hour program,” he said. “We’ve got to take some significant measures to create time and space to enable them to do some comprehensive training.”

Earlier this year, Col. Craig Alia, commander of the 101st Airborne Division’s combat aviation brigade, said the division’s air assets had dwindled from more than 200 aircraft to slightly more than 100.

He admitted that he could not deploy and mount a brigade-sized air assault, as has been done in recent wars, because he had neither the crews nor the equipment.

But the mission marches onward, and ground forces across the globe still need aviation even as aviators and aircrews have simply been overburdened given the growing demand and lack of resources.

One year after senior leaders sounded the alarm that Army aviation was in a “deep hole” because of inconsistent funding and high demand overseas, the top general at Forces Command is continuing five rules that he hopes will provide soldiers with some relief.

Last year’s warning from Gen. Robert Abrams came as the Army saw a decrease in manpower and aviation assets.

And while the Army’s aviators are doing “tremendous work,” they also haven’t had time to prepare for a potential fight against a near-peer competitor, Abrams said at the time.

“It manifests itself in poor operational readiness rates, it manifests itself in a lack of execution on our flying hour program,” he said. “We’ve got to take some significant measures to create time and space to enable them to do some comprehensive training.”

Earlier this year, Col. Craig Alia, commander of the 101st Airborne Division’s combat aviation brigade, said the division’s air assets had dwindled from more than 200 aircraft to slightly more than 100.

He admitted that he could not deploy and mount a brigade-sized air assault, as has been done in recent wars, because he had neither the crews nor the equipment.

But the mission marches onward, and ground forces across the globe still need aviation even as aviators and aircrews have simply been overburdened given the growing demand and lack of resources.