Rough Draft for the Pacific

Capacity of forces is just as important as capability, particularly in a region of vast distances like the Asia-Pacific, said former Chief of Naval Operations retired Adm. Gary Roughead. Further, since unmanned aircraft and undersea vehicles “will be the game changer for the coming decades,” the United States needs to have a “very thoughtful approach” to its unmanned strategy in the Pacific, he told the House Armed Services Committee on July 24 during a hearing on the US military’s Asia-Pacific rebalance. The United States has the lead in technology and operational experience, and should leverage these advantages, said Roughead. Senior officials should also examine US and allied communication architectures, as the nature of high-end conflict will turn on the resilience of these systems, he said. “How hard are they? How robust are they? How redundant are they” asked Roughead rhetorically. The command and control of forces, both American and allied, will be a critical factor in any contingency in the upper end of the conflict spectrum, he noted.