Submarine Forces release Commander’s Intent 3.0
25 September 2020
NORFOLK, Va. --
Vice Adm. Daryl Caudle, Commander, Submarine Forces, and Rear. Adm. Blake Converse, Commander, Submarine Force Pacific, released Commander’s Intent 3.0 on September 24, 2020.
Commander’s Intent 3.0 is designed to enable mission command authority for the Submarine Force by providing a clear and concise expression of the purpose of our operations and the desired end states. It is the undersea domain Commander’s guidance to the Force and is foundationally based on the National Defense Strategy, National Military Strategy, and the CNO’s operational guidance and directives.
Commander’s Intent 3.0 provides staff focus and guides subordinate and supporting commanders in achieving the undersea forces desired results. The document is built on an unclassified but comprehensive opening as well as ten classified annexes containing time-phased campaign plans that provide near-term direction to the Force.
“This is the next evolution of our undersea forces that supports, enables, and multiplies our Future Fleet’s combat power with undersea enabled capacity and capabilities created to maintain an enduring warfighting advantage,” said Caudle. “I am energizing the brilliance, innovation, creativity, and work ethic of the entire undersea enterprise in close collaboration with our other Navy communities, sister services, allies, partners, and the defense industrial base to unite toward designing new ideas and disruptive concepts that crush existing paradigms and leverage the untapped potential of our extraordinary undersea forces.”
Commander’s Intent 3.0 and the associated campaign plans are the foundation of how the undersea forces will ensure they are ready to “fight tonight” as well as support the Joint Force across the spectrum of conflict in the context of Great Power Competition.
“Our Undersea Forces provide a powerful, asymmetric advantage against increasingly well trained and technologically advanced adversaries who aim to shape the world consistent with their authoritarian model,” said Converse. “This update directs the Submarine Force toward increasing lethality, improving the autonomy of our commanding officers, and continuing to develop the highly trained, combat ready crews that are ready to fight tonight.”
The Campaign Plans:
To make the Force more lethal, persistent, and ready for high-end combat, the ten classified campaign plans direct the operations, activities, and investments to execute over the next 18 months. These supporting campaign plans include:
1. Maintain a Credible Strategic Deterrent Force.
Our ballistic missile submarine (SSBN) fleet is approaching a period of transition as we begin construction and introduction of the Columbia-class while sustaining the Ohio-class SSBNs to continue operating over 42 years. While this transition is in progress, we must continue to recapitalize our nuclear command, control, and communication capabilities to ensure our deterrent is resilient and credible.
2. Rebalance the Force for War
. We must change our force structure and focus in response to Great Power Competition. This rebalancing of the Force will impact the submarines we build, the capabilities we field, and how we organize, train, equip and command those forces.
3. Restore Expeditionary Maintenance/Logistics Capability.
Our competitor’s efforts to deny access to U.S. forces have upended the maintenance and logistics model that we have leveraged for decades and have forced us to reinvigorate capabilities that we minimized during the late 1990s and early 2000s. Our ability to rearm, resupply, and repair our forces abroad is essential to our sustained operations during combat.
4. Instill Mission Command.
This plan continues our emphasis on building effective leadership models, experience, and judgment to develop combat-ready leaders centered on the concept of mission command by leveraging decision science and understanding cognitive biases.
5. Develop the Undersea Force for Sustained Great Power Competition.
This effort is focused on training, developing, and retaining our highly capable Sailors and civilian workforce.
6. Innovate in Doctrine and Tactics to Counter Our Great Power Competitors.
This plan aligns efforts to develop new doctrine and innovative tactics that address the challenges of near-peer competitor submarines and the range of missions we expect to encounter in major combat operations.
7. Maintain Mastery of the Undersea Domain.
We must drive the acquisition process to meet fleet needs by setting requirements that maintain our competitive edge by developing integrated acquisition programs in conjunction with the acquisition community that provide “whole” and sustainable capabilities within a competitive fiscal environment for scarce resources.
8. Enable the Theater Undersea Warfare Commander (TUSWC) to Lead at the Operational Level of War.
Due to the range of missions and the early phasing of critical undersea operations in major combat, undersea forces are best commanded and controlled at the theater level by a TUSWC with the authorities and assets to be effective. To mature this concept, we will work with the fleet commanders to establish robust TUSWC doctrine and procedures that support the Navy and joint maritime fight.
9. Expand the Competitive Battlespace with Subsea & Seabed Warfare/Special Operations Force Capabilities Operating at Fleet Scale.
Undersea Forces are maturing new Subsea & Seabed Warfare (SSW) concepts and capabilities. This warfare area employs submarines, an undersea constellation of fixed and mobile sensors, communications nodes and power connections, unmanned undersea vehicles (UUV), and an enduring relationship with Special Operations Forces (SOF) to expand our undersea dominance.
10. Building Alliances and Partnerships.
Our undersea force relies on alliances and partnerships. This effort is focused on growing and maturing these partnerships and improving the capabilities of our partners in order to multiply our combined lethality across the spectrum of conflict. Our allies and partners also provide our Force access that will enable and empower our expeditionary maintenance and logistical efforts forward.
The end-state is an undersea force that is prepared to use its warfighting advantage to enhance strategic deterrence, integrate combat power with the Joint Force, and enable all-domain maneuver warfare. In support of these ends, the Force will field undersea forces capably led by our Commanding Officers, backed by officers and enlisted Sailors who are masters of their specialties at the operational and tactical level of war, equipped with unmatched capabilities designed to enhance and multiply the Joint Force in competition and conflict.
To read the unclassified Commander’s Intent 3.0 visit: https://media.defense.gov/2020/Sep/24/2002504938/-1/-1/0/SUBLANT-COMMANDERS-INTENT3.PDF/SUBLANT-COMMANDERS-INTENT3.PDF