Defense secretaries past and present have long complained about the amount of reports Congress requires the Pentagon to submit. This year, for instance, just on missile defense, House authorizers, in their report accompanying the fiscal year 2010 defense authorization bill, want eight reports from DOD to be submitted within the next year. Inside Missile Defense will be tracking the following:
A report on the U.S.-Israeli Arrow-3 program:
The committee understands that the Department of Defense is currently negotiating a project agreement with the Israeli Ministry of Defense for the Arrow-3 program. Given the high-risk nature of Arrow-3, the committee understands that the Arrow-3 project agreement will contain clear knowledge points (i.e., technical benchmarks) and a schedule that will govern the development of the program. Future decisions about the program should be based on the Arrow-3 system’s ability to meet the agreed knowledge points and schedule. Therefore, the committee directs the Secretary of Defense to submit a report to the congressional defense committees by April 15, 2010, that describes the agreed knowledge points and schedule, and assesses whether the Arrow-3 program is meeting the agreed knowledge points and schedule. The committee further directs that the report include a discussion of alternative paths the Department is examining to assist Israel in developing an upper-tier missile defense capability, such as the land-based version of the Standard Missile-3 (SM–3), should the Arrow-3 program fail to meet the agreed knowledge points and schedule.
A report on the recently canceled KEI and MKV programs:
The committee recognizes that the Kinetic Energy Interceptor (KEI) program and the Multiple Kill Vehicle (MKV) program have completed research and development of certain technologies that could be beneficial to other defense programs. The committee directs the Secretary of Defense to provide a report to the congressional defense committees not later than March 31, 2010, on the feasibility of completing development of certain technologies that were in the process of being developed through the KEI and MKV programs and could have additional useful defense applications.
A report on the planned Precision Tracking Space Sensor (PTSS) constellation:
The committee directs the Secretary of Defense to provide a report to the defense committees not later than March 1, 2010, providing a description of the PTSS long-lead, risk-reduction activities to include: (1) payload design, prototyping and laboratory characterization; (2) continuing work on consolidated ground processing of overhead sensor feeds; and (3) implementation of the C2BMC interface.
On the Ground-based Midcourse Defense Sustainment and Modernization Program:
This section would require the Secretary of Defense to establish a sustainment and modernization program to ensure the long-term reliability, availability, maintainability, and supportability of the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system to protect the United States against limited ballistic missile attacks, whether accidental, unauthorized, or deliberate. It would also require the Secretary of Defense to submit a report to the congressional defense committees outlining the Department of Defense’s long-term sustainment and modernization plan for that system.
Missile defense in Europe:
This section would prohibit the Department of Defense from acquiring (other than for initial long-lead procurement) or deploying operational missiles of a long-range missile defense system in Europe until the Secretary of Defense, after receiving the views of the Director of Operational Test and Evaluation, submits to the congressional defense committees a report certifying that the proposed interceptor to be deployed as part of such a missile defense system has demonstrated, through successful, operationally realistic flight testing, a high probability of working in an operationally effective manner and the ability to accomplish the mission.
Ascent phase missile defense:
This section would require the Secretary of Defense to submit a report to the congressional defense committees outlining a strategy for ascent phase missile defense within 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act.
Foreign ballistic missile intelligence analysis:
This section would require the Secretary of Defense, in consultation with the Director of National Intelligence, to conduct an assessment of foreign ballistic missile intelligence analysis gaps and shortfalls, and prepare a plan to ensure that the appropriate intelligence centers have sufficient analytical capabilities to address such gaps and shortfalls. The committee is aware of certain intelligence gaps and shortfalls in foreign ballistic missile activities, in particular emerging longer-range ballistic missile activities, as noted by the Missile Defense Agency.
This section would also require a report by February 28, 2010, on the results of the assessment, the plan to ensure sufficient analytical capabilities, and a description of the resources required to implement such plan.
A U.S.-Russian joint missile defense data exchange center:
This section would allow the Secretary of Defense, in conjunction with the Government of the Russian Federation, to expand the United States-Russian Federation joint center for the exchange of data from early warning systems for launches of ballistic missiles, as established pursuant to section 1231 of the Floyd D. Spence National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2001 (Public Law 106–398), to include the exchange of data on missile defense-related activities.
This section would also require the Secretary of Defense to submit a report on plans for expansion of the joint data exchange center to the Committees on Armed Services of the Senate and House of Representatives within 30 days after the date of enactment of this Act.
-- John Liang