Warfighter Support. Actions Needed to Improve Visibility and Coordination of DOD's Counter-Improvised Explosive Device Efforts
GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABILITY OFFICE WASHINGTON DC
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With the escalation of the IED threat in Iraq, DOD identified several counter-IED capability gaps and began focusing on addressing counter- IED issues. These counter-IED gaps included shortcomings in the areas of counter-IED technologies, qualified personnel with expertise in counter-IED tactics, training, dedicated funding, and expedited acquisition processes. DODs efforts to address these gaps culminated in the creation of JIEDDO in 2006. Prior to JIEDDOs establishment, many different DOD entities at the service and joint levels began focusing on counter-IED issues, but communication and cooperation among these various efforts was informal and ad hoc. In an attempt to coordinate and focus counter-IED efforts, the Army established an IED Task Force in 2003, but the Task Force lacked both the funding and authority to undertake a large-scale, department wide effort. DOD responded by elevating the Army IED Task Force to the joint level in 2004, placing it directly under the Deputy Secretary of Defense in 2005, and increasing the organizations budget from 20 million in 2004 to over 1.3 billion in 2005. In 2006, the Joint Task Force was turned into a permanent joint entity and jointly manned activity of DOD-JIEDDO-with an initial budget of over 3.7 billion and with the intention to provide the institutional stability necessary to attract and retain qualified personnel. These various actions that led to the development of JIEDDO were done in the absence of DOD having formal guidance for establishing joint organizations, and JIEDDO was developed largely through informal communication among key individuals in various services and agencies. Furthermore, DOD did not systematically evaluate all preexisting counter-IED resources in order to determine whether other DOD entities were engaged in similar efforts.
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