U.S. Army Integrated Air and Missile Defense Capabilities: Enabling Joint Force 2020 and Beyond

May 5, 2014

A decade of war has affirmed the U.S. Army’s ability to conduct its core competencies of combined-arms maneuver and wide-area security in the most trying circumstances. U.S. armed forces, across all domains, are without peer. Over the past 100 years, potential adversaries have keenly observed the forward-staging and power-projection capabilities of U.S. armed forces that have provided the nation with assured access and freedom of action across the global commons. Unwilling or unable to directly oppose the joint force, potential adversaries have turned to the development of asymmetric capabilities to establish an anti-access/area denial (A2/AD) operational environment to challenge the operational reach of the joint force and place assured access to the global commons at risk. They are relying on an array of air and missile threats—ballistic and cruise missiles, long-range precision rockets and artillery and unmanned aerial systems—as preferred asymmetric means to achieve A2/AD. These capabilities challenge U.S. ability to build and project joint combat power and the freedom of action this imparts. U.S. policy directs a comprehensive testing regime for Integrated Air and Missile Defense (IAMD) capabilities, strengthened cooperation with partners to develop cost-effective capabilities and burden sharing. This policy also directs development of mobile capabilities to provide flexible options to meet global demand for IAMD assets. However, recent and ongoing activities of potential adversaries have demonstrated that they are outpacing this U.S. policy. For example, the development of road-mobile capabilities in North Korea, technology transfer to Syria and the volume of research, development and testing conducted by Iran and China have all contributed to an increased imbalance and growing vulnerability gap between the U.S. IAMD force and potential adversaries’ capability and capacity