News   Lethality

Leaders Discuss Tri-Service Maritime Strategy to Deterring Conflict

Aug. 2, 2021 | BY David Vergun , DOD News

Leaders of the three military sea services spoke today about the challenges ahead and how the services plan to navigate through the rough waters.

Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Michael M. Gilday, Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. David H. Berger and Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Karl L. Schultz spoke at the Navy League of the United States' Sea-Air-Space Global Maritime Exposition at National Harbor, Md.

Three men in military uniforms sit in white chairs. One of them speaks.
Expo Speakers
Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. David H. Berger, right, speaks at the Navy League of the United States' Sea-Air-Space Global Maritime Exposition at National Harbor, Md., Aug. 2, 2021. Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Michael M. Gilday, left, and Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Karl L. Schultz, center, also spoke.
Photo By: David Vergun, DOD
VIRIN: 210802-D-UB488-001

Navy Adm. Michael M. Gilday

The tri-service navigation plan falls into four bands of emphasis, Gilday said: training, capabilities, capacity and failing. 

By failing, the admiral meant pushing the experimental and developmental envelope, taking calculated risks and learning from mistakes or failures.

Those four bands fall into two key areas, he said.

A man in uniform wearing glasses speaks while sitting in a chair.
Chief Remarks
Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Michael M. Gilday speaks at the Navy League of the United States' Sea-Air-Space Global Maritime Exposition at National Harbor, Md., Aug. 2, 2021.
Photo By: David Vergun, DOD
VIRIN: 210802-D-UB488-003

The first is water execution problems such as aviation maintenance, private and public shipyard maintenance, supply chain manpower and closing capability gaps. He said the Navy is focused on producing deliverables in those areas in a timely and accountable manner.

The second area is innovation problems, he said. They include unmanned systems and live virtual training.

The focus on this set of problems is on development, testing, experimentation, learning, and turning this quickly to generate innovative warfighting outcomes, he said.

"It's our hope that those areas produce for us a more capable, lethal, ready Navy, maybe by the end of the decade," he said.

Marine Corps Gen. David H. Berger

Berger said future warfighters will not offer the luxury of a long military buildup overseas such as that afforded during Operation Desert Storm.

Today, training and education, including wargaming experimentation exercises, is key to building more innovative and adaptive Marines and their leaders, he said.

A man speaks while making a gesture with his hands to emphasize what he's saying.
Commandant Comments
Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. David H. Berger speaks at the Navy League of the United States' Sea-Air-Space Global Maritime Exposition at National Harbor, Md., Aug. 2, 2021.
Photo By: David Vergun, DOD
VIRIN: 210802-D-UB488-002

The training and education should focus on developing leaders who understand risk and are willing to take [risks], he said.

"All three of us are pushing hard for wargaming experimentation exercises that force our leaders into circumstances where they have to make decisions under pressure," he said, referring to the three sea service leaders. 

Good wargaming experimentation will include opposition forces who have a lot of latitude to make calls on their own tempo, he added.

Coast Guard Adm. Karl L. Schultz

Schultz mentioned the importance of the Tri-Service Maritime Strategy that the military leaders of the three sea services signed in December.

A man in uniform speaks while making a gesture with his hands to emphasize what he's saying.
Commandant Remarks
Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Karl L. Schultz speaks at the Navy League of the United States' Sea-Air-Space Global Maritime Exposition at National Harbor, Md., Aug. 2, 2021.
Photo By: David Vergun, DOD
VIRIN: 210802-D-UB488-004

"It's a mindset where the whole is greater than the sum of the parts," he said, referring to greater naval integration in all domains that the document calls for in the face of threats from China and Russia.

The admiral mentioned that besides his service being a blue water Coast Guard which can augment global naval power, the service also has unique law enforcement authorities, search and rescue assets and other important capabilities.