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U.S. Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy Likes To See Things Fly And Explode When It Comes To Buying Military Hardware

Ryan D. McCarthy pledged to be the Army secretary that soldiers deserve as he took the oath to be the 24th person in the job. US Department of Defense

Washington Examiner: 'Things are flying and exploding': How Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy shops for military hardware

When Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy shops for equipment that will help fight the next war, he likes to smell the gasoline before he decides.

“Ten years ago, we were buying billions of dollars over PowerPoint,” he said during an appearance at the National Press Club on Friday. “Why do I think we’re getting better now? Things are flying and exploding, and you can smell gasoline.”

The move to more quickly develop the next generation of Army hardware requires private sector thinking, he said. To bring contractors on faster, the U.S. Army has leveraged an acquisition tool known as OTA, or Other Transaction Authority, to develop technology at the “speed of business.”

“Ultimately, it's about speed,” McCarthy said in one of numerous references to the use of OTAs. “You need to get this stuff into the field when it's relevant and then upgrade over time, like an iPhone.”

The secretary of the Army said he will continue to use OTAs “early and often.”

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WNU editor: His remarks on PowerPoint are spot on.

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