Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Department of Defense's (DOD) approach to implementing the U.S. Space Command's long-range plan for expanding military space systems, focusing on the extent to which: (1) plans for expanding military space systems conform to national and defense space policies; (2) funding projections support planned military space programs and desired capabilities; and (3) actions are being taken to educate military personnel to support future military space operations.
Recommendations for Executive Action
|Department of Defense||To ensure that the most cost-effective decisions are made in regard to planning and programming for space systems, the Secretary of Defense should direct the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Command, Control, Communications, and Intelligence and, as appropriate, the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics to: (1) require that plans in support of space systems include analyses of estimated costs and potential effectiveness of plausible terrestrial--land, sea, and air--systems as alternatives for performing the identified space missions, functions, or tasks; and (2) establish the means to develop and employ the modeling and simulation tools necessary to perform comparative analyses of space and terrestrial systems. Because the military services can only analyze space and terrestrial systems that are within their organizational purview, the Secretary should also identify and establish the proper office, and provide the necessary authority, to perform such analyses for decisionmakers on a DOD-wide basis.|
|Department of Defense||To ensure that military personnel are adequately educated in the use of space systems for military operations, the Secretary of Defense should direct the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to: (1) address the delay in completing joint doctrine for space operations by resolving differences among the services and establishing a timeframe for issuance; and (2) provide the necessary instructions to DOD and military service colleges and schools for incorporating essential space information into their professional military education curricula.|