March 1, 2010  


TO THE ARMY for getting its plan for a new Ground Combat Vehicle stuck in a rut. The Army’s request for proposals for the GCV was due out in mid-February, but reports of delays surfaced instead. The Army is apparently at loggerheads with Pentagon officials over the GCV’s weight, design and cost. The Defense Department last year canceled the Future Combat System family of vehicles over similar fundamentals. In making that announcement, however, Defense Secretary Robert Gates acknowledged that the Army must have a modernized fleet of combat vehicles, and he pledged to protect FCS vehicles funding in the hope that the Army would be ready to move forward this year on a new program. But the Army can’t seem to get a handle on what it wants: easily deployable or highly survivable. If it doesn’t soon get its head around that dichotomy, the Army runs the risk of losing its second chance and seeing the vehicle program canceled for good.