by Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Jim Greenhill
National Guard Bureau
1/3/2012 - WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- The chief of the National Guard Bureau is a statutory member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
With the stroke of a pen, the same month the nation's oldest military institution celebrated its 375th birthday, President Barack Obama signed legislation that includes a provision adding the CNGB to the Joint Chiefs on Dec. 31, 2011.
The provision -- part of the fiscal year 2012 National Defense Authorization Act -- ushers in a change some National Guard historians have called the most significant development since the Militia Act of 1903 codified the modern day dual-status structure of the Guard.
"We are grateful for the efforts the executive and legislative bodies have gone to in placing the chief of the National Guard Bureau on the Joint Chiefs of Staff," said Air Force Gen. Craig McKinley, the chief of the National Guard Bureau.
"We look forward to working alongside the other Joint Chiefs to provide our nation's senior leaders with a fuller picture of the non-federalized National Guard as it serves in support of homeland defense and civil support missions," McKinley said.
The provision is part of an annual federal law that has for the last half-century specified the Defense Department budget.
The 2012 NDAA authorizes $670 billion in spending for Defense Department programs and Energy Department nuclear weapons programs.
Other provisions of the bill that affect the National Guard include re-establishing the position of vice-chief of the National Guard Bureau at the three-star level while rescinding the two-star position of director of the NGB's joint staff.
The bill also requires that National Guard general officers be considered for command of Army North and Air Force North and authorizes funding for the National Guard State Partnership Program.
1/7/2012 9:40:36 PM ET Great for the ANG but in a time of belt tightening who smart of a move is it The appointees staff will count against AD numbers for end strength. Does this mean we can combine ANG and AD services Having 2 Command Posts on base because one is AD and the other is ANG is a waste.
1/5/2012 9:06:24 PM ET @Lance maybe some of the units don't but there are a large number of people where I am who are in the guard and here for much much less than 180 days. Plus what makes it even greater is when they get here and all they do is whine about the living conditions. Why do I have to share a room for 50 days waah.
1/5/2012 6:34:14 PM ET Lance I completely agree with you that the role of the NG has changed drastically from previous wars. I do have first hand knowledge of recent 45 day deployments by ANG aircrews however. Regardless the role has changed yet remains undefined. Hopefully the new leadership structure can help define it. With our leaner force there will be no room for members or units who can say no to taskings that aren't convenient for them. The mission is all that matters. JMW I wouldn't trade my active duty life for anything.
1/5/2012 5:51:16 PM ET Great what's next is the DoD going to build a Deathstar
1/5/2012 10:28:57 AM ET Maj SWA - sounds like someone is a little bitter/jealous of ANG/Reserve...don't be a hater You know you'll be looking to join in a few years.
1/5/2012 10:18:20 AM ET Well this is good news for the Sea Services. Wait, the US Navy and Marines don't have state militias and 2 of the other 6 Joint Chiefs won't care about Guard issues so nevermind. And @ADW, the USAF MAJCOM CCs responsible for OTE of nukes and special ops are only three stars, so until that change--and it won't--AFRC will remain a 3-star MAJCOM as well.
Semper Fi, Box Elder SD
1/5/2012 9:27:17 AM ET Umm Major SWA. I think the National Guard hasn't engaged in a 45-day deployment in over 10 years. In fact, their blood is soaked in the soil of both Iran and Iraq alongside their active-duty brothers and sisters. I think we can agree that their role has changed dramatically.
Lance, Norfolk Virginia
1/5/2012 12:58:56 AM ET CMSgt Haugen the ANG will continue to have a stimga if they continue to do things that warrant it such as holiday-time pull outs of operations they have volunteered for the rest of the year ex. Tanker Task Forces. Another example is insisting on 45 day deployments when the AD does 180s. In both cases the member is away from their homestation job by the way. Want a more active voice in the DoD Start taking a more active role in the DoD and not just when it suits you.
1/4/2012 11:55:22 AM ET Great This is a good thing for all components active duty reserve and guard. Bottom line....still to this day alot of active duty don't understand and refuse to understand or accept the the guard and reserve. Having a Guard Officer on the JCS will improve things quite a bit. Hopefully the next thing will be to elevate the Chief of USAFR to a 4 star since he is the head of a MAJCOM. All the other MAJCOM commanders are 4 star why not have one for reserve command It is a MAJCOM isn't it
ADW, Central Texas
1/3/2012 8:37:48 PM ET Chief Master Sergeant Haugen - what voice has the Guard not gotten in DoD? I find it more appropriate to believe that the actions of individual Guardsmen would be a better way to eliminate the stigmas that exist between the various components within the United States Air Force. Simple things like details are important - you abbreviate Chief Master Sergeant as CMSgt. The accepted way of abbreviating units is either to spell out 114th Fighter Wing or 114 FW. These details are the things that would eliminate the stigma of being a Guardsman. Details matter. I think the promotion of the National Guard as an individual component within DoD will actually have a negative impact and create a greater divide between Airmen in the active and reserve component; hopefully time will prove me wrong. When I was in the ANG, we wore a MAC/AMC patch, not an Air National Guard patch. We were proud to support the big Air Force and were not concerned about our voice. What changed?
Former ANG Airman now AD Airman, Washington DC
1/3/2012 3:05:49 PM ET Sounds like the federal government just got a little bigger along with the Defense budget. So as we cut 1T over the next ten years, it won't come from spending reduction but from you and your family's benefits.
Josh, Al Udeid
1/3/2012 3:04:54 PM ET Good Afternoon. This is a monumental moment for the NG. I believe this may resolve some of the stigmas that the Guard receives and allow the Guard a much more active voice in the DoD.