For Official Use Only

  Until Release by the

  Committee on Armed Services

  United States House of Representatives
















8 MARCH 2000



  For Official Use Only

  Until Release by the

  Committee on Armed Services

  United States House of Representatives

“Information Superiority and Information Assurance: Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century”



Mr. Chairman, Members of the Committee.

          I am grateful for the opportunity to again address the committee on the important topic of Information Superiority and its central role in the military transformation process, and to discuss the Joint Staff’s campaign plan addressing this complex issue of great importance.   I am Lieutenant General Jack Woodward, the Joint Staff Director for Command, Control, Communications, and Computer Systems.  I am also the Joint Staff Coordinating Authority for Information Superiority as it relates to implementing and enabling Joint Vision 2010.  My testimony will address Information Superiority, focusing on the delivery of assured, protected connectivity to increase combat power for today’s warfighter.  I will introduce you to an overarching concept referred to as the Global Information Grid (GIG).  Finally, I will share with you some of the important progress we have made over the previous year, and I will identify many challenges we face in achieving Information Superiority.

          At the dawn of the 21st century, the Joint community is fully engaged in exploiting the warfighting advantages of this high tech era.   The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff published his overarching vision, Joint Vision 2010 (JV2010), that describes warfare in the information age.   It articulates a vision for future warfare where information superiority is the fundamental enabler of the four pillar warfighting concepts: Precision Engagement, Dominant Maneuver, Focused Logistics, and Full-Dimensional Protection.  In simple terms, Information Superiority means getting the right information to the right people at the right time in the right format while denying an adversary the same capability.  Let me start my discussion by creating a fictional scenario of an information-intensive battlefield and address the Information Superiority concepts it represents.

A Potential Future Scenario


On a potential future battlefield, a US Joint STARS aircraft detects a column of vehicles nearing a sector patrolled by a German reconnaissance company, one of our Coalition Partners, and injects the positional data of the column into the Common Operational Picture (COP).  The Combined Joint Forces Air Component Commander (CJFACC) and the Combined Ground Component Commander (CGCC) and the Commander of the Joint Task Force (CJTF) all see this information simultaneously.   

The CGCC, using the secret Coalition Wide Area Network (CWAN), directs an orbiting, US-controlled Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) to reconnoiter the area and identify the vehicles as friend, foe or neutral.  The resulting real time, satellite-relayed video stream is analyzed at Allied intelligence centers on different continents and the vehicles are identified as hostile.  The centers quickly coordinate and build an analysis and targeting package with a common collaborative planning tool and forward this information to the Commander of the Joint Task Force (CJTF) and his coalition component commanders. 

After studying the information, the CJFACC directs an air strike against the enemy vehicles.  A rapid review of real-time status of aircraft in the area reveals the best course of action is to direct an orbiting 4-ship cell of Joint Strike Fighters to engage the target.  In addition, a carrier-based EA-6B is directed to provide Electronic Warfare (EW) support.  The pilots consult their onboard common tactical picture enroute to the target to verify the German team’s position and receive the latest targeting information.  Following the air attack by laser-guided precision weapons, satellite systems relay the real-time strike information from the UAV to the CJFACC, the CGCC, and CJTF commander.  Immediately after the strike, the UAV collects and transmits battle damage assessment information to the analysts to determine if a re-attack is required.   

As this scenario unfolds, operators and analysts are monitoring and assessing the military resources necessary to conduct the operations such as strike and support aircraft, fuel states, weapons loading, system status, and proximity of friendly forces and prohibited targets. The CJTF’s C4 coordination center monitors bandwidth requirements to support real-time voice, data, and video streams necessary to coordinate this coalition operation.  They are ensuring the networks are properly configured, enough bandwidth is allocated, and the C4 systems are immune to hostile cyber attacks.   Operators are alert to jamming and are poised to respond as necessary to ensure uninterrupted radio spectrum availability. 

The power of real-time, networked operations depicted here is the basis for the Commanders’ ability to share a common operational picture, collaboratively plan strikes, retarget weapons platforms while in flight, and work with a multitude of coalition partners. 

We accomplish much of this today, but it’s HARD work. Challenges remain in the areas of security and interoperability of our joint and coalition C4 systems.

This scenario highlights the potential power of a network-centric force -- force with the capability to dynamically retarget on demand -- a force with the capability to dynamically network sensors, regardless of platform; shooters, regardless of service or country; and decision makers, regardless of location.  This is what the ongoing transformation of military capability is all about.

Increasingly, it is a secure, reliable network that makes an effective warfighting force.   As a result, securing the network is not just about securing information.  It is about enabling assured operations and mission success.

We plan to achieve Information Superiority through an overarching concept called the Global Information Grid (GIG).


Realizing the Network - The Global Information Grid


The Global Information Grid is a unifying concept and one of the key enablers of Information Superiority.   We think of the Global Information Grid in the same way that most people think of the “Internet,” a single concept that describes something that is very complicated and constantly evolving.   General Shelton, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told Congress during his recent posture statement: An important aspect of future operations will be the development of a Global Information Grid, or GIG, to provide the network-centric environment required to achieve information superiority.  The GIG is the globally interconnected, end-to-end set of information capabilities, associated processes, and personnel to manage and provide information on demand to warfighters, policy makers, and supporting personnel.  It will enhance combat power through greatly increased battlespace awareness, improved ability to employ weapons beyond line-of-sight, employment of massed effects instead of massed forces, and reduced decision cycles.  It will contribute to the success of non-combat military operations as well.” 


Achieving the Global Information Grid


The overarching rationale for the Global Information Grid is supported by the ongoing shift to network-centric operations, the principle component of the Revolution in Military Affairs transformation.  In the military context, weapon systems are essential for mission success.  In times past with platform-centric operations, the link between sensors and shooters was tenuous and lacked the timeliness required.  In today’s network-centric operations, the timely exchange of information is key to leveraging all available sensors and weapons systems to generate increased combat power.  The secure, networking capabilities inherent in the Global Information Grid provide the fused, timely information essential for joint mission success.  It enables commanders to create a dynamically integrated fighting force by linking sensors to shooters to generate massed effects.  Because of this inextricable tie to combat power, the Global Information Grid must be treated like a weapon system.  Treating the Global Information Grid like a weapon system has several significant implications for its deployment and employment.

Operationalize the GIG: Our CINCs and warfighters must be confident they have the information superiority capabilities they need to fight and win.  We must standardize our network operational concepts and doctrine.  We must institutionalize our tactics, techniques and procedures (TT&P) and demand the requisite training of our network system administrators and the personnel who employ the GIG’s global applications (e.g. Global Command and Control System).  We must provide end-to-end visibility into the health and readiness of these critical components to decision makers as they make trade-off decisions to balance limited resources against operational demands. 

Organize for Combat: We must organize units that operate, maintain, and protect our networks as an integral part of our warfighting command structure, just as we do with all other warfighting resources.  We need to consolidate responsibility and operational control under a single warfighting commander.  This will place the authority for allocating essential, limited resources based on operational exigencies under a commander charged with the responsibility for the Global Information Grid. 

Protect and Defend the GIG: Defending our military capabilities is second nature to us.  Protecting and defending our networks and the information that is collected, processed, aggregated and stored over them should be as well.  We are committed to protecting the network with the same vigor that we protect other important elements of our force structure, such as the deployed Carrier Battle Group or a bomber enroute to its target.  All of these weapons systems use an analogous  Defense-In-Depth strategy.   This strategy employs techniques on the perimeter to detect intruders, capabilities to assess threats within our boundaries and technology to respond to attacks when necessary to restore the force structure.

Improve GIG Performance: As quickly as the technology evolves to allow us to prioritize and manage the flow of information over the network, we must adopt the means to optimize our systems.    There must be enough capacity to support the way the warfighter wants to fight now and in the future. A key lesson learned from Operation Allied Force is that today’s battlefield is information intensive.  Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), Video Teleconferencing, and Imagery require lots of bandwidth.  Precision guided munitions rely on global positioning data for accuracy.  Dispersed units rely on secure voice and data for situational awareness and command and control.  Our networks must be optimized to support all of these capabilities when needed.   Another key lesson learned was that our ability to manage the radio spectrum and the limitations of current tactical ground terminals directly impact the end-to-end network performance.  During Operation Allied Force, over 44,000 radio frequencies were deconflicted, permitting an uninterrupted flow of information.

Expand the GIG: The Multinational warfighting and peacekeeping environment in which the military operates today requires an ability to be able to “connect” with allied and coalition partners in order to operate effectively.  The need for a Coalition-wide WAN (Wide Area Network) has been validated over and over again in recent operations involving our multi-national partners.  Security technology, information releasability and other policy matters are key to making this a reality.  We must continue developing technology to reduce the manual burden of information releasability and secure connectivity while also working the policy issues to ensure we can share information within an international scenario.  In addition, improved cryptographic capabilities supporting high speed, high bandwidth communications must be part of the gameplan.

          Fund and Acquire GIG Capabilities: We have to compete and resource the Global Information Grid like any other weapon system. The Global Information Grid is a continually evolving system of systems that must be funded in a synchronized and coordinated manner.  Training to operate and protect these complex systems must be an integral component of our fielding strategy for successful employment of forces.  Research and development for advanced technologies to improve the communications and computing capability of the network must be a priority.

          Value the GIG: In today’s military, we value what we can depend on for mission success.  The Global Information Grid is the linchpin in both our military operations and business processes.  We must consider it an essential, precious resource in our arsenal of weapons.  The Global Information Grid is the entry fee for the DoD transformation and the combat power associated with our Joint Vision and it must be valued as any other essential component.   Deploying the Global Information Grid is a Strategic, not a Tactical decision. It is not a C4 decision -- it is a decision about increasing combat power.

The Global Information Grid to Date

The Joint Community is making real and tangible progress towards treating the network like a weapon system and making the GIG a reality.  Examples of this transformation are abundant.

United States Pacific Command (PACOM) is in the midst of operationalizing theater networks by establishing a Theater C4ISR Coordination Center (TCCC) and developing associated Techniques, Tactics, and Procedures (TT&P).  The TCCC will provide USCINCPAC with unprecedented visibility into theater networks.  The TCCC will provide a readiness assessment based on specific metrics enabling USCINCPAC to provide operational direction to Service components and other operators of networks, systems, and applications to optimize the Global Information Grid for current operations.  The TCCC will provide health and status information concerning theater networks to the Global Network Operations and Security Center that monitors DoD’s backbone communications networks. 

The first step in acquiring and funding the components of the Global Information Grid occurs in the requirements generation process.  Two separate but interrelated events are currently taking place which have significant impact on the evolution of the Global Information Grid.

U.S. Joint Forces Command is responsible for authoring a Capstone Requirements Document (CRD) describing the essential elements of the Global Information Grid.  This is the first time a single, overarching capstone document will provide a definitive architectural framework describing the inter-relationships and components of the weapons systems, connectivity, computing capabilities, applications, basic foundation concepts, network operations and information management components that comprise the Global Information Grid.  Rather than disparate, isolated networks, the CRD will call for interoperable, accessible, secure, reliable, inter-networked capabilities to enable effective global military operations. 

In addition, the requirements generation system as a whole has been strengthened with the rewrite of the Joint Staff instruction that governs this process.  It specifically requires C4 interoperability in future systems be demonstrated at key acquisition milestones.  This will improve the link between systems acquisition and end-to-end interoperability in an operational context.   The Joint Requirements Oversight Council (JROC) along with the Military Communications-Electronics Board (MCEB) and the new DoD Chief Information Officer (CIO) Executive Board will collaborate throughout the systems acquisition process to ensure capabilities are fielded that meet CINC, Service and Joint interoperability requirements.

End-to-end network performance is being enhanced through modeling and simulation.  The Network Warfare Simulation (NETWARS) initiative provides the first modeling and simulation capability to assess the performance of the Global Information Grid.  The Joint Staff-led NETWARS program was developed from a leading commercial network simulation tool, OPNET.  NETWARS is being used today to model the effectiveness of operational plans using the Global Information Grid as it currently exists.  Not only will we begin to assess the capability of our networks to support specific Joint operations during the planning stage, but NETWARS will help us understand where and how to employ advanced technologies to expand and improve the Global Information Grid.  For example, NETWARS will help understand the extent to which a new capability, such as the Advanced Wideband Satellite System, will improve the performance of the Global Information Grid.

Network performance and radio frequency (RF) spectrum usage are inextricably linked.  Over the past year, Congress has championed protection of the RF spectrum that is so critical to military operations.  You have returned 8 Megahertz of previously reallocated spectrum for DoD use.  Under your scrutiny the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) reassigned 50 Megahertz to preserve contiguous bandwidth required by the Navy’s Cooperative Engagement Capability - a program which provides networked sensor capability to shooters.  These and similar initiatives saved hundreds of millions of dollars for the Department and had a direct impact on our ability to employ and protect our fighting forces.  Thank you for your tenacity and objective assessment of our needs. 

Protecting and defending the Global Information Grid is a fundamental, mainstream military imperative.  Our strategy for information assurance is one which employs multiple layers that we call “defense in depth.”  This strategy establishes a set of minimum capabilities required for each of the four levels of Defense in Depth: the network, the enclave, the computing environment and the infrastructure.  These capabilities include automated and verifiable access control of database and software applications as well as a department-wide policy for virtual private network configurations.  They will enable the Department to keep pace with rapid technological advances while allowing for the integration of legacy equipment with existing capability.  Procedural changes are underway as well to take advantage of the technology currently employed.  We learned much from our experience with the most significant threat to the Global Information Grid that we have ever experienced – Y2K from both a technological as well as a procedural perspective.  We now have the tightest configuration control of the networks and computer systems that we have ever had and we intend to maintain this standard.

The Department is well on its way to organizing the Global Information Grid for combat operations.  A significant development in FY99 was the assignment of the Computer Network Defense (CND) mission to USCINCSPACE through the Unified Command Plan (UCP) 99.    This change gave a Commander in Chief (CINC) the responsibility and authority to protect and defend the Global Information Grid for assured operations and mission success.  The action arm of USCINCSPACE is the Joint Task Force Computer Network Defense (JTF-CND) operating here in Washington DC and co-located with the Global Network Operations Systems Center (GNOSC) of the Defense Information Systems Agency.  The GNOSC can display the operational picture of critical DoD networks worldwide. The co-location of these two operations results in tremendous synergy and synchronization. One of the success stories of placing the CND mission under a CINC was the operationalizing of readiness conditions as they apply to our worldwide networks.  Global Information Conditions or INFOCONs, are set by USCINCSPACE based on the level of threat to the Global Information Grid.   Each INFOCON level requires specific actions by personnel at every camp, post, base, station, and deployed unit.  This standardizes protection of this resource; a resource that is only as strong as its weakest link.  

Our ongoing Navigation Warfare (NAVWAR) initiative addresses potential vulnerabilities to the Global Positioning System (GPS).  This initiative is a major step in assuring access to the Global Information Grid.

Improvements to the Global Information Grid come from technological as well as procedural advances.  There has been much discussion about the challenges associated with exploiting rapidly emerging technology.  Let me tell you about some of our successes using Advanced Concept Technology Demonstrations (ACTDs), Joint Warrior Interoperability Demonstrations (JWID), the Joint C4ISR Battle Center and evolutionary acquisition processes. 

We currently have a Pilot Program in the Pacific that employs the information dissemination management capabilities developed in the Battlefield Awareness and Data Dissemination Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration (ACTD).  This capability will allow Commanders to “pull” information from multiple sources on demand as well as allow information sources to “push” critical information to specific warfighters as required.  The Information Assurance: Automated Intrusion Detection Environment (IA: AIDE) ACTD at U.S. Strategic Command promises to provide analysis and warning of information attack by integrating and displaying data from multiple intrusion detection sensors.  This capability will decrease time required to assess attacks on our networks and help discriminate serious threats from casual hacking attempts. 

Joint Warrior Interoperability Demonstrations provide an opportunity for the evaluation of emerging technology within a warfighting scenario to solve interoperability problems.  The last demonstration focused on coalition interoperability and resulted in establishing a coalition federated battlelab network that continues today.  This network will allow further studies in the operation of a secure network with our coalition partners.  Upon completion, warfighters identify the most promising, low cost technologies for immediate fielding.  Examples of these “golden nuggets” include data compression, collaborative planning tools, and secure information exchange capabilities.   

The Joint C4ISR Battle Center (JBC) is focussed on assessing new and emerging technologies to meet current and near-term CINC C4ISR requirements.  They measure the efficiency, effectiveness, and technical feasibility of commercial products.  For example, the Joint Battle Center evaluated and recommended Rosetta technology as a near-term solution to tactical data link interoperability problems.  Once deployed, this technology will help us provide the warfighter with a consistent composite air/ground picture.      

Evolutionary acquisition processes have been developed to leverage the advantages offered by a technology that leaps ahead every 12-18 months.  Our Global Command and Control System (GCCS) serves as the model for this novel approach to acquisition.  The GCCS model, supported by the Defense Information Infrastructure Common Operating Environment (DII COE) and the Joint Technical Architecture (JTA), allows rapid insertion of applications which add value to the warfighter.  Tight configuration control, stringent security and standard software are the keys to GCCS.  Our premier command and control capability provides the warfighter with a fused, near real-time common operational picture of the battlespace and the ability to coordinate, direct and respond vertically and horizontally to prosecute the mission.  The lessons we have learned in the GCCS program over the last three years are being applied directly to the Global Combat Support System (GCSS) today – an evolving capability whose utility was demonstrated during the war in Kosovo.

Our efforts to partner with Industry are proceeding along a number of fronts.  We have entered into an ongoing dialogue to address technological advances in the satellite communications and computing arenas to increase our understanding of how technology can improve our warfighting capabilities, as well relaying our broad requirements for the future.  These technical exchange opportunities help pave the way for capability development with an eye toward the feasible and the practical.

Appropriate levels of funding for the components of the Global Information Grid must be considered in relationship to the global capability as a whole.  The Global Information Grid satisfies requirements of tactical and strategic missions in an integrated and complex end-to-end fashion.  Lack of funding in one area, such as connectivity or computers, impacts the capability of the whole.  The Services and Agencies have submitted plans to provide bandwidth, computing power, network operations, information assurance, and applications as well as other related programs, all designed to achieve the single goal of the Global Information Grid.  These funding requests approach our minimum requirements today within the resources available.  The Services’ budget requests are based on operational requirements, many of which were highlighted in demonstrations and experiments.  The unifying theme of the Global Information Grid provides a conceptual framework for developing an investment strategy to achieve Information Superiority.

Integrating across Service experimentation efforts has given us insights into the joint combat power enabled by the Global Information Grid.  In the Army’s Advanced Warfighting Experiments (AWEs) tactical internets increased combat power by up to 250% as compared to a non-networked environment.  The Air Force has demonstrated a 250% increase in the kill ratio of an F-15C employing data links.  The Navy has demonstrated significant improvement in warfighting effectiveness in the counter-Special Forces mission area.  Similar results have been seen in the Marine Corps.

These capabilities highlight the key role of “the network” in enabling Information Superiority and demonstrates that Information Superiority is not just about technology, but about using people who use information to develop a competitive advantage.  This, however, provides both challenges and opportunities.


The Challenges  Ahead


There is no shortage of challenges and opportunities in the Information Superiority arena.  Let me outline a few of the ones we face, with a special emphasis on Information Assurance. 

The Military and Commercial Sectors must co-exist.  A strong economy and a strong military are both increasingly dependent on networks.   In some cases, our information rides through the same pipes. In other cases, we are in contention for resources that cannot be shared, such as frequency spectrum.  To preclude mutual interference, we continue to work with our civil, commercial and international partners to preserve our access to RF spectrum.
          As we move forward in deploying the Global Information Grid, we must continue to balance investments in our satellite communications capacity.  Our objective is to determine the appropriate mix of military and commercial capabilities to ensure worldwide coverage for our tactical and strategic users.  We are entering an era of great technological improvements in the satellite communications marketplace that provide significant promise for increased capability for the warfighter.

When working with coalition partners, we must accommodate multi-national technologies, many of which are developed outside of the U.S.  Our challenge is to ensure interoperability of these different but similar capabilities to ensure success with our coalition partners.

Kosovo pointed out the need for more communications capacity in our theaters. Thanks to some quick reaction by our Services and Agencies, we were able to provide adequate communications capacity to support the Air war.  Had we been involved in a ground operation in Kosovo our communications limitations would have impacted the conduct of operations.  Although we are working on ways to reduce the communications demand, our need for bandwidth has grown dramatically in the last few years because of the increased reliance on video teleconferencing, real-time video, imagery and web-based technology.  We need your continued support in funding critical components of the Global Information Grid, especially connectivity and computing power.  Information Assurance (IA) studies conducted over the past few years have provided ample guidance in determining the technology required for our defense in depth strategy.  The challenge before us is to apply precious resources to field capabilities.  We can’t afford to allow the “best” to get in the way of the “good enough.”  The difficult part is determining the “good enough.” 

As we continue to operationalize information assurance, we will field equipment and promulgate policies to optimize CINC-centric operations.    We are developing an Information Assurance Concept of Operations (CONOPs) for the deployed environment.   This document will help standardize and professionalize IA in every Joint Task Force we send to the field.   We are also orchestrating the deployment of a suite of equipment and software to ensure Joint Task Force Commanders leave home with the right IA capabilities to protect initial and follow-on operations rather than evolving to some level of protection over time.

Joint directed exercises and training are critical evolutions in institutionalizing joint doctrine and TT&P associated with operating and securing our critical networks, and maintaining our Global Information Grid.  Future exercises will focus on specific cyber threats and risk mitigation techniques as well as dynamic allocation of network resources.  We must expand these activities into the coalition training environment.

We are engaged in an aggressive validation of our current doctrine and guidance documentation that provides the direction to the components of the Global Information Grid.  These include two doctrinal publications, 22 policy and guidance instructions and five detailed procedural manuals.   Particular emphasis is being paid to the Defense in Depth strategy that directs the CINCs, Services and Agencies to put in place a minimum set of capabilities for the network, enclave, computing environment and the critical security infrastructure including use of Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) technology.  Although we are moving in the right direction, we are only moving as fast as the funding allows.

 Another area needing attention is our ability to “red team”—that is, allowing our technical experts to attack and exploit our own networks.  These teams would act as independent assessors, able to show us our own vulnerabilities.  Currently, however, the red teaming process is cumbersome and sometimes slow.  As a result, there are very few “no-notice” red teaming efforts today.  We must address the barriers that inhibit our ability to identify our own weaknesses before the enemy has the opportunity to exploit them. 

Although DOD networks were not affected by the rash of recent attacks against commercial web sites such as E-Bay and CNN, DoD continues to see an ever-growing number of attacks against our information systems.  It is time to reevaluate the penalties associated with deliberate hacking.  The recent case law developed from cases such as Melissa virus attacks, and numerous, highly publicized hacking events provides enough evidence for the legal community to review current laws to determine if they are sufficient to deter future attacks against our systems.

We cannot operate the Global Information Grid without people.  We are using “special skill” rewards to attract, train, and retain our best Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines.  However, our Total Force Information Technology Warriors are faced with choosing between their military professions and opportunities in the commercial sector that will compensate them at a much higher rate.  We must continue to assess our retention programs, proficiency pay, and operational tempo, which affect these highly trained and experienced people.  They are truly our Nation’s most precious resource.

Finally, we cannot view the command, control, communications and computers (C4) systems and the intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) budgets as bill payers for traditional Weapon Systems, but rather as the entry fee for the transformation that must be paid up front.




Ten to twenty years from now, I believe that people will look back on this period at the beginning of the 21st century and say one of two things.   There was an tremendous opportunity for transformation – but it was squandered, because the key role of the Global Information Grid was not appreciated, or... there was a tremendous opportunity and it was capitalized upon by the DoD and Congress working together to make a difference.

In conclusion, I believe we are making solid progress toward implementing a Joint Strategy for Information Superiority that supports our Warfighters.  Mr. Chairman and Members of the Committee, I look forward to helping make the Information Superiority strategies that I have shared with you this afternoon a reality, and to addressing you in the future regarding our successes and way ahead.  On behalf of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, I appreciate the opportunity to present the Joint Staff's insights on how to advance this issue of growing national importance – Information Superiority.