U.S. Strategic Command

 

Speeches

Space and Missile Defense Symposium

By Vice Admiral Carl V. Mauney | Huntsville, Ala. | August 13, 2008


VICE ADMIRAL CARL MAUNEY: Good morning, it's great to be here. This is one of those conferences that I never heard about until recently. That doesn't, I think, say anything about it because as I checked into it and talked to Kevin, I discovered this is a pretty significant event for space and missile defense. So it's my honor to be here. I was telling my staff the last time I was in Huntsville was I think 1981 when I was looking for a job. I had decided to leave the Navy, and hunt for jobs so I came here to Huntsville and interviewed with a couple companies and got a couple good offers. And then I went to another job interview up in New York, and spent the whole time talking about submarines. So I decided to stay, and here I am.

Thanks for organizing this conference, and I'd like to welcome missile defense professionals, space professionals, any generals or flags who are out there, as well as other folks. I hope to you give you some insights today about what Strategic Command is doing in Omaha and in other places. And I'll get to that in just a minute. But I'll just tell you that some of the insight I'm going to try to give you is how we're approaching this new century, which has been an increasingly complex and certainly interconnected world.

I'm going to talk about our perspective on ballistic cruise missile defense, but first I want to try to answer that question that some of you probably have asked yourselves: What'is a submarine officer doing talking about space and missile defense? In submarines, we don't worry too much about the direct threat from either cruise or ballistic missiles except that we'd certainly be ready to take any of them out should any of those launch platforms appear in our sites. Though I like to say I think the application of stealth coupled with persistent undersea presence might offer some solutions in the future so keep your minds open about that.

Recently I was talking to a friend of mine, and he works with one of the defense corporations, and he told me that one day he was in the office, and there was a Soldier, Sailor, an Airman, and a Marine all talking – they're all retired guys like probably one or two of you out there – and they were all arguing about who had the best service. And so they were talking, and the supervisor came through and they asked him, well, who do you think has the best service? I mean, it's a joint world, right?

So he said, well, why don't we send a note up to the CEO and we'll ask him, so they did that – wrote up a note and said, Dear CEO, What is the best service, the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, or the Marine Corps? So a few weeks went by and a note came back and the note – I need to read this. So a memorandum from the Desk of the Almighty to Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines. Subject: Which service is the best? Gentlemen, all branches of the U.S. armed forces are honorable and noble. Each serves America well and with distinction. Being servicemen in the military represents a special calling warranting special respect, tribute, and dedication. Be proud of that. Sincerely, CEO, U.S. Navy, Retired. (Laughter.)

In all seriousness, missile defense, and indeed, joint operations are truly Joint with a capital J. In less than four weeks, we're going to mark the anniversary of 9/11. I don't have to tell any of you about this. These attacks, perpetrated by violent extremists, symbolize a portion of our evolving security environment. Countering their ideology as well as future terror is consuming some of our national treasures as well as occupying our servicemen and -women on battlefields around the planet.

I'd ask that you remember those serving and those who have sacrificed for us today and every day. On this anniversary, we are again reminded of how complex and unpredictable the world is in the 21st century. Some say that life was simpler back there in the Cold War. I don't believe that. I fundamentally disagree with it. The world was pretty complex then. I know some of you agree with me on that. But to recognize that the security environment has changed, is complex, and is challenging us in new ways is undeniable.

I'd like to take a few minutes to talk about what we're doing in Omaha and around the United States, and indeed around the world, at Strategic Command. General Chilton and I arrived in Omaha within a week of each other last fall. And his first approach was to read the document called the Unified Command Plan, which is signed by the president. Comes out every couple of years. And it tells the combatant commanders what their job is. Just to tell you – and it's unclassified – but to tell you, the regional combatant commanders have about a half a page. SOCOM and Joint Forces Command -- maybe a page, page and a half. STRATCOM has two and a half pages of tasks in that document.

So we read that document and we spent some time on it. And indeed, a revision to the Unified Command Plan was being prepared by the Secretary Of Defense and the Chairman. So we submitted a few a few changes and we hope to see those pop out of the system here shortly. We'll not change the missions fundamentally but what it will do is adjust some of the wording to what we think will be more clear. And as I talk today, I'm going to use some of that context.

You can break our efforts at Strategic Command into two areas. The first areas are those missions which are global in nature, we have assigned forces, COCOM, or combatant command, assigned to General Chilton, and these forces tend to cross the regions. They operate across regions. They're not generally concentrated in one region or even two. These mission areas are – three of them – we call them our lines of operation.

The first one is strategic deterrence, and that includes nuclear force operations. That's the old SAC, translated to STRATCOM back in the '90s, translated to today. The second area is space operations. Lieutenant General Willie Shelton out at our Joint Space Operations Center at Vandenberg Air Force Base is our component command for space, although other components that we have work in the space area as well. I'll mention JTF Global Network Operations works very closely to make sure that the network that travels through space is maintained and operated properly.

The third area is cyberspace. Two commands there that work cyberspace for us. Up until a couple weeks ago, Lieutenant General Charlie Croom commanded Joint Task Force - Global Network Operations in Alexandria, Virginia. His replacement has yet to be named but RADM Elizabeth Hight is acting as successor, along with Brigadier General Jennifer Napper from the Army on the GNO side, teamed up with Lieutenant General Keith Alexander and Brigadier General Zan Vautrinot at JFCC Network Warfare at Ft Meade. So that's our cyber effort. It's a developing effort and we're working that hard.

The second major area besides our three lines of operation, we call them our joint enablers. Those are – these are areas where STRATCOM is assigned to advocate for capabilities, to help identify seams and gaps between the regional combatant commanders, and between the services and blend those seems and gaps – fill them in to come up with true joint solutions. Those areas are, obviously, integrated missile defense; the second would be intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; the third would be information operations; and the fourth would be combating weapons of mass destruction.

We have subject-matter experts at each of our components that work those areas, Lieutenant General Campbell being our missile defense pro and his team in Colorado Springs, and planning staffs, and we have the largest J8, or resources and requirements division, of any combatant commander. So we at STRATCOM are involved with capability development, resources and requirements, and in many cases, we serve as an advocate for other combatant commanders, as you'll see when I talk here in a minute about how we're changing our approach to developing missile defense capabilities.

Before I go too much further, I want to briefly highlight a test that STRATCOM directed in February with at least 18 other U.S. government agencies. We called it Burnt Frost. You know it as probably the satellite shoot down. It marked the first operation that I know of, and there may be others who can correct me, but the first time in a long time certainly that Strategic Command has been the supported commander for an operation, supported by another combatant commander, in this case Pacific Command, as we worked this military operation.

You all know the story; you know the result. Today, virtually all the remaining pieces of the satellite have reentered the atmosphere. We've not detected any of them hitting the surface of the earth. I'd have to check to make sure. But the last time I checked, we can kind of chalk this one up as a success. A tremendous story of superb technical prowess by the missile defense agency; flexibility; ingenuity; imagination; solid professional teamwork that stretched from Strategic Command to Pacific Command to the Joint Space Operational Center to the Missile Defense Agency, indeed our JFCC-IMD, and a number of other people all the way down to that wonderful Navy sailor on the Aegis cruiser that pushed the button.

If Winston Churchill were around today, he might consider himself prescient when he said, ""To build may have to be the slow and laborious task of years; to destroy can be the thoughtless act of a single day." As many of you are clearly aware with recent events, those words ring true today in a world where we're we face new threats. On 9/11, we saw damage our enemies could do by hijacking jets full of jet fuel and turning them into missiles, and using it as a tool to strike at our way of life. Today a number of nations, and indeed the violent extremists as well, vie for new ways to threaten us or inflict damage challenging freedom-loving nations everywhere.

President Bush has stated a number of times the importance of missile defense. Quote, ""The greatest threat facing our nation in the 21st century is the danger of terrorist networks or terrorist states armed with weapons of mass destruction."" One of the most important defensive measures we've taken is the deployment of new capabilities to defend America from ballistic missile attack. The proliferation of missile technologies and the continuing pursuit of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons by terrorist organizations and rogue nations will continue to pose considerable danger in the future, especially when these elements are combined.

We're going to continue to work to use all elements of our national capabilities to deter state and non-state people from obtaining or using WMD and ballistic missiles to threaten us or our allies. After all, it is a noble calling to prevent conflict. In particular, Iran's determined pursuit of ballistic missiles and nuclear technology poses a real threat. Additionally, recent nuclear long-range tests in the last several years from North Korea are a concern, though the Six-Party Talks continue and there are indications of positive change on the horizon.

In our missile defense areas, since 2002 STRATCOM has acted as a conductor, not like a wire but in a symphony – as a conductor, orchestrating the integration of several things. First, we provide indications and warnings of the threat – missile warning so that decision-makers can make the right decisions either in terms of response or decisions or posture. Second, we've helped develop consensus on where and how these sensors should go. We've worked on interceptor doctrine, coordinating among the various combatant commanders. And we've also worked to coordinate command-and-control connections with our goal of providing a flexible, effective global missile defense system.

General Campbell and his team at JFCC-IMD have really done the yeoman's work in getting some of the combatant – in fact, all of the combatant commanders to agree to a way forward. And if we don't think there are any strong-willed people in the world, look at the combatant commanders. They wouldn't be where they were if they weren't strong-willed – have some pretty solid and deeply-held beliefs. But we've been able to get them together and make some real progress.

As many of you know, passive and active missile defense is part of our larger national construct for strategic deterrence, embodied in the new triad that came out in early 2002. Our deterrence strategy focuses on denying potential adversaries the gains they seek to achieve by being prepared or potentially imposing costs on them in order to influence the decision calculus. Our missile defense system is part of that triad, the active defense and passive defense component. However, our capabilities are ready, should deterrence fail, to defeat those missiles for which the system is designed.

STRATCOM's responsibilities for missile defense are to plan, coordinate, and integrate missile defense operations and to certainly advocate for new capabilities. How do we do this? I'll take a few minutes, and I hope I won't bore too many of you, but I think it's important that you understand that Strategic Command is representing other warfighters in providing input into the system to help to focus the capabilities. In the arena of capabilities, we conduct and oversee key elements of the process that feeds Missile Defense Agency's technical program development and their budget management. I'll give you a little bit more on this in just a minute.

Second, General Chilton charged the commander of JFCC-IMD, General Campbell, with leading the development of the missile defense concept of operations. And I understand yesterday he gave you a good discussion on this. But in particular, for General Chilton, he led this discussion among the other combatant commanders and with the services involved. He and his team have General Chilton's complete trust and confidence, and they have absolutely done a great job.

General Chilton is a member of the Missile Defense Executive Board. And the acronym is MDEB; some of you may know about it. That's a relatively new senior oversight panel set up last year to oversee implementation of strategic policies and plans, program priorities, and investment options to make sure that our nation is adequately protected.

The MDEB is chaired by the Honorable John Young, the Undersecretary Of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, and has members other key community stakeholders, the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Cartwright, Director of the Missile Defense Agency, each of the services, several senior leaders from the office of the secretary of defense, and other key organizations. General Chilton is a member of that panel.

Strategic Command is also an active member of several of the committees that work for the Missile Defense Executive Board. I'm on the Policy Committee. General Campbell serves on the Operational Forces Committee. General Campbell's deputy is on the test and Evaluation Committee. And the director of requirements and resources at STRATCOM, SES Mr. Steve Callicutt, is on the Program Acquisition and Budget Committee. So you can see the committees have been set up to work the issues. The executive leadership is aligned to give oversight. I've attended a few of the executive board meetings this spring, and I'll tell you, Mr. Young is firmly interested and has already driven some change.

They've worked some tough issues, such as supporting capabilities for the next budget, developing business rules to support transfer and transition of capabilities from the Missile Defense Agency to the services. They've worked on developing a lifecycle management plan. And so there's been a lot of work, and I predict it will continue this next year in even a more relevant way.

We believe the key to effective investment in missile defense capabilities lies in ensuring that the needs of the warfighter are heard and balanced with the superb technical judgment that resides at the Missile Defense Agency. We've institutionalized this in our Warfighter Involvement Process. We will continue to mature both this process and the product. This year, we're closing out the first cycle of the Warfighter Involvement Process with a feedback loop between MDA and us. First, we call it the Capabilities Assessment Review, or CAR. I'll go back and I'll give you just a couple more words on that in a minute.

In March 2007, about a little over a year ago, working together with representatives from each combatant command, we developed what we call our Priorities Capability List. I'll just call it the priority list. This was our second try at this list and represented a balanced and holistic approach to developing a globally focused missile defense capability bin. We've institutionalized this process for identifying and prioritizing the missile defense requirements from the combatant commanders. It's methodical; it's credible; and it is substantive. And it focuses on identifying needed capabilities to be fielded.

Missile Defense Agency reviewed our priority list, and they considered technical risk, scheduled achievability, and other factors. And then, they gave us a read-back. They called it the achievability capability list – or Achievable Capability List. I'll call that the achievable list.

This report provided MDA's evaluation of their ability within their budget constraints to deliver those capabilities the warfighters had asked for. MDA's evaluation was that they could meet most of our capabilities, but in about a third to a half of the cases, there was some risk in those items and they provided that information to us. Using this achievability list, and the most recent budget discussions provided to the Missile Defense Executive Board, STRATCOM is taking the final step for this two-year cycle by conducting our Capabilities Assessment Review.

We've provided the Missile Defense Agency our initial observations, actually to Maj. Gen. O'Reilly about a month ago, the deputy at MDA, and will provide those to the Missile Defense Executive Board here shortly. This concept-to-customer process has resulted in a balanced missile defense portfolio that supports MDA's accelerated acquisition authorities while providing some requisite oversight. We're maturing our approach, but this process is a significant step in a world where swift advances in technology and the proliferation of ballistic missiles make time to field a precious commodity. While our priority list this time focused on missile defense, the next cycle is going to expand to consider how best to integrate air and cruise missile defense capabilities with those in the ballistic programs.

In support of our assigned mission areas and integrated missile defense advocacy responsibilities, the boss, General Chilton, was recently designated as the Air and Missile Defense Integrating Authority by Secretary England, the Deputy Secretary of Defense. Though we're just beginning to evaluate the process for how we can integrate and implement air and cruise missile defense capability assessment, this designation is intended to provide that same warfighter advocacy voice and requirements definition, acquisition and budgetary forums.

We have much work to do to sort out the similarities and differences between sourcing air and cruise missile capabilities alongside of ballistic defense capabilities without degrading speed, agility, and delivery of a quality, focused product. Having commander, STRATCOM, advocate for all air and cruise missile defense capabilities, and not just for ballistic defense, should help synchronize our research, testing, evaluation and acquisition. Some of you may see the impacts of this in the future as we look to prevent duplication, and leverage existing efforts to provide effects in other areas.

We already have proven joint capabilities, such as the Navy's Aegis-equipped destroyers and cruisers, the Army's Patriot THAAD is coming online shortly. These are capable against air threats and ballistic cruise missiles. We must work to optimize employment concepts with common command-and-control networks that provide high levels of common situational awareness. One of the things we don't need is to grow new flat screens in our command centers.

We must develop common structures that provide the ability to achieve global effects while preserving the independent action required by the local commander. Centralized decision-making, decentralized execution is a hallmark of our system. Furthermore, we need to ensure we fully exploit the superb capability of all of our sensors to detect and track objects in their field of view, whether they were designed to detect those or not.

At STRATCOM, we've got a couple of related initiatives, and I want to take just a minute to walk through those. First, the Sensor-Weapons Pairing Board of Directors – and three weeks ago I wasn't even sure what that was, but I actually now know. It's being re-chartered into the Air And Missile Defense Board of Directors to provide improved oversight of integration. We have a seat on that panel.

Second, we're part of the Joint Integrated Air and Missile Defense Organization-led effort to integrate our architectures. The resulting product, Spiral Three, is in full development; and Spiral Four has been commenced. Spiral Four adds missile warning and homeland, interagency, and coalition aspects.

We're actively working the effort to integrate information networks to rapidly provide situational awareness from a globally set of dispersed sensors. If you compare missile defense sensors with space sensors and other sensors, they're stove-piped, disconnected, and generally – not generally but actually – don't share their outputs.

For the Burnt Frost evolution back in the spring, we managed to cobble together a system that plugged in output from most all of the sensors that are pretty good, and so we have a really unique picture. And that picture was shared all the way from the Pentagon to STRATCOM to Missile Defense Agency out to Pacific Command. But after the test, it was all dismantled. It's our effort to try to sort through that, break down those stovepipes, and make sure that we're able to connect all those sensors.

By effectively connecting existing missile defense information networks, we want to limit the proliferation of display monitors, reduce the manpower needed to harvest the information - turn it into knowledge in our command centers. Warfighters need systems that fuse information from multiple areas together into the fewest displays tuned to really present what I call decision-ready information.

There are two other initiatives I want to highlight. The first is called a Global Sensor Integrated Network Initiative. We're focused on taking our missile warning and missile defense information and exposing that data onto the web to provide policy-makers with the combined information. Second, our Large Data Joint Capability Technical Demonstration is attacking the challenge of accessing or moving large data caches. Things like video files, huge files -- they've become even more important to us in the last several years as a result of our operations in Iraq and Afghanistan -- how to access those files from just about anywhere without clogging up the bandwidth that we have assigned is our challenge. The idea is to provide availability to the warfighter as if it were on his desktop, as opposed to stored somewhere in a data file.

Shifting gears, we've been working hard on the development of a concept of operations. I know General Campbell mentioned this yesterday. But from General Chilton's perspective, the focus of this global CONOPS is on the processes and procedures necessary to plan for, maintain command-and-control of, and execute trans-regional missile defense. It's not as simple as just combining separate plans from each of the regional combatant commanders. Emerging threats will be capable of crossing one or more geographic boundaries, and we must in advance have thought through the tactics, techniques, and procedures to consider multiple scenarios and rapidly transcend from one confined to one region, to one that crosses a region. And we've got to be able to make those choices quickly.

While traditional theater defense remains integral to the regional combatant commander plans and operations, use of inter-theater capabilities must define who is responsible and must take advantage of time-sensitive responses of our system. Finally, this CONOPS must address processes and procedures to make the best allocation and apportionment in assignment recommendation for sensors and shooters to ensure maximum efficient and effective utilization. While these efforts are important, they are focused on the operational and tactical levels of missile defense system operation.

Missile Defense Agency's progress in developing and fielding near-term capabilities brings up several potential strategic decisions in the future. One of these strategic decisions is how do we balance between research and development and filling up our magazines in terms of investments? Geographic commanders potentially in the future face significant theater missile threats, and questions about missile defense force size continue. Do we make investments against these future threats or, given our improved confidence in the system we have today, do we buy more missiles?

Another question we've got to answer is how to effectively transition new capabilities to service operation and sustainment? What resourcing requirements are needed and how do you best position that? When do you start holding those discussions? We've had several of those discussions started.

And then finally, as the services develop multi-mission platforms, some of these platforms might have missile defense capabilities and in fact, they're planned to. How do you do that linkage early on between Missile Defense Agency and the service?

And then, the last one, an important question, is how do we consider allied participation in missile defense? Our recent exercise Nimble Titan, conducted by General Campbell and General Obering in Colorado Springs, was widely attended by a number of nations. It was clear that concern for the missile threat was widely held. The initiative to explore missile defense systems in Europe has created significant dialogue regarding the threat and potential solutions.

As we work the answer to these questions, it's going to fill up our job jar for the next several years, so I predict there will be no lack of work for us at STRATCOM and, indeed, at Integrated Missile Defense. As we work through the strategic division for balancing our missile defense efforts, integrated air and missile defense will face similar challenges between R&D and current future capabilities, balancing defense of homeland with air and theater defense needs.

In closing, I'd like to end with a quote from Werner von Braun. I understand he used to live here in Huntsville and we honor his memory as a pioneer in rocketry. He is recognized also as a chief architect of the Saturn V, which put our folks on the moon a few years ago. He was a great scientist and a man who faced tremendous challenges throughout his life, always rising to meet them.

He said one time, ""I've learned to use the word ""impossible' with great caution."" It's in that spirit that we want to meet the challenges of the 21st century. I'm certain, working together with our partners in industry and academia, as well as our wonderful military services and agencies in the department and indeed across our government, we'll too learn to use the word ""impossible"" with great caution.

Finally, I want to thank the organizers for inviting me here and being able to share some of what we're doing in the Strategic Command with you. And with that, I'll be happy to answer any questions that there might be out in the audience. Thanks very much.

(Applause.)

There's got to be something for the Navy guy. All right. We'll start with question number two. If there are no questions, I'll be forced to bring up my 200 PowerPoint charts. (Laughter.) Ah, good.

Q: I wanted to ask about the concept of centralized decision-making and decentralized execution. As we in the future I think will be moving towards at least some options for boost-phase defense, isn't there going to be a need for decentralizing, at least to some degree, the decision-making and pre-delegating authority in order to achieve a significant boost phase intercept capability?

VADM. MAUNEY: That's an absolutely great observation. And the way I think of it is, there are decisions at every level and you want to push decision-making down to absolutely the lowest level. But commensurate with each level are certain authorities and, again, we'd like to push as much authority down to decentralize decisions as much as possible, but you know, point of fact is, the president's going to have to make some decisions, the secretary of defense makes some decisions, and, indeed, those are then delegated out to the regional combatant commander.

So it's in that context of pushing down decisions to the lowest possible level which is trying to get at what you're inferring is the objective. So I think that's a better clarification of really in terms of missile defense and other areas in our military, we have a long history of great success by pushing decisions down to our youngsters and giving them good guidance, good commander's intent, good training, and make sure they're properly equipped. And they've proven many times in the past that we can be very successful in that kind of context. So I appreciate that question.

Q: I'm Bob Forth with the Missile Defense Agency. My question is, what is STRATCOM doing regarding protecting our information systems -- cyberspace, hackers, those things or the folks that could do some damage or intend to do damage towards our communication networks?

VADM. MAUNEY: Okay, thanks. Thanks for that. I actually spend a fair amount of my time in a couple of areas -- one is actually the nuclear area, given my background. Kind of my second consumer of time and executive bandwidth is the cyber area. Strategic Command is tasked to do two things in the network area: first, to operate and defend the global information grid. The global information grid is the .mil and the .smil domains on our networks.

We do that through JTF Global Network Operations and GNO issues orders to virtually all of the networks, be they service networks, COCOM networks, around the planet. Some estimates say there's seven million users in the DOD GIG. So to the extent that the networks you're talking about connect to the global information grid, we have a very active program of assessment, information assurance, and monitoring of traffic and activity on the network, quick response when we determine that there are undesirables on the network.

Those threats range from the teenage individual who kind of wants to do some experimentation, to the seasoned hacker who has an axe to grind, to rogue elements, to nation states, all the way up the ladder. And we see virtually all sorts of those kinds of traffic, not only on the Internet, but in networks as well. So it's our objective to fulfill our mission to defend the network, to make sure that that network is ready when needed for military operations, maintaining freedom of action on our network.

And indeed the second area is, when directed, we conduct offensive computer network operations. But in terms of the networks and being able to operate them, as they pass through space and on the ground and throughout the globe, we maintain situational awareness, provide that to the various regional commanders, and work very closely with them to resolve any problems that we find.

There are networks that are not part of the Global Information Grid and various other folks work with those, but we certainly collaborate with them whenever we find indications of a problem on the network. As most of you know, the President announced back in the fall a National Cyber Initiative. Strategic Command as the operator in the Department of Defense is part of that initiative, and we will continue to ensure that we provide the assistance and in our case JTF-GNO is working very carefully with the Department of Homeland Security to try to get their network operations organization, to pass on the lessons learned that we've developed over the years of operating our networks, as we take steps to look at the government networks and the national networks here in the short term.

Q: Admiral, I'm Paul Schuman, Primus Incorporated. I enjoyed your talk. It's very clear that much of what you do is prioritizing and racking and stacking capabilities. We have a new commander of STRATCOM, a new deputy commander of STRATCOM. You've got many mission areas. Could you tell us where missile defense stands in your overall priority list?

VADM. MAUNEY: I think if Gen Chilton were here he would tell you that in his mind, the areas where we have forces assigned, we have to be ready to execute missions in those areas. But I'll tell you that he also recognizes, and General Renuart is a great advocate of the missile defense program for obvious reasons at Northern Command, as is Admiral Keating out at Pacific Command. So I'll tell you, over the last six, eight months, missile defense has been high on the priority list. And certainly General Campbell will tell you, he's spent a lot of time doing it and so, between him and our J8 folks as well as J3. Burnt Frost is an example where we learned a tremendous amount about the missile defense capabilities and the technologies and working through operations, so I'd say in the last six to eight months, it's been very high up there. I don't know whether it's been two, three, or four.
I think I'd be honest and tell you nuclear deterrence and operating the nuclear forces is number one. But up there in that top – and those change, as you know. Missile defense has been pretty high up and I think it will stay that way, at least for the near term, as we continue to watch. I'll mention that some of our missile defense assignment at STRATCOM, which is missile warning and operating sensors, is tied in with our nuclear deterrence""a strategic deterrence role as well. So, can't separate them out, and I think that guarantees that missile defense is going to continue to receive a priority in terms of our energy for the near term.

Q: I'm Mark Santor from Altera Corporation. You mentioned earlier that there was a dismantling of the sensor integration after the program. And I think that's interesting and exciting, I guess, unfortunate. Integration of sensors to achieve a network-centric theater of operations is really a key to being able to move forward to future combat systems. And also I think that we certainly are challenged by the compartmentalized data security issues that there are. Can you comment on any type of theater integration program or how we're going to meet that challenge?

MR. MAUNEY: Well, dismantlement's probably a little strong; disconnecting is probably more accurate. And we didn't totally disconnect the network. Certain elements of it that haven't been closely connected in the past were plugged in together. I guess the example I might give is similar to space situational awareness. And certainly the Missile Defense Agency has their own set of sensors, and they've been focused on their mission, which is building and testing new capabilities. So it's our intent to take – identify, first identify all of those sensors – we've done that - and then figure out, you know, there are some software things you can tack onto sensor outputs that just pipe the data over to somewhere else.

And that's what we're looking at. Some of these legacy programs – many of you have been involved in building them – where you were tasked to provide a certain sensor, a certain sensor result, for a certain program and then, now that we have the sesensors, we've learned that they can provide additional capability. So it's a matter of our evolving to, as you say, abd I think you've characterized it pretty well, a networked set of sensors so they all have data is pooled and compiled and get the most accurate determination of what's going on in the environment.

So I think you're right. We recognize that at STRATCOM and we're working, as I mentioned, our global sensor integrated network, GSIN initiative, as one example where we're going to attach some of these sidecars to the sensors to try to export the data. And not just offer this to industry: anytime you can look and use a common data format, common architectures"" As a submarine guy, we've been talking for years about an open architecture concept, and in fact, we've used that in our combat systems where you have the baseline, you have middleware, and you plug in modules on top and they share data freely. And so that's kind of the network solution that those of you who are involved with sensors and sensor development, we ought to certainly work to open up those discussions between the various acquisition authorities, as well as various companies that produce sensors and sensor data, and make sure we're common and that those architectures share that information so that it can be compiled. So – great observation.

Q: As a follow-up to that question, do you have a timeline for working that particular issue? How do you codify it? And as you pull together something, how do you ensure each of the services or users of that don't get information that gets diluted to the point that it doesn't become useful for them?

VADM. MAUNEY: I mean, I guess I'd say, as quick as we can, before we run out of money, you know, all of those things. But, you know, you highlighted a great point. And there's a – and this is an observation, and this is not a criticism against the services, but when the services decide they need a new capability, they've got resources. They go and buy that those capability. And in the case of missile defense, it's being born – I'll call it joint – outside the services.

And so crossing that line is very challenging, just because of the way our system works. And I'll lay this on the Joint Requirements Oversight Council, the JROC, which is the vice chiefs of all of the services along with the vice chairman. It's their job to kind of make these things all come together. And so I know General Cartwright has taken that seriously, but this network issue is a clear example of that, that we need to keep pushing that. And STRATCOM is going to continue to work that area hard because that not only applies in missile defense, but it applies in space, in cyber, and in nuclear command-and-control systems --our communications that we use to make sure that we understand the situation.

So it's a concept that ought to apply everywhere, I think, is have some mechanism to make sure that developers, whether they're funded by one of the services or by an agency, that they're kind of required to know what's going on in their domain and make sure they're common -- that there's a common baseline that's set. So I guess the short answer, soon as possible, and we'll try to get on with it.

Okay, thanks again. I appreciate the opportunity, and I'll be around for a little while, if anyone wants to hit me up for any follow-on questions, I'll certainly be glad to entertain those. Thanks a lot.

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