Add this to the fact that SecDef Gates wants to cancel the F-22 and slow the buying of C-17s and one begins to wonder if he is not overseeing the dismantling of the Air Force entirely. No new fighters, no new bombers, no new tankers, no new transports. At this rate, in 10 years the Air Force will have gone extinct.
The White House has given the Pentagon guidance to delay procurement of aerial refueling tankers by five years and cancel plans for a new long-range bomber, according to three sources close to the discussions.
Air power advocates and military officials contend that the moves, if enacted, would hurt U.S. strategic might and put at risk missions that depend on the aging tanker and bomber fleets.
ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œThe Air Force needs a new tanker desperately,ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â said retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Michael Dunn, president of the Air Force Association. ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œThe KC-135 tanker averages over 47 years old, and the B-52 bomber is almost as old.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â
cyberspace – A global domain within the information environment consisting of the interdependent network of information technology infrastructures, including the Internet, telecommunications networks, computer systems, and embedded processors and controllers. (CJCS CM-0363-08) REF: Department of Defense Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms (JP 1-02) (12 April 2001 – As Amended Through 17 October 2008)
To further the discussion, it is also necessary to present the definition of another domain medium from the same publication:
space – A medium like the land, sea, and air within which military activities shall be conducted to achieve US national security objectives. (JP 3-14)
With all of the redundancies across the various services, why not consolidate them into a new service? Analogous to the National Security Act of 1947, which created the Air Force from the Army Air Force, a 21st century reorganization could create a CyberSpace Force. (The exact name is not significant, using CyberSpace Force as a generic moniker.) This new force, formed from components in all of the services, would concentrate the existing disparate and duplicative efforts into one organization. No service would lose capabilities, because we fight as a Joint team now. Personnel from the newly created force would join operations and command structures as dictated by mission requirements.
The Pentagon is likely to take the rare action of adding a new combatant commander, this one for cyber warfare. COCOMs, as they are known, are the four-star generals who actually plan and fight the nationÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s wars.
Defense Secretary Robert Gates has been considering the idea of a cyber COCOMs for months and several senior cyberwarfare officials said he is likely to move on this soon after the White House finishes a 60-day study underway on the major policy, strategic, organizational and operational issues facing the country when it comes to cyber war and cyber security.
The 60-day study is led by Melissa Hathaway, acting senior director for cyberspace for the National Security and Homeland Security councils. This is all part of a final effort to resolve a major stumbling block to effective cooperation and policymaking ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Â stubborn battles between the NSA, Strategic Command, services and the Defense Information Systems Agency over just who has the biggest cyber muscles on the block.