Command to score joint C2

U.S. Joint Forces Command soon will be managing the Defense Department's joint command and control (C2) decisions, as soon as Pentagon leaders sign off on the implementation plan.

"Joint Forces Command will be fully in charge of joint command and control, and we're making them accountable by giving them the money to do it," said Army Lt. Gen. Joseph Kellogg Jr., director of command, control, communications and computer systems for the Joint Staff, during a Nov. 26 luncheon speech sponsored by the Washington, D.C., chapter of AFCEA International.

Kellogg, who has been calling for this move for more than a year, said the command will set requirements, control funding and oversee system integration decisions for all joint C2 programs within DOD. He added that the decision should be approved in within 60 days by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Air Force Gen. Richard Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

"We're as close as we've ever been," Kellogg said, using a football analogy to illustrate his point: "We're on the 1-yard line, it's first down and goal to go. Secretary Rumsfeld is my quarterback, Chairman Myers is the fullback, and I think we're going to score."

To help speed up the DOD's "slow, cumbersome acquisition process," Joint Forces Command also is in the process of establishing an Information Technology Development Center (ITDC) that will serve as a joint C2 collaboration nexus for government and industry, he said.

The ITDC, which should be operating with initial capabilities "within six months," will make it easier for DOD to collaborate with the private sector on joint C2 programs and technologies by eliminating the need for contractors to make the same pitch to various Pentagon offices, he said.

In related Joint Staff news, Kellogg said his office is working with the new Northern Command to establish "joint C2... and seamless horizontal integration" capabilities between Northcom and its numerous DOD and government partners, including the FBI. Northcom is responsible for ensuring homeland defense capabilities and supporting civilian authorities when directed by the president or secretary of Defense

Kellogg said industry and academia can help DOD with its joint C2 and homeland security integration needs by ensuring that its solutions are interoperable and can be delivered in months, instead of years.

"What I've found in this business of homeland security is there's enough work to go around," he said.

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