Two-Way Street or Two-Way Mirror? Will Canada's Future Army be able to Interoperate with the United States' Army After Next at the Operational and Tactical Level of War?
Multinational operations have been the norm in warfare and information management between multinational forces has long been an issue within alliances and in coalition warfare. The ongoing Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA) in information technology (IT) and management (IM) has increased the level of difficulty associated with multinational information interoperability. Canada's Future Army (CFA) and the US Army's Objective Force (AAN) places a priority on information as a critical
... critical requirement for future missions. This is inherent in Canadian and US Army Doctrine manuals, Strategic Visions, and Future Army capability requirements. Canada recognizes that it will not be able to possess all the operational and strategic ISR resources needed to ensure information superiority to properly support operational battle command. To compensate for this disparity, the Department of National Defense envisions a closer military link to U.S. Forces to allow access to high-end ISR assets. As the US Army continues to move ahead along this technological azimuth, OPSEC concerns over a technological gap between US and other military has caused IM to become dysfunctional. This was the case in Kosovo and unless IM protocols are adjusted, the potential technological gap will not allow the AAN and CFA to share in the common operational picture that will be critical for future operations. replacing the Liaison Officer as the primary means of exchanging information in a coalition. This creates a different battlefield management imperative. Timely and accurate information has become a key enabler to many modern forces, particularly those in NATO. Canada's Future Army (CFA) concept places a priority on information as a critical requirement for future missions. This is inherent in Canadian Army Doctrine manuals, the Canadian Forces Strategic Vision and the Future Army Capabilities Study. 4 Canada recognizes that it will not be able to possess all the operational and strategic intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) resources needed to ensure information superiority. To compensate for this disparity, the Department of National Defense (DND) envisions a closer military link to US Forces to allow access to high-end ISR assets. 5 The US Army is continuing to leverage information as a critical component for decisive engagement by its Transition (Force XXI) and Objective (Army After Next -AAN) Forces. Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) assets will form the critical nodes of the future battlefield for the AAN. These nodes will be lynchpins in a commander's battlespace management and the development of a common and relevant operational picture for modern coalition forces. As the US Army continues to move ahead along this technological azimuth, Canada and many alliance (NATO) and coalition partners will be hard pressed to keep