DoD has recently made efforts to improve the speed of innovation in defense, creating new organizations intended to improve innovation. But continuing down this path of “innovation theater” does little to change how the defense enterprise operates and adopts innovative ideas and technologies.
Today, seven geographic COCOMs are responsible for integrating forces across all domains for military operations within their respective Areas of Responsibility. But in today’s increasingly complex, connected, and multipolar strategic environment, the geographic COCOM structure is an outdated and counterproductive bad idea.
The Defense Department should start preparing now for an uncertain post-coronavirus budget environment. It should clearly identify the “crown jewel” capabilities it cannot sacrifice, start cutting end strength and lower priority force structure, and prepare for a robust debate over global security commitments and budget constraints.