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22 June 2003

Wolfowitz Says Joint National Training Capability Is Coming

(Commencement address at Naval War College) (3700)


Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz told graduating members of the
Naval War College June 20 that they can expect to see the U.S.
military "take the potential of joint operations to a dramatically new
and unprecedented level."

The commencement speaker at the U.S. Navy's graduate school in
Newport, Rhode Island, Wolfowitz said in his prepared remarks, "If
we're going to depend on one another in wartime, then we must forge
the bonds of trust in peacetime. That means that our training has to
become increasingly joint as well."

"With these thoughts in mind, we are developing a joint national
training capability. The idea is to create a distributed environment
with a global reach in which individuals and units will receive
training and experience in joint operations at the strategic,
operational, and tactical levels," Wolfowitz said.

The senior defense official also discussed the combat revolution, as
he termed it, as seen in Iraq. There the integration of air and ground
forces was taken to an entirely new level, he said, due to the
application of new networking and communications technologies.

"This new capability in turn enabled our ground forces to advance at
an astonishing speed, over a distance far exceeding that of the Desert
Storm offensive," he said. "It also made possible the use of Special
Operations Forces on a scale that would have been difficult to imagine
in the past."

Also remarkable, in Wolfowitz's opinion, was "the incorporation of
conventional armored units under the command of Special Forces and the
first-ever combined forces land component commander, integrating U.S.
Army, U.S. Marine Corps and Coalition forces in a single land combat
command. And we saw revolutionary application of new technologies,
such as unmanned aerial vehicles and hit-to-kill antimissile systems."

Other topics Wolfowitz raised included adapting to the transformation
of the U.S. military, the global war on terror, and the need for all
the branches of the military to develop a culture that rewards
innovation.

Following is the text of Wolfowitz's remarks, as released by the
Department of Defense:

(begin text)

United States Department of Defense
Commencement Address at the Naval War College
By Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz
Newport, Rhode Island
June 20, 2003

(Remarks as Prepared for Delivery)

Thank you, Admiral Rempt ... Distinguished faculty ... Honored guests
... Members of the graduating class ... Families and friends.

Admiral, thank you for that warm welcome, but the honor is all mine.
It is a privilege for me to join you this morning, to recognize the
class of 2003 at America's oldest military graduate school.

I was also pleased to learn that the class includes 70 international
students from 58 countries around the world. You bring an added
dimension to the academic program. Your attendance is a tribute to the
Naval War College.

Now, it is customary in commencement speeches to say something about
the dynamic world the graduates are about to enter and how change will
affect their lives.

But that traditional message will not work on this occasion. You are
graduating, but you are certainly not "commencing." "To commence" is
"to begin." When you return to the fleet or to your units, you will
not begin a brand new career. You will be going back to the noble
profession to which you have chosen to dedicate your lives. But you
will be going back enriched by what you have learned here and by what
you will continue to learn with the tools you have acquired here.

However, there have been dramatic changes in the world during your
year at the Naval War College, particularly in the world of the
military. You will be going back to operational assignments having had
a chance to study those developments from a critical perspective. Your
study here has prepared you to bring fresh ideas to the dynamic
process of innovation that is underway in our military today.

Revolutionizing Combat

One of the most significant developments was the battle of Iraq. I
expect most of you were glued to televisions for much of March and
April. The battlefield - or perhaps I should say, "battlespace" -- is
the ultimate classroom in your profession, and we are still evaluating
the lessons learned during those weeks. But some of them were obvious.
And they indicate lasting changes in the way the United States Armed
Forces will operate in the future.

Some of these have been in the works for a long time -- and I am sure
that many of you in this room have contributed to those changes -- but
in the last year, the whole world has had a chance to see what they
are and the effect has been dramatic.

Thanks in part to another innovation -- the concept of embedded
reporters -- the world has had a chance to see some remarkable
military innovations:

-- The application of new networking and communications technologies
has taken the integration of air and ground forces to an entirely new
level and gave our soldiers and Marines on the ground nearly constant
access to precision air support. The presence of those brave soldiers
and Marines on the ground enabled our long-range striking power to
find targets with precision. That too represents a quantum leap.
Precision weapons are only good if you have precision targeting. We
can now combine the two in dramatic new ways.

-- This new capability in turn enabled our ground forces to advance at
an astonishing speed, over a distance far exceeding that of the Desert
Storm offensive. It also made possible the use of Special Operations
Forces on a scale that would have been difficult to imagine in the
past. More than 100 Special Forces A teams were deployed throughout
Iraq. This in turn led to the disappearance of a "front" in the
traditional sense, to be replaced by a non-contiguous "battle space."

-- We also saw some remarkable organizational innovations, including
the incorporation of conventional armored units under the command of
Special Forces and the first-ever combined forces land component
commander, integrating U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corps and Coalition
forces in a single land combat command.

-- And we saw revolutionary application of new technologies, such as
unmanned aerial vehicles and hit-to-kill antimissile systems.

Adapting to Transformation

The question is not whether you will adapt to these changes. I have no
doubt that you will. You are professionals. The real question is
whether the organizations we work in will adapt.

But adapt they must. The world has changed, not only technologically,
but politically. The Armed Forces that many of you joined were
organized to fight an enemy that no longer exists, along boundaries
that were fixed and identifiable. Our enemy today does not have those
attributes. He is elusive, if not invisible. He uses unconventional
weapons against unconventional targets, including the American
heartland. The conflict is, in a word, "asymmetric." And we must
respond in kind.

Global War on Terror

The battle in Iraq, like the battle in Afghanistan before it, is a
dramatic victory in the war on terrorism. There have also been
important silent victories in the last year -- achieved by
extraordinary international cooperation among intelligence, law
enforcement and military authorities of dozens of countries -- to
capture and kill terrorists, among them the mastermind of the
September 11th attacks, Khalid Shaykh Mohammad.

But these victories are just battles in the larger war against
terrorism. As the President said in announcing the end of major combat
operations, "The battle of Iraq is one victory in a war on terror that
began on September the 11th, 2001 -- and still goes on."

Our purpose is not to manage terrorism, or just to arrest and
prosecute terrorists after they have attacked us. Our goal is to
destroy and delegitimize it -- the way slavery and piracy were
delegitimized in the 19th century.

The global war on terrorism needs to be understood as a two-front war.
The first and most obvious front is the effort to kill and capture
terrorists. That is not just a military operation. It is an effort
that requires all the instruments of national power, including
intelligence, law enforcement, and diplomacy.

We are making important headway every day. The enemy is on the run. We
are destroying his bases of operation ... his organization ... his
sources of funds ... his ability to move and communicate ... and his
ability to strike. That is the first front in the war on terror. In
the command and staff positions you will be assuming when you
graduate, you will be on the front lines of that war. And let there be
no doubt, we will win this war!

Again to quote the President, "We do not know the day of final
victory, but we have seen the turning of the tide. No act of the
terrorists will change our purpose, or weaken our resolve, or alter
their fate. Their cause is lost. Free nations will press on to
victory."

We will win in part because our military is the best-equipped,
best-trained, best-led fighting force on earth. And we have the
support of dozens of other freedom-loving nations that are part of our
coalition -- many of them represented here today. When we engage
militarily, the outcome is certain.

The second front in the Global War on Terror is to build what
President Bush called "a just and peaceful world beyond the war on
terror," especially in the Muslim world. That means helping a
liberated Iraq to become the free and democratic country that it can
be. It also means resolving the Arab-Israeli conflict.

But even though the war on terrorism will continue to consume our time
and attention, it is vital that we also continue the transformation
whose initial effects were demonstrated so dramatically in the war in
Iraq. We need to sustain that effort, not only to win the war on
terrorism but to deter the wars of the future or, if necessary, to
fight them successfully.

The American military has an extraordinary history of innovation in
wartime -- some might even say that we are more innovative under the
stress of war than in the leisure of peace. We should use the urgency
of the present war on terrorism to continue transforming our military,
not only to win this war but to be prepared to win, or to prevent, the
next one.

Joint Training

Needless to say, transformation means profound change: and not only
technological change -- not even primarily technological change. The
changes enabled by new networking and information technology take the
potential of joint operations to a dramatically new and unprecedented
level.

That is more than a mechanical change. It requires a change in the way
we think and the way we organize; it is properly described as a
cultural change. If we're going to depend on one another in wartime,
then we must forge the bonds of trust in peacetime. That means that
our training has to become increasingly joint as well.

With these thoughts in mind, we are developing a joint national
training capability. The idea is to create a distributed environment
with a global reach in which individuals and units will receive
training and experience in joint operations at the strategic,
operational, and tactical levels. It should include a live training
component, connecting live training exercises, and allowing Best
Practices to circulate among the Services. It should also include a
virtual capability that will link Service training centers. We want to
increase the amount of joint field training that our forces receive,
because we want to "train like we fight" -- as a coherently integrated
team.

Culture of Innovation

All of this requires that we develop a culture that encourages what
Secretary Rumsfeld calls, "innovation and intelligent risk-taking."

Someone once remarked on the huge numbers of failures Thomas Edison
suffered in developing a new battery -- 50,000 failed experiments with
no results. "Results?" said the inventor. "Why, I have gotten a lot of
results. I know 50,000 things that won't work!"

I'm sure I don't have to tell this audience that, for all of their
fine attributes, military organizations are not always the most
welcoming of change. There is, for example, the story told about
Robert Fulton, who constructed a submarine for a foreign navy. After
an embarrassing trial of the new sub, Fulton was approached by an
admiral who snorted, "Thank God, sir, we still fight our battles above
the waves, not beneath them!"

There is also the story of an infantry officer in the Army who began
to write about the future of armored warfare in the 1930s. Instead of
generating support, however, he was chastised by his commander who
told him that if he published anything contrary to "solid infantry
doctrine," it would mean court-martial. It took the intervention of
General Pershing's chief of staff to save that soldier's career. That
officer, so interested in the future of armored warfare, was Dwight
David Eisenhower. And the rest, as they say, is history.

In one sense, of course, a successful organization is right to oppose
disruptive innovation. There is an old proverb that says, "If it ain't
broke, don't fix it." Given the high stakes that attach to military
decisions, there are reasons to be conservative about risk taking.

Innovator's Dilemma

But there is another side to the same story. Harvard Business School
Professor Clayton Christensen -- in his book, "The Innovator's
Dilemma" -- has pointed out that the most successful companies -- the
ones that do everything right -- have been the most vulnerable when
disruptive innovations came along. As he put it, "The very
decision-making and resource-allocation processes that are key to the
success of established companies are the very processes that reject
disruptive technologies.... These are the reasons why great firms
stumbled or failed when confronted with disruptive technological
change."

Today, one of our fundamental challenges is to encourage prospective
Eisenhowers -- to inspire each of you to think about war of the
future. We should accelerate the development of a culture that
supports the innovation, flexibility, and vision that can transform
the face of battle. Instead of stifling innovators, we should
encourage and reward them.

During my present tour at the Pentagon, I have been privileged to know
some remarkable innovators -- and I'm sure there are many in this
audience today. The Commander of Central Command, General Tommy
Franks, is a great example. In Operation Enduring Freedom, for
instance, Special Forces on the ground took 19th century horse
cavalry, combined it with 50-year-old B-52 bombers, and -- using
modern satellite communications -- produced a truly 21st century
capability. When Secretary Rumsfeld was asked what he had in mind by
reintroducing horse cavalry into modern warfare, he replied with a
grin, "It was all part of our transformation plan."

Professional Military Education

As I am sure you are all aware, the Naval War College has been one of
the great generators of innovation for the U.S. military. During the
interwar period, for example, naval officers at Newport first thought
of massed carrier operations. It was here that Plan ORANGE -- the
prophetic concept of operations for a war with Japan -- was developed,
long before Pearl Harbor.

More recently, under the leadership of Admiral Art Cebrowski, the
College developed the concept of network centric warfare -- which has
become one of the organizing principles of the U.S. military.

At the same time, this institution maintains a curriculum that is
traditional in substance, with a focus on the Great Books and lots of
history, from the Peloponnesian War through the conflicts of the 20th
century. This combination of innovative and classical thought has
enabled the Naval War College to produce military leaders who harness
an understanding of military history and technological progress to
produce new ideas for the future.

Classical Military Education For An Era of Uncertainty

As you graduate, you will take with you what is, in effect, a liberal
education in the military art. The capacity for independent, critical
thought and reflection and the ability to question previous
assumptions and modes of warfare will give you an advantage over your
adversary in an age of tremendous uncertainty and change.

This classical education does three critical things:

One, it imparts a healthy skepticism about pat answers or easy
solutions. In particular, it should make you wary about received
wisdom.

Two, it exposes students to a tremendous variety of experience. As
someone has said, "history has more imagination than any scenario
writer in the Pentagon." In the summer of 2001, who would have
predicted that by the end of the year Americans would be viciously
attacked on their own shores by an enemy that has no capital or
conventional military force? And that within weeks of that attack
America would go to war in landlocked Afghanistan? And by the time the
last fires of the World Trade Center were extinguished, that U.S.
forces would be in Kabul?

Three, a classical education makes one think differently. It prepares
you to continue self-education. And it makes you more intellectually
adaptable as circumstances change and you confront surprise.

While technology confers many advantages, it cannot synthesize the
value of inter-personal debate and discussion. There is simply no
substitute for face-to-face learning and interaction -- between
students and faculty and among students themselves. Keep in touch with
your classmates after you leave. You will cross paths again, and
continue to learn from them.

Strategy and Policy: What the Classics Teach Us

And remember that all of us are influenced by our educational
experiences in different ways. This is not a training course, with a
manual and a multiple-choice test at the end. Instead, you have been
taught how to think, although there is no expectation that you will
always arrive at the same conclusions as a result.

Education, as opposed to training, teaches us that clichés about war
-- like the three-to-one rule for offense -- have fallen by the
wayside. Unorthodox battle plans, such as those employed in
Afghanistan and Iraq, cannot be found in a textbook or manual. They
were the product of military leaders who grasped the lessons of
military history and could apply them in entirely new circumstances.

To cite a recent example: In preparing the urban offensive on Baghdad
-- one that many predicted would result in a horrendous loss of life
-- General Franks and his staff developed a brilliant plan that was
informed by the lessons from the Russian military's experience in
Grozny. But rather than simply taking away the superficial lesson that
urban operations can be used to defeat advancing conventional armies
and should therefore be avoided, their critical thought process
allowed them to understand the differences between Baghdad -- a city
with people awaiting liberation and blessed with wide boulevards --
and Grozny -- with historical Chechen animus toward Russia and its
narrow streets. This was an important distinction that could easily
have been missed. No manual could tell you that. It proves that
education is not the same thing as training.

We have entered a period in which discrepancies between militaries are
far greater than at any time in the recent past -- but not,
necessarily, in human history. A world of homogeneous armed forces
that fought the same way with the same weapons is a recent
development.

Asymmetric warfare is not a new phenomenon. It is the story of our own
national military history -- of Continental Army forces firing from
the trees and wearing down a numerically superior, better-trained and
better-equipped British force.

Whatever conflicts lie ahead, you can be sure that they will be as
different from Iraq as Iraq was from Afghanistan ... Afghanistan from
Kosovo ... Kosovo from Desert Storm ... Desert Storm from Just
Cause.... Successfully meeting the challenges they pose will require
continuous questioning of accepted truths and a constant pursuit for
lessons from history and lessons from technology that may have
relevance to our contemporary situation.

Professional Military Education: A Continuous Journey

There is a tremendous need for continued self-education, and not just
about the problems immediately before us.

Given the premium we place on innovation, we require a joint officer
corps that has studied not only the technique of its profession, but
the very logic of war as an instrument of policy ... a joint officer
corps that is not afraid to ask questions and to come up with answers
that seem to violate bureaucratic norms and conventional wisdom.

It is no accident that many of the commanders in Iraq have been
graduates of the Naval War College. They include the commander of the
Atlantic Fleet, Admiral Robert Natter, who won the College's
Distinguished Graduate Leadership Award in 2000 ... the Vice Chief of
Naval Operations, Admiral William Fallon ... the Deputy Chief of Naval
Operations for Readiness and Logistics, Vice Admiral Charles Moore ...
as well as the Deputy Chief of Naval Operations for Readiness and
Logistics, Vice Admiral Dennis McGinn, who recently retired. And the
list goes on. It has been said that the College made its greatest
contribution to winning this war 10 or 15 years ago, when it educated
the men and women who are now taking the fight to the enemy.

And you will be following in their footsteps. You have been preparing
for what, we expect, will be senior leadership responsibilities. That
is the sole purpose for this institution. In the 21st century, we need
leaders who can both think creatively and carry out orders.

Conclusion

So congratulations, and best wishes as you continue your careers. In
closing, I would leave you with the words of President Theodore
Roosevelt, who walked these very grounds near the turn of the last
century. A man of great vision and personal courage, he said:

"We see across the dangers of the great future, and we rejoice as a
giant refreshed, the great victories are yet to be won, the greatest
deeds yet to be done."

Thank you. May God bless all of our brave men and women in uniform,
and may God bless America.

(end text)

(Distributed by the Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S.
Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)