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Network Centric Operations (NCO) Case Study: Task Force 50 During Operation ENDURING FREEDOM

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Abridged rept., version 1.0

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The United States Ship USS Carl Vinson CVN-70 battle group, commanded by Rear Admiral RADM now retired Thomas E. Zelibor, departed its home port in Bremerton, Washington, on July 23, 2001, ready for a scheduled deployment in support of Operation SOUTHERN WATCH in the Arabian Gulf. On September 11, 2001, the same day that the battle group reached the North Arabian Sea, the al-Qaeda terrorist network attacked the Pentagon, the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, and crashed a plane into a rural Pennsylvania field. Over the next several months, the battle group would undertake combat activities it had not planned for and would work in a joint and combined environment fighting the war on terror during Operation ENDURING FREEDOM OEF. RADM Zelibor, having seen the power of network centric warfare NCW firsthand during the Global 2000 wargame, implemented transformational practices that changed the very nature of command and control C2 within his command. He saw the need for a more efficient and effective way of conducting daily activities. He sought to change the way those in his command could get information and react to that information by reducing the amount of time needed to prepare briefs that were outdated as soon as they were created and by introducing the idea of adding time for staff planning. Under RADM Zelibors guidance, the sailors and staff were able to transform daily operations and work together more efficiently to achieve their mission. RADM Zelibors task force grew by orders of magnitude after the September 11 attacks, the sailors and staff were so successful at streamlining the daily operational process that they were able to make distinct changes that allowed them to experience a shared understanding of the battlespace, to collaborate, and to develop mission objectives more quickly.

Subject Categories:

  • Information Science
  • Computer Systems
  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics
  • Command, Control and Communications Systems

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