Rumsfeld sets early deadlines for transformation

Rumsfeld sets early deadlines for transformation

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has released his Transformation Planning Guidance, which offers a detailed blueprint for how the Defense Department will transform its fighting forces from the industrial age into the information age.

Throughout history wars have been fought using the cutting-edge technologies of their times, Rumsfeld said in his report'but never before has the United States had such significant enhancements to technology as exist today.

'The department must align itself with the ongoing information revolution, not just by exploiting information technology, but by developing information-enabled organizational relationships and operating concepts,' Rumsfeld wrote in the guidance.

Rumsfeld said the transformation would affect three core areas in DOD: how the military fights, how it conducts business and how it works with interagency and multinational partners.

'If the United States fails to transform, then our current military superiority and the relative peace, prosperity and stability it underwrites will erode,' Rumsfeld said. 'Some adversaries hope the United States will become complacent. They hope that they will be able to better exploit diffusion of knowledge and IT ' and thereby negate or leap ahead of current U.S. military advantages.'

Rumsfeld established deadlines, including July 1 for the Joint Forces Command to develop and submit to him an integrated interoperability plan that can be achieved within the decade.

Because a key element of transforming the military is interoperability, Rumsfeld said, services are now required to identify initiatives to:

  • Improve interoperability to deploy a secure, robust and wideband network

  • Adopt post-before-processing intelligence and information concepts

  • Use dynamic, distributed, collaborative capabilities

  • Achieve data level interoperability and net-ready nodes of sensors, platforms, weapons and forces.

  • In addition, service leaders have until Nov. 1 to build what Rumsfeld called transformation road maps for achieving goals that include:

  • Systems that can participate in a Joint Technical Architecture collaboration

  • Systems that are tested and evaluated to determine capabilities, limitations and interoperability in realistic joint warfare scenarios and missions

  • New command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance weapons and logistics systems that incorporate IP

  • Systems that are capable of post-before-processing functionality

  • Selected legacy systems that are retrofitted with these capabilities.

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