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ALSSA Articles

The Air Land Sea Application (ALSA) Center develops multi-Service tactics, techniques, and procedures (MTTP) with the goal of meeting the immediate needs of the warfighter. In addition to developing MTTP, ALSA provides the ALSB forum to facilitate tactically and operationally relevant information exchanges among warfighters of all Services.

There is no better resource for information than the people doing the jobs. Personal experiences, studies, and individual research lead to inspirational and educational articles. Therefore, we invite our readers to share their experiences and, possibly, have them published in an upcoming ALSB. 

We want to take your expertise and lessons learned from recent operations or any other multi-Service or multi-nation missions in which you have been involved, and spread that knowledge to others. Get published by sharing your experiences and expertise. 

You are invited to use this platform to share your insights on topics that may not be covered in doctrine or address an operational gap that highlights emerging needs for supporting multiservice publications. 

Please keep submissions unclassified, publicly releasable, and in accordance with the submission requirements below.


We solicit articles and reader's comments. Contributions of 2,500 to 5,000 words. Submit contributions double-spaced in MS Word. Include name, title, complete unit address, telephone numbers, and e-mail address. Graphics can appear in an article, but you must also provide a separate computer file for each graphic and photograph (photos must be 300 dpi). Send e-mail submissions to ALSA Center reserves the right to edit content to meet space limitations and conform to the ALSB style and format.

Feature Article
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Blast From The Past Article
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Previous Articles

March 14, 2022

The Critical Role Space Plays in Enabling C2 (The Ultimate High Ground)

For more than 15 years, the American joint force has been involved in perpetual conflict. During this period, near-peer adversaries have been watching, learning about, and aggressively closing the gap on United States’ (US’) asymmetric technological advantages (e.g., precision; stealth; or unmanned; cyber; and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance). Further, US dominance across all phases of warfighting remains heavily reliant on the ability to maintain situational awareness (SA) for the joint force commander; execute a decision cycle much faster than adversaries; and, ultimately, C2 the joint force (one of seven joint functions essential to accomplishing any mission).

Feb. 28, 2022

Command, Control, and Communications in the Southwest Pacific Area Campaign (1943-45): A retrospective to inform future C2 and Competition in the Indo-Pacific

The current DoD and Indo-Pacific strategy calls for a dynamic forward posture and presence in Southeast Asia, South Asia, and Oceania (formerly the SWPA). While the communication challenges and operating environment remain largely unchanged, advanced 21st-century communication technologies will only be as effective as the sophisticated adversarial threat capabilities built to deny them. This retrospective intends to provide context for command and control, and communications for future competition and conflict (if required) in the South Pacific to maintain a free and open Indo-Pacific.

Feb. 15, 2022

Maneuver Combat and the Integration of Air Force Special Warfare: Leveraging TACP Expertise Against a Near-Peer Threat

TACPs can longer rest on their laurels of liaison and terminal control alone, they must acknowledge the struggles that our nation faces in the next conflict. The Air Force developed a map for the TACP weapon system in the latest AIR FORCE SPECIAL WARFARE (AFSPECWAR) TACTICAL AIR CONTROL PARTY (TACP) WEAPON SYSTEM VISION 2030. In this four-page document, the USAF Deputy Chief of Staff states that: “The TACP weapon system (WS) is not currently postured to provide ‘joint lethality in contested environments’… from the tactical to strategic planning level as laid out in the National Defense Strategy …the improved TACP WS will provide effective air-minded integration to joint elements to enable stand-in sensors, link stand-off shooters, and provide all domain effects for joint commanders.” This battle-hardened community of joint terminal attack controllers (JTACs) must evolve to be joint partners in all domains; kinetic and non-kinetic subject matter experts across the all-domain spectrum.

Jan. 27, 2022

The FAC and The Future (“FAC IT”)

Any discussion of Air Force support for US Army forces eventually equates to the question, "Can the forward air controller (FAC) survive in modern warfare?”. Based on experience, many say "No, the mission of the FAC is to fly and die." "Remotely piloted vehicles are the answer." "Let the Army control close air support." Each of these statements writes off the FAC. However, the history of air warfare shows that the FAC has adapted and survived as warfare has changed. Out of necessity, the FAC has reappeared in every recent conflict we have fought. I don't believe we need to write off the FAC; in fact, we can't afford to write him off. The FAC is the central and final control node for command, control, and communication operations of tactical air (TACAIR), and he must remain the focal point for coordinating aerial firepower in close support of ground forces.

Jan. 14, 2022

INTRANET/INTERNET Technology and the Warfighting “A New Concept for the JFACC, the AOC, and CTAPS”

Intranet/internet is exploding as a technology. It's in the daily news; people discuss it frequently; every person is becoming familiar with the technology, and we are using the internet in greater numbers every day. Can this technology be used in an operation where large amounts of information need to get to many organizations across different operating systems with diverse computer languages and varied operating systems? The answer is an overwhelming yes! Currently, the military uses the Contingency Theater Advanced Planning System (CTAPS) to support the joint forces air component commander (JFACC) and many other systems. The computer requirements are more detailed in a later section. The numbers of the required systems, still to buy, to equip, and then train all organizations to use the equipment represents a considerable cost in money and time.

Jan. 1, 2022

DOD Cyberspace: Establishing a Shared Understanding and How to Protect It

The full consequences of potential adversary cyberspace operations (CO) in the DOD are still being fully understood. Yet, there is a lack of shared understanding about cyberspace across the DOD and the joint force and even less understanding of how the DOD should protect its cyberspace. Despite a desire to understand cyberspace and to protect ourselves, a dearth of clear, concise guidance for the joint force has led to a lack of emphasis on cyberspace and cyberspace security in planning and operations. This article establishes a clear, shared understanding of DOD cyberspace, provides guidance to the DOD to protect its cyberspace, and illustrates current and future efforts to improve DOD’s cybersecurity.

Dec. 15, 2021

Combined Arms in the CAS Firefight

The shifting threat environment and return to strategic competition forced the United States Air Force to rethink the mission and force structure of Air Force Tactical Air Control Party (TACP) airmen, now known as Special Warfare. This article reminds the Joint Force that in the best of times integration of forces is a significant challenge. Only through close relationships, combined training events, and technological advances are TACP airmen effective in integrating Air Force assets with ground maneuver units.

Dec. 1, 2021

Failing Forward - Disaggregated Command and Control in Strategic Competition

Currently, the Air Force has given lead wing commanders authority to conduct mission-type tactics, but these authorities have yet to be met with upgraded C2 capabilities nor the Airmen to effectively C2 lead wing assets in combat operations. Starting in World War II, the lead maneuver unit of the Air Force became the NAF, and NAF commanders conducted C2 of forces through assigned air operations centers (AOCs). However, AOCs now reside at the Major Command level effectively removing the primary C2 structure from both the NAF and lead wings. It is time for the Air Force to invest both dollars and manpower into rebuilding effective C2 capabilities within lead wings and across distant areas of responsibility (AORs)

Nov. 15, 2021

Close Air Support And The Digitized Division - An Airman's Perspective

This month’s Blast From the Past article was written just before the start of the War on Terror and focuses on using then-newly fielded technology to increase lethality on the battlefield during large-scale combat operations. Readers will notice the parallel to our feature article published on November 1st, “Winning the Counterland Battle by Enabling Sensor-to-Shooter Automation”. Both articles, written 20 years apart, focus on reducing the time required to identify and destroy targets on the modern battlefield.

Nov. 1, 2021

Winning The Counterland Battle By Enabling Sensor-to-shooter Automation

Machine-to-machine communication and automated intelligence reporting provide incremental improvements when used alone. Combining the two techniques significantly shortens a kill-chain. In order to fully harness the existing architectures, databases, datalinks, and communication pathways in the DoD, tactical experts need education on how to leverage new software and computer processing technologies. Once educated, experts from each area of responsibility need to make a concerted effort to sit down together on a regular basis. At the table, educated experts need to work down the joint prioritized target list with a laser focus on shortening each kill-chain. The focus cannot stay on widgets and gadgets to find things faster or track them better. The focus must shift to the specific tactics, techniques, and procedures to move information between the widgets and gadgets comprising the kill-chain.