Joint Forces lays out its role

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — The Defense Department's Joint Forces Command has developed a campaign plan that includes its priorities and goals for the next six years as part of an effort to ensure that all DOD is aware of what is being done in the myriad areas the command oversees.

Joint Forces Command is charged with generating systems requirements for strategic and tactical operations, particularly in battle management command and control. The command is also responsible for leading all DOD joint experimentation and testing.

The command's campaign plan, which runs from 2003-2009, is focused on the four areas that DOD's leadership requires for future success, said Army Col. Anthony Tata, chief of staff for joint experimentation at Joint Forces Command.

Speaking as part of a Feb. 28 panel here at the Association of the U.S. Army's winter symposium, Tata said the plan's four main purposes are:

*Establishing a standing Joint Forces headquarters at every combatant command headquarters by the first quarter of fiscal 2005.

*Rapid prototyping to enhance joint warfighting today.

*Provide recommendations for future force investments.

*Collaborating with all necessary partners.

DOD war games also fall under Joint Forces Command's purview, and the campaign plan in that area includes three objectives, Tata said:

* Achieving decision superiority.

* Creating coherent effects.

* Conducting and supporting distributed operations, which have 18 subsets of issues that must be at least partially addressed in the future experiments.

Later this year, Joint Forces Command will join with the Army's Training and Doctrine Command to lead the Army's transformation war game, Unified Quest 2003. That game will mark the first time the Joint Forces Command will serve as a co-sponsor with one of the services on its war game, Tata said. The exercise will address half of the 18 issues included in the command's campaign plan, he said. Joint Forces Command experiments are already paying dividends in the global war on terrorism. Numerous solutions tested during last year's Millennium Challenge, including collaborative information environments, are currently being used by combatant commanders worldwide to plan and fight battles, Tata said.

But more work is needed. Tata said the command wants to increase its partnerships with industry, DOD battle labs and military service schools.

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