Navy Hot for DISA

Maneuvering has begun over which branch of the military services will

take over leadership of DISA, and the Navy is ready to lobby heavily for

the slot that Army Lt. Gen. Dave Kelley will vacate this summer. The Navy

wants the DISA slot to protect its plans to take some Navy/Marine Corps

Intranet traffic off DISN. Sources say the Navy will nominate Adm. Dick

Mayo, currently the service's space and information warfare honcho.

The Air Force plans to offer up one of the many generals it has at Spacecom

for the slot, but the Army will make only a token nomination of a Signal

Command general because the Army's chances for another shot at the DISA

job are slim.

Outsource Almost Everything?

That's the message delivered by Navy undersecretary John Hultin, who

said the Navy needs to focus on its "core competencies and outsource the

rest." Hultin, speaking at the AFCEA/Navy League West 2000 conference this

month, said the Navy should issue a "hunting license to industry and ask

vendors what part of the Navy they could run." If the Navy does outsource

shipboard food service, I certainly hope it passes on the recipe for "sliders,"

a Navy-unique hamburger whose primary component seems to be grease.

The Cultural Gap

Army Chief of Staff Eric Shinseki experienced firsthand the "cultural

gap" between the military and the rest of society. At a recent meeting in

New York, he had a feeling he was not "connecting" during a 20-minute conversation

with another attendee. That fact was confirmed when his conversational partner

remarked, "Good to have you Marines on board." Shinseki said from now on

he plans to introduce himself — as he did at last week's Association of

the United States Army convention in Fort Lauderdale — with the phrase,

"My name is Shinseki, and I'm a soldier." Maybe it's time for the Marines

to bring back the brown shoes.

Hacker Good News

Michael Vatis, director of the FBI-managed National Infrastructure Protection

Center, saw a silver lining in the massive denial-of-service attacks against

e-commerce Web sites last week. The widespread economic effects of the attacks,

Vatis said at West 2000, should "finally motivate the private sector towards

computer security." This, Vatis added, makes more sense than launching a

heavy counterattack when the target of such fire is "a couple of teenagers."

A Bridge Too Far

This is the first year AUSA has held its winter convention in Fort Lauderdale,

Fla., (after many years in Orlando), and a few glitches marred the opening

of the convention, including construction of drawbridges over the Intracoastal

Waterway separating the hotels on the beach from the Broward County Convention


AUSA president Gordon Sullivan — a former Army chief of staff — urged

convention-goers to get some perspective, noting, "I think we can handle

the bridge in 82-degree weather."

Convention-going sure is hell.


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