Marine Lt. Gen. John Sattler, director for strategic plans
and policy on the Joint Staff, speaks on international cooperation during the “Strategic Engagement and Maritime
Diplomacy” seminar March 19. At his left is Canadian Navy
Rear Adm. P.D. McFadden, commander, Joint Task Force
Atlantic, and commander, Maritime Force Atlantic.
takes place in Egypt. Looking back at the deployment,
LeFever said “this is the future.”
Marine Lt. Gen. Richard F. Natonski, deputy commandant for Plans, Policy and Operations, offered an
abbreviated version of the service’s “Long War” brief. It
outlines how the Corps anticipates operating in the
post-Iraq War world and views fostering security cooperation relationships with countries as a key to avoiding major combat operations.
“Today, the Marine Corps is singularly focused in
Iraq and Afghanistan,” he said.
However, Natonski said that when the Corps reach-es its end-strength goal of 202,000 by 2011, it will be
able to train for the full spectrum of warfare, “getting
into the mountains, getting into the jungles.”
Coast Guard Vice Adm. Charles D. Wurster, commander, Pacific Area, outlined the many international
Coast Guard activities, including 26 separate bilateral
agreements with various countries to stem the flow of
illegal drugs from Central and South America into the
United States. He said that more than 355,000 pounds
of cocaine were interdicted last year.
Canadian Navy Rear Adm. P.D. McFadden, commander, Joint Task Force Atlantic, and commander
Maritime Force Atlantic, and Marine Lt. Gen. John
Sattler, director for strategic plans and policy on the
Joint Staff, highlighted the importance of increased
international cooperation to fight terrorism, ensure the
free flow of commerce and take interoperability
beyond the technical level to the level of increasing
trust among nations’ sea services.
Acquisition ‘Discipline’ and ‘Credibility’
The naval services’ top acquisition officials addressed
ways to improve processes and stop the cost and schedule overruns that have plagued so many programs and
eroded their support on Capitol Hill during the
“Acquisition Outlook and Priorities” panel March 20.
John Thackrah, acting assistant Navy secretary for research, development and acquisition, detailed the “
acquisition governance review” conducted by Navy Secretary
Donald C. Winter, which established a new process that
involves the service leaders in reviewing requirements at
the beginning of a program. This, he said, forces an early
evaluation of the trade-offs between additional level of
capability and a major increase in time and risk.
Brig. Gen. Michael Brogan, commanding general of
Marine Corps Systems Command, said the process
ensures top officials know if that last knot of speed or
meter of range “requires you to perform an unnatural
engineering act,” and if that additional capability is
really needed or just wanted.
Brogan warned that the sea services and industry
“have a credibility problem” with Congress because of
past acquisition failures. To restore that credibility, program managers need “no-nonsense” cost and schedule
data before they ask Congress for funding.
Vice Adm. Paul Sullivan, commander, Naval Sea
Systems Command, said the review effort established
by Winter created a “disciplined process” of assessing
requirements within the Navy Department before programs are sent to the defense secretary. Sullivan
emphasized the partnerships among the naval services
to help them all share information and improve their
Discussing the acquisition hurdles the Coast Guard
has been facing, Michael Tangora, deputy assistant
commandant for acquisition, outlined the intensive
overhaul ordered by Adm. Thad Allen after major
problems were encountered with the massive
Deepwater modernization program. The overhaul,
Tangora said, has included an urgent effort to rebuild
the acquisition work force, which had atrophied during the procurement gap in the 1990s.
Briefing Touts DDG 1000’s Value
The DDG 1000 Zumwalt-class land-attack destroyer
will provide capabilities that no other warship can
match, and have a higher level of technology maturity
than any recent warship at the start of production,
according to its program manager.
“This is the most capable destroyer we have ever
built” and will be “a great value for the capability,”
Navy Capt. Jim Syring said.
During an SAS briefing March 19, Syring stressed the
ship’s stealth characteristics, which make it harder to