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DoD Lists Key Needed Capabilities

Jan. 20, 2012 - 03:44PM   |  
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The Pentagon has released a list of 30 war-fighting capabilities it says it needs to fight anywhere on the globe in the future.

The 75-page document — officially called the Joint Operational Access Concept (JOAC) — lays out how the services must work together to defeat anti-access threats. It also will help shape development of future weapons and equipment.

“It’s a way to look at whether we’re correctly developing joint capabilities, not just service capabilities, to be able to get to where we need,” Lt. Gen. George Flynn, director of joint force development on the Joint Staff, said of the document during a Jan. 20 briefing at the Pentagon.

The document goes a step beyond the traditional fighting spaces — air, land and sea — to include space and cyberspace.

“The JOAC also envisions a greater degree and more flexible integration of space and cyberspace operations into the traditional air-sea-Iand battlespace than ever before,” the forward of the report, written by Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said.

Specifically, the 30 capabilities listed in the document are focused on command and control, intelligence, fires, movement and maneuver, protection, protection, sustainment, information and engagement. The document calls for more integration between the services at lower levels.

“How you achieve those capabilities; that could be provided by one service or it could be the collective capability of the joint force,” Flynn said.

In addition to the JOAC, the Pentagon is also pushing the services to develop requirements that can allow new weapons and systems to benefit all services, according to Maj. Gen. Craig Franklin, vice director of the Joint Staff.

“We can no longer afford to stovepipe expensive, exquisite munitions and platforms among the services,” Franklin said during a Jan. 17 speech at an industry conference. “We are working very hard on the Joint Staff to ensure the systems required by one service are actually compatible with and can talk to the systems of another service.”

The JOAC release comes just weeks after the Pentagon’s release of a new comprehensive strategy that will shape the military over the next decade. The Pentagon plans to cut $487 billion from planned spending over that period.

“One of the reasons this was put out after the strategy is, this was designed to be a framework that guides the development of capabilities,” Flynn said. “This ... will be a tool to use to make sure that [we] have the right priority in the development of capabilities that we think we need in the joint force 2020.”

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