Department of Defense Transcripts
(Source: compiled by defense-aerospace.com; issued April 20, 2009)
PARIS --- In three major speeches and one press conference last week, US Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates explained in some detail his plans for each one of the US military services and their equipment.

We have provided below links to the transcripts of these speeches, on the Pentagon website.


Naval War College (Newport, RI)

As Delivered on April 17, 2009

Good morning. It’s a real pleasure to be here for my first visit as secretary to the Naval War College. Based on the weather I’m thinking I may move the Pentagon here.

As you may know, this week I have visited each of the service war colleges and I discussed the budget recommendations I have made to the President. Those recommendations have three principal objectives:

-- First, to reaffirm our commitment to take care of the all-volunteer force, which, in my view represents America’s greatest strategic asset; as Admiral Mullen says, if we don’t get the people part of our business right, none of the other decisions will matter;
-- Second, to rebalance this department’s programs in order to institutionalize and enhance our capabilities to fight the wars we are in and the scenarios we are most likely to face in the years ahead, while at the same time providing a hedge against other risks and contingencies; and
-- Third, in order to do all this, we must reform how and what we buy, meaning a fundamental overhaul of our approach to procurement, acquisition, and contracting.

Click here for the full transcript (HTML format)




Army War College, Carlisle, Pa.

As Delivered on April 16, 2009

STAFF: Take your seats. It is a rare privilege for an Army War College, any war college class, to be addressed by the secretary of Defense. We are very fortunate today to welcome the honorable Dr. Robert M. Gates.

Before entering his present post, Secretary Gates was president of Texas A&M University, the Aggies, the nation’s seventh largest university. He also served as the director of Central Intelligence, from 1991 until 1993.

Secretary Gates is the only career officer in CIA’s history to rise from entry-level employee to director. He served as deputy director of Central Intelligence from 1986 until 1989, and then as assistant to the president and deputy national security advisor at the White House from 1989 until 1991.

Click here for the transcript (HTML format)




Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.

As delivered on April 15, 2009

SEC. GATES: As you may know this week, I'm visiting each of the service war colleges to discuss the budget recommendations I made to the president. Those recommendations have three principal objectives.

First, to reaffirm our commitment to take care of the all-volunteer force which, in my view, represents America's greatest strategic asset. As Admiral Mullen says, if we don't get the people part of our business right, then none of the other decisions we make will matter.

Second, to rebalance the Department of Defense's programs in order to institutionalize and enhance our capabilities to fight the wars we're in today and the scenarios we are most likely to face in the years ahead while at the same time providing a hedge against other risks and contingencies.

And third, in order to do all this, we must reform how and what we buy, meaning a fundamental overhaul to our approach to procurement, acquisition and contracting.

Click here for the full transcript (HTML format)




Press Conference at Ft. Rucker, Alabama

Event held on April 14, 2009

SEC. GATES: Well, thank you all for being here this afternoon. I had a great afternoon here at Fort Rucker. These amazing people here who are training people how to fly helicopters that are so much in demand everywhere, but especially in Iraq and Afghanistan, these people are doing something that is in direct support of our warfighters. They do everything from lift to protection to medevac. They do it all.

I came here partly to see what they were doing, but partly also to recognize the role that rotary lift plays in support for our warfighters. And a big part of what I'm trying to do in our budget for fiscal year '10 is recognize the importance of this kind of support for our warfighters and to see how we can increase it and also institutionalize it in the base budget of the Department of Defense.

And so I've added, for fiscal year '10 -- I've recommended the president adding an additional $500 million to increase the throughput of pilots and maintenance crews for our helicopters, for our rotary lift capability. And that will be -- that will help us train more instructors, help with the infrastructure, probably get some additional airframes, and at the end of the day what's most important, get us more well-trained pilots that can support our warfighters.

Click here for the full transcript (HTML format)


-ends-





prev next

Official reports See all