Marine commandant lays out tech needs

The commandant of the Marine Corps wants industry officials to develop information technologies that help Marines conduct distributive operations and sea basing.

Marines need IT that allows to more quickly and easily send voice, video and data information to U.S. and coalition forces when fighting on disparate parts of the battlefield. They also require IT that lets them station Marines and equipment at sea so the military can attack enemy forces worldwide, said Gen. Michael Hagee. He spoke today at the Naval IT Day event sponsored by the Northern Va. chapter of AFCEA International.

"We don’t go into a contested area until we’re ready," said Hagee, the Marine’s top officer and official.

The performance and durability of Marine IT systems fared better than expected in Iraq. But the military conflict against Iraqi insurgents and al Qaeda terrorists exposed problems with some of them, Hagee said.

For example, when Marine and Army forces started training for the war in Iraq, they could communicate by voice but not by data.

"Shame on industry and shame on us," said Hagee, emphasizing that should never happen again.

Marines and soldiers eventually solved the problem before major combat operations started in Iraq, he said.

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