What is ForceNet? What will it look like? How will it help the Navy and Marine Corps? Although there are no firm answers to these questions yet, this new network will be familiar to Internet users. One thing is certain: ForceNet will not be effective unless the power of the Global Positioning System is part and parcel of all data on the network.
It is clear from many recent press reports that ForceNet is not well understood by war fighters in the Navy and Marine Corps. Many do not know what it is or how it will contribute to the U.S. military's ability to prevail in combat. One reason is that ForceNet still is in the concept stage. The situation also is not helped by the obscure, computer-geek language often used to describe ForceNet and its potential functions. As retired Marine Lieutenant General Paul Van Riper pointed out at a Naval Institute symposium last year, "If we are unable to write in plain, simple English so an ordinary Marine could understand it, then our ability to ever implement [ForceNet], I think, is poor."