I had two unforgettable experiences in the last few months I want to share with you. The first occurred just a few days before Thanksgiving when I had the privilege of interviewing several Information Systems Technicians (ITs), Electronics Technicians (ETs) and Information Professional (IPs) Officers on the ground in Baghdad.
These technology warriors are building a network of Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence (C4I) for joint, combined and Iraqi Security Forces. They are facilitating knowledge sharing and providing secure voice, video and data services to a wide range of users. They are doing whatever needs to be done to support deployed air, ground and sea forces from 28 coalition nations and the United States.
Like all U.S. and coalition troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, they live and work in a perilous, austere environment, enduring extremes in weather conditions … far from home. Yet, they are upbeat, proud of the work they are doing in Iraq — and proud of each other. Their esprit de corps and unfailing energy are palpable. It was a joy to speak with them.
I thank them, and Rear Adm. Nancy E. Brown, Vice Director, Command, Control, Communications and Computers, J6, the Joint Staff, and Deputy Chief of Staff for Communications and Information Systems (DCS CIS) for MNF-I, for talking with CHIPS.
In December, I attended the exciting Trident Warrior 05 (TW05) Initial Planning Conference. Trident Warrior is the Navy's premier FORCEnet Sea Trial experiment. Trident Warrior is sponsored by the Naval Network Warfare Command (NETWARCOM). Others supporting commands include the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR), the Naval Postgraduate School, Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) and the Naval Personnel Development Command (NPDC).
About 200 participants attended, including representatives from 2nd Fleet and coalition partners from Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada and New Zealand (AUSCANNZUKUS).
The conference was held in the SPAWAR Tidewater Node of the FnCE (FORCEnet Composeable Environment) facility on the Norfolk Naval Base. Stay tuned for more information on TW05.