For Immediate Release:
October 21, 2003

Contact:

Harald Stavenas
Angela Sowa
(202) 225-2539
Jeff Sagnip (Saxton)
(609) 261-5801

Opening Remarks of Chairman Jim Saxton
Hearing on C4I Interoporability:
New Challenges in 21st Century Warfare

The Subcommittee on Terrorism, Unconventional Threats and Capabilities meets this morning to assess command, control, communications, computer, and intelligence systems (C4I) interoperability issues and lessons learned from Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF). We are also interested to learn more about how these issues present new challenges in 21st century warfare.

Ensuring that systems work effectively together is a vital issue for the Department of Defense as it transforms itself into a lighter, faster, more lethal force. Information technology (IT) plays a critical role in the Department’s transformation. The objective is to decrease the decision making time process—to effectively shorten the sensor-to-shooter time to deliver rounds on targets.

Network centric warfare (NCW) is an essential element of the Department’s transformation. The foundation of NCW is to use technology—computers, data links, networks—to connect members of the armed services, ground vehicles, aircraft, and ships into a series of highly integrated local and wide-area networks capable of sharing critical tactical information on a rapid and continuous real-time basis.

NCW’s components include: interoperability of various command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (C4ISR) systems. NCW eliminates stove-pipe systems, parochial interests, redundant and non-interoperable systems, and optimizes capital planning investments for present and future IT systems. The Subcommittee supports the Department’s initiative to attain the goals of NCW by implementing network-centric activities and programs.

To provide our warfighters the most accurate real-time information, they must have the latest command, control, communications, computer, and intelligence systems to receive and move that data over secure communication links. The key is to have this information move seamlessly within a chain of command and between the service commanders.

During OIF, the United States had over 170,000 military personnel in theater. With such a large number of people involved in operations that spanned several countries, it was imperative to have real-time C4I interoperability between the services at every level to coordinate missions, air-strikes, troop movement, and to prevent fratricide.

Interoperability is more than just the individual C4I and weapon systems that move information to leverage firepower. Interoperability also includes procedures and techniques. But most importantly, interoperability is about how people—warfighters—can obtain real-time access to intelligence and information to make informed decisions in battle. Information, access to it, and how fast it can be delivered now determines combat power.

There are several C4I interoperability issues that should be addressed during today’s hearing. These include battle command on the move—the integration of C2, intelligence, logistics, force protection, and weapon systems, bandwidth constraints and satellite communications, and coalition interoperability. These fundamental issues need to be addressed as the U.S. military transforms to meet and defeat conventional and asymmetric threats in the 21st Century battlespace.

Today, we are pleased to have Lieutenant General William Wallace, Lieutenant General Daniel Leaf, Major General Keith Stalder, Brigadier General Dennis Moran, and Brigadier General Marc Rodgers testify before the subcommittee on the importance of C4I interoperability following combat operations in OIF.

Lieutenant General Wallace commanded the U.S. Army’s 5th Corps—which was responsible for the capture and occupation of Baghdad.  His headquarters synchronized the decisive execution of the 3rd Infantry Division, the 101st Airborne Division, the 3rd Armored Calvary Regiment, the 82nd Airborne Division, the 2nd Cavalry Division, the 4th Infantry Division, and the 1st Armored Division, along with the associated combat support and combat service support under the 3rd Corps Support Command.  Gen. Wallace then assumed responsibility for all of Iraq upon his transition to the Commander, CJTF-7.  Presently, Gen. Wallace is Commanding General for Combined Arms Center, U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

Lieutenant General Leaf served as Director, Air Component Coordination Element with the Coalition Land Forces Component Commander in Kuwait and Iraq.

Lieutenant General Leaf was the Joint Forces Air Component Commander’s representative to the land component commander. He worked with the Coalition Forces Air Component Commander to develop the air and space strategy and coordinated close-air-support missions with the Army. General Leaf acted as the coordinating authority between the land and air commanders. Presently General Leaf is Vice Commander for U.S. Air Force Space Command.

Major General Stalder served and continues to serve as the Deputy Commanding General of the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force (MEF), the command element for all Marine air, ground, and combat service support operations during OIF.  During command operations he was responsible for the MEF’s rear headquarters. From this vantage point, General Stalder was able to assess the effectiveness of the Corps C4I systems operating within the MEF, and those networked to higher headquarters, sister services and coalition partners.

Brigadier General Moran served as U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM’s) J-6 and was responsible for all programs that provide command, control, and communications (C3) support to the Commander of CENTCOM and his staff.  In addition, he was responsible for the integration of all C3 support required by the ground, air and sea components of CENTCOM.  General Moran also provided the planning and execution of the communications architecture for Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and OIF. Presently General Moran is the Director of Information Operations, Networks, and Space for the U.S. Army.

Brigadier General Rogers is the Director, Joint Requirements and Integration Directorate, J-8 for U.S. Joint Forces Command (JFCOM). He is responsible for integrating the national military strategy with the Department of Defense’s planning programming and budgeting system. His directorate conducts reviews of future capabilities requirements outlined by the combatant commanders. The directorate focuses on the degree of interoperability among all force components and then validates emerging technology for testing through experimentation and demonstration.

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House Armed Services Committee
2120 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515