Rep. Adam Smith (D-Tacoma) announced today that he has secured $1 million for the National Defense University pilot program. This project has the basic premise that information technology is the keystone for military transformation and network centric warfare.

“As a Member of the House Armed Services committee, it is important that we understand the best way to utilize technology on the battlefield,” said Smith. “The funding of this program gives us information on new uses for information technology for new missions such as stabilization and reconstruction operations and homeland security.  Also, many of these new technologies that form the basis for transforming our military are vulnerable to disruption in various ways which could adversely affect US military capabilities. We have several projects designed to analyze this problem and to suggest possible solutions.”

As a leading proponent of technology, Smith sees the usefulness of this study. The projects will also focus on how we stay ahead of potential military competitors when it is the commercial sector that is driving most of the innovation in this area because competitors have access to the same commercial technology. The program is pursues several projects designed to allow the U.S. military to acquire more efficiently and more quickly new innovative technologies coming out of the commercial IT sector. Finally, the projects will show us the best way to share information technologies with our allies, who are playing an increasingly important role in combat operations.

Smith requested funding through the 2005 Defense Appropriations bill. It is expected that this bill will be finalized before Congress adjourns this year