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Chairman Unveils Blueprint for Joint Forces in 2010

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, July 26, 1996 – American military planners now have a a joint forces road map to follow.

Spokesmen for Gen. John M. Shalikashvili, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, unveilled Joint Vision 2010 at the Pentagon recently. The chairman's vision will serve as the template for the services in building jointness in the military.

Air Force Gen. Joseph W. Ralston, vice chairman, called the vision statement a capstone document. "This is where the joint world wants to be in 2010," he said. "This is the yardstick by which the services will be measured."

Ralston said the chairman and other military leaders will look to the vision when making decisions at the Joint Requirements Oversight Council and when preparing joint warfighting capability assessments. Officials will use the vision when preparing the Chairman's Program Assessment.

At the heart of the vision is military dominance through new operational concepts married with technological innovations, officials said. The vision centers around four operational concepts: dominant maneuver, precision engagement, full-dimensional protection and focused logistics.

Dominant maneuver means the ability to position and coordinate widely dispersed land, air, sea and space forces. "We won't have to mass forces in one place like we have in the past," said Air Force Maj. Gen. Joseph Redden, commander of the Joint Warfighting Center at Fort Monroe, Va.

Redden said U.S. forces must be able to outmaneuver and outpace any potential adversary. "Getting a clear picture of the battlefield is crucial to this," he said. "For those of us old enough to remember, in Vietnam we probably could discern 35 to 40 percent of the battlefield. In the Persian Gulf, the number went up to about 65 to 70 percent. We foresee this rising to 90 to 95 percent by 2010."

Precision engagement is intelligence, communications, attack and assessment capabilities rolled into one system. Precision engagement will allow U.S. forces to acquire targets, communicate their locations in near-real time, assess what weapon systems would be the best to use and then allow planners to assess the results.

Full-dimension protection means protecting American service members from the same technologies the United States wishes to employ. The concept will result in protection from the individual through the theater. U.S. planners will look to take away ballistic missile capabilities from potential adversaries, and again, information superiority is key to the success of this concept.

Finally, focused logistics will allow U.S. military forces to be more mobile and versatile. U.S. forces are primarily stateside now, said Pentagon officials. Delivering U.S. forces to distant battlefields and keeping them supplied will require a fusion of information, logistics and transportation technologies. Planners should be able to tailor logistics packages for specific levels of operations, officials said. Focused logistics will mean smaller, more capable deployed forces and less logistics presence than in the past.

All of these will require leadership schooled in joint doctrine. "I don't think this will be a problem in 2010," Redden said. "When we were writing this report, officers at the O-4 and O-5 level said by 2010 those in charge will be used to thinking jointly. Those officers were introduced to joint thinking earlier in their careers than my generation was. They have some knowledge of the capabilities and characteristics of the other services almost from the time they come in. This generation is prepared for something like Joint Vision 2010."

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