BATTLESPACE UPDATE Vol.6 ISSUE 25 – Enews Version www.battle-technology.com
Dstl response letter to above article dated 24th June 2004
29 June 2004
To the Editor
Ref: JWID – SEARCHING FOR AN IDENTITY
As host to JWID since 2002, The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) believes it is an important part of the event to welcome journalists to its unique facility at Portsdown West. We endeavour to give as much access as possible, however, each year there are certain aspects of the Demonstration not open to the media.
The protection of current or future equipment capabilities and the safeguarding of procedures which, if exposed, would allow a potential enemy to plan how to circumvent them, present significant security issues that Dstl must adhere to. Access to classified data being used to test our systems under realistic conditions would undermine to a major degree what we achieve every year in the totality of JWID. This year for instance, exclusion from certain demonstrations and areas within JWID was dictated by policy set by Defence Information Infrastructure Integrated Project Team and the Home Office.
A major component at JWID 04 was the creation of realistically staffed Future Command HQ and Tactical HQ, providing the primary focus for Networked Enabled Capability at the event. Unlimited access to these scenario was granted to the press. Here they could observe the testing and evaluation of technologies taking part in JWID, and witness how new technologies could address future defence communications requirements both nationally and within a coalition. In today’s climate many military locations operate tightened security measures where ‘escorted’ visitors, regardless of whom they represent, are accompanied whilst on site and JWID is no exception.
This year’s event included EDS, BT, Fujitsu, Thales, COGENT (part of EADS), Northop Grumman, General Dynamics (UK), Raytheon and BAE Systems, as detailed in the JWID Guidebook, in one way shape or form. Additionally, the bespoke network did indeed include BOWMAN and CORMORANT precisely to start building a network that is relevant for our future defence requirements.
With regard to the future of JWID, I am extremely confident that there will remain the requirement to retain an industry-independent facility. This will allow effective Government-to-Government working at key stages of the development of crucial capabilities designed to allow our forces to be interoperable on the battlefield.
Col Tim John
JWID National Lead
Defence Science and Technology Laboratory