Beyond Afghanistan: Effective Combined Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Operations
Air Command and Staff College Maxwell Air Force Base United States
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Since the creation of the International Security Assistance Force ISAF in 2001, there has been tension between the US led Operation Enduring Freedom and the NATO led ISAF. Because of differing chains of command, levels of classification and systems, there was a lack of unity of effort in the Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance ISR collection operations. With the growth of all military forces in Afghanistan, there has been a reorganization to put all conventional forces operating in Afghanistan under the ISAF Joint Command. Collection management for conventional forces in Afghanistan is now conducted by the ISR Division ISRD within the IJC and sets the stage for more effective and efficient use of ISR collection platforms. However, there still exist some long term problems which hinder coalition ISR operations that must be addressed by both the US and its allies. Training and exercises need to be developed which build knowledge and experience in coalition ISR operations. Interoperability is the key to multinational military operations. As such, ISR platforms, data and processes need to meet international agreed upon standards. US personnel also need to overcome a cultural bias that favors unilateral ISR operations and accept that coalition operations are likely to continue to dominate future military operations. By addressing these long term issues, coalition ISR operations can become more efficient and effective in ISAFs Afghanistan operations and future multinational operations.
- Military Intelligence
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics