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US DoD team to study options to enhance joint warfighting

A US marine rides in an M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) during joint exercise Scarlet Dragon in Dugway, Utah, on 2 February 2023. (US Marine Corps photo by Lance Corporal Emma Gray)

A recently formed team in the US Department of Defense (DoD) plans to explore the possibility of setting up a new organisation to improve joint warfighting by the US Armed Forces.

The team, called the Joint Futures Cross-Functional Team (CFT), will build on the work of research institutes and other independent study groups that have argued for years that the US military services risk creating capability gaps and redundancies because they are not sufficiently synchronised despite decades of DoD efforts to promote jointness. The Joint Futures CFT will examine organisational options for addressing the problem.

A new “organisation would focus solely on the future and not be distracted by the current crisis de jour,” US Army Major General Patrick 'Pat' Gaydon, the CFT's lead, told Janes on 7 March. “The organisation would be protected to experiment and innovate to create the optimal force design for the future joint force.”

Gaydon, who took the helm of the CFT in November 2022, said his Pentagon-based group is in its early stages and is unsure how long its work will take. “There's a sense of urgency but not necessarily ‘this is going to happen by a certain date and time',” he said. His team has seven “permanent” members, including Gaydon, plus “a few subject-matter experts that come in and out”.

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