The foundation of "Sea Power 21" is our people. Navy men and women—here, returning from Operation Iraqi Freedom—will be asked to deliver unprecedented offensive power, defensive assurance, and operational independence to joint force commanders with a level of responsiveness never before achieved. It is imperative they be prepared—either on station or poised to surge—to immediately employ combat capability. Sea Warrior is how we are going to build the sailor to run the Navy our nation demands.
The Navy's human resource system produces trained sailors to man the fleet. "Sea Power 21" demands much more. Our striking groups deployed over the past two years have been increasingly better manned as a result of a host of personnel and manpower initiatives, but we still have much to do if we are to optimize our Navy's personnel readiness. We must find a way to get each individual—consistently, systematically, and comprehensively—into the job of maximum potential.