WASHINGTON - The National Guard's State Partnership program is a good return on investment, the commander of U.S. European Command and Supreme Allied Commander said here last month.
During March 29 testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee on the topic of the Fiscal Year 2012 European Command Posture, Navy Adm. James Stavridis was asked whether the State Partnership Program was making a difference with European allies.
"We have 22 of these programs [within EUCOM]," Stavridis said. "The one from Oklahoma . does everything from prosaic military training to police training to oil field training; we try to match up the state with the country."
Worldwide, the SPP includes 63 nations.
"The presence . of the Oklahoma State Partnership Program has been very helpful in Azerbaijan in maintaining our access through our transit routes because of the strong mil-to-mil relationship," Stavridis said.
In response to a question from Oklahoma Sen. James Inhofe about whether the SPP worked as good as he had heard, Stavridis said that the relationship in Oklahoma was the same relationship developed all over Europe with the SPP.
"Multiply that by 22 all around Europe and you can see the bang for the buck here is really quite significant," he said.