Modern computer software, airborne combat simulation systems and a plethora of advanced Russian surface-to-air radar and missile hardware are melding air forces and ground-based air defense systems into a seamless air combat exercise that simulates ground and air combat. Friends are able to know immediately how their simulated fight against various foes is progressing, and after-action reviews can examine tactics and weapon performance in a multilevel security environment.
PACOM's effort to increase interaction between the U.S. and foreign governments through training exercises can reduce the potential for disputes or conflicts. What more can be done in the area to promote security and stability? Share your ideas here.
Obstacles ranging from passive obstinance to active hostility are vexing efforts by the U.S. Pacific Command to maintain security across the vast Asia-Pacific region. The command has built a structure of stability throughout the region based on diplomatic and military cooperation with most of the several dozen nations that populate the hemisphere. However, new military challenges are putting plans and resources to the test.
China has established its bona fides as an international maritime power with its participation in counterpiracy operations off the Horn of Africa. The emerging Asian maritime force contributed many different types of vessels as it learned how to support distant deployments. Its participation in the multinational effort also served to showcase some new ships and capabilities that may define Chinese naval power in the coming years.
Operating from the most remote island chain on the planet, the U.S. Pacific Command is working to bridge the waters that surround it by training hard and often with countries in the Asia-Pacific region. In an area of responsibility where bilateral relationships rather than multinational alliances are the norm, personnel spend large amounts of time engaged in exercises designed to improve interoperability and promote peace. Each year command troops and civilians alike rehearse, sometimes with tens of thousands of their closest friends, for real-world emergencies while simultaneously establishing relationships with their neighbors to the east.
As the civilian sector moves toward available collaborative networking applications and technologies, U.S. Forces Korea finds itself on the crest of this wave and is transforming how it conducts business across the command. The results of this effort will enable the command to provide authoritative, far-reaching data while dramatically improving its decision-making capabilities both in peace and wartime.
The Royal Australian Navy is building its first warship designed around a state-of-the-art radar and battle management system that will allow the vessels to share critical information with allied ships. A key part of the system is a phased array radar capable of detecting and identifying airborne targets, from aircraft to incoming missiles, at long distances.
Complexity is at the core of nearly every mission for the U.S. Marines serving in the Asia-Pacific region. Even something as simple as the international dateline must be taken into account when the U.S. Marine Corps plans operations within its area of responsibility. From the communications perspective, the diversity of countries it interacts with poses significant challenges to its network operators and planners.
Even as the United States continues to lead a coalition of countries in the battle against terrorism in Southwest Asia, another effort quietly continues to root out evildoers in the southeast portion of the continent. But unlike their counterparts in the deserts and mountains, the troops fighting in the jungles have a secondary position to their country hosts. Also present is a strong focus on non-war activities such as medical care and capacity building that demonstrates to citizens the dedication of both their government and that of the United States to improve their lives. The result of all this work has been a decrease in terrorist activities as well as enhanced quality of life for people in the region.
One look at a globe could define the vastness of the Asia-Pacific region, but the U.S. Army command responsible for it can apply that same description to the challenges it faces. These range from cultural issues among dozens of diverse countries to technological issues of network centricity and interoperability.
Communications and data interoperability with regional nations are essential for U.S. forces in Southeast Asia. The military command responsible for this region must manage and coordinate operations across approximately half of the planet’s surface, an area encompassing 39 nations with 60 percent of the world’s population, vital international trade routes and several potential flashpoints. To facilitate its mission across this vast region, this command spearheads a variety of efforts designed to foster interoperability with the region’s armed forces.
The U.S. Army is overhauling its communications in Korea to update decades-old infra-structure. Three major projects will offer commanders better information for their decision-making processes and put in place an architecture that enables necessary capabilities for the next 10 to 15 years. Some phases of the work are complete, and others will continue to 2012.
They may not exactly be the neighborhood watch, but countries in, around and concerned with the Asia-Pacific region have banded together to protect the area’s interests. A program headquartered at U.S. Pacific Command brings operational-level planners together several times a year to develop standards and conduct exercises to promote interoperability and streamline missions in the area. Though the program is voluntary and has no authority to mandate any actions, the work and relationships have made a significant difference during crises in various nations.
Improving effective intelligence links with dozens of disparate nations may be the key to prevailing on the Asia-Pacific front in the Global War on Terrorism. A changing enemy, diverse allies and emerging technologies are bringing about a sea change in intelligence operations throughout the Pacific theater.
The largest field command in the U.S. Marine Corps is updating equipment to enhance command and control operations. The upgrades include installing cutting-edge technology that will improve control of troops and communications among the various command levels, as well as integrating better intelligence capabilities and serving as a convergence point during critical missions.
The U.S. Pacific Command is reaching out to former enemies and even potential adversaries to help maintain security in the vast Asia-Pacific region. Some of these efforts are aimed at prevailing in the Global War on Terrorism, while others simply are part of a long-term effort to keep the dozens of nations that make up the region from going to war with one another.
How better to meet the needs of an ideal air defense ship than to put the land-based S-300 system that has protected Peking and Moscow on a large guided missile destroyer? China is sending the two newest, largest 6,000-ton 051C guided missile destroyers (DDGs)—hulls 115 and 116—to be flagships for the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) North Fleet. The 051C, which began construction prior to the later 052A and 052B ships, will be a new fleet command ship with air defense and coordination capabilities.
The People's Republic of China has launched a new series of frigates that provide an effective modern capability for littoral operations. Known as the Type 054 series, these new frigates can be categorized into two classes—the 054 Jingkai and the newer, much more capable 054A. The first appeared about four years ago, but China could be gearing up to produce both variants in large numbers.
Command and control systems used by the U.S./Republic of Korea Combined Forces Command, the 15-member United Nations Command in Korea and U.S. Forces Korea have transformed significantly over the past two years. These improvements in the region were made a priority by the former commander of U.S. Forces Korea, Gen. Leon J.
Two energy-starved Asian economic dynamos may face potential conflict in their quest for access to scarce oil reserves. China and Japan are finding themselves competing for the same undersea oil deposits, and this could lead to armed confrontations between the former antagonists.