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Defense Department Background Briefing

Presenter: Senior Defense Officials
March 05, 2004 11:10 AM EDT
Defense Department Background Briefing

            STAFF:  Good morning, ladies and gentlemen.  Mr. Whitman would be here, but he's feeling rather poorly today so he asked me to introduce -- set the ground rules for this press conference.

 

            This is a background briefing.  This is -- attribute everything you hear here to a senior Defense official only.  This will be a background briefing for a -- just so you understand who you have here, but I just want to reiterate Defense -- senior Defense official only. (Names and positions of briefers not transcribed.)

 

            All are here to talk about the DOD process of evaluation of capabilities; the process overall.  They will entertain -- they will each speak to you in turn and then they'll take questions.  And if you specifically have an item that you would like to get a quote from, you may bring that up as a possibility.  Otherwise this will be totally on background only.

 

            Questions?

 

            Q     I assume we can refer to the general as a senior military official.

 

            STAFF:  That's fine.  That will be fine.

 

            Okay.  Are you --

 

            (Consultations off mike.)

 

            Q     Yeah, can I ask, why are we -- why on background?  I mean, this is no secret capabilities thing.  Just curious to know why on background.  Why not on the record?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  The reason we're on background initially is because of the sensitivity in joint efforts between three separate areas.  We want to be sure that you understand what you're getting as far as understanding of this process overall.  And then if we're done and everybody feels comfortable we can go on the record if we want to. But we're concerned that there will be a misunderstanding of who says what, and there might be a difference of opinion of exactly how each shop works with each other.  So we want to make sure that gets clarified.

 

            Q     With all due respect --

 

            Q     I mean, I --

 

            Q     -- isn't it more confusing if you get news stories with dueling senior officials?

 

            Q     -- that doesn't really seem like a very good reason to --

 

            Q     Yeah.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Well, we're not going to have dueling senior officials.

 

            Q     Well, you got one senior, two senior, three senior officials.

 

            Q     Oh, shoot.  Why are we here?  (Laughs.)

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  That's right.

 

            Q     I mean, it just doesn't -- I mean --

 

            Q     A clarity point --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  They all work together.  All of these offices work together to evaluate the capabilities, so that's why they're all here together.

 

            Q     Well, it would just seem like you'd want to be right up front about this.  There's nothing secret about it.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Charlie, these are the -- these are ground rules, okay?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  The way that we do defense capabilities here is it's a strategy-driven process, and Policy are the ones that are responsible for the strategy.  But we do dovetail with the PA&E folks and the Joint Staff folks, and that's why all three of us are here, because we wanted to be able to give you a complete picture.

 

            About six months ago, Pete Aldridge provided the Secretary a different way to look at how we did Defense planning and to make it more strategy-driven.  So we kind of commonly refer to that as the Aldridge Process; the official name of it was, what, I can't think --

 

            STAFF:  Goodness gracious.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Something to do with capabilities.  But we just commonly referred to it as the Aldridge Process.

 

            Q     With a capital P?

 

            Q     It was a good Rumsfeld --

 

            Q     Capabilities Review is what we were told.

 

            Q     Yeah, something like that.  Something like Capabilities Assessment or --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Yeah, that's it.

 

            Q     -- or Joint Capabilities Review or --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  And one of the things he did there --

 

            Q     Joint Defense Capability Study.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  There we go.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  So he suggested changing from what we traditionally had as a Defense Planning Guidance, and actually taking that and putting it into three different pots.  One would be a Strategic Planning Guidance, and that would be moved up earlier in the cycle.  And we're at the process of having that fairly close to release and that is much more strategy-driven than it had been in the past.  And it was also to be cost-informed.  In the past we had put out a Defense Planning Guidance that just talked a lot about the things that we'd like to improve, but it didn't try to come up with what the specific cost would be.  We've done that this time.

 

            The other thing that he wanted out of that was a more robust risk guidance -- where risks were involved and how that fit into the strategy.  Those risks are both where we plan on reducing risk, which is something that we're normally pretty good at addressing; also, though, where we are willing to accept risk to be able to balance that and to move to a cost-neutral program.  And then there might be other areas where we would choose to hold risk.

 

            Out of that process we would take some selected areas that we thought deserved more scrutiny and put that into an enhanced planning process that would run for about a four-month period of time and would be led by PA&E.  And there are 11 areas that this time through looks like that we will be looking at.  Those areas are selected and I think (name of briefer deleted) will address this, largely driven by what the combatant commanders need to be able to do their job.  And so they highlight those in their integrated priority list they give us.

 

            Coming out of that enhanced planning process we would look at those items and put out a Joint Programming Guidance.   And that Joint Programming Guidance would give specific programming directions where the Strategic Planning Guidance would be more just at the planning level rather than specific programming direction.  And it would somewhat -- it would be very much focused on the areas chosen to study in the enhanced planning process.  It would, in fact, be cost-neutral and then from that -- and that would get out probably about the same time that the DPG had traditionally gotten out.  And then from that, all the decisions would be in place for the services to build their POMs.  And then we would go into the regular resourcing and program review at the end of the year.

 

            On the strategy itself, we are looking at, rather than having strategy as part of -- it'll be included in the Strategic Planning Guidance, but there are considerations under way right now to develop a specific Defense strategy that may or may not be a stand-alone document.  And that would be, obviously, scaled down from the broader national security strategy, incorporating a lot of the things that would normally be in the Defense Planning Guidance, but also covering in a little more depth some of the considerations that we have and some of the implementation issues.

 

            There's also legislation saying that there needs to be a military strategy, and so those two would be coordinated very, very tightly. The military strategy will obviously be coming out of the Joint Staff, and then those things work into things that we refer to as joint operating capabilities and joint integrating concepts, which I think my colleague will talk to briefly.

 

            From the strategy, not only do we put out the resource guidance, which comes out in the Strategic Planning Guidance and the other documents, but we also put out other guidances, which are the operational planning guidances, which are contained in the Contingency Planning Guidance, which is obviously the war plans that we address, and then the Security Cooperation Guidance, which are the peacetime operating functions that we look for the combatant commanders to fulfill and how we interface there.

 

            And then there's also -- on the organizational side, the guidance there is both the Unified Command Plan and the Transformation Planning Guidance.

 

            And so, to a greater or lesser extent, all those are currently in work, and those start to drive what the Defense capabilities are. Specifically, the operational capabilities that we expect the combatant commanders to do would be contained in that Contingency Planning Guidance and the Security Cooperation Guidance.  And then the way -- and the way that we plan on fighting and operating is contained in the joint operating concepts.  And they look at those and tell us where they need to have more resources or capabilities.

 

            And we're getting away from a thought process of coming in and dealing with specific platforms or systems, and more to start to discuss capabilities and then being able to understand how we do the trades across those capabilities.

 

            And with that, I start to move into (briefer name deleted) territory, and I'll -- or (briefer name deleted) is next.  Okay.  Pass it on to (briefer name deleted).

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  What I'd like to do is just step through a couple of pieces of this process and give you a sense of how it goes together, but I think up front -- and I see a lot of familiar faces out here.  Do I need to be closer?

 

            Q    (Off-mike comment about microphone.)

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  In order to have a dialogue here, let's at least get a couple of definitions up on the table and then we can kind of work from there, so we don't talk past each other.  But for capabilities-based, the department has for the most part worked over the years on three different types of planning, and none of them are to the exclusion of the others.  And so it's a question of balance here.  But during the major theater war, major regional contingency strategy period, we were focused mostly on the threat-based type planning, and that acknowledged the fact that we had an enemy out there that we had some understanding of, that that enemy had some characters and attributes which we either responded to or we tried to lead turn and anticipate where we wanted to be versus where that enemy was.  And that, for the most part, drove the capabilities or the platforms and systems that we then fielded.

 

            The second type of planning, which never goes away, is the resource-type planning.  And in that, the ability to match the resources that the department has to the requirements that we lay out in the other types of planning, that connection has to be made and that corner has to be squared because beyond the resources we have, there are a thousand good ideas out there but our ability to field them is directly related to the resources that we have.

 

            The third is this idea of capabilities-based planning.  And the acknowledgement there is that, particularly in today's world, the threat that's out there is not one that we can pin down to a particular nation.  We probably can't even pin it down to nation states.  We've got asymmetric threats, we've got cross-border, we've got all sorts of different types of actors out there, and so the opportunity to focus on just one threat would leave you in an area of vulnerability that the nation and the department probably couldn't stand.  And so when you field the force in a capabilities-based type planning, what you're trying to accomplish there is to understand the range of threat, understand in that threat where are those areas that the nation cannot stand the regret factor, and then try to focus your forces so that you ensure that you've covered those areas.  And it accepts the fact that tomorrow that threat may be very different, and that this is a changing world and there are alternate futures out there.  And so as you field these capabilities, whether we're talking about systems, platforms or people, you've got to field them in a way that allows you to quickly migrate and change as the world changes; allows you to address a broad enough range of threats that you, no kidding, can have a reasonable assurance that that regret factor that you can't stand won't occur.  Okay?  And so in that context, the capabilities- based planning starts to get a larger priority in the department versus just the threat-based planning.

 

            Now, talking -- and they've asked me to address two specific areas -- the combatant commanders' Integrated Priority Lists and how those change, and how the interaction of the combatant commanders changes with relation to this work, and then a little bit about the integrating concepts and how we use them to work in a capabilities- based environment versus a threat-based environment.

 

            First, with the Integrated Priority Lists, which is commonly referred to as the IPLs.  The difference for the combatant commanders in this review and in what Secretary Aldridge recommended is the idea that they are the warfighters, first and foremost.  That they should define the capabilities necessary to basically respond to the strategy and to these alternate futures that are out there.  In order to do that, and in order for the buildings processes, the idea of resourcing -- the old PPBS-type approach -- in order for those processes to respond, we need their input at the front end.  And historically, the input has always been at the back end.  But the reality is, the places you can have the biggest impact is to get this at the front end of the discussion.

 

            And so the intent here is to bring their Integrated Priority Lists at the front end of the process, have them bring those forward, have them bring them forward not in -- "I need platform or system X, Y, or Z" -- but come in and tell us what it takes in order for them to be able to match the strategy that's been laid out by the country to the capabilities necessary to effect that.  Okay?  So they will bring in their Integrated Priority Lists more at the capabilities level versus the platform level.  They'll do that at the beginning of the process.

 

            We will have a session, once they've nominated those in, and prior to, as (the other briefer) said, this strategic planning guidance, we will bring them in, after they've nominated them, to the building, and we'll have what's called a Senior Leader Review Group with combatant commanders added.  And these are essentially the service secretaries, the service chiefs, and the principal OSD deputies will come in, sit down with the combatant commanders and they'll go through these Integrated Priority Lists.  And they'll say what are the challenges that these bring; what do I already have in my arsenal; what would I need to have in order to have these capabilities.

 

            And that will drive the strategic planning guidance: the shortfalls that we have, the deltas that we have between what we think we need to be able to do and what we actually can accomplish.  That happens at the front end.  Once we've done that, we take those, we start to analyze them, we'll put them into a little bit of an analytic agenda that will work between PA&E and J8, principally, with policy in there to make sure we don't stray too far.  And we'll try to tee those up and understand the threat implications, understand the capability implications and understand the resource implications, so that we can understand and tee these up and get them into the processes of the building.

 

            The ones that we see that are high priority are the ones that (another briefer) referred to as the enhanced planning process.  These are critical areas where we see a shortfall and we've got to get at it quickly.  And the intent is to try to turn it in three or four months, one, because it's important, but two, to match up with the services so that they get the insights early enough that they can actually do programming associated with it.  So we're trying to get those to the service programmers by about the late April, early May time frame so as they build their budgets, they can actually take these things into account.

 

            At that point when we publish that joint planning guidance, which is the document that gives it to the services, we'll bring the combatant commanders back in, we'll sit down with the service chiefs and service secretaries and say, okay, does this match up?  Have we faithfully represented what you asked for?  And we'll have that dialogue and make sure we've got it right.  And then the services go off and include those in their programs as they build up for that particular year.  The process continues, then, with the program review.  At the end of that, probably in about the Christmas time frame, we bring the combatant commanders back in.

 

            There is a period from about late August through September, October and November where we're looking at what the services present, matching it up with what it is we thought we wanted to be able to do, and having a discussion about is that connected, bring the combatant commanders back in, in the December time frame.  And before we present that budget over to OMB and then on up to the White House, we'll have that dialogue at the very senior level: Is this what you meant?  Are we faithfully representing, combatant commander, the capabilities you thought you needed to have?

 

            And so that's the idea in the Aldridge work, is to, one, get leadership involved early, right up front.  That's absolutely critical.  Two, put the analytic engine in there so that you get enough response time that you can actually affect the budget of that year.  And then at the end, have the combatant commanders come in and, no kidding, kind of grade the homework, but basically review what it is we did, because likely there's not enough resource for everything. Did we put the risk in the right place?  Have we measured that in the right way?  Is that a reasonable representation?  And of course, each of them looks at it from a different view.

 

            So that's the Integrated Priority List story, and we'll be glad to take more questions on it.

 

            Going back to the analytic engine, we -- (name of briefer deleted) talked a little bit about operating concepts and functional concepts, et cetera.  One of the most powerful tools that we're using right now is called a joint integrating concept.  And essentially, what that is, is you start out at a strategy, you work your way down to concept, then you go to CONOPS.  CONOPS is the transition between what you want to be able to do into the how do you want to be able to do it.  And the CONOPS move to scenarios where you actually lay down and say, "This is how this would work."  And you are able, in a scenario, to give value.

 

            So if I add a capability in, did the conflict resolve itself sooner?  Was I able to resolve the conflict with less casualties, more effect, get to the objective quicker, all of those types of measures? You get a sense in the scenario of what difference does the concept make.  Okay?

 

            What that allows us to do that we have not been good at in the past and has always been a challenge for the department is, it's been pretty easy to compare, say, one airplane to another airplane, or one ship to another ship.  But the ability to take a submarine and compare its worth to an aircraft, where you're moving across very different capabilities and understand the value of the two, and then understand in your portfolio, where you want to take risk and where you want to invest, has been a very difficult challenge.

 

            The hope here is -- and we're working our way through this -- is by staying at the concept level and working our way through these scenarios, we can understand the values of very different capabilities and understand the risks that we take if, in the investment portfolio, we want to invest heavily, for instance, in the submarine versus the airplane.  What does that do to us?  What does that do to our broader capability?

 

            And so the work there is to get at that kind of a question.  And those are being handled right now -- we used to do that type of work, for the most part, in the Joint Requirements Oversight Council.  What you see going on here is, because you're really talking about the operational way you want to fight war, we're bringing that into a larger group, and so what you're seeing is the JCS side of the house, the service chiefs with their JCS hats on, and the JROC in a combined session are working their way through these integrating concepts, because you're dealing with tactics, techniques, procedures, doctrine, material solutions, how we're going to organize.  All of those things   are coming together.  So to put it in just one stovepipe or the other doesn't work for us.

 

            So the intent now is that both the tank process and the JROC process will merge on these integrating processes.  And so you'll have that kind of a look at it.

 

            These integrating concepts are written by a combatant commander, okay?  That's their linage.  So in order to start this process, again, the combatant commander is getting in at the front end, where it makes a difference, and saying this is what I have to be able to do.  The services are coming in on the process and saying here are competing ways that I could solve this problem.  And at the back end of it we're looking at, okay, we got a great solution for this problem X.  How does that -- how do I weight that in risk, in comparison to problem Y, okay?  And that's the intent behind the process, okay?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I'll wrap up quickly because I'm sure you've had enough presentation.

 

            I want to -- (another briefer) really laid out the process up to this point.  What I want to talk to you about are two things: the changing sets of tools that are going to be necessary to do it, and then a little bit about the fact that this is a highly experimental process change.

 

            Tool set; I'll do it -- (another briefer) did it to you -- for you in the operating or military sense.  I'll give it to you in what I think is -- my background is, as a business guy, is that what we're really doing is looking at supply and demand; demand of capabilities needed and supply by the military services and defense agencies of men, materiel and training.  And the challenge is how can we, at the analytic level and then at the decision level, get out of what is our normal model, which is looking at individual items on a sort of “mano-a-mano” basis?  What do I mean by that?

 

            What we tend to do is look at a system and say, do I want to buy the new system to replace the old system?  The answer is the new system is almost always much better than the old system, and that tends to frame a discussion one way.  Contrast it with what we're trying to get at, which is if you start with the objective is not supply, but it is demand -- to be able to do something, capabilities -- then say what are the range of systems training/capability/skill sets that are necessary -- the portfolio things necessary to create that capability.  That's analytically harder.  It is, from an evaluation standpoint, more difficult.  And it is decision -- and deciding on it is much more difficult.

 

            I'll refer to you what I think the Army just did with its aviation capabilities analysis -- in the Army context was a portfolio look.  They didn't look at Comanche or not, but they looked at the whole range of capabilities provided by Army aviation and said, given that I've got fixed dollars and I've got a whole set of skills and tools and operating concepts to create a capability, how do I want to change the mix?  And that's precisely what they worked at.    So it is an idea, that being in a service context, that we want to expand out to a joint context, the concept of portfolios.

 

            The second one -- second area of tool-set development is in metrics.  How do you actually measure things?  And the notion of measuring risk.  The secretary had laid out in a Quadrennial Defense Review the notion of balanced risk, that we had to balance among -- as managers balance among force-management risk, current operational risk, future challenge risk and institutional risk, the way we run the place.  And you had to think about what you got out of the investment, not simply what you put into the bucket in terms of dollars.  Right?

 

            So this notion of measuring risk over time and measuring outcome, not just input, is one of the tools that we're working a lot on.  You see it reflected in the last Annual Defense Report, you'll see it in the one where -- we may actually get an Annual Defense Report reasonably on time, or at least within the fiscal year it's supposed to report on.  We're hopefully going to do that soon.  But trying to measure outcomes in Defense is something that is -- you know, that is creating new space, if you will, and that's an area that we're going to do a lot of work on.

 

            The last thing at the sort of decision and experimental process is this notion of creating broader decision space.  And I'll refer back to the Crusader as an interesting case study, and you may wonder how I'm going to do that.  If you think about Crusader versus Paladin -- the old "mano-a-mano," old system versus new system -- in an old-system versus new-system check, Crusader is a much better system than Paladin was.  When, instead, one looked at the decision space -- not as that acquisition element, but what is the nature of joint integrated network fires in the battlefield of 2010 and beyond? -- a much broader set of portfolios and capabilities --  what Crusader added on the margin by itself versus what you got in precision, what you got in networking, what you got in integrating the various service capabilities together, was very little.  And so that challenge of broadening decision space so you look at an idea on the margin in the concept of a much bigger set of decisions is that whole analytical engine that the Aldridge panel had counseled us on and that we're trying to do.

 

            I just lastly note that this is a highly experimental development.  You know, when Pete would present his analytic engine, and it's all right there in the analytic engine, and then I would say, "Okay, Pete, what's inside the analytic engine?"

 

            He said, "Well, you still got to work on that."

 

            That is what we're working on, and why -- to your question of why are we on background is part of what we're trying to do here today is come and educate you on what we're working on; what the experimental development of process is.  Not terribly sexy sometimes.  But, you know, at the heart of the day -- tie this back to transformation -- if you think about the problem the same way you've always thought about the problem, with exactly the same data, it's not likely you're going to reach any new conclusions.  Part of what we're trying to do is challenge the framework of the way people think, how they analyze, and in particular, how questions are framed, to help the secretary and the senior decision-makers deal with the kinds of changes that we've got in front of us in the years ahead.

 

            And with that as a sort of opening -- any of the three of us.

 

            Q     You were talking about measuring weapons programs now against one another.  In other words, the value of the DDX compared to the value of the Comanche, et cetera.  And yet, what you all talked about on the Comanche, you talked about "mano- a-mano" portfolio programs; the Paladin, for instance, versus the new weapon that you cancelled.  I mean, that was measuring one gun against another.  It's something you no longer needed because you're not going to fight in the Fulda Gap in the Cold War.

 

            So what you're talking about canceling the Comanche and canceling the Crusader is somewhat different than what you're talking about looking at the big picture for planning the future now.  Or am I wrong?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Oh, no a much higher degree -- much higher degree of difficulty because you've made the picture bigger.

 

            Q     Exactly.  Because you've drawn in all the other weapon systems and balance what the whole portfolio would look like.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  To try to keep your focus up at that level, all of us want to dive to the program or the platform.  But what is the context in which that gives you value -- the program or the platform -- and is the change that you would get, whether it would be beneficial or not -- I mean, one, new is better than old, or something like that -- is that change really, in comparison to another program and another exchange, what's the value here, what's the value at the end of the day in the larger context?

 

            Q     And of course, it makes it extremely difficult, I guess, when you're talking about the cost of programs, like the F-22, the JSF, the DDX, and so on.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  And the big challenge has always been, in defense analysis, how much is enough?  You know, what is true cost- benefit analysis?

 

            I think one of the big challenges here is analytically and in decision-making -- and (the other briefer) hit on this -- it's not so much an issue of what we add in capability, it's what we're willing to take a risk in capability that is the new space that we're really pushing at as you look at these broader issues.  And that will be hard work.

 

            All right?

 

            Q     I have a couple of questions, if you can stick with me for a minute.  First, a broader one:  It seems, I think, to somebody just listening in, it seems crazy that you didn't used to get your requirements from the combatant commanders.  Culturally, historically why wasn't that happening, and what is it about this time that is making that happen?  And then if you can ignore just everyone else and just talk to me for a while, it would be good.  (Chuckles.)

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  We did get requirements, and they came in and as systems.   "I want this system, I want that system because these are what my components and other folks are telling me will solve the problem."  The difference now is we're saying is we're giving as inputs into their decision-making, here are the operational problem set that we want you to address, the wars we want you to be able to fight, and the engagement that we want you to be able to do in peacetime for security cooperation.  So these are the tasks that we're giving you.  We're giving you some insight on how, across the entire force, we expect you to accomplish those via the joint operating concepts.  We're giving them some target goals, measures of performance that we would like them to be able to meet.

 

            Q     Sir, when you say "we," do you mean OSD, do you mean OSD and the Joint Staff?  And when you say "they," do you mean the combatant commanders or the service chiefs?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Okay.  When I say "we," that is the Secretary of Defense via the guidance that he gives out.  Some of those documents are documents that he signs.  Things like the joint operating concepts, I believe the chairman signs.  So it's -- when we say "we," it is our seniors, the Secretary and the chairman.  We happen to do some of the staff work for them.

 

            So we give them that problem set and then we ask them to come back to us and don't tell us specifically what system you want to solve this, but tell us what the capability shortfalls you have because we've given you more -- we've given you a task that we haven't given you all the capability that you need to have to be able to do it.  So you tell us the type of capabilities -- whether you need more forcible entry, if you need more undersea warfare capability, where you need capability -- and while you're doing that, please come back and tell us where you think that you have a capabilities overmatch, over any of the opponents that you can -- or any of the contingencies that you might possibly have to meet.

 

            Q     Okay.  And my suspicion is that one upshot on this in getting them involved earlier and asking them not to be systems- specific is you're not going to have wish lists appearing on the Hill at budget time with specific --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  That's a second order --

 

            Q     I mean, I think it would probably be a benefit for you guys because you --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  But the key piece, and you hit on it, is -- that's very different is get it at the front when it actually could make a difference because at the past, when they did it at the back end --

 

            Q     Why did they wait till the back end?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Over the years, it was -- the process basically had allowed itself to grow to a point where the services looked at all of these guidance documents and then said here is a program that solves it from a service perspective.  The problem -- I mean, the problem with that and the realities of today is there aren't too many conflicts that we're going to go to that are service- specific.  We're going to fight in a joint context.  The person who's going to fight that joint fight is going to be a combatant commander.

 

            So we wanted to get the focus -- and again, it's not a change in authority, it's just a change of perspective and waiting.  But get him in there at the front end.  Let him declare up front what are those capabilities that he needs, then let the services compete.  And again, there's another nuance here, which is the competition piece.  I mean, a bomber might be a great solution for something; a carrier might be able to do it, too.  So how much of that redundancy do we need and do we want to make some of these decisions about one versus another?  And again, it's back to the issue of I might be trading very different platforms or systems against the common capability and trying to understand those types of trades.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  And that way, the service acquisition process -- its customer base becomes a joint war fighter rather than the specific service needs.  And so it helps us to build joint programs better.

 

            Q     Am I right in assuming that one of the possible things that could happen from this is, historically the service budgets have been pretty static, each one gets a certain percentage of the overall budget; and now those walls might come down and you can see money shifting more readily between them?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  We're certainly going to put tension on that assumption.

 

            Q     Isn't one thing that's making things a little easier now in this direction is that  the services are much, much, much more aware of jointness now?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Oh, that's very important.

 

            Q     I mean, you have people like Hagee and John Jumper working together on the JSF.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  There was no way --

 

            Q     -- working together on trade-offs, in fact, up front --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  The shifting of who is -- where the demand comes from is only possible by the recognition that the nature of who conducts warfare has shifted dramatically in the last 20 years.  In one sense, this is an evolution of that -- an evolution of that shift to the process-management side of the Department of Defense.

 

            Q     That leaves the two questions.  One is can you run us through the list of the 11 areas that you're going to be looking at specifically?  And the second part is where does the OMB review of F/A-22 that they asked for fit in here in the process?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Let me not jump to a specific of the list of 11.  We still have to get the Secretary to do his final approval. We'll put out a list after that.

 

            But let me give you some conceptual flavor for it so you -- because we're doing some different things.  One is working at tool- sets, right?  So how do -- I mean, some of this is really simple blocking and tackling stuff.  How do we identify units with, you know -- I'll use the term of art -- unique identifiers; bar codes for units, if you will -- up and down systems and across systems in such a way that I can compare them?  You would think that we would have that. But there isn't a common lexicon for that.  So that's part of doing a tool-set.  That's one type of work.

 

            Another type of work is take one of the joint integrating concept areas that -- (name of briefer deleted) -- talked about and try to build a case study for can you go from strategy to concept to CONOPS to a portfolio of opportunity and risk, and can you make a decision in that?  And so the 11 will have characters of -- those are the two extremes, and there will be stuff in between --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  There would be war-fighting ones that might look at how do you exactly get the right mix of your intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance assets?  Other ones might be, what's an optimum way to approach, to net the force together?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  And so, you know, will all of those produce on        the Aldridge panel timeline of I'd like you to have perfect joint planning guidance by the end of May?  The answer is no.  So the experimental part of this is some of this is deliverable in three months, some of this we don't even know when it's deliverable, but it's the right stuff to work on.

 

            To the second part of your question, because you all want to know the answer to this, I mean, first of all, there was a lot of heat, light and energy on that memo and that leak.  It got a lot of ink time.  I'm not sure that it merited as much as it got, but it's what you had, anyway.  We're going to try to look at the system of F/A-22 not as an F/A-22 or not, but in a concept of what kinds of missions and capabilities does it provide and how do you build the whole frame of that question around the missions and capabilities.

 

            Time frame?  I don't know.  I mean, I actually don't know how long it will take to do that work.  My guess is it's -- to your point, it is a much bigger, harder question than saying F/A-22 or not, but it is a much more relevant question to what should we be doing in those portfolios to provide those capabilities and how do you frame that choice.  So that's where we're headed with it.

 

            Q     The strategy document, is that finished yet?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  No, it's not.  I mean, these things go through a series of reviews, and each time they get a little bit better, and it's in that review process.  But it's at the senior level of review.

 

            Q     Is there any thought of changing the basic, you know, defeat one bad guy and hold the other one at bay while you're doing that?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I would say that the -- looking at the strategy right now says that the one that was laid down in QDR '01 is very resilient.  We think that maybe we have a clearer understanding the last 2-1/2 years on where some of the challenge sets are that we might be facing, but that what the administration came to the table with at the beginning, after they did the Quadrennial Defense Review, looks like that it is still applicable today.  But again, it's in draft form.

 

            Q     You know, if you're talking about a complete capabilities package, what about this concept of, if the Army saves a trillion dollars on Comanche, you can see them wanting to put some of that money back into repairing old helicopters, keep building the Black Hawks; but should all of the money that they save on a program go back to the Army, or should all of the money the Navy saves on canceling a program go back to the Navy?  Why can't it go back to the whole plan, for lack of a better term?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  There's a tension there.  One of the key things that has been different for the services in the last three or four years has been this idea that if you generate a savings, in order to keep the motivation to do that, you've got to net some of the value back on that.  But where we challenge that is if -- I don't want to use the Army as an example, but if you generate savings and you come back with a program, and we look at it, and in comparison to someone else's program, we decide on someone else's program, that's where the trade occurs, vice taking money from someone who puts the initiative forward to save in order to do something different, that that something different gets weighed against someone else's something different, and we -- then that's where the --

 

            Q     The other's more worthwhile, and the money could go there.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  That's right.

 

            Q     Two questions.  One follows on the event process.  I've heard some criticism of people who were skeptical of the process, saying combatant commanders are obviously fighting yesterday's war and today's war.  Is there any concern that their recommendations might not necessarily address five years out or the end of their POM cycle?  And how do you mitigate that?  And I do have a second one.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I'll jump in and let (name of briefer deleted) take it, too.  If we were asking for systems or platforms, there would be a risk there.  We're asking -- it's independent of time -- what is the capability you need?  What are the tasks that you want to do in a shorter or more robust -- shorter time frame or a more robust way that you can't do today?  You tell us what that is, and then we'll work with the services in this somewhat marketplace-of-capabilities environment to get you the best solution for that.  But you tell us what you want to do, and we'll provide you the mechanisms.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  And their input is not solely determinative.  I mean, that's not the only input into the system. There -- I mean, lots of inputs come into the discussion, but it's to try to get them focused on that which they add the most value to. Okay.

 

            Q     What's --

 

            Q     Can I ask my second question?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Yes.

 

            Q     The study also recommended the potential creation of, like, joint program managers to manage these joint trade-off capabilities across the services.  Where are you on implementing that?  Do you plan on doing that?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  We decided in general to let form follow function.  So go try to experiment and then figure out what you need to do with organization.  So in general, that's what we're doing.

 

            We have under the (ADE?) started to build functional capabilities boards to put all the like elements in, in an analytic process together, but not a program management process together.

 

            So the notion -- I mean, we've clearly not taken the first -- I mean, in general, the first step in the Pentagon is let's reorganize and then see if that makes a difference.  That tends to take a lot of time, lot of anger, lot of fighting.  What we've tried to do is let's do some different -- let's look at it a different way and then let's figure out what the organizational implications of that are.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I would -- oh, I'm sorry.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Go ahead.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I'd just add that the integrated priority list process that (name of briefer deleted) discussed was not part of the Aldridge study.  That is a -- what we think is a value-added aspect that we put on to it.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Right.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  What that does, effectively, is create a joint customer for the service programs.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Right.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  If you had a service program manager trying to solve and work for a service customer, then you might need to -- and the program office infused some jointness.  But if his customer is a joint with -- and he's trying to solve the joint operational requirements, then you might not have to do that.  And so we're going to give it a little time to see if this gets us far enough.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  But I need to tell you why it may not work, too.  Okay?  And we have joint program offices now.  I mean, that's not a new invention.  And there are some great values and synergies you get there.  The difficulty that you run into with joint program offices is the underpinning.  The services really have the engineering-level warehouses, the systems commands, that support that activity.  And without that engineering underpinning, you can manage the dollars and cents and the schedule, but you really aren't managing the risk or the actual capability that's delivered unless you've got that.

 

            And so we've got to find a way to bring those engineering skills and that large repository of capability in line with the joint package, and to some extent, wash out, I mean, the service-unique aspect of it.  If you want the Navy, for instance, the Navy engineering activity to build you a joint aircraft, you've got to make sure that you do it in a way that doesn't eliminate the good and the attributes that the Air Force side of the house would bring to that platform, or the Marine or whatever.

 

            So that's the challenge here.  It's not -- I mean, we've got joint program managers.  But joint programs that are actually managed and developed from the engineering level, that's a challenge that we have not solved yet.

 

            Q     So -- (off mike) -- is a wait-and-see approach?  This is not off the table?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  It's test and work, test and work.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Yeah, test and work, that's right.

 

            Q     Can you talk a little bit about how this process is going to convince the lay public that the Pentagon has -- you've got a process in place to control spending?  The context, as you know, now the Senate Budget Committee and the House Budget Committee --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Wait, wait.  Okay --

 

            Q     -- are going to be cutting, they want to cut -- from a layman's viewpoint.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Okay.  Start over again.  Start over again with what you want to try -- because this is not -- what we just talked about is not a process to control spending.

 

            Q     It's cost-neutral --

 

            Q     Well, that's what I wanted to --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  It's a process to frame choice, all right? Cost-neutral is a -- that's an assumption that one lays on it -- all right? -- to frame choice.  But --

 

            Q     (Off mike.)

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Yeah -- (inaudible) -- choices.  But to say that this is a process that's about cost reduction or cost management, I mean, that is a management challenge inside this process.  All right?  We didn't build this -- this is not a bean- counter process to control spending.  All right?  I just had to -- I had to -- so go ahead now and ask your question.

 

            Q     Okay, this method is -- I want to just be clear because The New York Times had an editorial today, you know, cutting certain weapons programs.  And there's a certain momentum growing, defense is getting too much this year.

 

            Your process doesn't get at the issue of spending, it's the capabilities the warfighters are going to need in the future, and the warfighter up-front getting a better -- earlier say in what's produced.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  How much you're willing to spend is an assumption that you put into this that then frames what kind of choices you have to make, all right?  I mean, I -- that -- it's still managerial responsibility.  I mean, if you think about cost schedule and performance, all right, that's at the program level.  At the secretarial level, it's how much is he willing to spend, what kind of risk is he willing to take, and what's his time frame based upon his strategy?  It's a similar set of tools, but this is not about -- the process itself could be used whether your budget is rising, whether your budget is steady, or whether your budget is declining.

 

            Q     That’s encouraging.  Can you put on -- give an example of General Abizaid or Admiral Ellis in their respective commands.  Early in the process, they would lay out X, Y, Z.  Like, Ellis has got a new responsibility for global strike, apparently.  They're going to IOC, and it's a kind of interesting capability.  But just take a name and a command and flesh it out a little bit.  That would -- I think it would make it more understandable.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Let's use Strategic Command and Admiral Ellis and the role of global strike.  He would come in and say, what is the demand?  He does his own analysis internally.  He tries to create a supply-demand function.  So let's just say that he comes in and he says, what I'd like to be able to do is field the capability to be able to deliver a discreet effect anyplace in the globe inside of 96 hours, okay?  That's about as detailed as it gets.  Then the services start to look at what would it take.  And it's not necessarily the bolt out of the blue that comes from the United States and goes -- some of it can be basing forward.  Some of it can be rotational forces that are forward, PREPO.  Some of it can be the long-range-type strike.

 

            But I'm going to give to you, all the other regional combatant commanders -- I would like to be able to give to you a capability that allows you to go to denied areas inside of 96 hours and provide a capability to destroy something.  It may be kinetic; it may be non- kinetic.  That's the capability I feel I must have.

 

            The services then turn and respond to that and say here's how I could do that, and they're responding to that capability.  It may be a new system, it may be an organizational change or a doctrine change, but that's how they respond.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  But I would just say on the Admiral Ellis one here, too, the way he's coming up with that need is he's looking at the war plans that he's required to support and across the spectrum, and you know, for almost all of them it's more than one.  So he's saying in order to be able to do my job that I'm tasked with, I'm going to have to have these capabilities.  So it's not just something he's got an itch somewhere.  He's taking that from the operational guidance.

 

            Q     Is that the sort of thing that would be in the IPL?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I just want to make clear this is a hypothetical.  Admiral Ellis has not, you know --

 

            Q     Right, is that the sort of thing that would be in an IPL, or is that something different?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I'm sorry?

 

            Q     Is that field capability or is that an example of something that might be on an IPL, or is that something different?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  No, that's the example of something that he may come in and say I want to be able to do this.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  That's a capability.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Again, it is hypothetical.

 

            Q     But -- I'm sorry.  I don't understand the difference between that and what's on the IPL.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  That is the --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  That is --

 

            Q     That is the IPL?  But the IPL, then, is the top ones that you're most concerned about?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  That's correct.

 

            Q     So you might have 400 of these, but you pull out the top --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  They may have 400 tasks or capabilities, but they are looking at it and saying, "I have a shortfall in this particular area.  This is the way I would articulate the capability that I think I am short on."

 

            Q     So, this is the task.  And then they would identify if this is something that we have actually have a real shortfall in --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Right.

 

            Q     -- and if it has a shortfall, it might go in that IPL list?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  And then it comes in to -- and the services say:  This is how I might respond to that.  And to the extent it requires program guidance, that gets into the joint planning guidance itself.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  And it can be solvable by a program, or it can be solvable by a reallocation of forces, or it can be solvable by coming up with new concepts of operation, all of which -- this isn't just about "buy me a new widget, bring me a new technology."

 

            Q     I have a question and a clarification.  Do you want these changes in place to affect the '06 POM?  Is that what you're going towards?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  This cycle.  That's correct.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  We're experimenting with it right now; I mean this is live.

 

            Q     But the goal is for the '06 POM, is that correct?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Because that's where are, yeah.  But the idea is, we go through it; if it works well, we carry it on to QDR. It may need course correction.

 

            Q     And my question is, how have the services responded to this?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  They've been part and parcel to the activity.  In other words, what they're sitting down is -- right now one of the difficulties for the services in the two-major-theater-war construct and how we had done business to date, each service developed a complete stand-alone capability.  The reality is you can't afford that when you've got more than two enemies out there.

 

            So this has given them a way to look at the problem and to create some interdependencies, some trust between each other -- "I'll pick up this, if you can pick up that" type of discussion.  That's the dialogue that is starting to emerge.  Because the reality is, again, coming back to the resource question, there's not enough resource for everybody to be able to do everything.

 

            Q     And there hasn't been static, say, from the idea that they might have to trade off bombers for carriers, things like that?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  There will certainly be tension in the system over that.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  But I think at the senior level, the chiefs understand this implicitly, because they are the ones who are trying to manage limited resources; they're managing the supply-and-demand equation all the time.

 

            Will there be static throughout the enterprise as you change this and people have their individual things challenged, the answer is yes. I mean, that's the whole nature of change.

 

            But where this whole notion of force equivalencies really got a lot of energy was when a couple of the chiefs got pretty excited about it and tried, the two of them sitting together, to come up with an explanation of what they meant to explain it to the rest of the table. And so I --

 

            Q     (Off mike.)

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I would say all of them.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Well, they all gathered --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  They've all -- no, but they've all being doing it.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Now, the two that had --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  They've all been going it.  Well, Air Force/Army have been doing it.  But --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  The two that had the first kind of example were the CNO and Jumper.  And they sat down and said, "We've got to figure out" -- you know, we were in the post-war assessment phase, and they were trying to figure out how we -- oh, what was the phrase of art? -- recock the force --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Reset.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  -- how we reset the force.  And the challenge was, you know, how do I -- how do we take all our assets and trade them versus each other, so we can some of them resetted and meanwhile have the capability that the joint force needs? And they turned and looked and said, "But we don't have a capability really to -- we don't have all the" --

 

            Q     Way of measure --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  -- way of doing that yet.  So they're -- I'd say, at the senior level, they're pretty excited about trying to figure out how to do this.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I would just correct one kind of embedded assumption that you had:  that this is necessarily going to result in win-lose scenarios for people that are developing different programs. The higher probability is that we're going to find where there's complementary efforts, as we have among the different services and is ongoing, started about nine months, I mean, intensely.  And it continues, and we're finding out how we can do the problem and deliver capabilities better.  It's a very, very complex and broad problem set.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Right.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  And so there is a probability that you're going to see that systems-wise, because of the rigor that the systems were brought up with, is that they're still going to be needed.

 

            Q     Could you answer a couple of questions here?  Can you help me understand -- I'm a real lay person on this stuff -- how the planning process gets you to a point where you've got folks driving aluminum-skinned Humvees on some of the most dangerous roads in Iraq and how that might change under these new changes here?

 

            And also, General Abizaid said on the Hill the other day that -- something I think everybody understands now:  that you need more translators, you need more intel, you need more Civil Affairs folks, and that sometimes, the way the process is set up, there's sort of this gravitational pull towards these sexy fighter systems and bases and all that.  How do you work the human things to make sure that the human things that you really seem to need now don't get short shrift because of the weapons systems?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  The first piece, on the materials that over time show vulnerabilities that you didn't anticipate when you started -- where this process will hopefully take you is, one, to being more responsive in acknowledging the fact that the threat changes faster than every 25 years.  I mean, you field many of our platforms for 10, 20. 30 years, and obviously the threat is changing. So you're going to have to look at the engineering of platforms differently, because one of the attributes the platform absolutely has to have -- or system -- is that it has to acknowledge the fact that things turn over fast.  Whether you use Moore's law or whatever you want to use, things are -- threats are going to change on a high rate, and you've got to build to that capability.  You cannot assume that today's threat will be the same threat you see 20 years into the future.

 

            So this is going to try to drive those kinds of discussions early in the process, so that you can work at that.

 

            The second piece was -- what was the question again?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  The human elements, the skills mix, the languages.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Oh, the human elements.  Yeah.  I mean, you can talk to that --

 

            Q     That sort of (gravitating ?) towards weapons systems

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Right.  Two things that I would give you there.  The first is, in the analysis and when we connect it with the strategy, the first thing that jumps out at you is that if you accept that there is a phase in the activity that's called engagement or theater security cooperation, et cetera, but where you're out there and you're trying to ensure that countries are stable, that you're giving them tools and you're interacting in a way that helps their stability, there is another phase in the activity which is things are not going well, I need to start to deter any bad happening and let the country stabilize.  And then there's this phase two of the war, phase three of the war, and now the classic, the phase four, the reconstitution.

 

            The question here is, whatever the plan is that you develop for this has to span all of these, okay?  And that means that the skills that you have, have to acknowledge the fact, and the trades that we make, have to acknowledge the fact that if you're going to be successful, the best place to be successful is right up front.  And so you've got to have a debate about whether you buy System X or you invest in people that have capabilities, language skills, "town business"-type skills to help nations come along.  Those skills have got to be there.  They have to be there at the front end, they clearly have to be there at the back end.  They're probably more relevant to your strategic objectives than they are to your war-fighting objectives, but they can be part and parcel of the package.  So they've got to play in the mix, is where I'm going to.  These language skills, these HUMINT-type skills, they've got to be and they've got to compete in a way that acknowledges the fact that they're critical at the front end, they're critical at the back end, and they're really critical through all the phases.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I would just add, that's one of the roles of the strategy, too, is making sure the emphasis is at the right place.  And traditionally, and coming out of the Cold War and the decade after the Cold War, we kind of looked out there and said, gee, the military is about winning combat -- I mean, prevailing in combat, and now, you know, we see, well, there's probably a larger spectrum there; it's about winning a peace.  And so there's different activities and they should perhaps get different emphasis; and the strategy should point that out, as should the guidance. And the operational guidance going out should be one, as (other briefer) said, what you can do to prevent and avoid conflict, but then also not just winning the specific combat operation, but what do you have to do to change events on the ground so that there will be a constructive nation left behind.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  The last piece of that, then, based upon that, is that guys like (other briefer) and me, J-8 and PA&E, don't define portfolios as just weapon systems.  So we ask what are the people skills you need, what's the mix of capability you need, what's the training you need?  And you know, look at Joint National Training Capability.  I mean, that was a very big investment done a couple of years ago and reinforced to try to get -- bring -- you know, network all these training facilities together so you can practice jointly what you want to do; big investment driven by kind of corporate and JFCOM thinking about what are the, if you will, softer skills, softer things we need to develop?

 

            The Army, in this year's budget, has the beginning of a pretty significant skills mix realignment, both in, you know, air defense and follow-on artillery coming down to fund more languages and civil affairs and military police.  And so we spent a lot of time this summer pushing through that, you know.  Is it coming along?  Yeah, that was in the right direction.

 

            So we've got to take the strategy and look at the portfolio as more than just stuff, and make sure that, you know, the system is responding to some of those other things.

 

            Q     Just to make sure I understand what you're saying -- so the system that you've come in and inherited and you're trying to change it sounds like is one where you had people in one room who spent 10 years thinking about how they might go in and take over Iraq, and people in another room who were developing systems and weren't talking to people in the other room.  And when the folks who went into Iraq went into Iraq, they were doing it with systems that weren't necessarily things that they had asked for for that purpose.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Yeah, I don't know --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I don't think it's that stovepiped.  I think that's probably an extreme, but what we think is the way we're trying to bring these together and merge them will help in trying to get the right needs out there.  But as -- I guess it was (another briefer) who said it, is the world's tending to change faster than we can change these systems that have long acquisition timelines to them. I mean, that's one of the problems.

 

            Q     Can you give us some examples of what might be moving through the enhanced planning process now, and also, in current operations, examples of the tradeoffs that you're talking about?  And you emphasized accepting risk.  Can you talk about what is the trend in new areas where risk -- you might be considering accepting risk where it might not have happened in the past?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  On the first one, we sort of -- we talked about what we were thinking about as -- some of them is -- first of all, we're not going to give you an exact answer on that because I got to get it – we’ve got to get that approved first.  But we are working on tool development, and we also are going to look at mission areas, joint integrating concepts, and try and flesh out a couple of those examples.  We'll get you the answer to the specifics of the EPP when we can get it.  We're just -- we're not quite there yet.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I can talk to barrage skill sets that are there.  I mean, from the perspective of the combatant commanders, there is probably in the top three of all of them is this idea of the net-centric: How do I get myself netted so that I can understand the world around me in a much quicker way, move information and move knowledge in a way that gives me a significant advantage?  That's one. The other one that you will find routinely in all of their submissions are these -- I don't want to call them soft skills, but are these skills that are necessary to prevent -- I mean, they see that as critical -- particularly in their regions, as critical to their ability to function in the region -- these language skills, these understandings of how you help nations develop and how you help them.  So, I mean, you're going to find those types of things.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I guess there's one thing, when we made our presentations we probably omitted this.  A major vector in saying what the capabilities are and the shortfalls we have, comes from the lessons learned; and the lessons learned from Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan, and Iraqi Freedom.  And especially in Iraqi Freedom, a very, very robust effort was put together by Joint Forces Command to be gathering information real time.  Largest effort like this that's ever been done.  And those lessons have a lot of weight going into this process.

 

            Fortunately -- not fortunately.  It was, I guess, pleasing to see that the integrated priorities that the combatant commanders came in with sat right on top of where the major lessons learned were coming out of the war.  So there wasn't tension between the two, but both of those tend to drive the process.

 

            STAFF:  Folks, we've got time for about two more questions.

 

            Q     Well, in terms of the trade-offs, I mentioned in current operations, where you might be seeing the trade-offs on where more risk might be -- you might be considering accepting, I mean, just the trends in accepting greater risk.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Yeah, from my perspective, that is something of the process that's going on that when the Strategic Planning Guidance gets signed, then you'll see what the Secretary feels specifically those risks are.  And, I mean, he is the ultimate decision-maker in this.  He hasn't made his decision on how he sees taking the cumulative inputs from the combatant commanders and the lessons learned.  And it would be premature, I think, for us --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Yeah, but the bottom line is the system is still -- I mean, that's going to be a challenge.  We are not going to be there in year one.  I mean, nobody likes to walk in and say, "Oh, take some of mine, please."  And so I would say that is probably one of the most challenging things that we'll do, is get people to talk about where they're willing to accept risk.

 

            Q     It sounds as though Joint Forces Command's work on developing the concept of effects-based operations has also come into play here -- just reading in between the lines of what you've been saying.  And if that's true and you're building a requirements   development or requirements-vetting process here that places more emphasis on developing that kind of effects-based capability, then that really does supersede the old way of doing things and makes this process that you're talking about -- if it works, if it gets in place, if it goes as far as the next QDR -- more important in the resourcing process than the old bean-counting way.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  We are trying very hard to network a bunch of new development that's going on out there rather than creating something independent of all of the rest of the work that's going on; one.

 

            Two, when I was here in late '80s, you know there was all the work on -- post-Goldwater-Nichols, all the work on the "P" in the PPBS is silent.  You know, you go back and read all the Defense Management studies back to the '50s and '40s, they all talk about moving decision making and energy to this notion of what you want to be able to do is move it earlier in the process; have less of it in dollars in, you know, my program hat; spend less time there and more time back where you can make choice.  Absolutely, that is exactly what we're trying to do.

 

            Q     So if that happens, then the entire acquisition process is fundamentally changed at DOD.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I'd say the forcing function has -- is -- I don't think it's been entirely changed.  We think that it's been updated to the world we see.  It was built when the strategic circumstances were a lot different.  There was a monolithic enemy and it made sense doing --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Your processes were very linear.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Yes, threat-based was the way that you should put most of your effort there.  So I think what we're doing is changing the front end and the driving part of it.  We're not coming forward and saying that the other changes that have been -- already been made in this administration are being re-looked.  We think that those look like they're getting some traction and they went in the right direction.  And as yet we don't see a need to improve on them.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  And one of the real things we're trying to do, one of the real -- why you see the three of us together is we're trying to integrate processes to ask bigger questions, rather than to ask the same little questions in each of the processes slightly differently.  And that is -- that's a big change.

 

            STAFF:  Folks, we've really got to let these gentlemen go.

 

            Q     You were at the -- you were on Wall Street yesterday talking to a defense group.  What's the message Defense strategic planners should take from this new process in terms of where they should be looking at the Pentagon's requirements -- and that drives internal investment decisions?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Yeah, I'd try to tell them they were talking to the wrong guy --

 

            Q     (Off mike.)

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  -- in trying to figure that out.  I mean --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I'd say, joint.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  Yeah.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  I mean, the big difference is going to a service customer and trying to find out specifically what's going to solve that -- what the world -- the way that that service sees the world is not going to be as applicable anymore.  It's going to be how -- the joint war fighter and what his problem set is.  And so -- and that's the thing that we're trying to build into it, too, is that the program manager's customer is that joint operator.

 

            Q     Why do you think this is going to work if for 50 years--

 

            STAFF:  Folks, we've got to end it.  Sorry, ma'am, got to go.

 

            Q     Let me just ask it and they can answer it if they want.

 

            STAFF:  We'll give her one.  We'll give her one.

 

            Q     For 50 years this has been the Pentagon's want to try to move it toward the requirement.  What's going to make it work this time?

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  The world's different.  The world is different.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  People are different, too.  People and their attitudes --

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  And I'll tell you, I think the big change is that joint is real.  And you've got a whole generation of people who have grown up in it.

 

            SR. DEFENSE OFFICIAL:  You had Afghanistan and Iraq that really validated the value of jointness.

 

            Q     Thank you.

 

            STAFF:  Thank you much.

 

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