Vice Chairman: Future of Military Transformation Depends on Service Integration
By Tech. Sgt. Adam M. Stump, USAF
Special to American Forces Press Service
NAVAL SUBMARINE BASE NEW LONDON, Conn., April 18, 2007 Integration between services and becoming part of the joint community are vital to the U.S. military's ability to transform, the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff told members of Submarine Group Two and students at the submarine school here yesterday.
Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Navy Adm. Edmund P. Giambastiani speaks to senior officers and enlisted sailors from Submarine Group Two during the admiral's question and answer session at Naval Submarine Base New London, Conn., April 17, 2007. Giambastiani spoke to 60 members of the group about the importance and future of submarine capabilities in joint operations. Defense Dept. photo by Air Force Tech. Sgt. Adam M. Stump
(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.
Integrating the deterrent capability of submarines into the future is important for the nation and in addition, there are operational and tactical reasons for having a vibrant and viable submarine force, Navy Adm. Edmund P. Giambastiani said.
"The ability to collect intelligence, to surveil and to do reconnaissance are so important," he said. "These have been characteristics that have been around for a long time. They will remain around for a very long time. You would be amazed at the importance that these bring within the joint community."
Members of the joint community rely on other services to provide information critical to accomplishing the mission, he said.
"A joint officer who goes out and commands somewhere does not care where he gets the intelligence from,” Giambastiani said. “All the joint officer cares about is getting it on time, when he needs it, and accurately to support what he does."
This attitude toward mission accomplishment is a change from the way operations were conducted 20 years ago, Giambastiani noted.
"In the Cold War, we in the submarine force and submarine community did everything in our power not to communicate with other people,” he said. “As long as we had the information coming to our submarines, we were happy. That's just the way it was. We focused our attention on not allowing other people to talk with us other than to provide us information."
Giambastiani said that senior leaders in the submarine community realized that mindset had to change. One example of that was a high-speed satellite antenna, which evolved into a tri-band satellite antenna on submarines. Giambastiani and others worked to develop this technology in the early 1990s.
Giambastiani challenged the leaders here with a thought-provoking question about joint operations and how they could impact future generations.
"One of the questions for you as an organization and for you as leaders is, 'What are you doing to think ahead? How you can bring additional capability?'" he said.
(Air Force Tech. Sgt. Adam M. Stump is assigned to the Joint Staff public affairs office.)