That’s the way Gen. Gene Renuart described his attitude in a last press conference as NORAD and US Northern Command boss. He said May 13 that the “aging systems”—namely radars and air defense fighters— NORAD employs “are a concern.” Renuart acknowledged there’s “a modernization plan in place” for fighters and said NORAD leaders would “stay connected to that to ensure” homeland defense needs are met. He said his commands do have DOD support for “bridges to the future,” but he called the current ground-based radar fixes only “temporary.” Renuart asserted that DOD must have “investment in place” in the 2017 to 2019 timeframe when the radars “begin to age out, [so] we have a plan.” However, he said he feels “very good about where the commands have gone” and believes he has “no unfinished business.” Vice Adm. James Winnefeld replaces Renuart May 19. (NORAD/NORTHCOM report by SSgt. Thomas Doscher; Associated Press report and The Gazette report) (Also see Renuart Takes Final Flight, Winnefeld Confirmed)
The U.S. supports “a stronger and more capable” European defense, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said during an Oct. 22 press conference in Brussels—but that defense should not duplicate the functions and capabilities of the NATO alliance.