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Lt. Col. Matthew Arrol: Army Needs Thorough Examination of Command and Control to Advance Combined JADC2

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Lt. Col. Matthew Arrol
Lt. Col. Matthew Arrol Commandant Army Joint Support Team

Lt. Col. Matthew Arrol, commandant of the U.S. Army’s Joint Support Team at Hurlburt Field in Florida, wrote in an article published Friday on Breaking Defense that the service should conduct a thorough analysis of its current command-and-control structures and optimize C2 to advance multidomain operations and make the Combined Joint All-Domain C2 concept a reality.

Arrol said the Army should consider “how closely and widely we want to integrate the new C2 systems with our allies and non-military Unified Action Partners.” He called on the service to design its C2 systems “from the ground up with inclusion as a mission goal” and work to achieve and protect that synergy with a multinational force.

“Even for those partners outside of traditional alliances, US forces must prepare for the day when we may need to rapidly integrate those forces,” Arrol said. “Hybrid warfare and winning in the ‘competition period’ requires the capabilities and expertise of a whole-of-government approach.”

Arrol noted that adapting the C2 structure to support C/JADC2 calls for the Army to address education by reassessing the skills and training at all echelons and exposing warfighters to the joint force far earlier in their careers.

“Practitioners of C/JADC2 processes will need to be trained to execute in a degraded environment and possess the command relationships and authorities to act appropriately,” he wrote. “This will naturally be enabled by technology to diagnose, treat, and heal broken C2 networks automatically to maintain the desired decision advantage.”

He said the Army should identify “change agents” and “champions” that could help oversee JADC2, act as an active participant and “must be deliberate in its approach to change, resilient during the process, and seek out those who are uniquely qualified to help lead it.”

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