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The Navy and Marine Corps in Regional Conflict in the 21st Century 6 Synthesis ISSUES IN JOINT AND COMBINED OPERATIONS Current doctrines and policies call for all expeditionary operations to involve fully coordinated use of all Service, National, and allied assets and forces under command of the regional commander in chief (CINC). Although many organizational and system changes to implement these doctrines and policies are under way, many have yet to be made. It is essential to complete the many initiatives in this area, and to undertake others not currently under way, if the Navy and Marine Corps (and indeed the other Service and allied forces operating with them) are to implement the new OMFTS concept for conduct of regional conflict successfully and with the resources available. All of the preceding review of the evolving Navy and Marine Corps concept of operations for regional conflict has assumed fully joint and sometimes combined operations. All the recommendations have emphasized them. In summary, the following are among the many areas and activities where inter-Service collaboration has been assumed or recommended: Treatment of the Navy and Marine Corps, considered as separate Services in many forums, as essentially a single force for operations along the littoral; Preparation by special operations forces of the ground for Marine landings and operations ashore, in many ways including scouting, neutralization of defenses, calling in preparatory fires, and other measures; Use of National, Air Force, and Army as well as Navy and Marine sensors and sensor platforms in integrated surveillance and reconnaissance systems under CINC command; Creation of situational awareness at different command levels, command and control for long-range fire support, targeting, and CID—all cooperative, multi-Service functions;
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The Navy and Marine Corps in Regional Conflict in the 21st Century Use of Army, National, and commercial systems, in addition to Navy and Marine Corps assets, to contribute to communications connectivity and to common facilities and systems for logistic support of amphibious maneuvers from the sea; Expansion of the Navy and Marine Corps guided-weapon inventory, coordinated with that of the other Services; and Cooperative operations in populated areas with Army and coalition partners. Indeed, it could be argued that one of the frequent objectives of an entire Navy and Marine Corps operation is likely to be the establishment of a lodgment for continuing heavy combat by the Army and the Air Force—the ultimate in cross-Service collaboration under a CINC. Enough is understood about such operations that it is possible to indicate, based on the above, the key steps that will have to be taken to enable joint operations. Combined operations present a different set of problems, since it is not always possible to know ahead of time who the coalition partners will be. However, many such coalitions, such as NATO, have already spent decades and extensive resources to ensure that disparate national forces can operate together. It is possible, from those experiences, to indicate steps that can be taken to prepare better for smooth and effective functioning of ad hoc as well as existing coalitions with which U.S. forces may be involved in regional conflicts. Key Areas of Emphasis to Refine Joint Operations Provision must be made in all the following areas to ensure seamless interoperability of all forces—including Navy and Marine Corps forces —that may be involved in all manner of regional conflict situations: Joint interoperability for tactical C4I and weapon systems; Common WGS-84 grid and universal time, with all maps in the grid, for all forces—for situational awareness, targeting, unit and force location (of all participants in a conflict, and neutrals), and non-cooperative CID; A multi-Service (and allied) coordinated approach to CID; The ability to receive, process, and use all-source surveillance and targeting data, in a timely fashion;
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The Navy and Marine Corps in Regional Conflict in the 21st Century Robust communications connectivity using multi-Service, National, and commercial communications assets, for long-range fire support and logistic support to forward combat elements; and Joint C2 of theater logistics operations—this must include moving logistics C2 from the administrative chain in-theater, where it has relatively low priority, to the operational chain, where it can be given the same level of attention for support of forward units from the sea as is given to fire support for the forward units. Parallel changes in the logistic communications system will be needed to ensure that logistic traffic does not swamp the operational communications links. In addition, it must be observed that developing and deploying systems represent only part of the task in ensuring smooth functioning of a joint force in crisis and combat conditions. It is also necessary that all potential elements of the force—all Service expeditionary units and forces—train and exercise together, frequently. Cooperative gaming and simulation will also contribute to training in an economical way and should be part of the joint training cycle. Another step that would help in integrating Service forces for joint action is an officer exchange program. As has been demonstrated wherever such programs have been instituted, in the national or international arenas, the resulting understanding of each other's operations and the friendships made will contribute uniquely to inter-Service communication, understanding, and cooperation in planning as well as in stressful situations. Key Areas of Emphasis to Refine Combined Operations More than 40 years of collaboration among the United States and its NATO partners in force planning, standardization of doctrines, equipment, facilities, and protocols; combined training and exercises; and establishment of a recognized Alliance command and control regime have shown how combined operations can be made to function smoothly and responsively. While some of the processes are cumbersome, they have worked well when invoked under stress—during alerts in Europe, in the Persian Gulf area, and in the Adriatic off and over Bosnia. Similar arrangements, different in detail to suit local circumstances, obtain in Korea and with Japan. With the impossibility of predicting exactly who other potential future coalition partners may be, it may appear difficult to extend such arrangements beyond the existing ones. However, the United States does understand its strategic interests, and it should not be difficult to assess where future international crises requiring coalition action may arise. While it may not always be possible to make arrangements having the solidity of those made in,
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The Navy and Marine Corps in Regional Conflict in the 21st Century say, NATO, it should be possible to make some arrangements and to have some interactions with potential future coalition partners that will smooth the way for combined Navy and Marine Corps operations with them when the need arises. Any useful steps taken ahead of time will obviate the confusion and delays, with attendant penalties in coalition effectiveness, of starting from scratch in a time of crisis. The following steps, suited to local conditions and participants, should be undertaken: Work out SOPs, C³ doctrines, and equipment interoperability agreements with potential coalition partners (as has been done in NATO); Exchange key personnel with potential coalition partners, for enough time to establish rapport and understanding of each other's doctrines, tactics, technical capabilities, and modes of operation; and Train with and undertake periodic gaming, simulation, and live field exercises with allies and potential coalition partners. RESOURCES Force Changes Required Many force changes must be involved in the Navy and Marine Corps evolution to the future concept of OMFTS. To recapitulate from the prior discussion, these changes are as follows: Drastically lightening the assault force, by reducing its landing weight and its logistic support requirements; Delivering major fire support from the fleet, thereby separating the weight of heavy firepower from the most forward echelon of the assault force; Establishing the logistic depot in the waters offshore; Re-engineering the logistic delivery system; Changing the C4I system to ensure robust, responsive situational awareness, targeting, communications connectivity, and enhanced CID;
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The Navy and Marine Corps in Regional Conflict in the 21st Century Making broader use of guided weapons, including the fielding of a Navy tactical, ballistic-type missile system; Devoting much more attention to countermine warfare, at sea, going ashore, and on land; Devoting more attention to military operations in populated areas; Reorienting of the medical logistic system to support expeditionary forces; and Embedding all of the above in a joint and combined operational environment, with more joint system elements, planning, and activities. Taken all together, these changes amount to a significant effort that will require expenditure of possibly substantial resources in what is expected to remain an extremely tight budget environment. In the interest of completeness and credibility it is worth exploring at least the general feasibility of marshaling the resources for such changes in that environment. Estimated Resources Required The changes needed to support the OMFTS concept must come in two broad areas: capitalization and operations. The costs of operational changes are virtually impossible to isolate, since with a given force size they take place within the Services' overall operating and training budgets. Issues of budget feasibility have traditionally focused on budgeting for force size and for capitalization, and here it is possible to make some estimates. The main non-weapon capitalization changes highlighted by the results of this study are as follows: Communications connectivity, other C2, targeting, CID, intelligence, and situational awareness enhancements; Provision for long-range fire support systems on fleet combatants, and possible specialized fire support ships; Aircraft targeting pods, and avionic system modifications to enable GPS P(Y) code transfer to guided weapons before launch and retention of the initialization fix while the weapon is in the aircraft shadow after launch;
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The Navy and Marine Corps in Regional Conflict in the 21st Century Logistic ship modifications, enhanced protection, LOTS enhancement, and logistic supply system transformation; Enhanced mine clearance capability; and Enhancements for military operations in populated areas. It is estimated that these changes might cost $13 billion to $14 billion altogether. A breakdown of the estimates is given in Table 4. The potential costs shown there are very coarse estimates, but they are informed by knowledge of past costs in related areas, by some estimates for specific system changes that were given to the committee by the Services in the course of the study, and by costs included in some proposals for proprietary systems in the logistics area. Although rough, the estimates are believed to be reasonably within the “ball park.” In addition to the above changes, a substantial expenditure must be anticipated for guided weapons in the new operational paradigm. To estimate what the cost of the additional weapons might be, it was assumed that the Navy and Marine Corps alone would acquire, for their own use, a roughly 50 percent increase in numbers of guided weapons, above the projected DOD-wide inventory outlined in Table 2. The distribution of weapon numbers by type in this acquisition would be roughly as shown in Table 2, with the exception that the original purchase of Block IV Tomahawk would not be increased, and that 2,000 NTACMS (assumed for this purpose), similar to the numbers of ATACMS in the DOD-wide plans, would be acquired. This would lead to Navy and Marine Corps acquisition of ~60,000 guided weapons in an assumed mix having an average unit cost of $108,500, as shown in Table 2, for a total cost of ~$6.5 billion. Table 4 Potential Cost, OMFTS Improvements IMPROVEMENTS COST ($B) Communications connectivity, C2, targeting, CID situational awareness enhancements 3.5 Provision for long-range fire support systems on fleet ships—$30M/ship for each of 50 combatants, plus 2 specialized missile ships at $0.5B each (aside from missiles) 2.5 Aircraft targeting pods and P(Y) code transfer to weapons—$2M + $2M for each of 300 A/C 1.2 Logistic ship modifications, enhanced protection, LOTS augmentation, logistic system transformation 5.0 Enhancements for military operations in populated areas 0.5 Enhanced mine clearance 1.0 TOTAL ~14.0
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The Navy and Marine Corps in Regional Conflict in the 21st Century In total, then, the estimated cost of capitalization involved in the projected force changes would be in the neighborhood of $20 billion. This money would not have to be spent all at once. Modifying the logistic ships and system, building new communication links, and acquiring new weapons under an annual weapon inventory acquisition budget would all take time, and the acquisitions could be adjusted to some extent to meet the exigencies of annual budgeting. While in actuality there would be peaks and valleys through the years, to the first approximation it may be assumed that the $20 billion would be spent uniformly over the 20-year period from 2000 to 2020. 1 The rough costs projected above do not yet include offsetting savings from: Steps taken to reduce guided-weapon costs; Less excess supply in a modernized logistic system; More reliance on joint systems and task sharing; and Fewer tanks and artillery in the initial assault forces. Not enough is known to quantify these potential savings with any accuracy. However, it is not unreasonable to project them at roughly $5 billion. Fifty percent reductions in the costs of guided weapons alone were deemed possible in the committee's analyses, above, leading to a possible $3 billion or more in savings. It appears conservative to project that the other items could lead to $2 billion in additional savings. For example, the latter might be only a small fraction of the excess holdings and potential reduction of those holdings in the logistic system alone. Possible additional savings from infrastructure reduction are not accounted for in the above enumeration. 1 The expenditure period is projected to start in 2000 because of the DOD budget cycle. It will take some time to plan exactly how the changes are to be made, and the changes will then have to be entered into the Program Objectives Memorandum (POM) that plans the budget for the year after the POM appears. Work on POM 1998 is soon to begin.
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The Navy and Marine Corps in Regional Conflict in the 21st Century Potential Sources of Resources and Relative Magnitude These rough estimates suggest that funds averaging on the order of $¾ billion to $1 billion per year over a 20-year period must be found to pay for the force changes deemed necessary to ensure the success of the new approach to OMFTS. Where can such sums be found in the Navy and Marine Corps budget? It is clear that in a stringent budget period such as the one anticipated over the period covered by this study, funds will have to be traded among existing accounts to make desired changes in force capability. Such exchanges could be considered if they are not unreasonably large. As examples of their potential size, budget shifts in manpower-related costs or in procurement costs were considered by the committee. A shift of about $¾ billion to $1 billion per year, on average, from manpower-related costs to capitalization would represent a 3 to 4 percent reduction in the manpower-related costs, in the O&M and Personnel accounts of the combined Navy and Marine Corps budget, reallocated to capital improvements in the forces and their weapons. Alternatively, it would represent a shift of 6 to 8 percent of funds within all the procurement accounts except weapons procurement (i.e., ship construction, aircraft procurement, and “other” Navy and Marine Corps procurement) to different uses. Conclusion The results of the coarse resource exchange estimates outlined above should not be taken as recommendations to reduce force size or to modify any specific current procurement plans to capture the resources needed for the recommended force changes. Indeed, great caution would have to be exercised in making the exchanges. For example, only after making the modernization investments would it be prudent to make compensating personnel and O&M reductions. It is simply concluded from these estimates that, barring ugly surprises on the international scene that would require severe changes in all defense planning, the resource exchanges required to achieve a sturdy OMFTS capability, while they would be difficult, appear to be within the realm of economic feasibility, given expected resource limitations. SIGNIFICANCE OF THE OPERATIONAL AND FORCES CHANGES The new Navy and Marine Corps approach to OMFTS has been occasioned by the convergence of a need for enhanced capability to engage in future warfare along the littoral of the world's oceans, with new equipment and
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The Navy and Marine Corps in Regional Conflict in the 21st Century capabilities that are becoming available to help meet that need. The committee has shown some critical areas where the advanced concepts could fail in implementation (e.g., in fire support, logistics support, mine warfare, and other areas that need improvement), and the committee has reviewed how practical problems in these areas could be resolved and the resulting force changes made more robust. Assuming that these solutions to problems, or equivalent alternative solutions, are implemented, what would be the significance of the resulting operational and force changes? Force Design and Support for Warfare Along the Littoral The Navy and Marine Corps will have to equip and train themselves differently for littoral warfare at the theater level, to meet new conditions of warfare and to exploit opportunities that will be offered by the technical capabilities being acquired, as was done for warfare in the NATO arena during the Cold War. Achieving this new capability will involve integrating sensors, exploitation of the sensor data, communications, weapons, mobility, and support in a total systems approach. It includes changing the sizes and operational characteristics of the assault, the assault follow-on, and the follow-on support echelons, and the logistic system as a whole. These force and equipment changes will require systematic revision of doctrines, concepts of operation, tactics, and training. The revisions must cover how the initial maneuver forces ashore are to be used; those forces' reliance on major fire support from the fleet at sea to deep inland locations beyond the horizon; and logistic support of the maneuver forces across the sea-land boundary. Also, the revisions must account for the presence of large, possibly hostile populations in objective areas. Overall, the advanced concepts will need gaming, simulation, and “red-teaming” to help refine the newly oriented forces and make them sturdy and resilient to unexpected events in carrying out their newly evolving missions. Great Expansion of the Lodgment Area Typically, amphibious landing forces can count on establishing a secure initial lodgment of 30 to 50 square miles on the beach, determined largely by the range of artillery brought ashore. Under the new concepts, with the new equipment and systems, the area of the secure initial lodgment will be expanded to 2,500 to 3,000 square miles, defined by the reach of the V-22. An area as large as 5,000 to 10,000 square miles would be dominated by the fleet-based surface and air fire support of the landing force, up to 75 to 100 miles inland. The time to establish a lodgment of this size will have been reduced from possibly weeks to a few days at most.
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The Navy and Marine Corps in Regional Conflict in the 21st Century Shorter Campaigns, Fewer Casualties, Less Damage The new concept of OMFTS will have to depend heavily on much more extensive use of guided weapons, especially in MRCs, than has been envisioned in past Navy and Marine Corps planning. Even when their unit costs are reduced by the means outlined in this report, and others, guided weapons will remain more costly than conventional unguided weapons. What perspective can be put on the added costs to illustrate compensating gains? Those gains must come in the areas of shorter campaigns with consequent cost savings, fewer casualties, and less collateral damage. Duration of “Heavy Firepower” Campaign, and Consequences The duration of wars is notoriously difficult to predict; even in recent history, many wars expected to be short instead extended into tragically long and difficult conflicts. Wars can be extended by many circumstances of chance; strategic miscalculations about geography, relative resources, determination, and interpretation of events by the different sides; and other factors. Their length may depend on the resolve and decisiveness in action of the opposing combatants. What starts as a definitive battle between armies in the field could end in the defeat of one of the armies, only to be extended by difficult combat in cities or a succeeding guerrilla war. Nevertheless, some useful metrics can be brought to bear in gauging the probable duration of modern conflicts. Modern wars involving major forces on each side, as is likely to be the case in an MRC, usually begin with a straggle for air superiority and a campaign designed to destroy opposing aviation, C³, targets related to long-term support of the war, and tactical forces before they enter the fray. This part of the war—a “heavy firepower campaign,” if one will—will rely heavily on aviation, but in the future it will increasingly use surface-to-surface weapons such as long-range cruise missiles. Such a campaign can cause many incidental civilian casualties and much unintended damage, even before ground forces clash seriously. Focusing first on this phase of a war, recent experience (e.g., the Gulf War) shows that a week of major regional warfare costs several billion dollars, when the costs of petroleum, oil, and lubricants, 2 weapons, other consumables, and major equipment losses are included. In Desert Storm, for which about 7 percent of the munitions used were guided, the munitions cost came to about 3 percent of the total cost of the war. Even if 50 percent of the munitions used 2 In the Gulf War, some 40 tons of aviation fuel were expended for all purposes, for every ton of bombs dropped. This expenditure represents a significant fraction of campaign cost, even if the weapon tonnage involves many guided weapons.
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The Navy and Marine Corps in Regional Conflict in the 21st Century had been guided, the munitions cost would have been only about 10 percent of the cost of the war. The total cost of the guided munitions would amount to approximately the overall cost of a week or two of major regional war. Large-scale use of guided weapons can greatly reduce the length of the “heavy firepower” phase of an MRC. Many analyses through the years have shown, and the Gulf War corroborated, that the typical 10,000 to 30,000 targets (other than attacking ground forces) to be attacked in that phase of the campaign—such as air defenses, C4I sites, airfields, major weapon and munitions storage and fixed launch sites, other fixed or relatively immobile installations, and other ground forces in bivouac or defensive sites—can be neutralized or destroyed by up to an order-of-magnitude fewer weapons and aircraft sorties. Such a reduction includes both air- and surface-launched weapons. The reduction in weapon use translates into a corresponding reduction in the duration of this phase of a campaign, preparatory to the ground combat phases of the war. In addition, the fact that many more weapons hit their intended targets without re-attacks, in addition to the earlier end to bombardment of targets that may be embedded in populated areas, would greatly reduce collateral damage and casualties to the civilian population. Duration of Ground Combat and Consequences Experience in Vietnam and Korea shows that ground force casualties in such major engagements tend to be proportional to the length of the campaign; they occurred at a rate of between 100 and 1,000 per week in those wars. While the circumstances of any war cannot be predicted with any precision, it is reasonable to expect that resistance by organized ground armies will be much lower, and a campaign's duration consequently shorter, when enemy ground combat elements, their C3, and their support are severely weakened prior to ground combat force engagement. To the extent that such attrition is accomplished, friendly casualties will be reduced, as will the collateral destruction and civilian casualties attending the clash of ground armies in populated areas. Conclusion: Return on Investment The return on investment for the advanced Navy and Marine Corps concepts of operation with expanded use of guided weapons can be expected to be very high. The success of the long-range firepower contribution to OMFTS, and therefore the ultimate success of the concept, depend on extensive use of guided weapons. Break-even costs could be reached in 1 or 2 weeks of major regional war, not counting casualties saved. U.S. air forces, including those of the Navy and Marine Corps, have been significantly reduced since the end of
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The Navy and Marine Corps in Regional Conflict in the 21st Century the Cold War. More extensive use of guided weapons will allow the smaller force to be more effective in the future than the force was when it was larger. Finally, such usage could enable CVBG+ARG+MPS combinations to contain situations beyond their current capability. PRIORITIES The committee believes that all of the force changes and equipment investments described in this report will be needed to ensure that the new Navy and Marine Corps concepts of operation for conflicts along the littoral are viable and robust. The severe budget pressures under which these changes must be made are recognized, and possible approaches to accommodating them are discussed above. However, the total package must have high enough priority relative to other Navy and Marine Corps investments to ensure successful implementation of the new concepts. Within this overall emphasis, some of the force changes and investments constitute “long poles in the tent” that will determine the success or failure of the concepts. The order in which these program essentials are listed below should not be taken as a rigid sequence of priorities, but it is not altogether accidental. The essential program elements are as follows: Improved situational awareness, communications connectivity, C2, targeting, and combat identification (CID) enabling sustained, reliable, and effective fire support from the fleet offshore to forward combat elements deep inland; Provision for increased use of guided weapons, including reduction of their cost, and application to long-range fire support from the sea; Re-engineering of the logistic system; and Countermine warfare. Several additional areas are in the “must do” category. They are as follows: Developing a much-enhanced capability to operate in populated areas, including combat in urbanized terrain, and operations other than war (OOTW);
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The Navy and Marine Corps in Regional Conflict in the 21st Century Force protection, with special attention, beyond currently ongoing efforts, to Protecting the logistic ships against antiship cruise missiles; Protecting the amphibious force against modern, quiet submarines; Using launch warning and passive protection SOPs against hostile tactical ballistic missiles; and Taking measures to protect against and to sustain operations in case weapons of mass destruction are used. Field medicine for forward forces and for OOTW. Preparation for coalition warfare. Finally, and of paramount importance, beyond these specific priorities and affecting all of them profoundly, attention to “jointness” must pervade everything.
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