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US to build wireless network for future warfare


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#1    Paulo

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Posted 13 November 2004 - 11:10 PM

NEW YORK (AFP) - The Pentagon (news - web sites), which invented the precursor to the Internet 40 years ago, has laid the first connections for a secure, wireless information network that proponents say will fundamentally transform warfare, a US newspaper reported.


Estimates are that the Global Information Grid will cost 200 billion dollars in the next decade alone, but take two decades to complete, the New York Times said.


The new network would fuse US military and intelligence services into a unified system and make volumes of information instantly available to soldiers on the battlefield, the Times said.


Every member of the military would have "a God's-eye view" of the battlefield, said Robert Stevens, chief executive of top US military contractor Lockheed Martin Corporation.


Proponents say it will become the most lethal weapon in the US arsenal and change the military and warfare the way the Internet changed business and culture.


The system would allow "marines in a Humvee, in a faraway land, in the middle of a rainstorm, to open up their laptops, request imagery" from a spy satellite, and "get it downloaded within seconds," Peter Teets, under secretary of the Air Force, told Congress, according to the Times.


The effort faces staggering technological hurdles.


Vint Cerf, one of the inventors of the Internet, is now a consultant to the Pentagon on the project. "I want to make sure what we realize is vision and not hallucination," he told the Times.


"This is sort of like Star Wars, where the policy was, 'Let's go out and build this system,' and technology lagged far behind," he said. "There's nothing wrong with having ambitious goals. You just need to temper them with physics and reality."


The military has twice before tried to build information networks for the military.


The 1960s-era Worldwide Military Command and Control System often failed in crises. A 25-billion-dollar successor completed in 2003 is already outdated.


Pentagon scientists invented the systems that became the Internet starting four decades ago but the Internet leapt forward once it emerged in the world of commerce a decade ago.


The war net is "an attempt to catch up," Cerf said.


Military contractors and information-technology innovators formed a consortium to develop the war net on September 28, the Times said.


The group includes Boeing, Cisco Systems, General Dynamics, Hewlett-Packard, Honeywell, IBM, Lockheed Martin, Microsoft, Northrop Grumman, Oracle, Raytheon, and Sun Microsystems.






Much Love, Light & Peace,

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#2    Paulo

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Posted 13 November 2004 - 11:14 PM

Posted on Sat, Nov. 13, 2004

Pentagon building `Internet in the sky' for future wars

PROJECT IS YEARS, BILLIONS AWAY FROM FRUITION

By Tim Weiner

New York Times


The Pentagon is building its own Internet, the military's Web for the wars of the future.

The goal is to give all American commanders and troops a moving picture of all foreign enemies and threats -- ``a God's-eye view'' of battle.

This ``Internet in the sky,'' Peter Teets, undersecretary of the Air Force, told Congress, would allow ``Marines in a Humvee, in a faraway land, in the middle of a rainstorm, to open up their laptops, request imagery'' from a spy satellite, and ``get it downloaded within seconds.''

The Pentagon calls the secure network the Global Information Grid, or GIG. Conceived six years ago, its first connections were laid six weeks ago. It may take two decades and hundreds of billions of dollars to build the new war net and its components.

Military contractors and information-technology creators formed a consortium to develop the war net Sept. 28. The group includes Boeing, Cisco Systems, Factiva (a joint venture of Dow Jones and Reuters), General Dynamics, Hewlett-Packard, Honeywell, IBM, Lockheed Martin, Microsoft, Northrop Grumman, Oracle, Raytheon and Sun Microsystems. They are working to weave weapons, intelligence and communications into a seamless web.

Skeptics say the costs are staggering and the technological hurdles huge.

Advocates say networked computers will be the most powerful weapon in the American arsenal. Fusing weapons, secret intelligence and soldiers in a globe-girdling network -- what they call net-centric warfare -- will, they say, change the military in the way the Internet has changed business and culture.

``Possibly the single most transforming thing in our force,'' Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has said, ``will not be a weapons system, but a set of interconnections.''

The U.S. military, built to fight nations and armies, now faces stateless enemies without jets, tanks, ships or central headquarters. Sending secret intelligence and stratagems instantly to soldiers in battle would, in theory, make the military a faster, fiercer force against a faceless foe.

Robert J. Stevens, chief executive of the Lockheed Martin, the nation's biggest military contractor, said he envisioned a ``highly secure Internet in which military and intelligence activities are fused'' that would shape 21st-century warfare in the way that nuclear weapons shaped the Cold War.

The ideals of this new warfare are driving many of the Pentagon's spending plans for the next 10 to 15 years. Some costs are secret, but billions of dollars have already been spent.

Providing the connections to run the war net will cost at least $24 billion over the next five years. Beyond that, encrypting data will be a $5 billion project.

Hundreds of thousands of new radios are likely to cost $25 billion. Satellite systems for intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance and communications will be tens of billions more. The Army's net-centric warfare program alone has a $120 billion price tag.

Overall, Pentagon documents suggest, $200 billion or more may go for the war net's hardware and software in the next decade or so.


http://www.mercurynews.com/mld/mercurynews...10172553.htm?1c

Much Love, Light & Peace,

Paulo`


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#3    Dancing_Dumplings

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Posted 13 November 2004 - 11:14 PM

i guess that will be very useful. but then again i dont like war much.

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#4    AztecInca

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Posted 14 November 2004 - 03:42 AM

And just imagine what all that money could achieve if put to the proper use like feeding all the starving people around the world, give them basic education and sanitation, help the environment, , boost funding for health and eduction and so much more that would make this a better world to live in, but why would we do that? its not like it would be the right thing to do or anything!





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