The United States prefers to fight the “away game,” and our adversaries know it. The problem for them is how to prevent us from projecting power onto their shores; the answer is to build a defense-offense strategy that denies us access to the littorals and maneuver space in the critical domains. China already is implementing this strategy. Thus, within the U.S. military, antiaccess/area-denial (A2/AD) and command-and-control denied or degraded environments have dominated the doctrinal discussion. The conversation, however, is singularly focused on operational access—how to sneak in and operate while hidden. Focusing on keeping a carrier strike group hidden may be distracting us from what should be our real goal—mastery of counter-targeting through proper information operations planning. We need to drive our tactical situation, not let it happen to us.
Living in TACSIT 1
In today’s operational environment, the Navy’s position often is known to an adversary—as this photo of the Donald Cook (DDG-75) being overflow by a Russian Sukhoi Su-24 demonstrates. Therefore, the goal should not be to remain hidden, but to be untargetable while located.
By Commander Bryan Leese, U.S. Navy