Working Toward Civilian And Military Integration

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Commission Releases Future Of Aerospace Report...

Could there be a military air traffic controller in your future? Civilian and military air traffic management systems may become a lot more integrated in the future. The Commission on the Future of the U.S. Aerospace Industry released its final report Tuesday recommending, among other things, a new, highly automated air traffic management system for all classes of aircraft, interoperable with national air defense systems. The commission was formed in 2001 to study the future of the U.S. aerospace industry in the global economy, particularly in relationship to U.S. national security. Problems in air traffic management are hampering the U.S. aerospace industry, according to commission chairman Robert S. Walker. "The government makes all decisions within vertical stovepipes," he said at a press conference in Washington on Monday. "It needs far more horizontal decision-making." We think that means being more flexible and involving more people who might be affected. The commission suggests that better decision-making can be accomplished by forming a multi-agency design task force made up of the DOD, the FAA, the Homeland Security Office, NASA and NOAA. Anyone feel their wallets getting skinnier?

...Throw In Some Hi-Tech Communications

The commission wants better communications, navigation, surveillance and reconnaissance so that the military can move around the globe more efficiently in order to protect the homeland. "The federal government needs a joint civilian and military initiative to develop this core infrastructure," the report states. The commission also wants to revise DOD acquisition policies to encourage adoption of commercial standards and increase financial flexibility. All of the 12 members of the commission signed off on the report, giving it their support; however, it hasn't escaped internal criticism. Former DOD Deputy Secretary John J. Hamre, a commission member, said the recommendations were "too general and diffuse." Well, after all, it was made up of congressional and presidential appointees, and they were given a "broad mandate" to study a lot of tuff...