Foundation for U.S.-Coalition Partner Operations in a Network-Enabled Environment: Lessons Learned
INSTITUTE FOR DEFENSE ANALYSES ALEXANDRIA VA
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The trend in U.S. operations suggests an increased level of operations with a greater variety of nations as coalition partners in the future than during the Cold War. The trend also suggests that the identity and mix of those partners will continue to be defined shortly before activity commences and be defined substantially by the nature of the situation. Because of our history of involvement with a small number of traditional partners and allies, we tend to approach operations with new partners on a case-by-case, unique basis. We argue that DOD would be well-served if it adopted a modular approach to defining the how-to of coalition operations. Such an approach would necessitate the systematic exploration of each key issue that can critically influence operational results. Such a research approach would necessarily be far-reaching, evolutionary, collaborative, and require a long-term commitment. The thesis for our research is that assessment of the combined U.S.-coalition partner force performance at forward echelons can be used to gauge the overall effectiveness of individual programs and initiatives that address culture, technology standards, organization and doctrine, and policy and law issues pursued to improve network-centric operations with coalition partners. Because operational performance is the final judge of military effectiveness, we advocate protracted, objective experimentation that will serve as the catalyst for progress in addressing culture, technology standards, organization and doctrine, and policy and law issues.
- Government and Political Science
- Military Forces and Organizations
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics