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Multi-Domain Command and Control Conference

MALE:  General Jay Raymond, the Commander of Air Force Space Command, has come out and will talk to you all a little bit—the things that are important to him and the Command about multi-domain command and control.  He really doesn't need an introduction.  Some of you may remember back—we used to give out the Jerome—General Jerome O'Malley trophy at an event that we had up at Keystone in Colorado; we called it the Space Warfare Symposium back in the day, before that was actually a proper name to be using, I guess—but he received that trophy in 2007 up there.  He's had some interesting jobs lately other than the one he currently has.  He was at U.S. Strategic Command and other combatant commands working around the world doing his job.  He oversees the Air Force Network Operations—manages a global network of satellite command and control, communications, missile warning, and space launch facilities.  A lot of you all know it's 38,000 people spread around the world—the sun never sets on Air Force Space Command—134 locations.  He was commissioned through the ROTC program at Clemson University in 1984.  Any other—really?  Okay.  He has commanded the 5th Space Surveillance Squadron at Royal Air Force, Feltwell, England; the 30th Operations Group at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California; and the 21st Space Wing at Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado previously; 14th Air Force United States Strategic Command Joint Functional Component Command for Space.  He deployed to southwest Asia as Director of Space Forces—DIRSPACEFOR, as we know—in support of Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom.  The general's staff assignments include Headquarters Air Force Space Command, U.S. Strategic Command, the Air Staff and the Office of Secretary of Defense.  Most recently, prior to assuming the command of Air Force Space Command, General Raymond was the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C., and we're glad to have him back in town.  Ladies and gentlemen, General Jay Raymond.

RAYMOND:  Well, good morning.  How's everybody?  Good?  Good conference so far?  How many Air Force Space Command airmen are here?  Great.  First of all, let me just say 'thanks'—good to see you—thanks very much to Chris and Henry for revitalizing this conference.  I'll tell you a funny story to kick off.

This used to be the AFA at Keystone, I heard, and when I was the Ops Groups Commander at Vandenberg, it was my last day; I was—change in command was, like, the next day.  I got this call saying "Hey, you have to be at Keystone the night before" because you're getting the O'Malley Award."  I said "Well, I can't; my going away dinner's that night, I'm moving and…"  "No, there's no option—you've gotta be there."  So I flew up to Denver and drove up to Keystone, got in right before the—right before the dinner and got the O'Malley Award—it's really cool.  I mean, it's a great award and it's a big award; it's like—it must weigh, what do you think, 30 or 40 pounds?  I mean, it's—and so I'm used to sea level at Vandenberg and I get this award up at Keystone and I—and I'm running back to my car to drive back to Denver so I can get back on a flight at 5:00 in the morning to get home in time for the change in command, and I parked like—I got a little lost going there and I parked like a mile away from the place where the event was, and I come walking out with this 35-pound statue and I was just dying—so I ended up finding a bush and I put O'Malley behind a bush and I ran to get my car and came back—don't tell anybody that.  It's now proudly displayed in my office, but for a minute it was proudly displayed behind a bush.  

I really appreciate the AFA for pulling this off and revitalizing this.  This is really important, and not only is this conference important where we can come together and talk about important issues not just for our Air Force for this one, but for our Joint Force.  It's good that we kind of centered this on multi-domain command and control.  And what I'd like to do is just talk a little bit about that, give you a few thoughts, and then I don't—I would like to open it up for questions at the end, so if you have anything that you want to get done, if I spur any thoughts, I'd love to have a little bit of a dialog with you.  

This is a really important topic for our Air Force.  As you know, it's one of the Chief's three big rocks.  General Saltzman—is he here?  He was?  Okay.  As you know, he's leading the Chief's Big Rock #3, which is multi-domain C2.  The Army has multi-domain battle space, the Navy has multi-domain warfare, and so lots of people thinking about this.  If you look at the construct that we use to talk about threats today, or potential threats—CRIKCTS or four-plus-one—China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, counterterrorism—and you think about all those, what do they all have in common?  They're all global or transregional; they're not confined to lines on a map; they're multi-functional and they're multi-domain, and that's why everybody's so interested in this and that's why this is so important to our joint force.  

So as I started thinking about this, you know, we've always—for the history of our Air Force, we've always been a multi-domain service, right?  We've always been about integrating air into either the land domain or the sea domain.  Think about World War I and World War II; just think what air power did as we integrated air power for the first time.  Now you fast forward to 1991—it's a big fast forward, but 1991, and you think about Desert Storm.  That was really the first time that we took strategic space assets and integrated those assets into tactical operations—multi-domain integration.  We stood up—you know, throughout that period we stood up the Weapons Division at the Warfare Center so we could grow folks like Colonel DeAnna Burt—all steeped in integrating space into the fight.  We stood up something called the Director of Space Forces; we stood up something called the 614th AOC, which is now the JSpOC (Joint Space Operating Center).  We have something called the Space Coordinating Authority.  We have JFCC (Joint Functional Component Command) Space as the Global Space Coordinating Authority.  You have each of the CFACs around the globe being named the Regional Space Coordinating Authority.  That's my whole career—almost my whole career, the vast majority of my whole career, has been about taking space and integrating it into air operations.  And today, there's nothing we do as a joint force—I say this every speech I give—there's nothing we do as a joint force where we don't take space and integrate it and where space and cyber have enabled that.  Nothing.  Think of something—come up with—I wish somebody'd come up with it.  I challenge you to come up with anything.  When I was the Air Force A3, I got a much broader perspective of joint operations and Air Force operations, and I'll tell you there's nothing we do—absolutely nothing we do without it.

And today I would suggest that just as we did back in Desert Storm where folks said that, you know, Desert Storm was the first space war.  I don't know if I agree with that.  I think probably the Cold War might have been the first space war; it was the first war where we integrated space into the fight.  I'd suggest to you today that the conflicts we're in today, we're doing the same thing now with cyber, and that integration of space and cyber—that multi-domain integration—is really fueling our American way of war.  It fuels our American way of life, but it's fueling our American way of war.  We can't fight the way we fight today without it.  And it's also, without question, enhanced our lethality.  

So if this is the case—if we've been doing this our whole career—the whole—my whole career, the whole time we've been an independent Air Force, what's the big deal?  Why are we talking about it?  Why it is a big rock?  Why are all the services working so hard on this?  Well, I would suggest that our potential adversaries have had a front row seat and have watched this integration to great effect—our integration provide great effect to us, and they have seen the advantages that it provides—and they don't like what they see, so they're rapidly developing capabilities to keep us from accessing those multi-domain capabilities and achieving the advantages they provide.  

So I think we kind of are moving into a new era of multi-domain integration and I would just suggest that in this chapter, space and cyber will not only be support operations—or will not only support operations in air, land, and sea, but air, land, and sea will also support operations in space and cyber.  I'll also tell you that this isn't just about making one domain better.  So largely what we've done is we've taken space and cyber and have made the air domain more effective.  I didn't come up with this term, but I heard somebody say this one and I like it—it's 'domain on demand'.  What domain do we want to use to get the best effect that we need?  And how do you carry out the five core missions of the Air Force in all three of those domains?  It's another way of thinking.  It's a more advanced and comprehensive way of thinking about multi-domain operations.  

I would also tell you the other thing that's probably significant most—maybe most significant in this new era of multi-domain operations is that we're gonna have to do this in a contested environment, and we're gonna have to do so on a global scale and we're gonna have to do it in tactical timelines that are extremely, extremely short both in space and way, way short when you think about how fast things happen in cyber.  We haven't had to do that in the past.  When I was the DIRSPACEFOR in theater, I could pick up the phone, I could reach out and I could call the JSpOC, they could do their thing, they could call me back and we'd have plenty of time to think about it.  Not the case going forward; we have to be able to do it at a speed that we can't do it today—so our strategic advantage rests, and our ability to project power forward and to fight that away game and to deliver global vigilance, global reach, and global power for our nation.  In this quickly evolving anti-access, area denial—A2AD—threat environment, space superiority is required to successfully project this power forward.  And I will tell you that I think about it—I don't think we can achieve air superiority in the timeframe that we would need to do it without having space superiority, and vice versa.  The domains are that connected.  We must have the ability to link sensors with shooters, and it can't just be sensors in the air domain with shooters in the air domain; it has to be multi-domain sensors and shooters.  So we have this thing called the 'Space Warfighting Construct'—so everybody that raised their hand that were in Air Force Space Command, has everybody heard of the Space Warfighting Construct?  It's a construct—and I want to state up front, although warfighting is in the name of the construct, it is a construct that is meant and primarily focused on deterring a conflict to extending into space.  We never want to fight this fight, but to not fight this fight, we have to be prepared for it.  And there are several pieces to this warfighting construct.  It starts with a vision—and my predecessor, General Hyten, in partnership with the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), built a vision for an architecture that is more defendable than the one that we have today.  And I'll tell you, it is a spectacular vision and it's a very powerful vision because it—it's this partnership with the National Reconnaissance Office that really, really gives it the weight that it deserves.  But it kind of fell flat on some ears in the Pentagon because it wasn't written in the warfighting language—so what we've done over the past six or seven months is wrap that vision in a CONOPs (Concept of Operations)—in a warfighting CONOPs.  And just—I think it's two weeks ago, maybe three weeks ago, Betty Sapp and I signed that CONOPs and this is how we—we wrote down how we expect to fight if that war were to go into space.  

There's two other CONOPs that we've also completed that we signed at this same time.  The first one was a CONOPs on shared situational awareness and indications and warning and how we're gonna do that between us, the NRO, and the broader intelligence community, and the next one was a CONOPs on how we're gonna do multi-domain command and control, and how we're gonna do that together.  Those CONOPs are the foundation for our activity in the Command going forward.  

Below that CONOPs section, there is a section on having to be agile, and so let me just—so today, I'll throw out a quiz; see if anybody can guess the answer to this.  Today, if we want to buy a satellite—pick a satellite—and we want to buy an exact clone of that satellite, how long do you think it takes just to buy a replica of what's already been built and launched?  Anybody have an idea?  It's a six-year deal usually—approximately six years.  So let's say you want to buy a satellite that has something different on it—how long do you think that's gonna take?  About nine years-and that's approximate, but it's in that ballpark.  So let's go back to Bernard Schriever when he stood up the schoolhouse out at—in Los Angeles and he built the ICBM (Intercontinental Ballistic Missile)—designed it, built it, tested it, fielded it—all the ground infrastructure, all the C2 (command and control) that went into it, all the training—how long do you think that took?

MALE:  About four years.

RAYMOND:  About five.  We're not moving fast enough, and this is gonna require a much more agile way of doing business, and so that's another layer.  The other layer that I would talk to is partnerships.  In the space domain, we haven't had to have partners in the past because it's been a relatively benign domain and we really didn't need to have any.  You just launched it onto orbit and if it worked, you're good.  Well, that's not the case today.  So we're working really, really hard—as I talked about, partnership with the National Reconnaissance Office, partnership with the broader intelligence community, partnership with our commercial partners, and partnerships with our allies to take this forward.  And the reason why I wanted to end with the partnership piece is that anything you come up with multi-domain command and control, if we're gonna be in a fight in the future, we're gonna fight with our allies, and so anything that we come up with for multi-domain C2 has to be coalition friendly, and today I will tell you that the systems that we have in our command for command and control aren't really coalition friendly, and I would suggest they're not really command and control systems, and I'll talk a little bit about that.

The other thing that we're gonna have to do is we're gonna have to be able to execute this command and control across multiple operations centers, multiple classification levels, multiple—and link multiple sources of information.  That's not easy to do.  And again, today the system that we have, which is called SPADOC (Space Defense Operations Center)—anybody ever hear of SPADOC?  I can't wait until we can take a hammer to SPADOC and just blow it to bits.  It's an old clunker and it's a catalog system: it's not a warfighting command and control system.  It's not a multi-domain system.  It's full, it's tired, and it's limping across the finish line until we can get this thing called JMS (Joint Space Operations Center Mission System) up.  And JMS is gonna have a new computer system and it'll have more capacity and it'll allow us to do things at a little bit higher speed, but it doesn't give you the multi-domain C2 capabilities that you need.  So when I first got into this job eight or nine months ago, one of the first things that we did was kill JMS Increment 3 and try to break that lifeline between—or the iron bar between Increment 2, which was hold Increment 3 hostage, and we developed something called the Enterprise Battle Management Command and Control Capability—ESBMC2—And to develop—to deliver while SMC (Space and Missile Systems Center) is building and finishing increment 2 to start down the path of providing our warfighters the C2 capability that they need.  Again, we have to go fast, so we went and reached out to the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office—Air Force RCO—and said "Hey, why don't you do this for us?"  Because they're already done it.  They'd built a system built on open standards, open architecture; there's a consortium that's already built, and it was designed and fielded a system for what was called the CMCC—let me get my note real quick on what that stands for, but—the Common Mission Control Center.  CMCC is a software, hardware, human, machine interface used to direct, task, and manage different platforms; consume and leverage all data sources; streamlining command and control; shortening the task execution chain and reducing human-intensive communications.  So we said "Go do that for space.  Use the same standards, use the same architectures, and go fast."  And that's what they're doing.  And that will get us at being able to—if we share the same standards that we're sharing with—in the air domain, that will get us linked into multi-domain C2.  I'm really excited about what they're doing for us and I think it's gonna pay us significant dividends going forward.  

The other thing I'd talk about before I wrap up—and I want to talk about one other thing and then I want to read a section out of the initial Commander's Intent that I sent out to every airman in the Command the day after I took command, and then I'll take questions.  

The other thing I'd like to talk about is our information platform that we have and our ability to do information operations in our Air Force.  So today, how many of you have unclassified email—personal unclassified email?   Everybody, right?  How many times has it ever gone down?  Anybody?  How many people have AFNET—Air Force NIPRNET (Non-Secure Internet Protocol Router Network)?  How many times has that gone down today?  Yeah, it does.  We haven't organized this right, we haven't equipped it right, we haven't—we haven't programmed for it, resourced it.  All we do is kind of use year-end dollars to keep this thing alive and we throw airmen at the problem.  We've gotta fix that.  

I went to SMC for a visit shortly after I took command and I was eating lunch with a bunch of CGOs (company grade officers) and I said "How's your day going?"  And we went around and were asking questions—they're asking questions, introducing themselves to me; I said "How's your day going?" to this one captain, and he said "Great.  I got an email to send."  Think about that.  That's pretty sad.  And so we're really looking hard to leverage commercial industry to get at—to have them help us with the network piece of this and then focus our airmen on multi-domain operations, focus our airmen on offensive and defensive cyber.  And so I think that's gonna be a critical, critical enabler for us going forward to get at the multi-domain challenges that we face.  

So let me just read one last thing for you—and I hate to read in front of an audience, but I want—this came out of my Initial Commander's Intent.  It was paragraph D of 2—paragraph 2D.  "We will be at the leading edge"—and this is a letter than went out to every airman in Air Force Space Command.  "We will be at the leading edge of Air Force multi-domain operations.  Of critical importance to the Department of Defense is the ability to successfully conduct multi-domain operations.  We must find ways to operate seamlessly between domains to generate effects at a tempo the adversary cannot match."  This is another one—earlier in the letter I had talked about the Chief's big rocks, but this was another one of the Chief of Staff's focus areas.  He believes the Air Force is postured to lead the DoD in developing this approach and I agree.  "As the Air Force owner of two domains, space and cyber, multi-domain operations must be an Air Force Space Command core competency.  We must build, develop, and operate space and cyberspace capabilities in support of this effort.  We must develop airmen who are multi-domain leaders to operate space and cyberspace capabilities in support of this effort and effectively integrate our space and cyberspace operations centers with the regional operations centers to provide commanders true multi-domain effects."  

The reason why I wanted to see the show of hands on who was here from Air Force Space Command—this is your job.  This is who you are.  You are multi-domain airmen.  I talk about the challenges that we face that are global, transregional, multi-domain, multi-functional—and think about where you operate.  You think about the domains that you operate in.  These are our challenges.  There's nobody better prepared in our Air Force to lead this for our Air Force than the airmen of Air Force Space Command.  So I'd ask you—think about this.  You're the experts.  Help us get to where we need to be—and thank you very much for your service; I really appreciate the opportunity to be here.  And I just want to say this is a really important topic—really an important topic—and again, I want to thank AFA (Air Force Association) and I would like to thank those that invited me today.  I'm actually on leave today, but I didn't want to miss this.  This is too important and I just want to say thanks to each of you for your service—and we've got a lot of work to do.  So thanks.

With that, do you have any questions?  Yes?

AUDIENCE:  This is a related question cyber and space require *** are two unclear areas. We haven’t fought a real war, that is an opponent that can strike us, for quite some time and my question is just general; it's not meant to be answered specifically—but my question is why is there not more support at the DoD/Pentagon level for more robust and active and redundant missile defenses given that in a real war, we might not—we would be preempted by our enemies and not preempting them.  Thank you.

RAYMOND:  That's a great question.  I guess I would disagree a little bit with your—the last part of that question where you were insinuating that there wasn't support from DoD on building that.

AUDIENCE:  Not enough.

RAYMOND:  Yeah—you know, there's a lot of challenges that we face.  If you look at those four-plus-one challenges, we have a lot of challenges and they don't come cheaply.  But to say that it isn't an importance, I wouldn't state that.  I think it's highly important and I think the DoD recognizes the importance of that, but there's a lot of challenges that we face and there's only so many resources, and so the first thing I would say is Congress needs to repeal the Budget Control Act so we can get some more dollars.  

Any other questions?  That was easy.


RAYMOND:  Go ahead.

AUDIENCE:  Sir, what role do you think Air Force comm has in—excuse me.  Sir, what role do you think Air Force comm has in not just improving reliability, but in also fostering basic collaboration?  

RAYMOND:  You know, I spoke at a conference at AFA down in Tampa and I answered this question there.  I said—and I came up with—I just, off the top of my head; I don't know how I came up with this—I said "You're the DNA of that."  You can't do any of this if it wasn't fo.  I think one of the things we have to do as an Air Force, though, is we have to figure out what we are doing; what's our role in cyber?  Today, cyber is everything from an airman at a help desk in a comm squadron answering, you know, a trouble ticket for an iPhone that isn't working all the way up to the higher end offensive and defensive cyber operations.  My view is that we need to narrow that focus a little bit and that I would like to get us out of the business—as much of the business that we're in of running networks and doing help desks and I want to focus you on the higher end warfighting aspects of that.  We really need to defend our networks—and not just defend our networks, but defend our weapons systems.  I really believe—when I was talking about NIPRNET, when you were a kid, or when you take your kids to the doctor, did the doctor ever, like, hold up a blue bear, you know, to distract you while he'd give you a shot?  I think NIPRNET's our blue bear.  I think we're focused on NIPRNET.  This is unclassified email—unclassified email.  We need to get—start focusing on other things.  It's gotta be done; somebody else can do that and they can do it a lot better than we can.  

I've got—yeah?

AUDIENCE:  Yes, sir—we talked a lot about culture this morning in the culture shift that we have to make to move towards multi-domain ops and multi-domain C2 to get the systems and the tactics and the processes and policies to be able to do that, and a couple of those—one is our leadership, both in the senior military and civilian, ready to make the shift to allow us a culture of being able to take greater risks and accept some failures along the way to be able to do that?  And two is are we ready to look at new ways of funding this?  Because in order to do DEVOPs type of operations, we're gonna have to fund it differently.  

RAYMOND:  I agree with you and I—you know, General Hyten's pushing this really hard on taking risks.  My view on this is we have—there's acquisition risk and there's operational risk.  In my opinion, we are too heavily weighted on protecting against acquisition risk and we've gotta focus a little bit more on operational risk, and I think you're gonna see that going forward.  There's a lot of people pushing on that.  It does take a culture change.

The other thing I was gonna—somewhat related but not completely related to that question, and I meant to state this: We also, as a service, need to figure out where we want to be in 2030.  We're a multi-domain Air Force and that requires that we—from the time that we assess airmen into the Air Force either through basic military training or ROTC or the Academy, throughout the course of their career with professional development opportunities, airmen leadership school, squadron officer school, air command and staff college, all the way up through retirement, we have got to figure out how we build that multi-domain Air Force.  I don't think we're there yet and we've got some work to do to switch that culture and we're pushing on that—I'm personally pushing on that really, really, really hard.  

Got time for one more question.

AUDIENCE:  Yes, sir—to tag onto the comment you made about acquisitions, what can we expect in industry to see that can cut the timeline from acquisitions from that six-year time period to get a system on orbit to more like two to three years?  Because, as you know, that's costing us—how much money are we wasting in the acquisition process just to get there?

RAYMOND:  Yeah, so I've been digging into this hard.  I'm not—first of all, let me say right up front I'm not an acquisition person and go to bed every night very thankful that I'm not.  I'm an operator and I don't know if I could—I don't know if it's in my personality.  I—some of you may have heard me say this before, but when I became a one star, I got sent to a leadership course called 'CCL' and I went down to Florida—Tampa, Florida and spent a week getting personality tests, you know?  And they do all kinds of what colors are you and what four letters are you and all that.  And I brought my family out with me and they enjoyed Florida while I was there, and at the end of the week I came back to the hotel room and my daughter, who at the time was in high school, said "Hey Dad, what'd you learn?"  I said "Well, you know, I learned I don't have any patience."  And my wife says "Well, how much did the Air Force pay to figure that out?  I coulda told 'em that in about two minutes."  

So here's what I think on acquisition:  As I've—there's kind of two pieces of this that I'm digging into.  The first part is all the front end part to do all the AOAs (alternate of analysis) and all the analysis and the ICDs and all the other things that you have to do to get something on contract.  And I think there's ways—we have organizations today like the Air Force RCO (rapid capabilities office), like Air Force Space Command's ORS (Operationally Responsive Space), that really hack at that process around the fringes to go faster.  You know, we have ExComms—you know, the VFR Director, the Chief, and the Secretary and AT&L (Acquisitions, Technology and Logistics) to make rapid decisions.  So that's a piece of it.  I think we've got to figure out, and where I'm pushing on our team, is to use ORS authorities more broadly, not just for the one-off little experiments or prototypes that we do.  But that only gets you so far, and then there's this—from the time there's a contract to the time you launch a satellite, and that's that, you know, six-year or eight-year or whatever, nine-year, piece that I talked about.   As I dig into it, I think it's—it fundamentally comes down to requirements.  I think we're over-required.  And if you have requirements that are burdensome, people will tell you—a lot smarter people than I am that have been in this business for a long, long time and have the acquisition experience—will tell you it's gonna take you that long.  And so I think you have to change the business model.  You have to—and I think that starts with changing the requirements, and that's really where I'm pushing a lot of—pushing on to try to think about that differently to allow industry to go faster.  I think we can go faster.  We've—history shows we can go fast.  So every time I go out to industry, I ask them "Tell me what I can do to help you go fast."  And every time I get an answer to that is largely it gets back to requirements.  

Alright, again, I really appreciate the opportunity to be here.  Thank you very much for putting this conference on and thanks for all the airmen that are here; this is important for you to listen to, and remember, for those in Air Force Space Command, this is our job.  This is in your bailiwick; this is what you're an expert at—go off and make it happen.  Thanks.