26 May 2012

COTS Networking Gets Military Workout

The Economist takes a quick trip to Ft Bliss to look into the current NIE.

It has been three weeks since the Ellisian army invaded next-door Attica. The United States, Attica’s ally, quickly deployed troops to help re-establish the international border, and had advanced more than 50 miles by May 16th.

The mission, however, was not an easy one. As well as facing rugged terrain and extreme weather, the American soldiers and Attican security forces had to contend with the radical Islamic Congress of Attica, the transnational Islamic Brotherhood for Jihad, the malicious hackers of the Wolf Brigade and the petty criminals of the area. Thank heaven it was, in fact, a staged exercise, running from Fort Bliss, in west Texas, through to the White Sands missile range, an army base in New Mexico. Some 3,800 soldiers and several thousand military and civilian personnel were taking part in this spring’s Network Integration Evaluation (NIE), the third round of a new twice-yearly series of exercises. Their point is to test how well fancy new mapping and messaging systems would stand up to the stresses of conflict in harsh conditions.

By: Brant

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