Roughead Notes Fusion of Intelligence, Operations

WASHINGTON, March 23, 2011 — The fusion of intel­li­gence and oper­a­tions is an impor­tant advance that has tak­en shape dur­ing the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the chief of naval oper­a­tions told the Defense Writ­ers Group here today.
Navy Adm. Gary Roug­head said the abil­i­ty for intel­li­gence to be in the hands of oper­a­tors and deci­sion-mak­ers in almost real time has been extra­or­di­nary.

Advances dur­ing the wars have brought togeth­er the intel­li­gence and com­mand and con­trol orga­ni­za­tions at all lev­els, the admi­ral said. “I real­ly do think that we have the poten­tial … to change how we fuse intel­li­gence and oper­a­tions,” he added.

Roug­head point­ed to com­mu­ni­ca­tions as an exam­ple of this meld­ing, not­ing to the audi­ence of defense jour­nal­ists that their access to infor­ma­tion and the ways they dis­sem­i­nate it have changed marked­ly. “We’re see­ing the same thing,” he said. “How do you fold that into struc­tures and process­es is the next step.”

The fusion is more than sim­ply putting intel­li­gence peo­ple and oper­a­tions spe­cial­ists in the same room, Roug­head said. The fusion allows intel­li­gence pro­fes­sion­als to see what types of infor­ma­tion are most help­ful to oper­a­tions per­son­nel, while oper­a­tions per­son­nel have a clos­er knowl­edge of what is pos­si­ble and what ques­tions to ask their intel­li­gence brethren, he explained.

And it goes beyond com­bat infor­ma­tion cen­ters or brigade oper­a­tions offices, the Navy’s top offi­cer not­ed. Roug­head said he merged his service’s intel­li­gence and com­mand and con­trol career fields. He also cre­at­ed the 10th Fleet -– a glob­al fleet that has cyber­space at its bat­tle­ground cyber­space.

U.S. Depart­ment of Defense
Office of the Assis­tant Sec­re­tary of Defense (Pub­lic Affairs)

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