Between October 25 and November 7, 50,000 military participants from 31 nations will conduct a defensive live exercise in the North Atlantic and Baltic Sea. One of the largest exercises ever, the NATO event, Trident Juncture 18, is meant to ensure that NATO forces “are trained, able to operate together and ready to respond to any threat from any direction,” according to a statement from the alliance.
Identity isn’t mentioned in the President’s Management Agenda — the Trump administration’s blueprint for modernizing the federal government. But it is central to almost everything the federal government wants to accomplish in IT transformation and digitizing citizen services, Federal Chief Information Officer Suzette Kent told AFCEA’s Federal Identity Summit Wednesday.
“Identity and how we control access to information in the federal government ... is central to all the strategies that we’re talking about and the things that we’re doing” with regard to IT modernization, she said in a keynote address.
The need for increased efficiency drove the U.S. Air Force to pursue its biggest reorganization in the last 25 years, the creation of the Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center, or AFIMSC. The restructuring pulled together 150 capabilities, centralizing how the service delivers installation support, expeditionary support and resources. AFIMSC encompasses civil engineering, financial management and financial services, installation contracting, security forces and services activity, which includes recreation, lodging, child care, fitness and other support.
U.S. Strategic Command headquarters, the lynchpin for U.S. nuclear deterrence, is undergoing the technical renovations it requires to fulfill its current mission and facilitate growth for future operations. The new command and control facility under construction integrates the latest technologies and meets the growing demand to continue to evolve as needs emerge.
President Donald Trump’s recent call for a U.S. Space Force that would potentially be on par with the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and Coast Guard shows a renewed recognition of the importance of space. This presidential proclamation has been met with varying responses. Regardless of one’s position on the topic, it begs for a discussion that is long overdue. The Commission to Assess U.S. National Security Space Management and Organization, often referred to as the Rumsfeld Commission, put into place more than 17 years ago a solid set of findings and recommendations on national space policy. Some of the recommendations have been adopted, while others have fallen by the wayside for a variety of reasons.
The U.S. Army is making multiple changes to the way it educates soldiers fighting in the cyber and electronic warfare domains. Rather than training soldiers on step-by-step processes, the service is educating personnel to come up with their own solutions on a technologically complex battlefield.
The U.S. Army is poised to implement five force design changes related to the integration of multidomain capabilities, including intelligence, cyber and electronic warfare. The integration of such capabilities is designed to allow commanders to act more quickly on the cyber-era battlefield.
David May, senior intelligence advisor, U.S. Army Cyber Center of Excellence and Fort Gordon, Georgia, explained the changes while serving on a multidomain panel at the AFCEA TechNet Augusta conference.
The U.S. Army may establish an artificial intelligence task force over the next 90 days in an effort to help develop needed expertise and better prepare for the service for the future of warfare, says Lt. Gen. Bruce Crawford, USA, Army chief information officer. The service also is creating a cloud computing advisory board.
Today’s battlefield is highly technical and dynamic. We are not only fighting people and weapons but also defending and attacking information at light speed. For mission success, the American warrior in the field and commanders up the chain need the support of highly adaptive systems that can quickly and securely establish reliable communications and deliver real-time intelligence anytime and anywhere.
U.S. Army leaders are sloughing off some of the old ways of fielding technology and embracing commercial and government advances in tactical communications. Facing a technology revolution, dangerous adversaries and budgetary constraints, leaders are working to get capabilities into the hands of warfighters faster.
The U.S. Army’s major overhaul of its network may lead to a communications structure capable of conforming to an array of operational situations, including the possibility of providing offensive cyber and electronic warfare capabilities.
The federal government is increasingly dependent on commercial technologies ranging from infrastructure to the cloud to security solutions. Identifying and incorporating the appropriate complex commercial solutions, however, can be overwhelming when the number of options and the level of risk are significant.
In the case of military operations, warfighters’ lives depend on having the right products with effective security. The best technologies must be found, potential cyber holes must be identified, and security gaps must be filled.
The U.S. Army’s efforts to bring electronic warfare, information warfare and cyber capabilities into expeditionary forces is succeeding, Army leaders report. To better support tactical commanders, the service developed a pilot program in 2015 to add such capabilities to brigade combat teams (BCTs). In addition to providing equipment, abilities and authorities to BCTs, the service deployed cyber electromagnetic activities (CEMA) teams to support the initiative known as CEMA Support to Corps and Below (CSCB). The CEMA teams, under the guidance of the U.S. Army Cyber Command, provide training to brigade combat teams (BCTs) through National Training Center (NTC) rotations at exercises and home-base training.
The U.S. Navy announced today that U.S. Strategic Command has approved the service’s next-generation narrowband satellite communication system for expanded operational use. The authorization paves the way for Navy and Marine Corps “early-adopter” commands to use the system on deployment as early as this fall, primarily in the Pacific theater, according to the written announcement. The Navy's on-orbit, five-satellite constellation—the Mobile User Objective System, or MUOS—began providing legacy satellite communications shortly after the system’s first satellite launch in 2012.
Some U.S. Army officials and other experts warn that the nation’s military may one day have to do something militaries throughout history have tried to avoid: fight in major cities. Urban combat, in many ways, neutralizes any technological advantage, but some technologies, such as robots and 3D learning maps, could still provide an edge.
Urban combat, even in smaller cities, is the most complicated, chaotic, brutal and bloody form of warfare. But experts increasingly caution that it is only a matter of time before warfighting in megacities—cities with populations of 10 million or more—becomes necessary.
Tactical command, control and communications (C3) is significantly changing as the U.S. military retools amid 17 years of conflict in the Middle East. During this period, much of the long-term joint tactical C3 planning and resourcing was overtaken in favor of addressing immediate—and vital—needs on the battlefield.
The U.S. Army took another step toward developing its fourth command when it announced that Austin, Texas, would be the location of the new Futures Command.
The service is pursuing the new command as a way to modernize and position itself “to achieve clear overmatch in future conflicts,” according to the Army. Having a central location for its modernization will unify its efforts, Army leaders said.
“The creation of the Army’s Futures Command constitutes the Army’s most significant reorganization effort since 1973,” said Army Secretary Mark Esper. “It is a new organization that epitomizes our commitment to bold reform and transforming the Army’s modernization process.”
Fraud, waste, and abuse (FWA) remains a major challenge to the federal government. From 2012 to 2016, the 73 federal inspectors general (IGs), who are on the frontline of fighting FWA, identified $173 billion in potential savings and reported $88 billion in investigative recoveries and 36,000 successful prosecutions and civil actions.
U.S. Marines on the move need to be able to negotiate the battlefield effectively. Part of operating on the fly also means working in the dark. To aid warfighters, the Marine Corps Systems Command (MCSC) recently began fielding advanced binoculars to help with improved vision at night, according to a June 18 report from Kaitlin Kelly, MCSC Office of Public Affairs and Communication.
The effort of the U.S. Marine Corps Systems Command in bringing the networking on-the-move platform to more aircraft is coming to fruition. The service announced on June 28 that it had placed a new iteration of tactical network family of systems known as the NOTM onto the MV-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraft.
The new NOTM-Airborne Increment II System can provide communications access for up to five users, including access to networks, voice, email, video and texting capabilities while airborne, command officials noted.