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Highlights

Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Navy's and the Air Force's development of the Joint Standoff Weapon (JSOW), focusing on whether the: (1) missile will provide the capabilities originally intended; and (2) cost and operational effectiveness analyses continue to support the program's procurement plans.

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Recommendations

Matter for Congressional Consideration

Matter Status Comments
Congress should consider requiring the Secretary of Defense, in the fiscal year 2001 budget submission, to report on the reassessment of the procurement quantities for the JSOW antiarmor and unitary variants.
Closed - Implemented
The Congress, in the fiscal year 2000 Defense appropriations act, considered the findings and recommendations in the report and took action to reduce the funding and quantities requested for the antiarmor version of JSOW by both the Air Force and the Navy.

Recommendations for Executive Action

Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Department of Defense 1. GAO believes the acquisition plans for the JSOW program need to be reassessed because the targeting limitations of the antiarmor variant and the design changes of the unitary variant prevent their effective use against moving or relocatable targets. Consequently, these limitations restrict them to attacking only stationary targets. As a result of the reduction in the number of targets, the Secretary of Defense should reassess the quantity of antiarmor and unitary variants that are needed to attack stationary targets and revise the near-term procurement plans to reflect only those quantities. Based on the reassessment, the Secretary should determine whether the remaining quantities and unit cost continue to make JSOW a cost-effective weapon.
Closed - Implemented
In preparing its budget request for fiscal year 2001, the Navy decided to reduce the quantities of the antiarmor variant of the JSOW.
Department of Defense 2. To assist DOD in its assessment, the Secretary of Defense should task the Director of Program Analysis and Evaluation to independently review the reasons for the unitary variant's projected use against low-priority, moving and relocatable targets as well as why it is not selected for use against high-value targets in the capabilities-based munitions requirements process.
Closed - Implemented
The Director, Program Analysis and Evaluation conducted a review of the requirement for the unitary variant of JSOW and determined that the Navy has a valid requirement for the missile. However, PA&E's review did not assess the quantity of unitary variants that the Navy needs to buy.