A soon-to-be published HQDA Execution Order will direct the Army to locate, identify and categorize its information technology (IT) assets as part of an overall strategy to optimize resources and increase force protection.
Have you ever received notification from a government or industry office that your personal information may have been compromised or lost? I have—on both counts—and it is not a comforting feeling. It also makes you immediately question the care and practices of the organizations that solicited your trust in safeguarding your private information.
With the ongoing conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan amid the Global War on Terrorism, it is easy to become focused on the Persian Gulf and U.S. Central Command, on NATO and Europe, and on the domestic homeland security threat. However, outside of these areas lies half of the Earth’s surface, and it comprises many of the challenges present in other parts of the world.
The task seemed simple enough: The U.S. military services should use a technological edge to adapt forces to whatever type of fight came to pass. They were prodded by an impatient secretary of defense who saw information technology as the means to win conventional wars quickly with less force. But, U.S. armed forces also were instructed by the 2006 Quadrennial Defense Review to prepare for combat operations against new, elusive nonstate foes, with a focus on multiple irregular, asymmetric operations. They also had to give equal weight to combat and sustainability operations.
When he is not selling software to federal agencies and major corporations, Curt Kolcun likes to unwind on his 26-acre “farm” near the historic town of Leesburg, Virginia, about 40 miles northwest of Washington, D.C. The capital commute sometimes can seem like capital punishment, but Kolcun doesn’t seem to mind.
The U.S. Defense Department has developed a network architecture that will give its research test and evaluation community new radio spectrum-enhancing capabilities. Once fully operational, the Telemetry Network System will provide its installations’ computer networks with a wideband wireless capability that covers hundreds of square miles. As a result, flight test centers will be able to dynamically adjust the spectrum required for test vehicles. In addition, the technology will enable program managers and aircraft manufacturer personnel to monitor tests from off site.
Armed forces around the world soon may deploy an integrated family of communications intelligence and electronic warfare systems. Designed for export, the hardware and software supports land and sea forces, as well as national intelligence services, by sharing data across all echelons from the tactical level up to national-level organizations. Parts of the system already are in service with the French army.
Intelligence data is under a virtual microscope and literally surrounding analysts with the opening of a facility at the U.S. Joint Forces Command, Norfolk, Virginia. Under the auspices of the Joint Transformation Command for Intelligence, the Joint Intelligence Laboratory is the new home for representatives from the services as well as from industry and academia. The laboratory enables them to view real-world operational data in innovative ways and solve commanders’ real-world problems. After evaluating technologies and methodologies, intelligence experts pass along promising solutions seasoned with ideas about doctrine; concepts of operations; and tactics, techniques and procedures to heighten their success.
The National Reconnaissance Office has come down to Earth with a new emphasis on ground-based systems for delivering its remote sensing to users. This new focus on the ground infrastructure that supports space systems may be the only way the office can keep its orbital assets in step with the high-technology revolution raging unabated on Earth.
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.
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.
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.
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.