Sunday, June 2, 2013

(Korean) Allies agree on new combined command

Let the controversy begin.  I do not know anything more than what is in this article but if it is accurate it is certainly something I endorse (and have endorsed for a long time).  But there are those who will be opposed to the new command arrangement.  This is virtually no change for US SOF as it has for decades fallen under the ROK 3 Star SOF commander in the Combined Unconventional Warfare Task Force.  But we should keep in mind that although not stated in this article the Combined Theater Command (I guess the new acronym will the be the CTC) will likely answer to the Military Committee just as the Combined Forces Command does now.  And the Military Committee is made up of representatives of both nations' National Command and Military Authorities.  But in my mind this is good news.  Will be interesting to see what happens at the Security Consultative Meeting in October.

The agreement by the allies’ Joint Chiefs of Staffs ditched the initial plan for dissolving their Combined Forces Command and building separate command structures 
The plan, which virtually retains the CFC 

Under the allies’ tentative plan, a four-star Korean general is to head the Combined Theater Command ― the envisioned command structure ― while a U.S. general will become its deputy chief.  

Should it be adopted as a final version, it would virtually mark the first time for the U.S. military to be under the operational control of a foreign commander.  
Under the envisioned Combined Component Commands, there would be five wings ― the Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps and Special Ops. Only the combined air force would be led by a three-star U.S. commander, sources said, given the massive amount of U.S. aerial assets to be deployed in case of a peninsular contingency.
V/R
Dave
Allies agree on new combined command
Plan may be finalized at SCM in October but will still need political approval

Published : 2013-06-02 20:47
Updated : 2013-06-02 20:48
The South Korean and U.S. militaries have agreed to create a new combined command structure similar to their current decades-old apparatus after the transfer of wartime operational control slated for 2015 to maintain high security vigilance, Seoul officials said Sunday.

The agreement by the allies’ Joint Chiefs of Staffs ditched the initial plan for dissolving their Combined Forces Command and building separate command structures. But it should be endorsed by their legislatures and government leaders, the officials noted. 

The plan, which virtually retains the CFC, may be finalized when the allies’ defense chiefs meet for their annual Security Consultative Meeting in Seoul in October, they said. 

South Korean Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin (right), U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel (center) and Japanese Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera pose for a photo prior to their talks at the annual Asia Security Summit, better known as the Shangri-La Dialogue, in Singapore on Saturday. (Defense Ministry)

“The current command system has been entrenched as an ideal mechanism. Thus, (South Korea and the U.S.) share the understanding that (the efforts to build a new command structure) be pushed for in this direction,” Seoul’s Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin told reporters on the sidelines of the Asia Security Summit, a gathering of defense ministers in Singapore on Saturday.

The allies initially agreed to scrap the CFC and build a cooperative body to ensure bilateral military collaboration. But amid North Korea’s increasing nuclear and missile threats, they have thought twice about the original plan. 

Conservatives here have increased their calls for keeping the CFC as its dissolution could embolden the North, undermine the allies’ operational efficiency and weaken U.S. security commitments. After Seoul retakes the OPCON, it will assume a leading role in wartime operations with the U.S. providing support.

Under the allies’ tentative plan, a four-star Korean general is to head the Combined Theater Command ― the envisioned command structure ― while a U.S. general will become its deputy chief. 

Should it be adopted as a final version, it would virtually mark the first time for the U.S. military to be under the operational control of a foreign commander. 

Under the envisioned Combined Component Commands, there would be five wings ― the Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps and Special Ops. Only the combined air force would be led by a three-star U.S. commander, sources said, given the massive amount of U.S. aerial assets to be deployed in case of a peninsular contingency.

Seoul’s Defense Ministry spokesperson Kim Min-seok expressed caution, stressing the plan was far from finalization.

“Although the allied militaries thought it would be an ideal form, it should go through many procedures such as getting understanding from the government as a whole, and the legislature and other political circles,” he told reporters.
(Continued at the link below)

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