Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Building the Black Box of Effects Support

All-Domain Operations is in many ways War 101 combined operations on a grander scale, yet has a slipper slope. But it has an angle I am fully on board with:

Hence the crucial importance of a key effort launched last year by the senior leadership, coordinated by the Joint Staff, and led by the Air Force: Joint All-Domain Command and Control (JADC2). Breaking D readers know more about this because we’ve covered as much of its evolution as possible. It is a concrete effort to build sensors, communications systems, and data fusion engines designed to make it possible for, say, a submarine, a Marine Corps infantry squad, an F-35, an Apache gunship, a P-8 patrol plane, an orbiting satellite or a Navy ship to feed targeting data to any other weapon to ensure the most efficient and lethal response to a threat.

That's my ideal world of fire effects support:

In my ideal world, fire support is a black box where a call to destroy or suppress a target automatically calls in the appropriate weapon capable of taking out the target in a timely manner without the soldier making the support request even knowing what asset provided the support.

It could be a plane or space system out of sight, an attack helicopter, a ship or submarine offshore, a distant ground force missile or artillery asset, or even an 81mm mortar back at the company level.

If cyber weapons can suppress the target or add to the fires mission success--perhaps by negating point defenses against fires missions or information operations highlighting a path of retreat open to the enemy before the rounds hit to get them to retreat, for example--it is automatically plugged in to the mission.

Indeed, if the target is close to civilians, perhaps the call for fire support triggers automatic telephone warnings to civilian numbers near the target if there is time before the rounds need to hit.

And if there is automatic deconfliction between aerial assets and artillery to avoid the former being hit by the latter by being in the same air space, that would be great, too.

We want to get to that ideal world.

Ideally for deterrence effect and not war-winning effect, of course.