Surface Warriors Form Elite School

The surface community is in the process of standing up a new command later this year dedicated to improving tactical proficiency across all mission areas. The schoolhouse will improve the surface force’s ability to maintain warfighting superiority in a changing world.

Lt. j.g. Theresa Rouse, training officer, left, and Ensign Stephanie Wexler, combat information center officer, review and discuss contacts at the anti-air warfare coordinator watch station in the combat information center aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Shiloh (CG 67), May 27, 2013. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class N. Ross Taylor/Released)

Lt. j.g. Theresa Rouse, training officer, left, and Ensign Stephanie Wexler, combat information center officer, review and discuss contacts at the anti-air warfare coordinator watch station in the combat information center aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Shiloh (CG 67), May 27, 2013. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class N. Ross Taylor/Released)

 

The new command will be tasked with the development, training and assessment of surface warfare tactical proficiency, and capability against a full range of adversaries. The core of this effort will be a Surface Warfare Combat Training Continuum, which will codify the training and experience standards that officers and certain enlisted will be required to meet as they progress through their careers.

The first weapons and tactics instructors have already received training at Naval Air and Missile Defense Command and Naval Mine and Anti-Submarine Warfare Command.

Lt. Christopher Barnes, right, anti-terrorism officer aboard the amphibious dock landing ship USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43), trains Lt.j.g. Ethan Blankenship on the next course of action as an anti-terrorism officer while monitoring surface contact movements in the combat information center aboard Fort McHenry in the Mediterranean Sea, June 19, 2009. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Kristopher Wilson/Released)

Lt. Christopher Barnes, right, anti-terrorism officer aboard the amphibious dock landing ship USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43), trains Lt.j.g. Ethan Blankenship on the next course of action as an anti-terrorism officer while monitoring surface contact movements in the combat information center aboard Fort McHenry in the Mediterranean Sea, June 19, 2009. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Kristopher Wilson/Released)

The new anti-submarine warfare and integrated air and missile defense weapons and tactics instructors returned to the fleet last year. These officers are armed with the knowledge and skills to make immediate and substantive impacts on the tactical proficiency of their individual commands. Over time, weapons and tactics instructors will populate all surface ships, and will be responsible for meeting standards within the Surface Warfare Combat Training Continuum.

The new command will generate, validate and promulgate tactics, techniques and procedures for the full spectrum of surface warfare mission areas. It will not only develop experts in many warfare areas, but will focus on mastering the integration of different warfare areas. It’s not enough to have experts purely in air warfare, strike warfare, ballistic missile defense, electronic warfare and undersea warfare, because surface warriors must excel in multiple missions simultaneously. It will be more than a place to write tactics; it will be a means for instilling uniform tactical excellence as a cultural standard.

“Our junior officers, in particular, join the Navy to be warfighters, and we must provide them a culture in which tactical excellence is developed and maintained throughout a career and where it is an explicit discriminator of who gets promoted”

Vice Adm. Tom Copeman, Commander, Naval Surface Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet

Editor’s note: This blog was originally posted Jan. 24 on iDriveWarships.