From the thesis abstract: "Prior to operations Desert Shield/Desert Storm in the early 1990s, our national military strategy relied on the Reserve Component (RC), in particular the Army National Guard (ARNG), as a strategic, as opposed to an operational reserve. Since that time, a paradigm shift occurred. From that point forward we realized that operational employment of the ARNG in all significant military contingency operations was necessary, hence the need for an operationally ready ARNG. This paper examines what missions the army could task to the ARNG that best ensure its ability to maintain operational readiness. The examination: (1) includes a brief historical background of the ARNG, (2) a review of the missions that maintain operational readiness, (3) conducts an analysis of those missions, and finally, (4) recommends a basic mission set for the ARNG. The ARNG, through enhanced training, equipment modernization, force structure balancing and multiple deployments, has developed and maintains an operational readiness that exceeds any previous level. Future readiness and effective employment of the ARNG requires a mission set and policy that ensures continuous engagement with viable missions that continue to develop and strengthen readiness and an already solid partnership with the Active Component (AC)."